|Beth, Miss August 2012|
In our August Playmate, we have a very familiar face in Beth Williams. Beth debuted a little less than three years ago as a Cyber Girl of the Week, and throughout the years, her pictorial output has been well above average. Unlike Shelby and many of the other ladies we've seen this year, Beth is no stranger to the Playboy world. She's posed off and on, earning the CGOM title, and always had a fierce fanbase who vigorously backed a Playmate appearance. This year, their prayers have finally been answered, but to what effect is the question.
Indeed, Beth has always been an attractive model to me. While I never really bought into the hype with her, I thought she was a more than passable girl. Her height is a real strength, and her beauty lies in her subtleties. I thought her lovely dark hair was always one of her best features, always looking a bit frazzled and accessible. While she was quite talented, she never really showed to be the true, picturesque beauty that is demanded of a girl in the Playmate position. But then again, far less-deserving models have had that title.
Beth's transformation for her Miss August stint is, well, disappointing to say the least. Although I never have had high hopes for her, I thought that a model as seasoned at her could have turned out something more spectacular. Instead, we were shown a pictorial with a bit of pop and fizz here and there, but something that was generally pretty flat. Beth is a great model when the shot is just right, but there are too many flaws and changes here to really appreciate her for her potential.
One thing that really irked me was Beth's transition from shoulder-length black/brown hair to having long, thick, dirty blonde hair. It's something that I believe does not suit her well, and takes away from some of the magic that came with her being a natural, girl-next-door model that was the centerpiece of her appeal. While this may be a small change, it does quite a bit to influence her persona as a model, and seems like a waste of a perfectly good opportunity.
When all else is factored in, Beth does as well as she can with an abysmally boring pictorial. Her "country cowgirl" theme has been tried and beaten to death, but not executed particularly well here. Her brunette look might have complemented the softer colors far better here, as she seems to just fade into the background anonymously. Her body is, as it was before, photogenic and beautifully natural, but it's certainly not enough to carry her through.
- Face: B
With any semblance of accessibility Beth had as a brunette, she severely lost quite a bit in her transformation. Although she's the same decently talented model she was before, the focus now shifts to her face itself, while the hair was a distraction before. Miss Williams' face is not particularly photogenic in itself, only at times looking balanced and entirely wholesome. Her squinty, forgettable eyes don't help, either.
- Body: B+
Quite simply, Beth's best attributes stem from her very slim and tall body. Although she doesn't have the volume and balance that Shelby had, Beth is just-right, having a great set of natural breasts and a sleek, clean look. Although it won't capture your attention with its curvature and lines, it looks great on camera.
- Talent: B
Beth is an otherwise highly talented model with a great vision for the camera, and should be with her extensive experience. However, she definitely doesn't hit it out of the park when it's counted most, as a Playmate. She never gets into the groove of things, always looking uniformly uninteresting in her photos, and only actively posing at times. For a woman with such demonstrated talents in moving her body, she oddly comes out cold.
- Pictorial: C+
While Beth's physical changes and lack of a convincing performance didn't help her case much, her drab pictorial certainly hurt it. The theme is ill-conceived, and lacks any semblance of trying to use the model's looks to the producers' advantage. Blame Playboy, and the photographers, but this isn't what a girl of Beth's hidden talent deserves.
- Centerfold: B
While it's a good shot choice overall, it fits into the boring mold of the rest of the pictorial, just looking like another blown-up photo. Certainly not her best picture.
- Overall: B
Beth Williams has done plenty for Playboy over the past few years, and I'm sure her numerous fans would disagree with me here, but this is not what we were looking for. When Playboy anointed Beth as a Playmate, this wasn't the way to go about it. She is a wonderful model, and had all the physical tools to put on a stellar performance. However, Beth is a finicky model, and with such subtlety and depth comes a responsibility for the editors to put her in the right environment. As was Shelby, Beth isn't a 'bombshell' who could just strut out and look like a sexual goddess - she needs to be tailored to look that way, through great production value, as we saw with Leola and Shelby this year. With this girl, they just never put in the effort to get it right, and it hurt the model most of all.