I was actually a bit excited about the Miss Intercontinental pageant because of the presence of Kris Tiffany Janson, and I was hoping she will out perform the 2nd runner-up finish of Maria Sovietskaya Bacud 19 years ago. I was also hopeful that this pageant will finally assume a place amongst the premiere international pageants–it would be long overdue for a pageant that originated 43 years ago in Aruba.
Unfortunately, many pageant fans and pundits’ hopes are dashed when they witnessed the live stream of the pageant–some of my colleagues have described the proceedings as akin to witnessing a local junior-senior prom, with production values that were woefully parochial and subpar. Aggravating matters was the announcement of finalists–supposedly there would only be five finalists each representing a continent (Asia & Oceania, Africa, Europe, North America, and South America). After the five finalists/continental winners were awarded, they then suddenly announced there was a sixth finalist–the host reportedly dilly-dallied and claimed there was a tie in one of the continents (Asia & Oceania) hence the additional slot.
After the final Q&A, most watchers felt that the sixth finalist called would just remain that–a finalist. This was because she flubbed her answer while the others gave more solid responses to the questions given to them. Filipino fans like myself were pleased enough that Kris Tiffany Janson was called as 2nd runner-up, and that the pretty Miss Cuba was 1st runner-up. Then the shocker–the sixth finalist called from Thailand is then declared the winner. Many pageant fans (most particularly the Filipinos) immediately made derisive comments about the decision, declaring the winner unworthy of the title.
I have to agree and join in the chorus of disapproval over the selection of the winner. Her features are not that special for my taste, and compound that fact that she flubbed her Q&A, so her win is a headscratcher for most people. Sure, it’s welcome news that finally an Asian country has won, but it seems it’s not the “right” or “most deserving” one that got the crown. Some Filipino pageant fans and pundits speculate that a certain popular-but-controversial website had a hand in this, because said site is also affiliated with the training camp that groomed the winner.
Though to the winner’s credit she reaped the rewards of her training as she was polished onstage, her perceived performance is simply just disproportionate to the results. Every major pageant has its share of headscratching results from time to time, but it’s unfortunate that this occurred when there were such high hopes for a pageant that people hope would finally emerge from the doldrums. It seems it will take more time for this pageant to earn back its credibility, as this is quite a setback.
As much as I disagreed with the choice of winner, I’ll take the high ground and not be disagreeable–I won’t disparage the parties associated with said website and training camp and will simply celebrate what we have achieved thanks to Kris Tiffany. Mabuhay and job well done!