MISTER SUPRANATIONAL 2016: AN AUSPICIOUS DEBUT, AND A GAUNTLET THROWN (CONCLUSION)

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The Top Ten then changed into formal wear, and with female partners performed a Viennese waltz set to a cover of The Weeknd’s smash from Fifty Shades of Grey“Earned It”.  It’s not simply gliding motions here, but the guys also had to lift their partners several times.  It’s not a routine for guys with low stamina.  After that dance number, they are subjected to a final Q&A, just like as it was introduced in last year’s Miss Supranational.  Just like in last year’s format, the Top Ten are asked a very simple question:  “What would you like to get from your significant other for Christmas this year?”

10TH PLACE:  JAPAN – Ricky wakabayashi.  I did predict he’ll make the cut because he exudes a sophisticated cosmopolitan Asian vibe, and it does appeal the girls (especially those who love J-Doramas–and there is a significant fanbase in Europe, I heard).  His Christmas wish is simple and direct–dinner with family and a nice jacket.  Though I preferred Czech Republic and Puerto Rico, I have no objections to him making the cut over them, just like…

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9TH PLACE:  PANAMA – Michael Piggott.  “Dark Chocolate” was the only man of color to make the final cut, which probably made him stand out even more and soar to the Top Ten.  His Christmas wish is sweet, humble and lovely–he announced his Christmas wish was granted as he finally saw snow when he set foot in Poland.

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8TH PLACE:  POLAND – Rafal Jonkisz.  I was expecting that since he’s competing on home turf he would make the Top Five at the very least.  It seemed to be pointing towards that direction throughout the pageant finals, as he led the AquaCity challenge and won Mr. MobStar (an automatic ticket to the Top Ten).  I suppose in the judges’ reckoning it was a tight eight-way battle for top honors, and he probably missed the Final Five honors by very little.  This somewhat reminded me of a similar scenario with the previous year’s Mister International, and it’s possible he’s like the equivalent of Reniel Villareal here.  His Christmas wish reveals that even with his stellar status, he’s still a youth at 19 years old–spend time with his family and that he’ll do well in his first semester at university.

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7TH PLACE:  DENMARK – Markus Rosenberg.  This son of Miss World and Miss International 1986 1st runner-up Pia Rosenberg has that boyish appeal that is indeed a charmer.  As I mentioned before it’s a major rumble for eight guys fighting for five limited slots, and he’s one of the three who missed it by a few slivers.  He has the consolation of garnering the Photo-Challenge special award (I have a feeling it has to do with the James Bond style photos they did).  He went for the sincere and honest approach in his Christmas wish–a GoPro camera so he can capture moments and memories.

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6TH PLACE:  VENEZUELA – Gustavo Acevedo.  That Latin handsomeness and those Zac Efron eyes are too irresistible.  I don’t know if his choice to speak Spanish cost him that Top Five slot–he gave a lengthy answer that seems to invoke something poetic about love–it seems he’s citing the Bible or a book and I heard the word “solidaridad” in it.  But since they have no translator, they had Panama translate and all he can come up with is “Love”.

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Now, let’s talk about the Royal Court.  I got three out of five right, with one a pretty big sleeper surprise, and the other one, a sigh of relief that he was not affected by the reports I had been receiving about him.

4TH RUNNER-UP:  ROMANIA – Catalin Brinza.  He fully vindicated his non-finalist finish at Mister Universal Ambassador by making all the way in the Top Five in this pageant.  I suppose his severe features are catnip in the Slavic markets that is why he was able to edge out strong contenders from Poland, Denmark and Venezuela out of the Top Five.  I can’t begrudge him his showing and will just file this under “refreshing sleeper surprises.”  Like many of the guys here, his Christmas wish was also sweet and simple–spend time int eh snow t build snowmen and play in the fjords.

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3RD RUNNER-UP:  BRAZIL – Bruno Vanin.  I’ve always pegged him as Final Five worthy and indeed he placed in this lofty position.  Yes, his physique may be on the slender side, but his charisma and outgoing personality could not be denied.  When asked about his Christmas wish, he talks about being grateful for the life he has lived thus far and the love of his family and the experiences he has in this pageant, and his wish is to pay it forward, that he wishes everyone else will have a wonderful life like the one he already has.  Lovely and altruistic answer, I have to say.

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2ND RUNNER-UP:  INDIA – Jitesh Naresh Thakur.  Here’s another big front-runner who simply ticks all the boxes all throughout.  But I have to say, his Christmas wish is a bit of “humble-brag”:  he talks about wanting to give something instead of getting, and that gift he wants to give is pride for his country and family by winning this title.  His wish obviously didn’t come true, but placing third is still something that his country and family would be proud of, especially with such a strong group like this one.

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1ST RUNNER-UP:  BELARUS – Sergey Bindalov.  He was the one who most peg as the one to win it all in this inaugural edition, especially if we applied Miss Supranational’s trajectory to this pageant.  He was firing on all cylinders indeed and also looked to be on-tract to win.  But the all female panel were just more into another fellow, but still his finish is also part of this country’s extremely strong track record in this pageant franchise.  His Christmas wish is simple and honest–eat a lot and enjoy time with family, and he wish everyone the same.  Those celebrating Christmas understand the sentiment very well.

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MISTER SUPRANATIONAL 2016:  MEXICO – Diego Garcy.  I pegged him as a front-runner until I heard reports from friends with close links to his national director as they relayed tales of conflicts with the choreographer and some other personnel.  So I pegged him down a bit and placed him outside the Top Five.  But apparently with the people that counted like his fellow contestants and the all-female panel of judges, he won them over.  For me, it was a three-way battle for the top honors among him, India, and Belarus, and his flirtatious way with the ladies as shown in videos like the Drift / Maluch challenge where it ended with him asking race car driver Karolina Pilarczyk, “Are you single?” made him stand out.  That, and his imposing 6’2 1/2″ stature and elegant bearing (he won the Mr. Elegance special award) are just too strong to ignore.  Just like Brazil, his Christmas wish was to give something–since Latinos love a party, he wants to throw one for his new friends, his fellow Mister Supranational contestants.  With that outgoing wish, and the charm he has with the ladies, he clinched the inaugural title.

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The production of the inaugural edition of Mister Supranational far eclipsed what was delivered by more established male international pageants like Mister World, Mister International, and Manhunt International (not to mention the host of fledgling up-and-coming ones).  Even with obvious growing pains, this pageant set an indelibly high standard  that it has almost firmly established itself as a premiere pageant worthy of belonging to the level of the aforementioned pageants.  Can the established pageants meet the production values delivered here?  I hope now that Diego is the winner, he could help the World Beauty Organization by providing inputs on how to improve the experience of the contestants in future editions to ensure this pageant sustain its prestige.  Looking forward to what the next editions would hold…

JUST ME!

JOSEPH

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The winners’ court: Brazil (3rd RU), Belarus (1st RU), Mexico (Mister Supranational 2016), India (2nd RU), and Romania (4th RU).

 

 

MISTER SUPRANATIONAL 2016: AN AUSPICIOUS DEBUT, AND A GAUNTLET THROWN (PART 2)

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Before I discuss the Top 20, I have previously mentioned this pageant borrowed an element from another major pageant.  The major pageant is Miss World, and the element is the leaderboard (employed from 2011-2015).  In this case, the twist is it is used to score the three challenge activities conducted:  One team challenge which is the “Maluch” (Polish car assembly) chalenge, and two individual challenges, the Aquacity (swimming) challenge and Supra Chef (cooking) challenge.  The team challenge is scored with 8 points for the 1st place team, 6 for the 2nd place team, 4 for the 3rd place team, and 2 for the last-placed team, but there is 5 bonus points* for one individual who was singled out and given the privilege to go on a drift ride with female race car driver Karolina Pilarczyk, while the individual challenges scored the Top 10 performers with 10 points going to the 1st placer and 1 point going to the 10th placer.  The one who accumulates the most points would be given a wildcard slot in the Top 20.  It turns out there is a tie for first this year…

*That honor went to Trinidad & Tobago.

I have to note about an awkward moment on the leaderboard segment–Peru (Alvaro Paz-Lopez) was disqualified a day before (because he was bringing in girls to his hotel room and basically treating his stint as “spring break”), but he made it to the scoreboard as he was part of the winning Maluch challenge team (8 points) and placed 7th in the Supra-Chef challenge (4 points).  Wonder if he would make the final cut if he wasn’t disqualified?

After the Top 20 was announced, we are then treated to a chic fashion parade with the Top 20 modeling semi-formal black outfits.  set to Goodbye” by Feder featuring Lyse.  

Immediately after that sequence, the Top 10 was announced.  But before we delve into the Top Ten, let’s discuss the Top 20.  I got 14 of the 20 correct, and I have to admit I severely underrated quite a few guys who made it, plus I wasn’t aware of the “wildcard” part, and one of the two wildcards would’ve probably had been in the dreaded “Bottom 11” if it wasn’t for it.  And that person is…

20TH PLACE:  UNITED KINGDOM – Rex Newmark.  He is a chef by profession, and that is the factor why he won the Supra Chef challenge and garnered 10 points.  He was also part of the winning Maluch challenge team, and that gave him an additional 8 points, and with that he was in the joint lead and advanced to the Top 20.  Based on this official ranking, it meant he ousted Egypt from a Top 20 placement as otherwise, most pageant fans and pundits (including myself) regard him as one of the bottom contestants in this batch.

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19TH PLACE:  SWEDEN – Ali Ghafori.  I think his situation was similar to Egypt. but he was lucky enough that he ranked one notch higher to avoid being knocked out by the Wildcard winners.  He didn’t really register that much in the preliminary looks rounds but he showed spunk and personality later on (which may reflect in the interviews).

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18TH PLACE:  FRANCE – Bryan Weber.  As I predicted he made the cut, but it seems barely so as the judges seemed to rate others more highly.  Still it’s worth celebrating that he made the cut this time after missing Mister International the previous year.

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17TH PLACE:  PHILIPPINES – AR dela Cerna.  I’m glad his boyish cuteness garnered enough appeal to make the cut.  It’s all we expected of him and he delivered.

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16TH PLACE:  PUERTO RICO – Christian Trenche.  He was co-champion of the challenge events, garnering 7th in the AquaCity challenge (4 points), was part of the 2nd place team in the Maluch challenge (6 points) and third in the Supra Chef challenge (8 points).  But based on his ranking, it seems he would’ve made the cut without the Wildcard anyway.  Still, I’m surprised he ranked relatively lower than I predicted (I expected him in the Top Ten) as I maintain that he’s way better, than, say, Slovakia.

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15TH PLACE:  SPAIN – Jose de Jaro.  Unlike in activities prior to finals night, he decided to let his hair down.  I’m not that into his long mane, but well, he does handsomeness and charisma enough to make the cut (though I predicted in my homestretch review that he would fare better).

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14TH PLACE:  SLOVAKIA – Karol Kotlar.  I expected him to make the cut on the basis of the fact his country co-hosted some of this pageant’s events.  But to rank this high?  With his boyish scrawny untoned frame?  That he’s better than Spain and Puerto Rico?  That I’m not convinced.  But I have to hand it to him that he has fly dance moves (perhaps he has extensive dance background, both in street and ballet).

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13TH PLACE:  BELGIUM – Johnny Gaspart.  Showing off his beefily buffed physique at almost any occasion worked for him–I should’ve placed him in higher regard as his physique is indeed enviable, and yes, hot enough to make girls swoon.  In the end, though I prefer someone like Puerto Rico above him, he earned his high placement.

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12TH PLACE:  MALTA – Neil Scerri.  Here is another guy that I severely underestimated, to the point that I didn’t even include him in my “Striking Distance” or “Bubbling Under” lists.  But upon a second look, he did have charisma and I found he has a strong fanbase, too.  I apologize for my weak assessment of him initially.  Yes, I prefer Puerto Rico, but he’s proven to be a strong, worthy contender knocking at Top Ten’s door.

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11TH PLACE:  CZECH REPUBLIC – Jan Pultar.  He is actually highly regarded, and based on this ranking, he probably missed the Top Ten by very little–the judges probably simply had a stronger preference for a couple of more exotic types on top of a sleeper surprise.  Some might view his placement as so close yet so far from glory, but in my reckoning, his placement is nothing to be ashamed of.

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COMING UP:  THE TOP TEN