Friday, July 25, 2008

Summer Surprise

With my assessment of the candidates for Cyber Girl of the Month up until October, I truly thought that lovely Vegas-bred beauty Dana Dicillo was a clear frontrunner for the July CGOM spot. Dana was positively brimming with talent, and we had one real superstar in the making. I also claimed that Dana should get her Cyber Girl of the Year aspirations in line, since she couldn't have been too far from that title, given the lack of competition so far this year.

Well, now at least she can leave that dream on the back burner. Dana's lost the July CGOM position to my 2nd place pick, Heidi Wheeler, who also impressed me in her weekly spot. It was a shock to me that Dana, a certain fan favorite, was passed over, but we all know why. Playboy has made no secret of the favoritism it's shown for its own girls. If you're already internal to Playboy's business, meaning that you are a model who's been working inside Playboy in some capacity other than just being a random girl they picked up from the streets, chances are you've got some credibility with them and you have an inside track to the higher ranks. It's not always the case, but it happens from time to time.

Heidi is also a Las Vegas-based lady, but she worked at Playboy's club in Sin City as a dealer at the tables there. I wouldn't normally be in favor of a colossal snub like the one dealt out to Dana, but I'll make an exception here. After a month of seeing Heidi's pictorials and videos, I can safely conclude that Heidi is a knockout of a model, and if enough people catch on to her wave, she might have a pretty solid chance at Cyber Girl of the Year, barring competition from Trina Marie and others down the road.

Heidi's first pictorial starts off without a whole lot of flair, but proves a point that is obvious: Heidi's body is cut from stone, pure stone. She has one hell of a body, with all the right curves and fanastic obliques and an unbelievable set of breasts. Although her first two pictorial themes weren't perfect and her looks were a bit flat, her body delivered and she knows how to strike a great pose. Heidi is certainly full of talent and knows how to work it, and she deserves plenty of credit for that.

Heidi's Week 3 and 4 features are where she truly takes off and looks like a seminal star. A simple, lengthy tank top combined with perhaps the best body I've seen this year gives the pictorial a great flavor. Just take a look at that butt popping out of that shirt, and tell me it's not one of the most glorious things you've seen this year. As Heidi gets fully nude, you can notice her fantastic abs tapering down to a hard set of legs, and everything above and below in perfect harmony. I'll say, Heidi's body was MADE for the camera, and it's just a pleasure seeing her move in each of her videos. And speaking of videos... her Week 4 videos are unbelievable, with the first in a sultry sheer outfit that complements her body perfectly, and a second one that's the obligatory shower shot that captures the attention because of how chiseled and breathtaking Heidi's body is.

I'm not saying Heidi is perfect in every way. If that was the case, she'd be in the spotlight far more than she already is, and I'd have crowned her the 2009 nominee already. She's not. She's a great girl with a near-perfect body, which has been conditioned and perfected to the point that it's a dream to look at. However, her face isn't always striking and picturesque, and sometimes she can look spaced-out and a bit clueless about how to form her facial expressions. Lovely eyes and lips, but otherwise she has a tough time with that part of her game. Also, the first two pictorials could have used some work. Other than these flaws, Heidi's physique and posing talent make her very exciting and definitely worth a look. Certainly, she's the best Cyber Girl besides the beautiful Trina Marie this year, and could make a run for it with her connections with Playboy already.

Consensus... B+

Heidi Wheeler
Cyber Girl of the Month
July 2008

Friday, July 11, 2008

Finely Crofted

So here we are, starting off the second half of the year in terms of Playmates, and we've got a class that's slowly starting to pick up. The pace at which the Playmate race has been going is frustrating; we started out with some beautiful models who had plenty to offer but gave us very little, like Sandra Nilsson or Regina Deutinger. We also had some questionable candidates like AJ Alexander or Michelle McLaughlin, who perhaps weren't "cut out" for the elite role of being a Playmate. Then, we finally had a savior in the year with Juliette Frette, who had plenty of talent and really set the bar high for the year, and who will be very tough to compete with for PMOY 2009.

Now, we have Miss July, Laura Croft, who seems to be taking that upward trend and running with it. Laura is, indeed, a lovely girl, and from her modeling previews that have been circulating around the internet, you can tell that Laura's had a bit of experience with non-nude modeling, and she looked so fantastic that I was really pumped for her nude debut. I was floored by her silky hair and cute and fresh smile, and I knew Laura would have something new to offer and maybe brighten up this dull year.

I can safely say that Laura met my expectations, and even surpassed them in some ways. On the other hand, she might have disappointed in other ways still. First of all, Laura is a fantastic model, and one with tons of talent that really carries her far. I'll also say this: Laura is probably the most beautiful girl that we've had so far in 2008, meaning that she just has raw beauty, and is just physically more appealing than all the models so far. However, that said, Laura doesn't always deliver to her full potential, and sometimes it feels like she's holding back. I think it feels that way because she had to follow the fantastic Juliette Frette, who wasn't as beautiful, per se, as Laura, but knew how to work it as well as anyone.

Laura's pictorial is fresh and perky, and takes on a summertime feeling, given the month of July. Comparing Laura's "Playboy makeover" look to her previous bikini shoots, you'll notice immediately that she's just become more of a presence on camera due to her blown up, longer hair and airbrushed exterior. Yes, Playboy seems to have done some editing on many of her photos, but the unpublished photos look far better. I mean, Laura looks statuesque in pictures like this, but it's so processed that she almost looks like a computer-generated image.

Laura's pictorial isn't very long, but it gets to the point. She starts out whimsical and fun, and puts out full body shots like this that really are striking. But still, shots like these don't scream talent, not like her predecessor's did. Some of Laura's photos look a bit awkward, and sometimes it seems like she doesn't fully know how to control or use her body in the pictorial. This is disappointing, given Laura's innate beauty. Laura strikes some uninspired, plain poses before moving into more spicy looks, like this one where she's laying down and having some fun. Miss July is a bit of a clueless model, but this one's a keeper, given just how amazing she looks naked.

When the mood darkens a bit, it all escalates and gets better. She delivers this piercing shot on a speedboat, where her face looks perfect and her eyes tell all. Now that is what her performance should have more of. I think that Laura sometimes doesn't fully embrace her sexuality, and often just fiddles around in front of the camera. Most of the time, audiences want more sex and only a slight bit of girl-next-door charm. I mean, Laura's body is cut out for this, absolutely, and she's a great choice for Playmate, and it's photos like this one that really gather a nice balance for her.

Ultimately, Laura seems like a bit of a wasted opportunity, just like we saw at the beginning of 2008, but considerably less so. The blow is softened by the fact that Laura is extremely adorable, and just a sight to behold. Again, she's probably the prettiest, most visually pleasing girl since Spencer Scott or even back to Jayde Nicole of last year. In fact, her appearance reminds me of Jayde, but I guess that she just didn't have the opportunity to prove her sexual appeal like Jayde did. I doubt that Laura will be in major contention for PMOY 2009, but it all depends on the next 5 candidates, which includes the highly-anticipated Valerie Mason in September.

Consensus... B+

Laura Croft
Miss July 2008