Eva the Diva: A Primer

Atlanta S10 is debuting this Sunday, and with it a new Friend Of: occasional actress Eva Marcille. As reality television archivists, however, we remember Eva Marcille as Eva Pigford, winner of America’s Next Top Model “Cycle” 3, and everything we remember demonstrates a great deal of Housewiving promise. Let’s get revved up for whatever random grime Eva’s about to throw at us with a trip through her storied, Tyra-tinged herstory, shall we?

Ep. 1: The Girl With The Secret

Eva is introduced to America through a fusillade of questionable (though inappropriately funny) comments, e.g., saying of a skinny competitor:

HER BONES ARE POPPING OUT, IT’S LIKE SHE’S GONNA BREAK, LIKE, NO MAN WILL EVER SLEEP WITH YOU, YOU CAN NEVER BEAR KIDS, IT’S LIKE, THAT’S NOT SEXY!

Uh huh. This is all set up for Tyra to announce that “I don’t want to cast another ‘Black Bitch'” (ed.– HAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA, *catches breath*, HAAAHAHAHAHA), wring tears out of Eva, and “dramatically” choose her last for the show. Gee, I wonder if she wins.

Ep. 2: The Girl Who Is Codependent

Eva establishes an unbreakable………….”bond”…👀 with fellow contestant/former water polo player Ann, first via Ann erupting into sobbing fury when she’s informed that they can’t room together, and then by Eva cradling Ann like a g-d Pietà during a turbulence-induced meltdown on a flight to Jamaica:

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Ep. 6: The Girl Who Mutilated The Precious Brownies

Proud bulimic Cassie makes herself a $6 box of low-carb brownies (wut.) but doesn’t clean up after herself. Eva and Ann considerately bring this to her attention by writing CLEAN YOUR SHIT in the finished brownies with a butter knife.

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Before you know it, Cassie is screaming at Eva and Ann across the table at Moby’s erstwhile vegan cafe Teany (yes, I know, and yes, I’ve been), and Yaya, Eva’s eventual First Loser, is delivering a condescending lecture about respec–sorry, sorry, RESPEITO. To which Eva reacts thusly:

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Ep. 8: The Girl Who Is Panic-Stricken

The models have to pose with live tarantulas. Eva does not like spiders.

Jay Manuel: So to make sure this doesn’t look like a typical jewelry ad, we do have someone else for you to pose with today in your shot. Can we have our other person?

(A squat middle-aged woman emerges holding a tarantula.)

Eva: ARE WE POSING WITH HER OR THE SPIDER?!

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Jay Manuel: …the tarantula. The tarantula is very safe, but we do have EMS on the side—

Eva: WHAT DO YOU MEAN IT’S VERY SAFE WHY WOULD YOU HAVE TO HAVE EMS IF IT’S SAFE?!?!

Jay Manuel: We have EMS here alllll the time.

Out of this pants-wetting fear, she manages to produce the following photo:

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So, you know, she’s not too bad at the modeling thing.

Ep. 12: The Girl Who Didn’t Hug Goodbye

The insanely fraught Eva/Ann sexual tension finally boils over as Ann accuses Eva of being Fake!! in the holding room pre-elimination, and boy do I love behind-the-scenes drama that exposes the nuts and bolts of the show. As Ann huddles with the ever-smug Yaya and Amanda, Eva reacts thusly:

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Hoo boy. When Ann is subsequently eliminated, she sweeps away without hugging Eva goodbye, as Eva murmurs “Banana…”, her pet name for Ann (yes I know!):

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(I don’t know why this gif came out all sepia when I made it but I love it.)

But through all these highs and lows our Ms…Marcille…persevered, won the show, and went on to appear on The Young and the Restless and supposedly date Missy Elliott. And now, we ask ourselves: has the glitzy world of soap opera acting gone to Eva’s head? Will she get caught up in Kandi’s predatory web of DL lesbianism? And, most importantly: Top Model viewers, what are your favorite Eva quotes? Have to say I’m partial to “first of all, I didn’t even know you were a bitch.”

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