For anybody who likes the concept of "America's Next Top Model" but finds Tyra Banks irritating, "A Model Life" -- its protestations about being produced "without staged eliminations or contrived challenges" notwithstanding -- is virtually the same show, only hosted by Czech beauty Petra Nemcova. Six aspiring models go through the paces for a modeling contract, with any or all of them eligible to emerge with that hallowed prize at the program's end.

For anybody who likes the concept of “America’s Next Top Model” but finds Tyra Banks irritating, “A Model Life” — its protestations about being produced “without staged eliminations or contrived challenges” notwithstanding — is virtually the same show, only hosted by Czech beauty Petra Nemcova. Six aspiring models go through the paces for a modeling contract, with any or all of them eligible to emerge with that hallowed prize at the program’s end.

Seriously, that’s about it. Models are grand TV fodder inasmuch as they’re easy on the eyes, but as a group they’re not that interesting unless you’re 5’9″ and 110 pounds, with legitimate aspirations in that field. That’s true even with Nemcova’s personal story of having been seriously injured in the 2004 tsunami that struck while the former Sports Illustrated cover girl was in Thailand — a fact mentioned at the outset, then quickly abandoned.

The larger question is why TLC would come to the table with something so brazenly designed to latch onto the CW’s coattails (or rather, short skirts and bare midriffs). Keep this up, and the network formerly known as the Learning Channel might have to change its name to TCC, a.k.a. The Cloning Channel.

A Model Life With Petra Nemcova

Series; TLC, Fri. July 13, 10 p.m.

Production

Produced by 25/7 Prods. in association with the Mottola Co. Executive producers, Tommy Mottola, Dave Broome, Jeb Brien, Sara Kozak; co-executive producer, Susan Hoenig; supervising producer, Suzanne Pate; director, Rich Kim; story editor, Matt Sims; editors, Tony Solomons, Joe Weiss. 60 MIN.
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