I never would’ve scored a perfect score in my “fearful forecast” for Mister International–this is because I forgot that they are selecting a Top 16, not a Top 15!  Anyway, whatever the case, I had a good batting average this time:  I got 10 out of the 16 correct!  And three of the guys in my Top 5 made it, including the winner so I’m mighty pleased.  Four of those I missed are in the “Bubbling Under” list, so in my book I also did pretty well.

Still, I found baffling why one of my Top Three frontrunners, Ireland, totally missed the cut.  Sure, his skin color is pasty white, but you can still see definition in his physique even with the pale color.  Seriously, are the two “headscratchers” truly better than him?

Lucas Malvacini awardee: Ireland

Let’s discuss the two “headscratchers” who made it, starting with China.  Okay, he redeemed himself a bit by cleaning up his stubble and looking better than expected.  But still, seriously, him over Ireland?

Even more baffling to me is that Malaysia, who I rated as among the bottom of the pack, went even further and landed in the Top 10.  Sure he has a buffed physique, but so is Mr. Ireland and Ireland has a better looking face than this guy.  But looking at the final night pictures, it suddenly dawned on me–he looks like a very special person in my life, that if his voice sounds like smoked hickory, I would probably break down and weep.  Still, I would rather see, say, ex-Manhunt contestants like Costa Rica and Spain making the cut instead of him.

I’m glad redemption from a Manhunt non-finalist came to France.  I just only hoped that besides Ireland, Costa Rica and Spain joined him, too.


I was surprised Mr. Slovak Republic went as far as becoming 4th runner-up.  I only placed him in my “Bubbling Under” list.  Still, I’m okay with his placement.  There are some pageant fans who hated seeing Singapore in the Top Five.  Considering he garnered a special award prior to the proceedings, I sensed that he would do well, but I didn’t expect that he’ll beat the likes of Brazil and Slovenia to become first runner-up.  Still I’m not really violently objecting and just put it as a difference in taste.  There were similar objections over the Top Five placements of Indonesia and Vietnam last year, remember?

The winning court: Brazil (3RU), Singapore (1RU), Lebanon (winner), Slovenia (2RU), Slovak Republic (4RU)

Congratulations again to Lebanon for his well-deserved win.  He possesses that killer mix of handsomeness, sex appeal, and charisma characteristic of winners in this pageant. Job well done!



(image sourced from
Flanked by the two most recent Mister International winners: Ryan Terry of Great Britain (L), and Cesar Curti of Brazil (R)

All images courtesy of Julio Rodriguez of Belleza Venezolana unless otherwise indicated.


I will probably be semi-vague about my sentiments as I’m planning to prepare a full-fledged review on this pageant’s finals (probably will be posted in a week or two).  I was at the venue of the live finals (after a long ride going there since I rarely venture into the Alabang area and live very far from there) and I think the intention of holding this pageant again outdoors in front of an elegant country club facade was to recapture the magic of the 2006 finals, when it was held in front of the National Museum.  There was a swimming pool right in front of the facade, where they installed a curving catwalk, plus stairs and a platform.  It does make for an interesting effect, to say the least.

The overall program was fast-paced in general, especially since it was broadcast live on Star World.  It was almost glitch-free, and there was only a brief overrun of about 5-10 minutes for the scheduled two-hour program (it was mostly brief and barely noticeable extended lulls that caused it, so subsequent rebroadcasts in this cable channel would probably be able to shorten the program to their typical 1 hour and 40 minutes with commercials).

Hosts Marc Nelson and Sandra Seifert

Admittedly I was very off in my “fearful” forecast, only getting seven of the actual Top 16, but with the exception of one, the rest were in my “Bubbling Under” list anyway, so it’s not bad in my reckoning.  There is one thing that I was glad I was wrong about in my “fearful” forecast–the gorgeous Miss Brazil  made the final cut (and how!) despite not medaling.  Turns out the medal scores do not carry as much weight as I (and most pageant fans and pundits) have presumed.  Conversely, I was shocked at the exclusion of some erstwhile medal leaders like Turkey and Thailand (the latter could be easily explained away after I took a closer look after the pageant, but I’m still a bit baffled by the former even if I learned from a member of the prejudging panel that she “lacked spark” during that round).  Many of the ones I missed are refreshing additions so I don’t have serious objections, with the exception of one or two, whom I would rather replace with the aforementioned two medal leaders.  But I wished there was a black girl in that roster (I was of course hoping for Kenya, but it’s again a shut-out for her…).

Most of the Top 16 semifinalists after being called.
Boy, I was glad I was wrong! Brazil made it!
Wonder what happened to her in prejudging?
Playfully mock-weeping about her non-placement: Miss Thailand with a fan after the pageant (image courtesy of Cuizon-Alinsug Ko-Ko)
No room for a black girl?

As the night wore on, I felt that though despite some merits, it seems to be mostly set up for one particular delegate to advance, and maybe win it all.  As the final results were announced, it was mostly a mixed, bittersweet emotion I felt.  But I’m unequivocally glad about one thing: they selected an absolutely gorgeous lady as the winner.

There seems to be a common link between 2009, 2011, and this year, if you see the triptych I created below.  I hoped for a fresh mix, but that wasn’t realized this year.  Nevertheless, it seems based on the spontaneous hugs amongst all the delegates behind the scenes prior to the announcement of results, the delegates themselves were satisfied with the outcome.  I still respect the final decision and am relieved that I do not need to subtitle my upcoming review as “Homeland Glories (Part 5)”.  All hail Tereza Fajksova, Miss Earth 2012!



Can you figure out what they have in common? The Miss Earth elemental courts of 2009, 2011, and 2012. (2009 courtesy of Jory Rivera for OPMB Worldwide, 2011 and 2012 sourced from

Images courtesy of Jory Rivera and Bruce Casanova of OPMB Worldwide unless otherwise indicated.