After 12 years, 22 cycles and and 300+ contestants, America’s Next Top Model will finally crown its final winner during tonight’s series finale.
It’s the end of an iconic era that brought countless entries to the pantheon of reality television’s greatest moments.
But no moment will go down as more WTF-slash-legendary than Tyra’s infamous “we were all rooting for you” speech.
It’s not just the show’s breakout moment, it’s a pop culture staple that, like a fine bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau, only gets better with age. (It’s also Tyra’s best hair system on the series, but that’s arguable… and tangential… and let’s stick to the topic.)
The shocking double elimination twist during the show’s 4th cycle will go down in ANTM history as the most dramatic elimination ceremony in the history of the series.
Contestant Tiffany Richardson, entirely checked out from the competition, unwisely forgot to emote at the level Tyra expects of her girls when ousted from the competition. As a result, Tyra gave her a verbal whooping.
Once Tyra got going, her mean mentor diatribe quickly went from 0 to full pop off, laying into the vacant-faced Tiffany with no remorse.
Here’s the full transcript (in all caps, obviously):
BE QUIET, TIFFANY, BE QUIET! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? STOP IT!
I HAVE NEVER IN MY LIFE YELLED AT A GIRL LIKE THIS. WHEN MY MOTHER YELLS LIKE THIS IT’S BECAUSE SHE LOVES ME.
I WAS ROOTING FOR YOU, WE WERE ALL ROOTING FOR YOU. HOW DARE YOU? LEARN SOMETHING FROM THIS.
WHEN YOU GO TO BED AT NIGHT, YOU LAY THERE AND YOU TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOURSELF, ‘CAUSE NOBODY’S GONNA TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOU.
YOU ROLLIN’ YOUR EYES AND YOU ACTING LIKE THIS BECAUSE YOU’VE HEARD IT ALL BEFORE. YOU’VE HEARD IT ALL BEFORE, YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE THE HELL I COME FROM, YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I’VE BEEN THROUGH.
BUT I’M NOT A VICTIM, I GROW FROM IT, AND I LEARN.
TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOURSELF.
Now, BE QUIET, and watch the video:
“You ain’t did nothing but put me through hell these weeks,” Tiffany said immediately following the elimination.
In an interview with, About.com, Tiffany commented on the experience:
“I wanted to hit her! I was so upset with her at that moment after she told me shut up. My mom doesn’t even tell me shut up because when she tells me shut up, I’m not going to hear anything after. I’m going to roll my eyes and suck my teeth. I’m not going to hear anything! So at the moment, I didn’t hear anything else that she said. I was just like ’Whatever, get out of my face.’ But when I came home and watched it and heard everything that she said, like when she said My mom yells at me like this because she loves me. At the moment, I was thinking But you ain’t my momma. But with me watching, I’m like this lady really cares about me.”
Bless this mess and congratulations to Tyra Banks & co. on a terrific run.
With the heaviest of hearts, RIP ANTM.