Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 5 Episode 1 Review + Amiciness Picks

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I can’t be more excited that Asia’s Next Top Model is finally back for Cycle 5. Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 5 finally premiered last Wednesday. But with all that excitement of seeing our beloved model competition back on air, we get the disappointment of another *yawn* photo shoot with the Singapore harbor as its backdrop…

I mean, these were all just from Cycle 4. This gallery would probably span a whole page if I included everything way back Cycle 1.

Joel Lim was the photographer for the shoot.

These are my TOP 3 favorites and BOTTOM 3 for the week:

(Check out the video at the bottom for the photos.)

Top 3


It looks like she’s levitating in this picture! She looks calm and collected but still showing some movement in her photo. Her leg extension is divine. I’ve seen some comments saying her body looks disproportionate, but I ask in return: Have you seen those legs, though?! Plus her whole vibe fits the style of her clothes here.


Clara was the best performer in Episode 1, and all of the judges seemed to like the photo. I have to dock marks though because the photo didn’t seem to follow the brief. As with most of the other girls, there isn’t as much motion or a runaway vibe here. Nevertheless, the picture’s air of mystery makes all the difference. I’m like, who’s that girl?


This would’ve been my number one pick if it weren’t for two major flaws. But first let’s list down the goods. She looks super graceful in this pose, pushing towards the camera and at the same time off the floor at the right moment. And she looks super good in her outfit. However, the facial expression leaves me a bit confused as to what emotion she was trying to convey. And the other one, a definite Tyra no-no, is that her other arm is missing. But overall, a great first photo for Heidi!

Bottom 3


Oh, Nametha. I’m not sure if this was the only good, non-blurry photo from all of her shots, or if it’s a case of someone picking a bad photo for her. She was one of my early favorites because even though she’s one of the younger contestants, both in age and modelling experience, she already has a great model portfolio. This photo though doesn’t belong there. The face is emotionless, the pose unflattering. Here’s hoping she does better in the next shoot. 🙂


The left leg is the best part of this shot, and oddly, the only part that doesn’t seem stiff af. Now let’s zoom in her left arm. OH NO! WTF happened there?! 😱 She got the brief at least… though I guess Cindy in this photo looks less runaway model and more like actual running away from a cannibalistic serial killer paparazzo. She SLAYED in the opening titles so I hope she captures that same energy in the next photo shoot. (Although chronologically, I don’t know how that will be possible.)


I would preface this by saying that this is not a bad photo per se. It’s just that it didn’t fit the photo shoot theme at all. (But it won’t be out of place in Cycle 3’s aerial high fashion shoot.) It’s just… blasé. It’s quite unfortunate that she got eliminated already too. She seems to be the best runway girl among the 3 Filipina representatives. 🙁

Full Ranking

Episode Review

The episode was generally more fast-paced than any AsNTM pilot I’ve ever seen. I guess like in other cycles, the stories of the girls will be revealed per episode, as they are bound to be eliminated.

Opening Titles

OMG YOU GUYS! THE OPENING TITLES SLAAAYYYEEDD. It was refreshing to watch, and edgier than the usual. It reminds me of America’s Next Top Model’s opening titles from cycle 10 onward, with so much less Tyra. They looked better in motion than the promotional photos they used for the girls. The styling is on point. And I love how it’s better-paced than last cycle’s draaaaagging opening titles.

The Judges

Judges Cara G, Cindy Bishop, and guest judge Pia Wurtzbach on Asia's Next Top Model Cycle 5 Episode 1 - AsNTM 5x01
Model mentor Cara G. McIlroy, top model host Cindy Bishop, and guest judge Pia Wurtzbach during the first runway challenge

Yu Tsai was MIA in the pilot. Duh. I guess he’ll have a surpise entrance in the middle of the season, like he did last time. Scratch that, he’ll be in Episode 2 based on this Facebook post. 😍 (The production could only probably get him on the show for a few episodes. He’s in demand, of course!)

Guest judge Pia Wurtzbach is also doing a Yu Tsai this cycle. She’ll be appearing, in person, from time to time during shoots and the deliberation, but she’ll mostly be sending the girls love through video messages. I guess that’s better than nothing. (And to those asking: yes, she was and is a model, even before her beauty pageant days.)

Cara was an effective model mentor. She was the first one to meet the girls and she seemed excited to be part of the show and to help the girls through their model journey. And, as if that wasn’t enough, we witnessed how genuinely (at least as reality shows go) nice Cara was when Layla almost quit the show.

The Deliberation Corner Room

While watching the deliberation, I could only imagine the room as a tin of tall, well-dressed, gorgeous sardines. That deliberation room is seriously cramped. It’s so cramped that they could only manage to fit only fewer than half of the girls in one frame. Nevertheless, the all-white scheme seriously looks good. It continues the sleek and stylish theme of last cycle’s deliberation room. The neon lights are a nice touch, except for the handwriting look they went for.

Overall, it was an okay episode, with the opening titles being the highlight. The editing is super fast-paced as an attempt to make the episode more exciting than it was in real life. The show tried to provide us drama, but failed when everything got resolved immediately after one scene, which they also did last cycle. I’m still super excited though to see the girls on their journey to become Asia’s Next Top Model.

What do you think of Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 5 Episode 1? What are your thoughts on the episode? How would you rank the girls’ photos? Sound off in the comments below.

Also, don’t forget to vote for your favorite girl in the poll in the recap post. Poll closes right before Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 5 Episode 2 on Wednesday, 9 p.m. on Star World.

The Girl Who Got Up & Walked Again: Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 5 Episode 1 Recap

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