After the dust has settled, four new Alpha winners comprise the class of 2017!
Miss Earth – Karen Ibasco, Philippines
Miss International – Kevin Liliana, Indonesia
Miss Universe – Demi-leigh Nel-Peters, South Africa
Miss World – Manushi Chillar, India
Interesting to note that three out of the four winners are from Asia. It is even more noteworthy that the winners of Miss Earth and Miss International were trained in the same pageant camp in the Philippines! Not to mention that for 5 years in a row the Philippines has won one or two of the Alpha pageants consecutively. This goes to show that the Philippines is indeed a pageant powerhouse country.
After the dust has settled and all the major pageants has finished, we can now say that the Philippines continues its winning streak in the 4 most relevant pageants in the world. Since 2013, the Philippines has been winning one crown after another in Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International and Miss Earth (arranged according to date of establishment).
Every year since 2013, we have been winning one title after another.
2013 – Miss International Bea Rose Santiago & Miss World Megan Young
2014 – Miss Earth Jamie Herrell
2015 – Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach & Miss Earth Angelia Gabrena Ong
2016 – Miss International Kylie Verzosa
2017 – Miss Earth Karen Ibasco
The latest addition to the list is Miss Earth Karen Ibasco who allowed the Philippines its 7th Alpha pageant win in 5 consecutive years. The medical physicist wowed the judges with her gift of gab and earning the 4th Miss Earth title for the country. She brought in a sandwich victory after Angelia Ong’s back-to-back win with Jamie Herrell.
With 7 wins in 5 years, will we be seeing another Filipina winner come 2018?
Two international pageant titles are won by the Philippines within less than 24 hours in between. Miss Earth 2017 Karen Ibasco and Reina Hispanoamericana 2017 Teresita Ssen Marquez have won through their hard-work, grit, wit and intelligence.
While they may not be the most facially strong girls in the competition, they have showed that character and intelligence trumps mere physical beauty. Their victories are as much a throwback to the beauty queens of the 90’s where it is not the prettiest girl that wins, but those who speak with substance and eloquence. They remind us of names like Sushmita Sen, Wendy Fitzwilliam and Brooke Mahaelani Lee whose wit and intelligence won over the crown for them.
Below are their responses to their questions in their respective pageants.
“I believe that the real problem is not climate change. The real problem is us, because of our ignorance and apathy. What we have to do is to start changing our ways, to start recalibrating our minds and redirecting our steps. Because together as a global community, our micro efforts will have a macro effect to help save our home, our planet.” – Karen Ibasco
“Language can be learned, but the will and determination to contribute something to an organization cannot. It has to come from the heart and it has to be natural. I believe that kindness is a universal language that if you treat people with tolerance, patience and love, you will understand each other. The Hispanic culture is not about language only, it’s about love for God, love for country, love for history and culture and love for family. And as a Filipino with a unique heritage I have instilled that. I am ready to promote the Hispanic culture not just in Asia but in the whole world. It is time to celebrate Hispanic culture. It is meant to be celebrated. Gracias!!!” – Teresita Ssen Marquez
The victories of the two is now a precursor to other pageant girls that beauty is no longer enough in winning pageants. You have to hone your mind and public speaking just like how you hone your pasarela for the competition.
First came the 2nd runner up finish of Elizabeth Clenci in Miss Grand International, then came the 1st runner up finish of Nelda Ibe in Miss Globe, and now Miss Earth 2017 Karen Ibasco…
The Kagandahang Flores camp is on a winning streak this year. The oldest pageant camp in country started off with a huge bang at Binibining Pilipinas & Miss Philippines Earth that continued to go on ’til the recently concluded Miss Earth at the MOA Arena. KF Stalwarts Sir Rodgil Fores and Gio Flores must be very proud of their wards’ accomplishments this year.
Elizabeth started it off to a good start placing 3rd overall in MGI earlier in Vietnam. In all honesty, I thought that she would be the one to win the title with tough competition coming from Peru. Then came the well deserved 2nd place finish of Nelda in Albania, just an inch short of clinching the title that went on to Vietnam. While Karen solidified things at the homefront winning the 4th ME crown for the country. After a solid performance in every segment of the pageant, she romped away easily with the title after smashing it at the final q&a.
Will KF continue its winning streak until Miss Universe this year? Can’t wait to find out!
This is going to be a quick fire Miss Earth 2017 review as I was writing this blog while the pageant is on-going. So this is as honest and as raw as you can get on my thoughts on the pageant finals.
The Pre-pageant Activity – the month-long pageant was filled with activities and medal competition. IMHO the 4 week could be lessened to just 3 so that it wouldn’t be too exhausting for the candidates. However the long schedule allowed the candidates to travel around the country and experience eco-tourism spots which is a major plus for the pageant.
The Host, James Deakin – as a host he was quite excellent as he tried to add energy into his stint. In my eyes, this guy can’t do no wrong as he is perhaps the best male host so far of the pageant in recent memory. I do have to comment how he rolls off his tongue & sounds angry when he announces the names of the countries.
The Opening – I am a bit on the fence at the novelty concept of superhero outfits for the opening simply because there are some countries that didn’t seem to take this seriously. Some costumes looked more apt for a cosplay convention. But those that took this seriously were real standouts like the Philippines, Venezuela, Netherlands and Thailand.
Top 16 Semi-finalists & Swimsuits– the semis comprised of an equal mix of the frontrunners and the underdog surprises: Thailand, USA, Russia, Tonga, Colombia, Angola, Guatemala, Vietnam, Switzerland, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Australia, Philippines, Venezuela, Netherlands, Cameroon and Czech Republic. Out of my list o of them made it to the actual semis with an additional 2 coming from my alternate list for a total of 11. The swimsuit round is too quick! It was like the girls just went and had 2 seconds TV time to gauge how they were cut to the top 8.
Top 8 finalists & the Hashtag Rounds – Australia, Philippines, Thailand, Venezuela, Colombia, Czech Republic, Netherlands and Russia. Standouts in the hashtag segments were Australia, Venezuela, Philippines and Colombia. Netherlands picked an easy hashtag but her answer was a bit off. Thailand started off well but got nervous as she closed her statement. Russia, I feel that she did answer her question well but the translator used a simplified word in English.
Top 4 & the Final Question – Colombia, Australia, Philippines & Russia. It was a shock not to see Thailand make the cut!
But boy the top 4 delivered during the final question. Philippines blasted the competition with her answer. She gave the best answer among the girls in the top 4. Australia did well and articulated her thoughts nicely. Colombia’s answer was actually the most thought-out as consumption is what fuels the global industries that depletes natural resources and hence, global warming. I feel for Russia for not being able to complete her answer.
Miss Fire- Lada Akimova, Russia
Miss Water – Juliana Franco, Colombia
Miss Air – Nina Robertson, Australia
Miss Earth – Karen Ibasco, Philippines
The Miss Earth pageant is almost at its culmination. And as such Sashes&Scripts is listing down the ladies that could possibly comprise of the winners and semi-finalists of the pageant.
Potential Spoilers: Puerto Rico, Austria, Switzerland, Northern Ireland, Nigeria, & Cameroon
Top 16 – Australia, Mexico, Ecuador, Angola ,Indonesia, US Virgin Islands, Brazil, Ethiopia
Top 8 – Venezuela, Vietnam, Peru, Colombia
The Elemental Court
Fire – USA, Andreia Gibau
Water – Philippines, Karen Ibasco
Air – Netherlands, Faith Landman
Miss Earth – Thailand, Paweensuda Drouin
I would have to admit that the Miss Earth title is going to be a fight between Faith and Fahsai. Those two ladies are arguably the best in this year’s batch and there is no denying that the two are equally deserving of the title. But there is a tie-breaker between the two; which one has the bigger fanbase and that seems to be Fahsai. However either of the two can do the job. Hopefully the new winner could promote Miss Earth pageant to a wider international audience and not just the Philippines. The winner should be able to raise the profile of the pageant to the international community like how Tereza did back in 2012. And I only see both Faith and Fahsai to be up for that task.