Miss USA 2017 has earned mixed reviews but there is no doubt that the result shocked a lot of pageant analysts. Here are the five takeaways from the pageant which can shape not only the future of the Miss USA but also that of Miss Universe.
1.) Miss USA is becoming like Miss America minus the talent. If this sounds familiar, well that’s because Miss USA 2004/Miss Universe 2004 first runner-up Shandi Finnessey said this in her scathing video critique of the Miss USA 2017 pageant. Shandi basically summed up what most of pageant analysts believe. She went on by saying that it seems everyone at Miss USA must have a story and judging from her tone, she is not that impressed by such changes at the pageant. In a way, she is correct because at Miss USA 2017, for a contestant to be noticed, she must have a story relevant to the plat du jour of the pageant which in this year is about diversity. In fact the entire Miss USA 2017 pageant was anchored on diversity!
2.) The achievements and personality of the contestants count a lot and this no longer a matter of swimsuit-interview-gown combination. Everyone knew the game: ace the swimsuit, interview and gown segments. The Miss USA 2017 pageant has demonstrated that the swimsuit was just a diversion, the gowns were basically useless and the final question and answer is no longer a deal breaker. Kára McCullough’s key to victory was less about her prelim performance (which is actually great and she is actually one of the top choices of many analysts) but more of the fact that she is a nuclear scientist.
3.) The fan base of Miss USA has been alienated and this has nothing to do with the winner. The fact that so many contestants were left out despite putting a strong performance at swimsuit and gown prelim left many of the fans bewildered and totally lost. It looks as if this is no longer the pageant that they once loved. If the same dynamics will be played at Miss Universe, IMG may alienate its biggest fan base which is the Latin American region. They need to understand the reason why Miss Universe and not Miss World is the most popular pageant in that region.
4.) Surprise! Surprise! The Miss USA 2017 pageant ended with a total surprise not only with the winner but with the semifinalists as well. Whether it is for good or bad, every fan should admit that the element of surprise is what keeps a good show interesting. It would be so damn boring if everyone knew who will win in the end.
5.) It will be downhill from here when it comes to predictions. The fact that the swimsuit and gown prelims play miniscule roles in the outcome of the pageant means that Miss USA and Miss Universe will be difficult to predict. Expect more fails with hot picks and predictions with these pageants in the near future. Miss USA became a celebrated event in the 80’s and 90’s because of its transparent scoring system. People understood how and why the winners were chosen based on the flow of events. Now, it’s mostly about speculations. One would wonder as to what will be the “theme” of next year’s Miss USA.