KOREA – Jemin Hong. I know it’s trendy for Korean guys in the entertainment industry to color their hair to any shade that want, but I think the combination of his blond hair and his slender lanky frame in his pre-arrival photos make me think as the cellar-dweller of this batch. But thank goodness he decided to revert back to his natural hair color, and he cuts a more elegant impression as a result.
MALAYSIA – Nazirul Mubin. See INDONESIA.
MEXICO – Luis Zepeda. Yes, he has features that are similar to his countryman, Mister World 2019 2nd runner-up Brian Faugier and Mister World 2012 Francisco Escobar of Colombia. But there’s something about this guy’s features that seem a bit off, and maintaining a unibrow just doesn’t help matters. He just doesn’t quite possess the charisma of those two guys, in my reckoning.
MOROCCO – Lahoudine El Omri. Yes, he’s dusky and his country is in the African continent, but I don’t think I can classify him as black as I’m not certain if his complexion is simply because of Berber roots and I could not confirm if he has genes from the sub-Saharan parts of this continent. He’s actually attractive, but there is something about his mannerisms that make me think of that 2016 Danish contestant, Sy Lee. He was one of the last to comply with Rosko’s clean-shaven policy by shaving for the prejudging round, and to be blunt, it emphasized the Sy Lee-ness of his vibe.
MYANMAR – Shane Htet. See INDONESIA and MALAYSIA, but with a more East Asian vibe.
NEPAL – Bibesh Shrestha. Yes he got a sponsor’s prize in an early event but I don’t think he’s got an inside track for the Top 16. Yes he has some sort of appeal, but for me he would be the closest thing to a headscratcher if he made the cut.
NETHERLANDS – Paul Luzineau. This guy is very consistent in the way he presents himself, and he shows his drive to win by the way he engages his followers in social media. He seems poised to finish in the Final Five, and perhaps becoming a possible usurper to the perceived dominance of BRAZIL and GREECE.
PAKISTAN – Mirza Nabi. Him being clean shaven as he arrived in Manila may have caused some sponsors to underrate a highly worthy and charismatic fellow as they both share very similar chiseled jawlines, which is why that latter fellow did not figure in the sponsors’ prizes, while he got to snag one during the Fox and New Balance swimwear-with-sneakers event. He is a worthwhile contender, but in the end, I think the prejudging round may have finally created the needed distinction between these two guys. So who’s the other guy? He’s in the next section of this review.
PARAGUAY – Williams Ocampos. He’s undeniably a very handsome boyish cutie, even when sporting scruff prior to his arrival in Manila. He looks great scruffy or clean-shaven, but he knows the game and he is likely to have an inside track to the Top 16.
PERU – Alonso Bandenay. Like MOROCCO, he decided to lose the scruff for the prejudging, and with it he does lose that swarthy appeal he possessed.
PHILIPPINES – Daumier Corilla. There are some pageant fans and pundits concerned that he seems to be subdued in most appearances, but like his predecessor, he knows to conserve his energies to when it counts, and even in “subdued” mode, he still exudes oodles of charisma. I am very optimistic he’ll sustain a Final Five finish.
POLAND – Adrian Michalowski. I think learning from the missteps of some of his fellow countrymen who attempted a clean-shaven look to their disadvantage, he decided to stubbornly keep the scruff, alongside FERNANDO DE NORONHA and DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, Good on him, though admittedly with a batch as highly competitive as this one, it’s from far assured that he’ll secure a slot–it seems CZECH REPUBLIC has an advantage over him this time…
COMING UP: SINGAPORE to VIETNAM plus the “FEARFUL” FORECAST