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Saying Farewell to Kayla Ferrel - 'Top Model’s' Great Lesbian Hope

Saying Farewell to Kayla Ferrel - 'Top Model’s' Great Lesbian Hope

Remember how excited you were in 2012 when Kayla Ferrel, the hot lesbian Hooters waitress from Rockford, Illinois was first cast on America’s Next Top Model? She was attractive in that femmey butch way (but not that “futch” way that Dani Campbell from Shot at Love was butchy) and she was out, had done some regional modeling, and giving more cred to her Sapphic ways, the first thing we knew about her was that she played soccer for 9 years and had a disc injury. Gay!

DeliciousDiane

Remember how excited you were in 2012 when Kayla Ferrel, the hot lesbian Hooters waitress from Rockford, Illinois was first cast on America’s Next Top Model? She was attractive in that femmey butch way (but not that “futch” way that Dani Campbell from Shot at Love was butchy) and she was out, had done some regional modeling, and giving more cred to her Sapphic ways, the first thing we knew about her was that she played soccer for 9 years and had a disc injury. Gay!

Kayla had a live-in girlfriend and told reporters that “Being the openly gay girl in the house, I was afraid of how the others would receive me.” Turns out everyone was fine with her lesbianism but not her modeling, so she was sent packing.

Then benevolent Tyra Banks brought Kayla back as a fan favorite for the first (of what we hope is many) America’s Next Top Model: All-Stars, which began a month ago. Episode one started strong: Kayla was out, loud, and proud and when the stylists draped her with a rainbow flag (the symbol of all that is queer in America) she reveled in the newfound freedom.

Pretty quickly, though, things began to go south. Like all the models, Kayla was given a word that represented her “brand” this season (just to be clear, it was a word, not the kind of thing they do with cattle, though if I were Tyra I’d try the latter). Other girls got brand identities like survivor, tough, loveable, and daring. Proving fashion insiders are clueless about queer women, Kayla was branded with “free."

Perhaps the judges think “free” equals “lesbian.” (Hmm, would they use a word like “free” to describe Rosie O’Donnell, Ellen DeGeneres, or Jackie Warner?) Either way, it was the albatross that doomed Kayla, that cute Hooters girl we all loved in 2010.

Week after week poor Kayla tried to represent the word “free” in her photo shoots, got called out and barely survived judging panel weekly, until last night when she and Bre Scullark (the most annoying woman on a reality TV series that doesn’t have the words "shore" or "housewives" in it) both got sent packing.

After weeks of clips (the same clip no doubt) of Kayla saying,  “there’s never been a lesbian to win Top Model,” many thought that was a early hint that dykedom would be celebrating a win six weeks from now. But no.

Sadly, Kayla joins Beverly McClelland and Jennifer Biesty and every other reality TV lesbian who had the potential to take us to No. 1. We still love ya, ladies.

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Diane Anderson-Minshall

Diane Anderson-Minshall is CEO and editorial director of Pride Media, the parent company of PRIDE, Out, The Advocate, Plus, and Out Traveler.

Diane Anderson-Minshall is CEO and editorial director of Pride Media, the parent company of PRIDE, Out, The Advocate, Plus, and Out Traveler.