THE RESULTS (Dec. 21, 2015)

And the controversy ensues! After temporarily leading us to believe that Colombia had become the second country to win the Miss Universe crown two years in a row, host Steve Harvey revealed that he misread the card and that the Philippines had finally obtained their 3rd Miss Universe crown after all these years of loyalty. The controversial way in which the results were revealed are making headlines worldwide as Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach manages to get the tropical haven of Asia its long awaited Miss Universe crown. Other pageants which saw the wrong girl crowned and later corrected include Miss California USA 2008 and Miss Universe Canada 2013. Did you also notice that this is the third year in a row that my 4th runner up won Miss Universe??? In terms of my predictions, I picked 9 of the 15 semifinalists plus 2 alternates (Japan and Belgium). The 4 ladies that missed my list were Curacao and Mexico (who were in the tier below my honorable mentions) and Indonesia and South Africa were the countries that I missed entirely. My full commentary on this interesting pageant will be posted on December 26.



Winner=Philippines-Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach

Winner=India-Urvashi Rautela

1st Runner Up=Colombia-Ariadna Gutierrez

1st Runner Up=Colombia-Ariadna Gutierrez*

2nd Runner Up=USA-Olivia Jordan Thomas

2nd Runner Up=Venezuela-Mariana Jimenez*

FINALISTS (alpha'l):


Australia-Monika Radulovic

USA-Olivia Jordan Thomas*

France-Flora Coquerel

Philippines-Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach*



Curaçao-Kanisha Sluis

France-Flora Coquerel*

Dominican Republic-Clarissa Molina

Vietnam-Thi Huong Pham

Japan-Ariana Miyamoto

Thailand-Aniporn Chalermburanawong*

Thailand-Aniporn Chalermburanawong

Australia-Monika Radulovic*

Venezuela-Mariana Jimenez

Brazil-Marthina Brandt*



Belgium-Annelies Törös

Paraguay-Myriam Arevalos

Brazil-Marthina Brandt

Dominican Republic-Clarissa Molina*

Indonesia-Anindya Kusuma Putri

Peru-Laura Spoya

Mexico-Wendolly Esparza

Georgia-Janet Kerdikoshvili

South Africa-Refilwe Mthimunye

Kosovo-Mirjeta Shala


ALTERNATES: Finland, Netherlands, Belgium*, Japan*, Sweden


HONORABLE MENTIONS: Denmark, Spain, Ukraine, Italy, Czech Republic


* = made actual top 15


THE PREDICTIONS (Dec. 18, 2015)

Controversial national costumes that are bound to make headlines are pictured above worn by the delegates from Spain and Austria. Spain's delegate Carla Barber is dressed in a dual sided costume with one side being that of Don Quixote. Austria's delegate Amina Dagi is dressed as Conchita Wurst who is a drag queen pop star from Austria.

In addition to Steve Harvey serving as host, we have Roselyn Sanchez to do backstage commentary. Some of the judges have been announced and they include: Miss Universe 2012-Olivia Culpo, Perez Hilton, Niecy Nash and Emmitt Smith (husband of Pat Southall who was 1st runner up to Miss USA 1994). Performers include: Seal, Charlie Puth and the Band Perry.

So after watching the preliminaries and observing the delegates through videos and coupled with my background knowledge of each delegate, I now present to you my predictions for Miss Universe 2015.


Winner=India-Urvashi Rautela

It should come as no surprise to those who read my first round prethoughts that Urvashi was my winner since she was crowned Miss India TWICE. We all now know the story that Urvashi was originally supposed to compete at Miss Universe 2012 which coincidentally was also held in Las Vegas like this year's pageant but she barely didn't meet the age cut off by a few weeks since she had to be 18 by February 1 of that year even though the pageant was held in December but her birthday is February 25 so her runner up, Shilpa Singh competed instead and placed among the semifinalists. After establishing herself as a noted Bollywood actress and gaining over 4 million Facebook followers, extremely popular Urvashi came back to pursue her dream and won the Miss India Universe title again this year and received training from the two former Miss Universes from her country, Sushmita Sen and Lara Dutta in addition to Miss World 1997, Diana Hayden. This speaks volumes about her star quality and Urvashi has shown up being very strong in all aspects of the competition. She has the body, the face, the demeanor, the talent and top notch interview skills so Urvashi is my winner this year.

1st Runner Up=Colombia-Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo

Ariadna is often compared to popular Colombian celebrity, Sofia Vergara who has made a name for herself in American media. Here we have, Ariadna with the pressure of representing the country of the reigning Miss Universe, Paulina Vega so will Colombia be the next country to win Miss Universe two years in a row since Venezuela became the only country to win back-to-back Miss Universe crowns in 2009? Ariadna is also a strong all-around candidate who has the phenomenal body, looks and moves and she has excellent public speaking skills and she does carry on the sensational Colombian gown tradition so I am looking for Ariadna to have a strong showing.

2nd Runner Up=Venezuela-Mariana Jimenez

Venezuela is comfortably the international pageant powerhouse and they have churned out yet another outstanding delegate with their latest bet, Mariana. She perhaps has the body of the competition and it amazes me that they are able to bring it consistently. Mariana's gown styling looked a bit 80s in the preliminaries but I'm pretty sure she will change it up for finals. I actually appreciated the throwback look but Mariana is prepared well. Will she get Venezuela their 8th Miss Universe crown?

3rd Runner Up=USA-Olivia Jordan Thomas

There's a lot of factors working in Olivia's favor this year being the host country delegate and in my first round prethoughts, I pointed out a lot of parallels to her namesake, Olivia Culpo-Miss Universe 2012 who also represented the USA in Las Vegas in December winning her title. Culpo is a finals judge this year and both Olivias have attended Boston University. All of this points to a strong showing for the USA this year. A Screen Actors Guild member with some movie appearances under her belt, Olivia also holds the distinction of being the first woman to represent the USA at both Miss World and Miss Universe as she competed at Miss World 2013 placing in the top 20 that year prior to winning Miss USA 2015 and now competing at Miss Universe and has a chance to get the USA's 9th Miss Universe crown.

4th Runner Up=Philippines-Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach

The pageant obsessed nation of the Philippines currently holds the longest streak in the semifinals placing every year since 2010 and 4 of those years were in the top 5 so will Pia not only place but get the pearl of the Orient their 3rd Miss Universe crown? Of course, Philippines will have a very loud cheering section in Vegas that could fuel her and Pia is very strong on her own with a great body and elegant presentation skills. Pia is half-German on her father's side and is also an experienced actress since the age of 4 so Pia is used to the spotlight and this should help her. My top 5 also happens to match that of 1994 with the exclusion of Slovak Republic.


France-Flora Coquerel

France has endured a lot of tragedies this year and Flora actually attended a soccer match where one of the attacks took place. Aside from that, Flora is the Eyeful Tower and is a strong delegate who is tall and exotic being half-Beninese on her mother's side. Flora was actually crowned Miss France prior to last year's representative, Camille Cerf who placed in the top 15 but now has her chance to compete and is considered a favorite by many. Her look also at times reminds me of Rachel Smith, Miss USA 2007.

Vietnam-Thi Huong Pham

Bjork can step aside as we have a new swan dress to admire as the one worn by the Vietnamese delegate this year was a standout. Huong is another universal favorite who looks poised to get her country's second placement following their first in 2008 when Vietnam hosted the Miss Universe pageant. While I'm not as sure about her interview skills, she is an experienced competitor having competed a few times for the Miss Universe Vietnam title and in Vietnam's Top Model competition. Good morning, Vietnam!

Thailand-Aniporn Chalermburanawong

I really like Aniporn and she just glows to me and exudes both warmth and beauty. I understand she has chin issues and I actually wished she didn't do the Zuleyka slick-back hair during evening gown because I'm not a fan of that hairstyle but she has very angelic qualities and she has a fantastic body and overall look. She has a lot of fans also and they were cheering her on during preliminaries so I am looking for Thailand to get their first placement since 2007.

Australia-Monika Radulovic

Monika has a timely story about being from a refugee family and she seems to be a favorite among others so that prompted me to put her in my list. Facially, she's a bit off for me but she does have a great body and Aussies have been strong recently.

Brazil-Marthina Brandt

Brazil has the 2nd longest streak in the semifinals currently placing every year since hosting in 2011. Marthina is widely expected to keep the streak going. I think her face is a bit long but her body is on point and the gown is spectacular so she could do it.


Paraguay-Myriam Arevalos

Also experienced in various pageants, Myriam really wowed a lot of people after preliminaries with strong presentations in swimsuit and gown so she is suddenly making a lot of lists including mine. Even though, she didn't place at Miss World 2014, Myriam does have a great body and has a very good chance of getting Paraguay another placement since their last in 2006.

Dominican Republic-Clarissa Molina

Clarissa's performance in the preliminaries was very good as expected as she has a great body, stunning gown and overall look but she might come across as somewhat arrogant. She placed 4th in the 2015 edition of the reality contest Nuestra Belleza Latina so she is used to heavy competition and she also competed in various other pageants as well so she has a lot of experience.

Peru-Laura Spoya

Laura has been a consistently strong competitor from the start who is lovely with a very fit body and nice gown. She also speaks well so Laura is expected to get Peru's next placement since their last in 2012 which was also in Las Vegas.

Georgia-Janet Kerdikoshvili

Georgious Georgia! Janet certainly is a stunning delegate and she looks poised to get her country's first placement. This girl photographs extremely well and while her self-designed gown is interesting, she certainly presents with confidence. This is another one with really nice hair that I would prefer to not see pulled back. She has a bit of an edge and some have compared her to singer Lorde.

Kosovo-Mirjeta Shala

A lot of people like her look. Mirjeta was denied in 2013 from competing since that year's host country of Russia didn't recognize Kosovo as a country. Pageant photographer Fadil Berisha also directs Kosovo's pageant so I think Kosovo is in this year. Many appreciated her performance in the preliminaries but I don't think she will advance past the swimsuit round.


Finland-Rosa-Maria Ryyti

Rosa-Maria certainly has a great body but her speaking style came across somewhat dull and uninterested after watching a few online videos of her to determine where I would place her. Her styling might also be interpreted as a bit too 90s but Rosa-Maria does have what it takes to get Finland its first placement since 1996 which was also in Las Vegas and she is a tomboy and you know how much they love those tomboy stories in pageants, right? She is a possibility and I really wanted to put her in my list but I have no idea who to take out.

Netherlands-Jessie Jazz Vuijk

Also barely missing out was DJ Jessie Jazz who is a good candidate but this still in swimsuit and a weaker gown wasn't quite enough to pull her into my list. The story about her being a DJ might make for better audio-visuals. I also heard an interview with her and wasn't terribly wowed by it so we'll see what happens.

Belgium-Annelies Törös

She is pretty and I wanted to put her in my list but after preliminaries, I didn't quite feel strongly enough about her. Her chin was a bit distracting at angles and while I would like to see her place, I have a feeling it's another year out for Belgium.

Japan-Ariana Miyamoto

Her body isn't quite right for this competition even though she does have a good story about being the first biracial Miss Japan (Ariana's father is African-American) and even though one of the preliminary judges is Japanese, I don't see Japan making a comeback this year.

Sweden-Paulina Brodd

As mentioned in my first round prethoughts, Paulina is the daughter of Monika Brodd, Miss Sweden 1992 who placed 10th at Miss Universe during that competitive year. Unfortunately, I don't see Paulina matching her mother's achievement. I loved Monika and thought she was gorgeous but Paulina's body, gown and overall styling weren't up to par with these competitive conditions.


Denmark-Cecilie Wellemberg

The land of the little mermaid hasn't placed since 2007 and while they did send a formidable delegate this year, she didn't really come across as too enthusiastic so I'm somewhat neutral to her but she was an early favorite among others so she's a possibility.

Spain-Carla Barber Garcia

The Spanish delegate is certainly a good one. As a plastic surgeon, Carla is one of two doctors competing in this pageant (neighboring delegate Portugal is the other). However, her gown didn't flatter her figure so it looks like Spain's streak may end this year.

Ukraine-Anna Vergelskaya

Ukraine's glory days might be over as this year's delegate doesn't seem to be garnering enough favor amongst others and a certain someone is also no longer involved with the pageant but she's still a decent delegate so we'll see what happens this year.

Italy-Giada Pezzaioli

The final two spots in the honorable mentions category favor sponsors so the first would be Italy's Giada who placed in the top 7 at Miss World 2010 and while she has a decent body, her gown and the look on her face didn't quite convince me but she could get a spot.

Czech Republic-Nikol Švantnerová

The crown sponsor is Czech company DIC so we must always watch the Czech delegate and this year's delegate could pull off a placement. She's tall and decent but comes across a bit mature but still, she could be up there.

Other delegates that I might mention include the following:

Costa Rica - She is a really good delegate but a bit on the shorter side but I'm not seeing her in any lists so I'm guessing she's out but I honestly would not be surprised if she placed.

Argentina - She reminds me of Susie Castillo, Miss USA 2003 and she is a decent delegate but a downgrade from last year's excellent delegate so I don't see it happening for the land of tango this year.

Curacao - Other people love her. I don't get it.

Bahamas - As mentioned earlier, Bahamas hosted Miss Teen USA since 2008 and also hosted the Miss Universe pageant in 2009. She may be this year's tallest delegate but doesn't have the right look or body but the Solange Knowles hairstyle stands out. Still, that she was featured in some videos and pictures tells me that she might be one to watch as she might get a thank-you spot.

Mexico - Previous co-owner of the pageants, Donald Trump's comments about Mexicans earlier this year caused Mexico to originally want to boycott until the pageant was sold to the new owners so I was thinking Mexico might get an apology spot but this year's delegate is not semifinalist material so I'm thinking this will be Mexico's first year out in Las Vegas as they placed the other 4 years in Vegas (1991, 1996, 2010 and 2012) and even won both of their crowns in Vegas.

Class clown honors go to Guatemala - Gurl, you a trip!

Kudos also to Myanmar for her recovery after a stumble on the stairs during the preliminary evening gown competition. Will she pull a Miriam Quiambao?

And of course, tell everyone to watch Miss Universe 2015 - Sunday, December 20 on FOX!



Be sure to watch the preliminaries which are being held on Wednesday, December 16 where all the delegates will compete in swimsuit and evening gown. The webcast should be available at on that day.

I will be posting my final predictions on Friday, December 18 and then we will all witness the magic unfold on December 20 on FOX when the Miss Universe 2015 pageant broadcasts live from Las Vegas. This year's host is Steve Harvey who has his own talk show and also is the current host of the game show Family Feud so we'll see if we will have a similar show to Miss USA 2002 with Deion Sanders. Of course, my predictions will be finalized after I have had a chance to view all the delegates competing in preliminaries but in the meantime, a lot of you have been asking who I think the early contenders are so here is a 2nd round of prethoughts of my current feelings about each of the 80 delegates for Miss Universe 2015 so far. Note: there were 81 delegates but Slovenia's Ana Halozan is rumored to be ill so she will not be competing.

Albania-Megi Luka

Albania could be a potential surprise. They have never won the crown and their last placement was in 2010 when they made the top 10 and let's not forget that her pageant is directed by pageant photographer Fadil Berisha. Will the land where Mother Teresa spent much her childhood make a comeback this year?

Angola-Whitney Houston A. Shikongo

I don't see Angola placing this year but you gotta love that she was named after Whitney Houston! Angola last placed when they won the crown in 2011 thanks to Leila Lopes who still remains the Miss Universe with the longest reign.

Argentina-Claudia Barrionuevo

Claudia seems to be favored by many. Last year's delegate was phenomenal but this year's delegate, I'm not as enamored with. I might end up giving her an honorable mention but at the moment, she is not in my list. The land of Evita Peron hasn't placed in the top 10 last year and they have one Miss Universe winner, Norma Nolan in 1962.

Aruba-Alysha Boekhoudt

Placements for Aruba are rare and I'm not expecting that to change this year. Aruba's last and best placement was in 1996 when Taryn Mansell was 1st runner up.

Australia-Monika Radulovic

I'm not sure about the Aussie delegate this year. Something about her face is a bit off for me but other people seem to like her so I'm not counting her out entirely. The land down under placed in the top 10 last year and they have won the crown two times which were in 1972 (Kerry Anne Wells) and 2004 (Jennifer Hawkins).

Austria-Amina Dagi

Born Amina Mirzakhanova, this model could place but I don't think it will happen. Austria's last and best placement was in 1977 was when Eva Maria Duringer would place as 1st runner up and Eva would later marry one of the judges of that pageant, Roberto Cavalli.

Bahamas-Toria Nichole Penn

This year's delegate for the Bahamas seems to be getting more attention than usual so she is one to watch. The Bahamas have never placed in the history of Miss Universe but they have hosted the Miss Teen USA pageant since 2008 and hosted the Miss Universe pageant in 2009. Toria is one of this year's tallest delegates and has an interesting story after losing a lot of weight to get into modelling since she used to weigh 200 pounds and was a size 14 so there's a story here. Toria is a potential surprise.

Belgium-Annelies Törös

The Belgian delegate this year is quite pretty but I'm not sure that she is quite strong enough to get noticed this year. They last placed in 2010 and have yet to win the crown.

Bolivia-Romina Rocamonje

This year's pageant isn't in Los Angeles so they won't place. Of course, I'm kidding as a venue normally doesn't affect a country's chances but it is true that Bolivia's last two placements were when the Miss Universe pageant was held in Los Angeles (in 2006 and 1990). I don't see Bolivia placing this year.

Brazil-Marthina Brandt

Brazil was among the last delegates to be crowned this year as she just won her crown on November 18. Brazil has placed 4 years in a row now but I'm not sure that they will place this year but there is a possibility so Marthina is one to watch. I have her as an alternate at the moment. Brazil has two Miss Universe winners: Ieda Maria Vargas in 1963 and Martha Vasconcellos in 1968.

British Virgin Islands-Adorya Baly

I think Nature's Little Secret will remain a secret this year.

Bulgaria-Radostina Todorova

The land of roses sends a decent delegate but probably won't do it for this competition. Bulgaria has yet to place.

Canada-Paola Nunez

The land of the maple leaf hasn't placed since 2006 and Paola is not expected to change that.

Cayman Islands-Tonie Chisholm

The land of crystal blue waters and white coral beaches has never placed and that isn't expected to change this year.

Chile-María Belén Jerez

This year's delegate is decent but at this time, I don't see her placing. Chile's Cecilia Bolocco won their only Miss Universe crown in 1987 and their last placement was in 2004.

China-Yun Fang (Jessica) Xue

The world's most populated country last placed in 2013 and they have never won the crown. This year's delegate seems decent but I'm not sure that she is quite strong enough to pull off a placement this year. She still has a chance though so I'm not counting her out entirely so I'll wait until preliminaries to see if she can change my mind.

Colombia-Ariadna María Gutiérrez Arévalo

Will the world's finest coffee land be the next country to win two successive Miss Universe crowns after Venezuela did it in 2009? It is very possible as Ariadna is a heavy favorite and she is currently in my top 5. She has an amazing body and also speaks and presents herself extremely well. Many have likened her to popular Sofia Vergara who is easily America's most popular Colombian celebrity at the moment. Colombia's first Miss Universe winner, Luz Marina Zuluaga tragically just passed away on December 2. Luz Marina won Colombia's first Miss Universe crown in 1958 and their second win just came earlier this year when Paulina Vega became Miss Universe 2014 so is it time again for the land of victoric orchids?

Costa Rica-Brenda Castro

Costa Rica sends another delegate with promise so this is one to keep an eye on. Recent years have been good to Costa Rica. After their first placement in 1954, they incredibly had to wait 50 years for their next placement in 2004 and they also placed in 2011 and 2013 so will Costa Rica pull off another placement this year? Brenda could do it. As of right now, she is among my alternates but that could change after preliminaries.

Croatia-Mirta Kustan

Croatia has surprised us before so you never know. She's not among my picks at this moment so I'll be keeping an eye on her during preliminaries. Croatia has placed twice as a semifinalist (2009 and 2012).

Curacao-Kanisha Sluis

Curacao hasn't placed since 1997 but this year's delegate is one to keep an eye on as she seems be on a few lists already so I'll be keeping an eye on her during preliminaries to determine where exactly to put her in my list.

Czech Republic-Nikol Švantnerová

The new crown sponsor DIC is based in the Czech Republic so naturally the Czech delegate is definitely one to watch. I have her as an honorable mention at the moment as I feel facially she could be stronger. Czech Republic has never won the crown but they did have a 4 year streak in the semifinals from 2007 to 2010 so is it time for a return?

Denmark-Cecilie Wellemberg

The land of the little mermaid has never won the crown but they did place as 1st runner up in 1963 and last made the semifinals in 2007. Here we see lovely Cecilie with a strong chance to bring Denmark into the mix assuming she doesn't walk like a trucker as some Danish delegates have done in the past... Cecilie is among my top 16 at the moment but I will be watching how she walks closely during preliminaries to determine if she will stay there or not.

Dominican Republic-Clarissa Molina

Clarissa seems to be favored by others so I'm leaning toward putting her in my list but I'm not totally positive so I will wait until preliminaries to determine where I put her. The Dominican Republic won the crown in 2003 thanks to Amelia Vega and last placed in the top 10 in 2013.

Ecuador-Francesca Cipriani

The land where the hemispheres meet last placed in 2013 when they pulled off their highest placement ever last year when Constanza Baez placed as 2nd runner up. This year's delegate, however, is not on my list.

El Salvador-Fatima Rivas

I don't see the Gentleman of the Americas placing this year. El Salvador was 1st runner up back in 1955 and they haven't placed since 1996.

Finland-Rosa-Maria Ryyti

The land where tolerance and northern lights shine bright sends a promising delegate this year. Finland hasn't placed since 1996 and they have 2 Miss Universe winners (in 1952 and 1975) and this year's delegate hopes to convince us that Finland ain't finished! Rosa-Maria will be somewhere on my list as I'm impressed with her but where exactly will be determined after preliminaries.

France-Flora Coquerel

Even though, Flora won the Miss France crown prior to Camille Cerf who represented France at Miss Universe 2014, Flora is competing for Miss Universe 2015 after Camille but better late than never as Flora is also a favorite this year. She is in my top 10 at the moment as Flora is the eyeful tower from the land of the Eiffel tower being a tall, exotic beauty being half-French and half-Beninese and Flora at times reminds me of Miss USA 2007, Rachel Smith. France has also been in the news a lot this year due to some tragic shootings that have occurred there. France won the Miss Universe crown once back in 1953 but they have not made the top 5 since then even though they have had quite a few semifinalists over the years so will this be the year? France is one of three countries that has competed at every Miss Universe pageant since its inception in 1952 (Canada and Germany are the other two and USA was disqualified in 1957).

Gabon-Ornella Obone

Gabon is fairly new to competing at Miss Universe. I'm not expecting this year's representative to place.

Georgia-Janet Kerdikoshvili

Georgia has never placed but this year's delegate looks promising but I don't know how job ready Georgia's delegates are but there's no denying that Janet is gorgeous so she is probably be among my alternates but she could move into my semifinalist list after preliminaries if I like what I see.

Germany-Sarah-Lorraine Riek

I don't see Germany placing this year but I appreciate that they have consistently competed in every Miss Universe pageant since the first one in 1952. Germany hasn't placed since 2002 and they won the crown once back in 1961.

Ghana-Hilda Akua Frimpong

Hilda was Miss Ghana USA 2012 and placed as 2nd runner-up at the annual Miss Africa USA 2014 pageant but I don't think she will place at Miss Universe. Ghana last placed back in 1999 and they have never won the crown.

Great Britain-Narissara (Nena) France

I'm leaning towards not putting her in my list but Nena is a possibility. Great Britain has never won the crown and last placed in 2013.

Greece-Michaela Fotiadi

I'm not expecting her to place. Greece hasn't placed since 2005 and won the crown once in 1964.

Guatemala-Jeimmy Aburto

The heart of the Mundo Maya last placed in 2010 but this year's delegate is not expected to place. I appreciate her fun attitude though so maybe she could contend for the Miss Congeniality title.

Guyana-Shauna Ramdyhan

This country has never placed and this year's delegate is not expected to change that.

Haiti-Lisa Drouillard

Lisa may look familiar as she was Miss New York Teen USA 2011 but went unplaced at Miss Teen USA 2011. She recently competed in Miss Grand International 2014 where she placed in the top 10 for Haiti but I don't see her placing at Miss Universe. Haiti's best placement was in 1975 when Gerthie David finished as 1st runner up.

Honduras-Iroshka Elvir

Honduras hasn't placed since 1955 which makes them the country that has had to wait the longest for a repeat semifinalist. This year's delegate is not expected to place.

Hungary-Nikoletta Nagy

The land of the Blue Danube probably won't place this year but they have surprised us before! Their last placement was in 2012.

India-Urvashi Rautela

Urvashi remains my winner so far. She won the Miss India Universe title twice - the first time being in 2012 but at the time didn't quite meet the age cut-off by a few weeks so the 2012 Indian Miss Universe rep was her runner-up, Shilpa Singh who broke India's four year drought from the semifinals from 2008 to 2011 but India has placed ever since and now Urvashi went and competed all over again and won the Miss India Universe again this year. She carries herself in a such a regal manner and has been very active on social media and already has 4 million followers on Facebook after establishing herself as a Bollywood actress. Urvashi has proven that she will be able to do the job of Miss Universe extremely well and am looking for great things from her. India has won Miss Universe two times thanks to Sushmita Sen in 1994 and Lara Dutta in 2000, both of whom have trained Urvashi further adding to her strength.

Indonesia-Anindya Putri

Indonesia pulled off 2 consecutive placements so will they make it a third year in a row in the semifinals? This year's delegate is not on my list so I think the streak ends here.

Ireland-Joanna Cooper

The emerald isle sends us a shorter delegate with some extreme eyebrows that may help her stand out but I don't expect her to place. Ireland last placed in 2010 and they have never won the crown but have placed as 2nd runner up twice (1963 and 1983).

Israel-Avigail Alfatov

This delegate isn't strong enough so she is not among my picks but Israel has surprised us before. They last placed in 2005 and Rina Messinger is Israel's only Miss Universe winning the crown in 1976.

Italy-Giada Pezzaioli

Sponsors this year include Yamamay and Buca di Beppo... Giada did place in the top 7 at Miss World 2010 so it is possible for the land of culture, pasta and fashion to place a second year in a row. Italy has never won the Miss Universe crown but they do have two 1st runner ups (1960 and 1987).

Jamaica-Sharlene Rädlein

Will it be a second year of placing in a row for Jamaica? This year's delegate looks promising so I'll be watching her in preliminaries to determine whether or not she makes my list. Even though the island of reggae has won Miss World 3 times, they have never won the Miss Universe crown but their best placement was 1st runner up in 2010.

Japan-Ariana Miyamoto

Ariana's story about being half-black has garnered some media attention when she won her title but I don't think Ariana quite has the body for this competition so I don't think she will place. Japan last placed in 2008 and they have won the Miss Universe crown twice in the years of 1959 and 2007.

Korea-Seo-yeon Kim

Her body isn't strong enough even though she has a decent face but I don't see her placing. Korea last placed in 2007 and the closest they came to the crown was a 1st runner up placement in 1988.

Kosovo-Mirjeta Shala

Kosovo could do it. Their national director is pageant photographer, Fadil Berisha which may explain Kosovo's strong showings in recent years placing 4 times since 2008. Mirjeta was also originally supposed to compete at Miss Universe 2013 which was held in Russia but since Russia didn't recognize Kosovo as a country and her safety couldn't be ensured, Kosovo withdrew from competing that year but now Mirjeta has her chance and I am debating whether to have her in my list or as an alternate so I will determine this after preliminaries. Kosovo's highest placement was as 2nd runner up in 2009.

Lebanon-Cynthia Samuel

Cynthia has a sweet face but usually Lebanese delegate don't focus enough on the body so after preliminaries, I will determine where to place her. Lebanon hasn't placed since 1973 and they have one winner, Georgina Rizk in 1971.

Malaysia-Vanessa Tevi Kumares

Malaysia normally doesn't place and that isn't expected to change this year. They have only placed once which was back in 1970.

Mauritius-Sheetal Khadun

Mauritius has never placed and unfortunately I don't see that changing this year as this year's delegate doesn't quite have the body.

Mexico-Wendolly Esparza

Could this be the first year when Miss Universe is in Las Vegas that Mexico doesn't place? As mentioned in my first round prethoughts, Mexico has placed the first 4 years that Miss Universe was held in Las Vegas and even won its two Miss Universe crowns in Las Vegas but Wendy doesn't seem to be bringing it almost as if she knows she won't place. It wouldn't surprise me if she does place though as she will have loud crowd supporters in Las Vegas and Mexico did almost boycott when a certain previous owner of this pageant made certain comments so Wendolly is a question mark but I'm daring to lean towards her not placing. Mexico last placed in 2012 (in Las Vegas) and won in 1991 and 2010 (in Las Vegas).

Montenegro-Maja Čukić

At 6 feet tall, Maja is one of the taller delegates this year but is staying fairly low key so I'm not really sure of what to think of her. As of right now, she's not in my list but I'll see if she can change my mind after preliminaries.

Myanmar-May Thaw

Myanmar has never placed but they have been placing in other international pageants. This year's delegate isn't quite strong enough for the competition.

Netherlands-Jessie Jazz Vuijk

Netherlands made the top 5 last year so will Jessie get another successive placement for the land of tulips and windmills? This year's Dutch delegate is another favorite so she is one to watch. Angela Visser won the crown for Holland in 1989.

New Zealand-Samantha McClung

New Zealand won the crown once in 1983 but the Kiwis haven't placed since 1992 surprisingly. Will that change this year? It is certainly possible but I will wait until preliminaries to be sure.

Nicaragua-Daniela Torres

The land of lakes and volcanoes last placed in 2013 but this year's delegate is not expected to place.

Nigeria-Debbie Collins

Placements for Nigeria are rare. Their only placement was in 2001 by Agbani Darego who would go on to win Miss World later that year. This year's delegate is not expected to place.

Norway-Martine Rødseth

The land of the fjords hasn't placed since 2005 and they won the crown once in 1990. This year's delegate is a long shot and is not expected to place and I think this country could be a lot more competitive.

Panama-Gladys Brandao Amaya

This tropical isthmus last placed in 2011 but I don't find this delegate competitive enough.

Paraguay-Myriam Arévalos

I'm not totally sure about Myriam but she has potential. Paraguay recently won the Miss Supranational title so maybe some of that luck will rub off on Myriam. Paraguay has never won and they last placed in 2006 and 2004 placing as 3rd runner up both times.

Peru-Laura Spoya

Laura actually is one of the stronger delegates this year and she is among my picks so far. The land of the Incas last placed in 2012 and they did win the crown in 1957.

Philippines-Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach

Pia is still in my top 5 presently. The Philippines have the longest streak in the semifinals placing 5 years in a row and Pia hopes to make it a 6th year. Pia has been acting since the age of 4 so she is used to the spotlight and she has strong presentation skills so I am looking for her to go far in the competition.

Poland-Weronika Szmajdzinska

Weronika is experienced in pageants winning a pageant called Miss Global Teen in 2012 but going unplaced at Miss World 2012. Weronika is now trying her luck at Miss Universe. I don't have her in my list at the moment as I don't feel she quite has the body for this competition. Placements for Poland are rare. They did place in 2012 but have never won the crown.

Portugal-Emília Araújo

Portugal got their first placement ever in 2011 finishing in the top 10. This year's delegate is not expected to place though.

Puerto Rico-Catalina Morales

Facially, this is not a strong delegate for the shining star of the Caribbean which is a country for which we have high expectations as Puerto Rico has won the Miss Universe crown 5 times (1970, 1985, 1993, 2001 and 2006) and last placed in 2013. Catalina is not among my picks this year.

Russia-Vladislava Evtushenko

I'm not impressed with this year's Russian delegate as her look does not appeal to me so she also is not among my picks. Russia last placed in 2012 and their only winner, Oxana Fedorova was dethroned in 2002.

Serbia-Daša Radosavljević

Serbia's delegate is also not among my picks as she doesn't quite have the body and overall look.

Singapore-Lisa White

Placements for Singapore are rare and this year's delegate is not in my list. Singapore last placed in 1987 which was also the year they hosted the Miss Universe pageant.

Slovak Republic-Denisa Vyšnovská

Slovak Republic placed only once which was in 1994. I don't expect this delegate to place.

South Africa-Refilwe Mthimunye

South Africa again is sending their winner to Miss World and the runner-up to Miss Universe like last year. South Africa last placed in 2012 but this year's delegate is not expected to place. South Africa's only Miss Universe is Margaret Gardiner who won the crown in 1978.

Spain-Carla Barber Garcia

Will Spain make it 3 years in a row? Carla could very well make that a reality. She is among my picks at the moment as she does have a very nice face and body but also seems very fun-loving and I appreciate her nature. Carla also placed in the top 15 at Miss World 2011. Spain won the Miss Universe crown once in 1974.

Sweden-Paulina Brodd

As mentioned in my first round prethoughts, Paulina is the daughter of Monika Brodd, Miss Sweden 1992 who placed 10th at Miss Universe 1992. Paulina obviously hopes to follow in Monika's footsteps but will it happen? Right now, I'm actually not sure. Paulina's body could perhaps be better so I have her as an alternate at the moment but preliminaries could change that. Sweden has won the crown 3 times (1955, 1966 and 1984) and they last placed in 2009.

Tanzania-Lorraine Marriot

Tanzania last placed in 2007 but I don't see this year's delegate placing.

Thailand-Aniporn Chalermburanawong

Aniporn is actually in my top 10 currently. I am actually quite impressed with her glowing smile and great body and I can see her going far in the competition. Thailand hasn't placed since 2007 and they have won two Miss Universe crowns in the years of 1965 and 1988.

Turkey-Melisa Uzun

Turkey pulled off a surprise placement in 2012 but I don't see it happening this year but then again, it is close to Christmas. And people do eat Turkey at Christmas so...

Ukraine-Anna Vergelskaya

Anna could place but with Trump no longer involved, one can only wonder if Ukraine will still enjoy the success it has had recently placing 6 of the last 9 years as mentioned in my first round prethoughts. I currently have Anna as an alternate at the moment but she could change my mind during preliminaries. Ukraine has never won but they were 1st runner up in 2011 and 2nd runner up last year.

Uruguay-Bianca Sánchez

Placements for Uruguay are rare and this year's delegate isn't expected to change that. Uruguay hasn't placed since 1985.

USA-Olivia Jordan Thomas

Olivia is in my top 5. Being the host delegate, Olivia will have the crowd support obviously so she's expected to go far and possibly all the way like the last time in Vegas back in December 2012 when another Olivia who also once attended Boston University representing the USA won the Miss Universe crown. So is history about to repeat itself and will the USA get its 9th Miss Universe crown?

Venezuela-Mariana Jimenez

Also in my top 5 is the international pageant powerhouse of Venezuela who once again sends another complete stunner who could easily get yet another crown for Venezuela. Could Mariana repeat the results of the 1996 Miss Universe pageant which was also in Las Vegas? Mariana has a chance to win the 8th Miss Universe crown for her nation so we will see if she can pull it off.

Vietnam-Thi Huong Pham

And finally, Good Morning, Vietnam! This country sends us a strong delegate who is in my top 10 at the moment as she appears to be an all-around strong delegate that is favored by many. An experienced competitor, Huong competed in Vietnam's Next Top Model 2010 and she competed four times before she finally won the title of Miss Universe Vietnam 2015. Vietnam has only placed once which was in 2008, the year they hosted the Miss Universe pageant and Huong will likely give them that 2nd placement and could go all the way.

So there you have it! Again, preliminaries are on December 16 and I will post my final predictions on December 18 and then the truth will be unveiled on December 20 on FOX!!



India and PhilippinesNetherlands
Costa RicaAruba, Bahamas, Israel, Ukraine
Ecuador, El Salvador, SingaporeThailand

Caught Up! (Got Me Feelin' It)

In what could be described as one of the most turbulent years in pageant history, the 2015 Miss Universe pageant is actually being held in the year 2015 on December 20 and all is right in the world. But there was a long time when all of this didn't seem so certain. It all began in the year 2014 which became the first calendar year to not have a Miss Universe pageant in it since its official inception in 1952. In September 2014, it was announced to the surprise of many that the 2014 Miss Universe pageant would be delayed to January 25, 2015. The delay of the pageant was possibly due to the pageant being unable to find a host country outside of the U.S. There were rumors that Fortaleza, Brazil might have been slated to host the pageant but probably bailed as many countries seem to do recently due to the large hosting fee. The pageant found a U.S. location in Miami that did pay a moderate fee to host the pageant. There was also speculation that since NBC delayed the airing of 'The Celebrity Apprentice' to January 2015 rather than in 2014 that they wanted to tie that in with Miss Universe pageant since both of these shows involved Donald Trump at the time. The ratings were strong for this January pageant which led me to believe that it was possible that 2014 would be a forever skipped year or we would experience a long period of time where the pageant was post-dated. The Miss America pageant experienced this when in the calendar year of 2005, there was no Miss America pageant and it was delayed to January 2006 when that pageant was traditionally held in September. However, since the Miss America pageant postdates its title, no one really noticed. (i.e. Miss America 2005 was crowned in September 2004 and Miss America 2006 was crowned in January 2006). It took 9 years for the Miss America pageant to return to normalcy as in 2013, they held two pageants (one in January and the next back to the regular month of September with the postdated title). I feared that it would take that length of time for the Miss Universe pageant to return to normalcy but all that fear was for nothing as all was immediately made right in 2015. The Miss Universe pageant did postdate its titles for the titleholders of the 50s. For example, the first official Miss Universe, Armi Kuusela of Finland won her title in 1952 but she was named Miss Universe 1953 at the time but from the 60s onwards, the titleholders were named the winners of the years in which they were crowned (Linda Bement, Miss Universe 1960 won her title in 1960 and all previous titleholders were then pushed back to the years that they were actually crowned. Paulina Vega-Miss Universe 2014Donald Trump announces his run for President With the events of 2014, it might have been better to have kept the titles postdated but that's all in the past now. But the delay of the Miss Universe 2014 was only the beginning. Adding to the turbulence of 2015, it was on June 16, Donald Trump (who co-owned the Miss Universe family of pageants including Miss USA and Miss Teen USA) announced that he was running to be the Republican candidate for President and since then, he has risen to the top of multiple polls. However some comments uttered during his speech triggered a lot of boycotting of things associated with Trump. Many people took offense to one portion of Trump's speech when he said, "When do we beat Mexico at the border? They’re laughing at us, at our stupidity. And now they are beating us economically. They are not our friend, believe me. But they’re killing us economically. The U.S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else’s problems. (audience applauds) Thank you. It’s true, and these are the best and the finest. When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They’re sending us not the right people. It’s coming from more than Mexico. It’s coming from all over South and Latin America, and it’s coming probably, probably from the Middle East. But we don’t know. Because we have no protection and we have no competence, we don’t know what’s happening. And it’s got to stop and it’s got to stop fast." There was some speculation that the source of these comments came from when the behind-the-scenes deal for Miss Universe 2007 which was held in Mexico went awry. The 2007 Miss Universe pageant held in Mexico City was likely what soured Trump on Mexico. He was booed during his appearance but the recipient of the most boos that night was then Miss USA, Rachel Smith, Miss USA 2007, Rachel Smith falls during the 2007 Miss Universe pageant in Mexico who placed as 4th runner up even after falling during the evening gown competition whereas then Miss Mexico, Rosa Maria Ojeda Cuen made the top 10 but not the top 5 which angered members of the predominantly Mexican audience. This whole episode was reminiscent of the 1993 Miss Universe pageant which was also held in Mexico City. When Miss Mexico didn't make the top 10 that year, many members of that audience became raucous and booed loudly throughout the show daring to target then legendary host, Dick Clark and especially then Miss USA, Kenya Moore who also participated in the most recent Celebrity Apprentice featuring Trump in the leading role. Also, according to an article from Yahoo Finance, the Mexican businessmen responsible for paying the hosting fee of 6.5 million dollars to bring the Miss Universe pageant to Mexico in 2007 didn't pay the full hosting fee originally. One businessman paid 1 million dollars upfront out of the 6.5 million dollar hosting fee. As collateral for the remainder, he agreed to set up a trust containing 26 properties belonging to a second businessman. After the show was over, they refused to pay the remaining balance and it was impossible to claim the collateral and it turned out that the assets were never actually contributed to the trust. The Miss Universe organization went to court over this in Mexico and won but it got tied up in the Mexican court system and after interest and legal fees, the amount owed to the Miss Universe organization grew to 12 million dollars but they ended up not being able to collect it. On February 24, Trump tweeted, “I have a lawsuit in Mexico’s corrupt court system that I won but so far can’t collect. Don’t do business with Mexico!” Trump shortly thereafter vowed that Mexico would never host another Miss Universe pageant. When it came time for the Miss USA 2015 pageant, on June 24, one of the original performers, Latin singer J. Balvin said he would no longer participate at Miss USA because of Trump's comments and from there the Miss USA pageant started unravelling at the seams. Univision was slated to broadcast the Spanish version of Miss USA 2015 which was to be color commentated by Chilean actor Cristian de la Fuente, who has previously participated as a judge for Miss Universe 2000, and the Puerto Rican actress Roselyn Sanchez but all of them bailed. Originally 5 judges were announced: Former Miss Universe, Puerto Rico's Zuleyka Rivera, Property Brothers star Jonathon Scott, Football great Emmitt Smith (husband of Pat Southall, 1st runner up to Miss USA 1994), E! News co-anchor Terrence Jenkins, and country singer Jessie James Decker. As posted in my first round prethoughts, there was speculation that Catelyn Jenner (formerly Olympic champion, Bruce Jenner who is transitioning to become a woman) was rumored to also be a judge but any hopes of that happening were eliminated. Other originally slated performers all dropped out and they included: Flo Rida, Natalie La Rose and Craig Wayne Boyd, winner of the seventh season of The Voice. The original hosts, Cheryl Burke and Thomas Roberts said they will no longer be participating. Some sponsors pulled out and NBC Universal who co-owns the pageant also announced that it would not broadcast Miss USA this year even after recently signing a five year deal. Miss USA 2015 needed a complete overhaul with new hosts, judges and performers and a new network but it happened and all came together nicely. A lot of Latin countries said they would also boycott Miss Universe at the time so change was inevitable and very much needed for the survival the Miss Universe family of pageants so Donald Trump ended up buying back the share in the pageants that he sold to NBC in 2002 after that year's winners were chosen. Donald Trump took ownership of the Miss Universe family of pageants in 1996 and ever since then, controversy became a major factor in the publicity of multiple pageants to follow and Miss Universe 1996, Venezuela's Alicia Machado Donald Trump with Alicia Machado-Miss Universe 1996Donald Trump crowns Justine Pasek as Miss Universe 2002 was the first to experience this when she was criticized for gaining weight during her reign. 2002 became the last year that the pageants aired on CBS and was also the year that a Miss Universe winner was dethroned and replaced by her runner up. Russia's Oxana Fedorova was the original winner of Miss Universe 2002 but was dethroned a few months later for failing to fulfill her duties. Oxana said she became unwilling to perform her duties especially after an appearance on Howard Stern's radio show in which he asked her very degrading questions such as 'spit or swallow?' Oxana was replaced by Justine Pasek of Panama who also happened to represent the host country of the following Miss Universe pageant in 2003... which was the first year that NBC joined with Donald Trump as co-owner of the pageants and this was the year that the reality show 'The Apprentice' which aired on NBC began filming and the first season aired in January 2004. 2002 was also a transition year for new Mikimoto crowns to be used which seemed to resemble peacock feathers like the peacock logo of NBC... In 2015, NBC broke its ties with Donald Trump and refused to air Miss USA which ended up being picked up by the Reelz network which recognized that the delegates competing for Miss USA shouldn't have been punished for what happened so after Miss Teen USA happened, it was announced that Trump bought back NBC's share of the pageants and sold it all to the WME/IMG Group which heads the William Morris and Endeavor Agencies which are highly renowned talent and modelling agencies headed by executives Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell and then we learned that FOX would be the airing the pageants so we have entered a brave new era in pageantry with new ownership and hopefully some change for the better. However, Donald Trump did host an episode of Saturday Night Live which is an NBC show in November 2015 after the deal was done so maybe there is more to this story than we know like perhaps they weren't too keen on keeping the pageants and this was more of an escape tactic... Trump's role on 'The Apprentice' is apparently being taken over by Arnold Schwarzenegger. We will learn what the outcome of the U.S. presidential race is over on November 8, 2016 and whether or not all of this was worth it. So the timeline goes that Miss Universe aired on CBS from 1960 to 2002. NBC aired the pageants from 2003 to 2014/15 and now in 2015, FOX takes its turn in airing the pageants. The other major American network ABC is the one that airs the Miss America pageant. Some dizzying changes have occurred over the years but cheers to the new era of pageantry and let's all hope for the best! This year's pageant is also being held one day after the Miss World pageant which will be held on December 19 which means that there will be no overlap of contestants this year like there have been in years past. Some national directors that run the pageants to select representatives for both the Miss World and Miss Universe pageants have been forced to choose which pageant to attend and some countries are sending a runner up like South Africa is doing by sending their winner to Miss World and the runner up to Miss Universe. In most cases these days, there are separate national pageants: One to select a country's representative for Miss Universe and another for Miss World.

La Vega in Las Vegas

Paulina Vega-Miss Universe 2014Amelia Vega-Miss Universe 2003Mexico-Wendolly Esparza The last name Vega is the first last name to be repeated amongst Miss Universe titleholders. The reigning Miss Universe, Colombia's Paulina Vega shares the same last name as Miss Universe 2003, Dominican Republic's Amelia Vega. So it is only fitting that La Vega give up her crown in Las Vegas, no? And perhaps both of las Vegas will appear in Las Vegas if Amelia shows up to perhaps be a judge or just attend as an audience member. Miss Universe 2015 will be the 5th Miss Universe pageant to be held in that exciting city following the years of 1991, 1996, 2010 and 2012. The country of Mexico has placed all of those years and has even won both of its Miss Universe crowns in Las Vegas (1991 and 2010) thanks to Lupita Jones and Ximena Navarrete so this year's representative of the land of the Mariachi, Wendolly Esparza hopes that she experience the same luck that Mexico has encountered in Las Vegas. In fact, Mexico's last two placements were in Las Vegas in 2010 and 2012 but they haven't placed since then. It will be interesting to see how Mexico places especially this year as they would have boycotted if Trump still owned the pageants but since he is not involved, Mexico is back and will try to win its 3rd Miss Universe crown and will they perhaps be rewarded because of those comments? There will certainly be loud support from the audience as always from the Mexican Cantinflas...I mean contingent and while I don't see a win for Wendolly, she could very well get a semifinalist spot but we shall see how this all plays out. The other two countries to win in Las Vegas were Venezuela in 1996 and the USA in 2012 so could one of these countries experience a repeat win in Vegas as Mexico has or is it time for another country to win in Vegas?

Once, Twice, Three Times A Winner?

India-Urvashi RautelaUrvashi Rautela with Bollywood star, Salman Khan India's Urvashi Rautela is easily one of the top contenders for the Miss Universe crown this year but the story of how she got to Miss Universe is a fascinating one. You see, back in 2012, Urvashi was the original winner of the Miss India Universe title. That was the last year that former Miss Universe, Sushmita Sen ran the "I Am She" pageant which selected India's representative to Miss Universe. Apparently, Urvashi barely missed the age cut-off at the time. Even though, she was 18 and technically old enough to compete for Miss Universe 2012 when it happened in December of that year, there was apparently a rule that contestants had to be 18 by February 1, 2012 but Urvashi turned 18 on February 25, 2012. Urvashi was also at the time, a reigning titleholder for another pageant, Miss Tourism Queen of the Year International 2011 meaning she would have conflicting duties and as a result, India was represented in 2012 by runner-up, Shilpa Singh who managed to place in the semifinals and broke India's drought as India missed the semifinals for 4 years from 2008 to 2011. India has placed every year since 2012 which could mean a return to regain the powerhouse status it once held during its glory years from 1990 to 2002 which India only missed the semifinals in one of those years (1991) and winning its two Miss Universe crowns during that period (1994 and 2000) thanks to Sushmita Sen and Lara Dutta. Urvashi would not let this setback phase her and determined to fulfill her dream of competing for the Miss Universe crown, she competed all over again for the 2015 Miss Diva Universe crown to win the right to represent India at Miss Universe and she won that title AGAIN! This further proves what a powerful force Urvashi is. Lara Dutta, Miss Universe 2000 is involved with Miss Diva Universe pageant and so Urvashi has therefore received training from both Indian Miss Universes and even Miss World 1997, Diana Hayden. Urvashi has since become an established celebrity in her country getting Bollywood film roles and has friends in high places. She is shown pictured here standing next to Bollywood superstar, Salman Khan and she even has almost 4 million followers of her Facebook fan page so it is safe to say that Urvashi is this year's most popular delegate. Urvashi won Miss India twice and so will a win of the Miss Universe title make her not once, twice, but three times a winner??? Urvashi is my winner at this moment. In fact, my top 5 is looking like a repeat of 1994 excluding Slovak Republic, the other 5 countries in that top 6 were: India, Colombia, Venezuela, USA and Philippines which also happen to be my top 5 for 2015 so far. Another pattern working in this favor: USA placed 4th in 1994 and won in 2012, Venezuela placed 3rd in 1994 and won in 2013, Colombia placed 2nd in 1994 and won for 2014 and India placed 1st in 1994 so is it time for the country which embodies unity through diversity in 2015???
The top 6 of Miss Universe 1994

You Get a Miss USA Title! You Get a Miss World USA title!! Everybody Gets a Miss USA Tiiiiitllllle!!!!!

Olivia Jordan-Miss USA 2015Olivia Culpo-Miss Universe 2012So Miss USA 2015, Olivia Jordan met Oprah Winfrey who inspired this headline, of course! Here we see, Olivia Jordan Thomas with Oprah and her friend Gayle King. Olivia's real last name is Thomas and Jordan is actually her middle name, by the way. And the once, twice, three times a winner scenario doesn't only work for India but it also works in Olivia Jordan's favor as prior to winning the Miss USA title, Olivia won the Miss World USA title in 2013 and placed in the top 20 of Miss World 2013 and she went on to win Miss USA 2015 which makes Olivia the first woman in history to represent the USA at both Miss World and Miss Universe. Olivia was also 1st runner up to Miss California USA 2013. Like India's Urvashi Rautela, USA's Olivia Jordan also has some film credits to her name and is a member of the Screen Actors Guild. Olivia has appeared in "Ted" (2012), "Here Comes the Boom" (2012) and "Hot Tub Time Machine 2" (2015). And of course, we must bring up the patterns! Olivia Jordan happens to have the same first name as Olivia Culpo, Miss Universe 2012 who also represented the USA and competed for Miss Universe in Las Vegas in the month of December (only one day apart too - Olivia Culpo won her crown on December 19, 2012 and Olivia Jordan will compete on December 20, 2015) and on top of that both Olivia Culpo and Olivia Jordan have attended Boston University! With all of these things in common, will it mean yet another Miss Universe win for the USA??? The USA has won the Miss Universe crown 8 times which is more than any other country. Olivia Culpo has also been making headlines due to her recent break-up with football player Tim Tebow who reportedly refused to have sex with her because he is saving his virginity until after marriage citing his Christian values. This break-up follows Olivia Culpo's previous break-up from Nick Jonas which also happened this year. Nick Jonas, of course, performed during the Miss Universe 2014 pageant which was held in January and at one point, got down on his knee in front of Olivia Culpo who was sitting in the audience. She also stars in the music video for his song, "Jealous" which was a top 10 hit for Nick Jonas peaking at number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

I Can't Feel My Face When I'm in Pageants...
Because of the Make Up... But I Love it... Oh.

Philippines-Pia WurtzbachVenezuela-Mariana Jimenez Two countries have become pageant powerhouses in recent years and those nations would be the Philippines and Venezuela. The tropical haven of Asia, the Philippines currently holds the longest streak in the semifinals for Miss Universe placing every year since 2010 and 4 of those 5 years were in the top 5. Their latest hope for the crown is another experienced competitor, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach who is half-German on her father's side. Also, an experienced actress since age 4, Pia is used to the spotlight and should have a very strong showing at this year's Miss Universe pageant. The Philippines has won the crown twice (Gloria Diaz in 1969 and Margarita Moran in 1973) but this pageant obsessed nation has come very close to the crown in recent years but haven't been able to grasp it as of yet but Pia hopes to change that. She won the right to represent the Philippines at Miss Universe on her third try and she also has friends in high places and there is a rumor that she is dating the current President of her country, Benigno Aquino III but Pia has not confirmed these rumors. The gateway of South America, Venezuela is being represented by Mariana Jimenez and she is the latest hope of this other pageant powerhouse to capture another Miss Universe crown. Venezuela is easily the most successful in international pageantry capturing multiple crowns from numerous pageants and 7 of those crowns are Miss Universe crowns won in the years of 1979, 1981, 1986, 1996, 2008, 2009 and 2013. These wins make Venezuela second only to the USA in terms of having the most Miss Universe winners. Mariana also has previous experience competing in a new international pageant called Miss Grand International where she placed among the top 10 in 2013 at that pageant. The most recent winner of the Miss Grand International by the way was Anea Garcia who was my prediction to win Miss USA 2015 where she represented Rhode Island but placed as 2nd runner up due to an unfortunate question and answer round. Anea went on to represent the Dominican Republic at the Miss Grand International 2015 pageant so this tells me that she may very well have dual citizenship which means she may be making an appearance on the Miss Universe stage in the near future representing the Dominican Republic. Venezuela and Philippines were my top 2 last year so how will they fare in my list this year?

The Eyeful Tower

France-Flora Coquerel The land of the Eiffel Tower is giving us an eyeful of beauty with another favorite, Flora Coquerel who was actually crowned Miss France 2014 and competed for the Miss World 2014 crown where she went unplaced but now she has been given the opportunity to compete for the Miss Universe crown. Oddly enough, Flora's successor for the Miss France title, Camille Cerf was the one who competed for the Miss Universe 2014 which was held in January and she placed among the top 15 although many felt that Camille could have gone much further. Now, we see Flora competing after Camille instead of before her and a large part of this is likely due to the odd dating of the Miss Universe pageants in recent years but now that things have been made right, there should be some normalcy. Flora has a French father and Beninese mother which contributes to her exotic appearance. The country of France has made headlines recently due to the horrific terrorist attacks that have affected that nation. When Camille Cerf was competing for Miss Universe earlier this year, some staff of the French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo were shot and killed and this was seen as an attack worldwide on free speech. Last month, there were numerous shootings in various venues throughout Paris also carried out by terrorists and the world mourned the senseless losses of innocent victims and France's presence in international events like the Miss Universe pageant is a testament to their strength and they could have a strong showing this time around. France has done quite well in recent Miss Universe pageants placing every year since 2009 except for one year, 2013. France's only Miss Universe is Christiane Martel who won their nation's crown back in 1953 making France the country that has had to wait the longest for a repeat Miss Universe win. Will Flora be able to do it?

Don't Watch Me Whip and Nae-Nae,
Watch Me Snap Turn and Sweden Out

Monica Brodd, Miss Sweden 1992Monica Brodd, Miss Sweden 1992 and daughter Paulina Brodd, Miss Sweden 2015Paulina Brodd, Miss Sweden 2015
We have another like-mother-like-daughter scenario which has been seen quite a bit lately. This year, it is the country of Sweden that has a legacy story in it. Paulina Brodd represents the nobel prize country of Sweden and she is the daughter of Monica Brodd, Miss Sweden 1992 who was a top 10 semifinalist at Miss Universe 1992 which was held in Bangkok, Thailand. Will Paulina be able to match her mother's feat and even surpass it? During the last Miss Universe pageant earlier this year, Finland's representative was the daughter of the 1985 Finnish representative. Other pageants in the Miss Universe family have seen similar stories such as Miss USA 2009, Kristen Dalton who is the daughter of Miss North Carolina USA 1982, Jeannine Boger who went unplaced at Miss USA 1982. Miss Teen USA 2014, K. Lee Graham is also the daughter of Miss South Carolina Teen USA 1985, Jennifer Neuen. The land of the midnight sun has claimed the Miss Universe crown three times thanks to Hillevi Rombin (1955), Margareta Arvidsson (1966) and Yvonne Ryding (1984) but recent years haven't been good to Sweden. They last placed in 2009 so is it time for them to make a comeback?

Good Morning, Vietnam!

What a wonderful world! So, Vietnam has only placed once in the history of the Miss Universe pageant and it was the year that they hosted the pageant (2008). Vietnam sends us a promising delegate this year with Thi Huong Pham and she hopes to do Vietnam proud by not only placing in the semifinals but possibly going all the way to the crown. An experienced competitor, Huong competed in Vietnam's Next Top Model 2010 and she competed four times before she finally won the title of Miss Universe Vietnam 2015. She lives and works in Ho Chi Minh. She works as a teacher and lecturer at the Saigon College of Arts, Culture and Tourism.

I Have A Ukraine Headache

Ivanka Trump hosts Miss Teen USA 1997Ukraine-Anna Vergelskaya Ukraine has experienced great success at the Miss Universe pageant in recent years placing 6 out of the last 9 years. A lot of that may have to do with Donald Trump's involvement however which takes us back to 2004 when Oleksandra Nikolayenko competed for Miss Universe 2004 but did not place among the semifinals even though she made the top 10 at Miss World 2001 only a few years earlier. This angered Trump as he said he was so sick of seeing the most beautiful women in the world standing in the background as others are chosen. He invited Oleksandra to be a finals judge the following year at Miss Universe 2005 and Oleksandra is now married and has children with one of Trump's friends, prominent businessman Phil Ruffin. Due to Oleksandra's exclusion, this prompted the rule be introduced that the Miss Universe Organization would select 6 of the semifinalists and the preliminary judges would choose 9. Now, that Trump is no longer involved with the pageant, we shall soon learn if this method of selected semifinalists will still be in effect or not and if Ukraine may no longer have the success it has enjoyed in recent years. Ukraine first placed in 2006 and got as high as 1st runner up in 2011 and they were even 2nd runner up in the most recent Miss Universe pageant, now we have Anna Vergelskaya who I think happens to look a lot like Donald's daughter Ivanka Trump. I have pictured them here side by side so you can see what I mean. Ivanka is shown here when she co-hosted Miss Teen USA 1997 when she often made her trademark kissy face as she was working as a model at the time. Anna Vergelskaya certainly could place on her own merit so we shall see if she can keep Ukraine's strong showings going at Miss Universe.

Let Me See You Move Like You Come From Colombia

Paulina Vega crowns Ariadna Gutierrez, Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez, Miss ColombiaThose hips don't lie! The world's finest coffee land sends us the fine Ariadna Gutierrez who is yet another major contender for the Miss Universe crown. She also hails from the country of the reigning Miss Universe, Paulina Vega so will Colombia be the next country to win Miss Universe two years in a row? The only country to achieve this extremely rare feat was Venezuela in 2009 when Stefania Fernandez won the Miss Universe crown for Venezuela immediately following Dayana Mendoza who won the Miss Universe crown for Venezuela in 2008. Colombia has won the Miss Universe crown twice (1958 and 2014) and was 1st runner up 4 times (1992, 1993, 1994 and 2008) so the land of passions and emeralds has consistently proven itself to be a force to be reckoned with. Ariadna is the youngest of five children in her family and also happens to be a cousin of the reigning Miss Universe, Paulina Vega so it would be extra special for their family if Ariadna happens to win the Miss Universe crown. Ariadna has been nicknamed the “Cat Lady” because she loves cats, especially her two own cats, Abril and Gianni. Ariadna works as a fashion model and studies Communications and she is also a Christmas baby also! She was born on December 25, 1993.

Rest in Peace, Luz Marina Zuluaga-Miss Universe 1958

Luz Marina Zuluaga-Miss Universe 1958Luz Marina Zuluaga-Miss Universe 1958 2015 tragically becomes the first year to have two former Miss Universe pass away in one calendar year. On August 16, Miss Universe 1967-Sylvia Hitchcock Carson passed away and now on December 2, Miss Universe 1958-Luz Marina Zuluaga has entered mortality at the age of 77. Luz Marina was Colombia's first Miss Universe and what an unbelievable coincidence that she passed away during the year of Colombia's 2nd Miss Universe win as the reigning Miss Universe, Paulina Vega became the second Colombian Miss Universe over 56 years after Luz Marina's win. Zuluaga died around 2 a.m. on December 2 in an apartment in the neighborhood, Palermo, from Manizales, where she lived. According to reports, she died of acute coronary syndrome with cardio-pulmonary arrest. Sources indicated that apparently Zuluaga suffered a blackout when in the company of friends in her apartment and the emergency services that came to her rescue couldn't do anything to bring her back.

Interestingly enough, Zuluaga did not actually win the Miss Colombia title, instead finishing as 1st Runner-Up. However, the original Miss Colombia winner, Doris Gil Santamaria got married which was against the rules since we all know, any candidate who participates in Miss Universe must never have been married and as a result, Santamaria was forced to resign, making Zuluaga Miss Colombia by default and fate sided with Luz Marina and the rest is history. Luz Marina's Miss Universe win was warmly received and celebrated by Colombians. During Miss Universe pageants in the 90s, it was often said that she was given a mansion and declared tax exempt for life but some people don't actually believe that story but rather when citizens of her city, Manizales learned that her family was not well off financially, many citizens collected money, which was used to build a better house for Zuluaga and her family. There were also stamps issued in Colombia of Luz Marina to honor her. Luz Marina is now the 4th Miss Universe to enter mortality. Hillevi Rombin Schine-Miss Universe 1955 died in a plane crash in 1996. Amparo Munoz Quesada-Miss Universe 1974 died of brain cancer in 2011 and as previously mentioned, Sylvia Hitchcock Carson-Miss Universe 1967 also passed away due to cancer in August 2015.

Rest in Peace, Luz Marina Zuluaga (October 31, 1938-December 2, 2015)

On December 11, I will be posting my second round prethoughts with comments on each delegate competing this year so stay tuned!

And of course, tell everyone to watch Miss Universe 2015 on December 20 at 7 p.m. on FOX!




Some photos courtesy Miss Universe L.P., LLLP