Today's Evil Beet Gossip

The Winner of Tyra Banks’ “Fiercely Real” Teen Modeling Competition is Going to Be HUGE!!!


Oh, Tyra. How I love to hate thee. Tyra is SO open-minded, you guys. She ran a contest for teenage plus-size models. Except she doesn’t call them “plus-size.” She would never do that. Because Tyra Banks has no idea how to properly hyphenate anything. She also thinks the term is unfair, because apparently the average woman in the United States is a size 14, so this is “real-sized.” (Without the hyphen, ‘natch.) She calls these teens “fiercely real.” This was the Fiercely Real Teen Modeling Competition. CATCHY.

And, I’m sorry, but weren’t we hearing just a few years back that the average woman in the U.S. was a size 12? It’s a size 14 now? And that’s the average? I’m not saying that a size 14 is a big fatty, but, like, that’s a whole hell of a lot of people who are heavier than a size 14. At what point are we going to stop pushing weight acceptance and start pushing healthy eating, portion size, and exercise? Because, like, sure, it’s all good and well to tell our children that they are just fine at any size or shape. In fact, they are just fine at the one-legged shape they’ll have when they have their leg amputated because their diet of fats and sugars has resulted in raging Type 2 diabetes that wasn’t properly treated because no one’s insured in this country. And then they can die of an obesity-related heart attack in their mid-40s. AND THAT IS JUST FINE AND BEAUTIFUL. NO PROBLEM AT ALL HERE. MOVE ALONG. TAKE A BIG MAC FOR THE ROAD.

Rant over. You may all explain in the comments why I’m an asshole and obesity in this country does not at all need to be aggressively addressed rather than babysat.

Anyway. Whatever. Of course you can’t get a whole damn show for this, because we only like to watch thin people on TV, so Tyra ran most of the contest on her website and then brought the finalists onto her talk show. The winner is Sheridan Watson, a 17-year-old teen who’s a size 14. She wins a three-year contract with Wilhemina (which the agency will promptly file in a back drawer and forget about — because, remember, a “contract” with a modeling agency doesn’t mean shit if they don’t get you work) and gets to be in Seventeen magazine, like, once.

That said, this is a very beautiful young woman who a) doesn’t even look plus-size in photos and b) will not have a career in modeling.

54 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I’ve never understood how a size 14 is the national average – that’s freakin’ HUGE! Seriously, I only know of a few girls who are that big. I’m a 2, and all of my friends range from a 0-6 (depending on their height).

    • I hate to break it to you Abigail, but a size 14 is not “freakin’ HUGE”.There are actually women that big who are perfectly healthy and not the slightest bit fat. As a larger woman, I can attest to the fact that not everyone can nor should be a size 6. In my teenage years when I starved myself to skin and bone, I managed to get down to a size 10. I am currently a very healthy size 14 and no one around me seems to think I am enormous. I eat well (I am also a vegetarian), eat normal portions and stay away from junk food and exercise much more than the average American.
      Perhaps you out to get out more and gain a little perspective.

    • At my thinnest I was a size 6. And everybody kept trying to make me gain weight because almost all of my bones were visible. I look unhealthy at anything less than a 10. At a 14 I look plump, but not fat.

    • Well, I hope you and your sorority sisters enjoy judging everyone who is “freakin’ HUGE!” Hop down off your high horse, why don’t you, and look around. Size 14 IS pretty average. I vary between an 8 and a 12, and trust me, I’m nowhere near “HUGE!” I’m healthy, happy, have huge boobs, awesome hips, and a tiny little waist. A size 2 only means “average” to you because you apparently can’t take your blinders off and look at other people walking down the street.

  • I love Tyra but if she believes and is so concerned about people being comfortable with who they are and being “fiercely real” then why exactly has she gone and lost so much weight AGAIN?!

  • Bravo, Beet.
    You know something is wrong when a woman like me (5’10” and 150-155 #) was a size 10-12 in HS (1994) and is now a size 4 or 6. Vanity sizing has gone WAY TOO FAR.

  • When I starved myself down to a size 12 (from a 14), people accused me of not eating. It was true, but that’s not why they said it. I had several people accuse me of lying when I told them my size. It all depends on how you are built. Some people are too heavy/big at size 14, some are not. I’m 5’9″ and weighed 155 as a size 12, and my BMI was in the normal/healthy range. So to say a size 14 is huge isn’t fair.

    However, I agree that we, as a nation, are fat and just getting fatter. I think that saying the average woman in the US is a size 14 is hugely misleading (no pun intended). That makes it sound like the majority of woman are a size 14, which isn’t true. You put a size 0 with a size 28 and they average a 14.
    As Beet said, I think “healthy” needs to be pushed more than anything else. You can be healthy as a size 14, and you can be healthy at a size 0, but no one focuses on that. It’s all “you’re too skinny”, “you’re too fat” and it is about so much more than just what looks good. I don’t know what it’s going to take to make people see that.

      • I actually thought this was Molls when I started reading it. It has that “I’m pissed off at the whole world” kinda vibe to it.

        I agree with the above posters, that weight is an individual matter and as such shouldn’t be so rudely condemned by the ideals of one person. Yes, health should be promoted, but I really don’t think that being so aggressively against a certain size is the right thing to do either.

  • Thank goodness EB is back! We have missed you! Anyways, I completely agree. We are the first generation where the children have a lower life expectancy than the parents generation. Why? Because we preach this fat acceptance crap and “sure, everything is better with bacon” mentality. As someone who as struggled with weight my entire life, I am so mad when I hear people say how “it’s ok to be who you are. It’s ok to be fat”. Well no it’s not. It’s unhealthy and I know that even when I gain 5 – 10 pounds my joints can definately tell the difference.

    Not everyone should or needs to be a size 2. I’m a size 8/9 and frankly I hate it. I was a size 6 and I can’t tell you how much better I felt. I slept better and my back didn’t give me as much trouble. We need to focus on teaching out kids what healthy looks like (not fat and not emaciated) and more importantly, what healthy feels and tastes like.

  • ha, i totally thought this was Molls as well….she does have her own distinctive brand of pissed off at the world thing going on

  • Totally agree.
    Sure, for some people, being “overweight” is something they can’t help. But not for most. And it’s not okay. It’s not appropriate to single a person out, of course, but the issue must be drilled that obesity is bad. You wouldn’t NOT discuss anti-smoking stats because smokers will feel bad about themselves. So why should you make nice about other (far more prevalent) health risks?

    • I completely agree with you. It’s all about height-to-weight ratio. If you are 5’2″ and 210 lbs-as is a girl I work with, then you are obese and need to lose weight. You do not need to be coddled to believe that being that weight is ok. It’s not ok. Obesity is a problem and people want to get all sensitive and yell, “I’m not fat!” even though they clearly are while stuffing their faces with cheese, bread, and chocolate, then they want to get all upset when they let themselves go to the point where they can’t get on a plane because they won’t fit in a seat. It’s time to wake up people! If you’re obese (which I’ve been told is more than 35 lbs. overweight for your height), then DO something about it and stop whining.

      • Shit, it’s people like you that make me want to eat a large pizza all by myself. I bet that girl that works with you hates your guts, even if she doesn’t act like it.

      • I don’t give a flying fuck if she “hates my guts”. This is not about whether or not she likes me or I like her, this is about being obese. And for the record, I have never commented on her weight or about her appearance in any way. But she sure has taken every opportunity to comment on the fact that I “talk proper” or “dress funny”. And the morbidly obese girl who is over 300 lbs is always talking about “the way I talk” or “how I walk like a model”. They’re all massively insecure which is probably why they’re eating themselves into oblivion, like you it seems. Eat your pizza and STFU.

      • hey grasce jones, i agree with u. fat people are actually very very insecure. and u fat people out there dont be all like “i love and accept my body” and shit because i bet if you could have a great healthy looking body u would. its not a contest between fat and thin, its being healthy and not hiding behind weight.

  • Why can’t you people just stick to posting pictures of celebrity? You’re opinions are usually stupid and without any kind of facts or proper citing. I come here to read about hollywood, not to hear what you think about controversial issues. If I wanted to hear an idiot discussing news topics, I’d watch fox news. From now on I’m getting my escapist celebrity stories from the 100’s of other celebrity blogs. I’m over this one.

    • Well, writing articles and not just posting hundreds of pictures is kind of EB’s trademark…

  • How can you even tell if she’s pretty under all that makeup & photoshop?!

    Seriously, real people (or fiercly real if U prefer) have pores.

  • Why can’t everyone be as perfect as Beet? Seriously, no one is advocating obesity, but everyone is different and people can be healthy without be skinny. Eat a healthy, balanced diet and get lots of physical activity and you’ll find the weight that’s right for your body. If I want to read some blogger’s bulls**t opinion about health and public policy, I’ll do it somewhere other than an entertainment blog.

  • Daycares and schools feed the kids crap, and limit their outdoor playtime (and physical ed).

  • Getting off of the Molls/EB bashing…can we focus on two other things please? 1 – Tyra is as hypocritical as they come – i believe she is the producer/star of another show called America’s Next Top Model. You’ll never see a size 12 or 14 on THAT show. And 2 – notice in the photo that Tyra is almost saying “I’m still prettier, I’m still the star here”.

    So which is it Tyra? Fat, not fat, super-skinny, too skinny, big ass, kiss my ass…oh right….as long as it’s all about Tyra then it doesn’t matter if she walks both sides of that street.

    • actually many times they squeeze one “plus-sized” model through.
      but only one plus-sized model has ever won.

      hmm maybe the wording of “squeeze one “plus-sized” model through” wasn’t the greatest….

  • As an avid reader of your blog I have noticed the quality of writing decreasing. I know that you always back your employees and I understand that their job is hard, but this use to be an “in the know” type of blog but now you are sometimes weeks late on stories, the editing is horrible, there are serious grammar and spelling errors as well as misinformation. I have never left a comment in all of my years reading this blog but felt compelled to this time. I feel that you article on plus sized women and comparing a size 14 to someone who has type 2 to diabetes is unfair. I was also offended by your leg amputation comment, being from a household where my father is Type 1 diabetic who lost his leg, which has nothing to do with his weight, I know that it isn’t just being fat that causes you to lose limbs from this terrible TERMINAL disease but it is also being aware of sores and infections. It’s not that I think your comments were completely off, but your rant, or whatever you may call that (I call it poor writing and fluff) is way out of line. On the other hand I do think your message on portion size, exercise and healthy eating is worth writing about, but I think they way you went about your message has no couth and the writing on this blog is becoming shameful and lacks any sort of positive message. I am afraid to say it but I will probably stop reading this blog if the stories and writing do not improve. I would like to say a positive blog for women can be found at There is a positive message for women on this blog, not someone just ranting negative comments with little research and little heart. Hope you get the heart back.

  • i think there’s a line in there somewhere, though.

    yes, americans are an obese nation. and there is not enough work being done to change that, especially for kids. its gross – serving sizes at restaurants, coke machines in grade schools, etc.


    it is what it is. and if there’s freaks like whats-her-face – god, what’s her name? the one with all the plastic surgery? with the weird husband? – who get multiple surgeries on an already thin body, we do need to offset that with some drive for body acceptance. a teenage girl in america is faced with constant self-doubt. there needs to be a balance.

    that said. due, 14 is not HUGE. i’m 5’10, and my skeletal frame wouldn’t fit into a size 8, let alone a size 2. even at my most skin and bones, i’m a 10.

  • This “size 14” model is gorgeous and doesn’t look fat at all.

    On another note, “average” size really depends on where you live. In San Diego, CA the average size is probably a 2. I live in the Deep South and I would say every girl I know is between a 6-12. And that’s not considered “fat” here. Different areas have different standards.

  • i am size 4 or 6 and i am 5′ 4 and weight 120 pounds and i feel fat… but i do think that it depends on how tall you are and other things… not only on the size

  • Sorry Beet but I think you’ve got this one wrong.

    It’s not a simple choice between fat acceptance and babysitting, and I have never heard anyone suggest that being fat is a good thing. You can still push the message of healthy eating and exercise without treating fatties like scum.

    Fat people are still people, and they deserve to go about their lives without being made to feel like freaks. Fat people don’t actually want to be fat, any more than compassionless judgemental harpies want to be compassionless judgemental harpies.

    Of course being fat is a risk factor for all sorts of illnesses, but we all engage in activities that put us at risk of all sorts of things, but for some reason society has chosen fat people as personae non grata over everyone else, I suspect mainly because they don’t look good.

    Even if someone lives exclusively on a diet of cheeseburgers and cake, and drops dead at 40 from a coronary, how does that affect you? Other than give you someone to feel superior to?

  • Beet touched on a huge problem in this country with all the PROCESSED foods we Americans eat on a daily basis – this isn’t just about vanity and what looks good. Google that shit and read up on how the United States has the worst diet on the PLANET. Big corporations make shitloads of money from all this unhealthy processed shit we are eating and feeding our kids – who by the way, then develop childhood diabetes and obesity. Thanks to places like Walmart it’s become cheaper to eat the bad stuff and those of us who prefer to eat actual food are stuck having to pay alot more. It’s not right and will no doubt affect people’s health – but they way it’s dealt with is to just accept our ever growing sizes and tell people that it is okay to be unhealthy. I was a 10-12 in highschool back in 1985 and at 42 I’m now a size 6-8 because I eat right and excercise daily. It takes effort to take care of yourself and I feel better without eating processed food of anykind which would make my ass balloon up to a size 14. It’s nice to see you back again Beet.

  • I don’t think this girl is a size 14… she looks pretty much exactly my size and I’m a size 8. I mean, there can certainly be flattering angles, but still.

    I agree with Beet, we need to put the focus on being healthy and take it away from pure acceptance. I used to be a size 14/16, and I was very unhealthy. I was eating crap, drinking crap, and not working out. I’m not saying it’s impossible to be a healthy 14, but many of the people who are a size 14 are not healthy. I have friends who are healthy 18’s and just genuinely can’t lose the weight, but I also have friends who don’t understand how they stay overweight on a vegetarian diet without realizing that eating a pound of pasta a day isn’t healthy.

  • Very “American.” Fat is good (and thin is bad) or thin is good (and fat is bad). Vote Democrat & diss Republicans or vote Republican and diss Democrats. Support gay marriage & hate Christian conservatives or support Christian conservatives and hate gay marriage. Etc. etc.

    When will we learn that more than one side can be right… or both sides can be wrong? These knee-jerk reactions of “good”- and “bad”-mouthing should be limited to Schwarzenegger movies!

    Yes, of course the US have a huge problem with overweight-related health problems.

    At the same time, there are tons of myths about overweight people, e.g.,
    – that they necessarily have health issues (just a few days ago, research hit the news saying that the BMI doesn’t predict much, but the size of your waist does quite a bit)
    – that they’re stupid
    – that thinner people have a right to make fun of fatter people
    – etc.

    Moreover, there are tons of health problems of underweight people, both physically and psychologically. Not to mention that the common belief that everyone has to be slimmer is not exactly improving the well-being of all those people who learn to be unhappy about their bodies.

    Does that mean every slim person is unhealthy or makes another person get unhealthy thoughts about losing weight? Of course not! And yet, talking about health problems of overweight people and keeping silent about health problems of underweight people is just ridiculously one-sided!!

    PS: I’m a bit surprised about the result of the casting show. Sheridan has an awesome body, but I’ve seen many size 44+ women whose faces seemed more expressive and, yes, beautiful. [I’m judging by a quick look at Tyra’s website. Maybe they haven’t been able to do Sheridan justice.] Sheridan’s body, however, doesn’t look size 44. Which makes me wonder… maybe that’s why she won? :( …

  • You have to take into account that not every woman is the same height and a woman who is 5’10” and size 12 will not look the same as a woman who is 5’2″ and size 12. So just saying that size 12 or 14 or whatever is “freakin huge” is very narrow minded.

  • You can blather on all you like about how you’re a size fourteen and you’re still healthy, but the FACT is that the average weight of americans has INCREASED. You can’t ignore this!

    I’ve been saying the same thing for years. As a group, us chicks need to get together and start focussing more on our health and less on our appearance. We have to teach our daughters to nourish our bodies with healthy food and a healthy emotional relationship with how we look.

  • Americans in general are too fat. Myself included. We eat way too much of the wrong crap and don’t get enough exercise. And don’t tell me that a woman over a size 20 (myself included) can be fit at that size if they just work out enough. That’s bs. That said, there are a lot of reasons that people get fat and stay fat. Probably some people are “lazy”, a theory I have heard before from the staff of this blog and Zelda Lily. As I have said before in detailed explanation, and won’t bore anyone with again, that isn’t the sole reason everyone is fat, it’s much too simplistic and self righteous and inadequate to explain the entire problem.
    And no I don’t mind the word fat. I am fat. I actually prefer it to “obese”. Probably due to some denial on my part.
    My actual point to writing this is that I have never seen winners of these type of contests (ANTM, Runway, American Idol, etc.) consistently be successful in whatever field they were competing in. Sure, people make it here and there, but not even all of the winners of Design Star on HGTV do really well and they are GUARANTEED their own show. So if this (gorgeous, I must add) young woman doesn’t make it, it unfortunately would not be surprising.

  • I didn’t take this post to say that a size 14 is huge…I took it to mean that since 14 is the average it has to mean that there are A LOT of people who are significantly larger than a 14, which say what you want about weight distribution, it is unhealthy and hard on your joints and your heart

  • It’s down to your height and build. I mean I’m 6’2 and a girl. When I go to the hospital and they do my BMI, the women’s chart does’t even do up to my fucking height -_-. I’m not stick thin by any means, but I know because of my height, my body will look different from a shorter girl the same size as me.

    So I think saying size 14 is big or ‘freakin’ huge’ is rather wrong and narrow minded. BTW, that girl is gorgeous.

    • she didnt her body (boobs) came in when she became older and the modeling industry told her she was fat, she thought different and turned a new leaf, she’s not fat

  • Hey I agree obesity is a huge problem in America but a size 14 is NOT unhealthy, I used to be 260 pounds, yes very unhealthy, then lost 84 pounds and currently am a size 14, want to get down to a size 12, then after that I’m good; right now (at a size 14) my doctor says I can stop if I want to and I’m perfectly healthy, and I look smaller then a size 14, but I would like to ensure my health further. But this kind of modeling would not set a bad example, in fact I am currently a plus size model and I think my story about losing weight and fighting for my health and convincing others to do the same is a great example. I think if your a plus size model, at any size, if you are in great health then your are a great example and accept your body at being healthy and beautiful, then why not, why shrink your size if it is unnecessary for yourself. To conform to another opinion, thats like me telling you to go gain a couple pounds because it’s the average. Totally uncalled for, especially if your healthy and happy with your body.

    Marilyn Monroe was a size 12, does anyone want to say she was ugly? She was gorgeous, and in my opinion, perfect. I understand where you are comming from, I was at a size where for my age (17) and health was very dangerous, but then again after going through this journey, accepting my body, myself, and becoming healthy in the process, I can understand both sides, body acceptance and the power of being healthy.

    And I know people below a size 6 can be that way naturally, but with metabolism it very unlikely that all these women are naturally that thin, with all these problems with anorexia and bulimia it’s hard to argue. Look at high schools today, people who are size 5’s want to be 2’s, people who are 2’s want to be 0’s, people who are 10’s want to be 6’s. I know how defeated I felt every single day looking in the mirror and hating everything.

    Both can expose a negative impact, but then again a size 16, 14 or 12 isn’t bad, a size 6 isn’t bad, a size 0 or 2 isn’t bad as long as it’s done within being healthy. People who are size 6’s are being kicked off runways. A size 6. Does that sound way to big or unhealthy to you? A size 6 isn’t even the average, it’s less than half. And the world doesn’t enjoy watching this kind of process because if they did no one would be speaking out. I’m not saying anyone on this site is wrong, I’m just saying we all have our own variety of opinions. Mine is, This industry has become blind to women and their image of a healthy body. And this world has become blind to it’s health and self confidence.