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Tyra Banks Gets Dragged On TikTok Over How ANTM Handled Contestant Who Was Considered Plus-Sized On Show

Tyra Banks in screenshot from episode of America's Next Top Model
(Image credit: UPN)

It’s been four years since America’s Next Top Model came back from the dead briefly after the show reached its 22-season run. Without any more cycles left to see, this is the time for former fans to reflect on scandalous moments that occurred on the show that wouldn’t be allowed today. A trending piece of controversy that’s been circulating is a TikTok compilation video of how former host Tyra Banks and the rest of the judges on America’s Next Top Model handled a contestant who was considered “plus-sized” on the show.

There's a compilation TikTok video making the rounds tagged #tyrabanks that starts with the caption “Most appalling behavior on ANTM…the mistreatment of the first 'plus-sized' model." In Season 1, the then-26-year-old Robin was considered a “plus-sized” model in the eyes of Tyra Banks. Banks said that the problem she had with Robin was that she was not “plus-sized on top, and on the bottom, she is.” Judge and ex-model Janice Dickerson said Robin was “out in terms of being a supermodel” and that the next top model will not be plus-sized. Instead of the Life Size actress slamming back at Dickerson and the other judges for their offensive comments, she said she wished Robin's upper and lower body matched “better” in size. 

The video later showed Banks criticizing Robin’s wardrobe choice for a photo shoot as she wore a sarong over her bottom bikini. Banks asked Robin if she was covering herself all the time so no one would stare at her hips. Robin walked away in tears, and the former America’s Got Talent host continued to ask her if she was crying. Other judges said Robin was “too old” to start modeling and that there’s no market for plus-sizes in France. Despite the judges acting turned off by Robin’s body shape, they were not happy when she didn’t provide them with a nude photo despite her reasoning being she wasn’t comfortable. Ultimately, Robin was asked to leave.

A number of comments on this TikTok video expressed sympathy for Robin and a lot of hate for the former Victoria’s Secret model. Comments would say that they were shocked that the judges considered this season one contestant to be plus-sized and how they did her so dirty. Other TikTok users felt that Tyra Banks’ behavior was “unacceptable,” and that she should have defended Robin as she’s been in her shoes before during the days she started out as a model.  

A couple of years ago, Tyra Banks admitted America’s Next Top Model made mistakes, in that by making sure these girls would get work, she would tell them what they needed to change about their appearance. But now, she believes if there was anything that needed to be “fixed” with any of the girls, that feedback should have been given after that contestant won. With that in mind, maybe this television personality would have treated Robin differently if this show was done today or would have stopped those who fat-shamed any contestant.

As of now, Tyra Banks works as the new replacement host for Dancing with the Stars for Dancing with the Stars. If America’s Next Top Model were to come back for more cycles, there’s a good chance the show would be more inclusive to people of different shapes and sizes. You can watch this top model host Dancing with the Stars on September 19th. Until then, check out other shows you can keep your eyes glued to on the Fall 2022 TV schedule.

Carly Levy
Entertainment Writer

Just your average South Floridian cinephile who believes the pen is mightier than the sword.