Friday, December 30, 2011

No Other Choice

Kayla Love
CGOM December 2011
While 2011 was a decent year for Playmates, with things looking up in the second half of the year, the same can't be said for Cyber Girls as of late. The year was abysmal for Cyber Girl of the Year candidates, with no one seemingly taking the lead as we saw last year. In 2010, Bethanie Badertscher looked like a lock as soon as her pictorial debuted. In 2009, there were a handful of excellent candidates who are among the best Cyber Girls ever.

But, there is a saving grace. December's Cyber Girl of the Month, Kayla Love, is fantastic. She is, without a doubt, my choice for CGOY in 2012.

It all starts and ends with her posing talent. Kayla might be the most talented model of the year, even when taking Playmates and other models into account. Just take a look at her pictorials, and you'll understand. Her sinewy body does some awesome things, as she can curl up and minimize her frame to look vulnerable, or she can do her signature move, standing tall and creating a lean, sleek set of lines.

I could go on and on referring to some of her wonderful photos, but the fact is that her slim body and sharp posing sense meld almost magically. She might be a lightweight in appearance, but her curves look spectacular when viewed as a profile, in shots like this one or this.

While Kayla's face might be her Achilles' heel in the end, with a lack of definition that makes her look rather generic, she's still pretty, and this shouldn't detract from her sexy presence. She also looks incredible in videos, flashing a melting gaze along with her ability to stand tall and deliver a great picture.

In the end, the other ladies of 2011's Cyber Girl class don't deserve a full rundown. The bottom line is, there's Kayla, and then there's everyone else. We've seen a similar talent and body type last year (Bethanie, anyone?), and Kayla delivered just as well. However, let's cross our fingers and hope Miss Love  can deliver on a CGOY bid that will dig us out of our current rut.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Texan Attraction

Rainy Day, Miss December
Given the rollercoaster year we had in 2011, I'd say that we've ended on some thankfully positive notes. While the year started out and developed to look like one of the more disappointing years in the past decade, salvation came in the form of a couple of sensational talents that made their mark and allowed us to forget the missteps of the past. Duds like Mattingly made way for gems like Cerny, and we made lemonade in the latter half.

Fittingly, after some great ladies in September, October, and November, we should see the grand finale in the last month. As is always pointed out, great December Playmates used to be something of an expectation (Tiffany Fallon, Teles Twins, Lani Todd, Karen McDougal, Elisa Bridges, Barbara Moore...). I really thought we had one in Miss December, Rainy Day Jordan. Rainy had made her way to Playmate status through the Casting Calls circuit (in February) and as a Coed of the Week in April. Her quick ascension brings her to cap off a mystifying, but ultimately satisfying, year.

I initially had a great first impression of Rainy Day when I laid my eyes on her preview pictorial. Since she was extremely unpolished before as a COTW, it was something of a surprise to see her in her comfortable element, posing with a sexy, sinewy frame that looked spectacular in the soft lighting. If the Playmate pictorial only took it from there, I thought, we could have the PMOY on our hands.

But, alas, it didn't quite work out that way. But then again, not so bad either. With Rainy Day, you get kind of a mixed bag. She is certainly unlike other models we've seen this year, with a more unique face and a totally different body type. I feel like the way the pictorial displayed her face in such harsh light really ruined it for me, as it exposed some of the issues with the evenness in her facial skin tone and other features. Rainy's face is certainly her biggest issue, and it reflects poorly when the editors can't get it just right. When it is done right, like in this shot, her pouty lips and gorgeous eyes don't take away from anything at all.

Still, when she's photographed well, she's definitely a wonder. Her skill in front of the camera is among the best we've seen in 2011, and she can lay down some sexual bombshells. But, as in many Playboy pictorials of late, she isn't ever allowed to spread out and explore the boundaries, making the whole thing seem rather restrictive and boring. You can tell that Rainy is one of the more outwardly sexual girls of the year (much more so than Amanda or Ciara), but she's kept in the same box as all of them. There are just too many repetitive shots like this, and not enough creative, freestyle shots like this around.

All in all, when you get down to what makes Miss Jordan unique this year, you can't avoid talking about her body. It's definitely the hottest body of the year. Rainy is the tallest Playmate of 2011 (5' 9") while still having the best waist-hip ratio of any of them (0.647 - the lowest since Dasha Astafieva in 2009). Rainy is perfectly proportioned, gorgeously tanned, and has smooth, almost palpable skin that makes her absolutely stunning in the glow of the photos.

  • Face: B
    Rainy's biggest issue, her face just does not come off very attractively in hard light, and the editors use it plenty in her Playmate spread. Although she has penetrating hazel eyes and lovely wispy hair, her sometimes awkward looks detract from an otherwise near-perfect model.
  • Body: A+
    Despite being the tallest Playmate of the year, Rainy maintains a rather curvy physique, one with some of the best measurements we've seen in a few years. Her amazing hips and smooth, natural contours are a sight to behold. Her golden brown skin is silky in pictures. This is how and why she got the nod for Playmate, after hitting the scene in under a year.
  • Talent: A
    Rainy is probably one of the more unrestrained and freewheeling girls of the 2011 class. Although we only get to see glimpses of her talent, it's definitely there. She maintains a coy, sensual persona throughout, and comes with an attitude that melds Texas farm girl with unbridled enthusiasm.
  • Pictorial: B
    While Rainy is a great talent, she got a raw deal when it comes to her final pictorial spread. The meandering, pointless photos follow a familiar cowgirl theme, which is very fitting and sexy, but are executed horribly. The quality of the model saved it with her natural looks, but besides that, it's just uninspired photography.
  • Centerfold: B+
    While nothing special, Rainy's centerfold is solidly sexy, and shows off a good amount of her body. The direct look does a good job of depicting her hit-or-miss face.
  • Overall: A-
    The year came in with a whimper, but certainly finished with quite a bit of a roar. Rainy Day did a great job of following up some of her highly touted predecessors. With the main attraction being her sexy and perfectly proportioned physique, Miss Jordan was a fine choice for Playmate. Just as in recent months (and years), though, Playboy's editors dropped the ball by inserting an otherwise awesome model into a drab, boring set of photos. The uninspired Western theme was a cookie-cutter choice, and didn't do Rainy justice, just as Ciara was also jilted. Still, Rainy is going to be up there in many fans' lists for Playmate of the Year. Although I doubt she will get too much consideration for the top prize (much more will go to Ciara, Amanda, and Tiffany), Rainy has certainly made her mark on the Class of '11, and will definitely fall in my top 5.
Well, there we have it! All 12 Playmates have been set, and we're ready for PMOY voting to heat up. I'll publish my usual full rundown of all twelve, including my annual ranking, around the end of the year. We had some serious ups and downs this year, but it was all worth it in the end. Thanks for reading!