The 2014 Miss USA pageant — won by Miss Nevada, Nia Sanchez — was tame as far as flubs go. But there were a few moments — mostly on the production side — that were shudder-inducing.
The requisite scene-setting intro video featured a few laughable editing tricks. Dancing contestants were super-imposed over scenes of Baton Rouge, this year’s host city, creating an awkward effect that set the tone for the show.
This year’s question portion was proceeded by a video montage of past botched answers, in case the most terrorizing element of the program wasn’t frightening enough. The six finalists got through their questions without any made-for-YouTube gaffes, though.
However, Miss Iowa Carlyn Bradarich, who was saved by viewer votes via Twitter to move on to the question portion, had an ironically negative answer about social media. When asked whether she agreed that social media was spurring narcissism, Bradarich said yes.
“I think social media and technology has allowed the youth to post pictures of themselves and videos of themselves and that seems narcissistic,” she said, with no recognition at all that it was those very platforms had kept her in the competition.
Miss Louisiana received a politically-charged question about the recent swap of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five members of the Taliban. The hometown favorite delivered a clear but polarizing answer.
“I am glad we got our guy back however I do not felt it is right we subject ourselves to these acts of terrorism.”
Eventual winner Miss Nevada delivered one of the best answers, saying colleges may be tempted to sweep rape incidents under the rug but that awareness could bring better opportunities for women to learn to protect themselves.
Worse than the legendary Q&A segment was the performance by Florida Georgia Line before the announcement of this year’s winner. The band, performing “This Is How We Roll,” gave a tone-deaf rendition that could have been cut from the three-hour show.
Other cringeworthy moments came in the form of particularly unflattering swimsuits by sponsor Kandice Pelletier. The white, retro-looking suits read more underwear than beach-ready.
A hard question about campus sexual assault for Miss Nevada, the new Miss USA