29 comments on “Miss Universe 2019 Zozibini Tunzi and her first day in the Big Apple

  1. Miss Universe is still a beauty pageant. In choosing the winner that best represents the organization, they have to find the right balance between beauty and brilliance. Choosing SA as the winner is a major deviation from the established norms and standards of what the beauty queen should be. I hope Miss South Africa could prove something to represent women to make her reign purposeful! If it is just to generate publicity, then the said change or modernization is only a useless facade. It will not achieve longevity and will eventually crash. Her speaking skill is off the roof and that sealed her victory! Let us wait if she will truly make a difference.

    • @ Shine The burden of making that real difference lies with the MUO, which is the one tasked with mapping out her schedule for the year. She has already demonstrated she has the goods. It will not be her fault if by the end of her reign, the MU brand is still lackluster in American consciousness.

    • Unfortunately, the so-called “established norms and standards of what a beauty queen should be” represents the Western hegemonic gaze on beauty. When the standard is shaped by the dominant culture, expect that the physique-centric Western beauty archetype prevails in most beauty contests– pointed nose, blue/green eyes, fair skin, straight or wavy hair, whistlebait figure, towering height, etc. But that standard is fast crumbling. It is now being replaced by a more inclusive and holistic concept. The world has come to realize that there is no universal concept of physical beauty as every culture has its own standard. If at all, the universality of beauty lies in the other dimensions– intellect and character. I’m glad MU is now on the right side of history. To insist on the antiquated sense of superficial femininity is a sure ticket to irrelevance and obsolescence.

  2. I saw it coming— the crowning of a Miss Universe in a persona like Zozibini! The business of MUO revolves around the goal to “empower women to realize their goals through experiences that build self-confidence and create opportunities for success”. The attainment of this goal requires MUO to establish its brand as a leading women’s empowerment platform. With that as a guidepost, we may well expect the crown to be clinched by one who is capable of talking to decision makers in corporate boardrooms of Wall Street as well as to hawkers in any Main Street, to academics in universities as well as to farmers in remote African villages and to dwellers in some segregated townships. Yes, she has to be beautiful, but not in the antiquated sense of superficial femininity. She has to be confidently beautiful– liked, listened to, and followed. This means that her worth is not just measured in terms of physical attributes— face, hair, body statistics, complexion, walk. It shoiuld also be gauged in terms of brainpower—intelligence, knowledge, judgment, abilities, insights, eloquence,. Finally, it should be gauged in character, that distinctive mental and moral qualities that make one a positive influence in society. Zozibini’s credentials seem cut out for a strategic role in MU’s brand positioning and architecture: empowering women and raising awareness on women’s issues and other challenges to human beings everywhere. As the brand spokesperson, she appears qualified to enlist the much needed support of the business community and the civil society in sustaining MU’s women empowerment programs. Lastly, Zozini’s triumph fits well into MUO’s playbook on global political economy. MUO needs to strengthen its stronghold on the next economic frontier of the world, Africa, home to six of the world’s fastest rising economies today.

    • I concur.

      IMG has totally rebranded the MU trademark by advancing the cause of women and valuing their existence equally as men. Prior to IMG, I also couldn’t feel that diversity was primordial in MU, albeit a few emerging black beauties therein.

      That’s all.

    • Hahaha that’s what your thought, SAfrica is great her responsive ability make her win…though her look doean’t fit for MU.. I will replace her with Sierra leone she so stunning and goergous. MU popularity si shrinking especially social media. Crowning SA again did not increase the popularity level like catriona did…totally failed

      • hello haven’t you seen the likes and following changes after she was crowned? she is just as powerful as Catriona in terms of engagement….

      • Hahaha 4m changes ! yes a bit changes coz the wiiner is black, black ameriican race is delighted of her win and nothing more.But catriona brought tremendous popularity of miss universe while the competion still running, the social media is heating up because of catriona. No zozibini effect 2019 her winning moment is just like some ohers winners, no significant traces…

      • @ ANGELA PEREZ I have three things in mind.

        1. That surge in publicity (?) for MU owing to Catriona was, imo, fueled primarily by Filipinos, who are quite active on socmed, in the first place. Had it not been for that, she probably would have been as tepid to the American audience as Iris or Demi-Leigh before her. And now that we can compare the Media blitz, I have to say Zozibini resonated more with modern America more than her predecessor did. We will see in the end if this South African win will indeed translate to greater engagement by the Americans for their own homegrown pageant brand. IT IS THE AMERICAN MARKET MUO NEEDS TO IMPRESS IF THEY ARE TO LAST. Regardless of whom WME/IMG crowns, the rest of the Universe has no choice but to accept the result. Filipinos were simply lucky it went in their favor last year.

        2. Catriona was a clear standout even before the pageant. The comparison of Zozibini to her predecessor, Tamaryn Green, might have had played some role in diminishing her initial impression.

        3. Bangura of Sierra Leone is undeniably stunning, I agree. Hopefully that was not the last we will see of her.


  3. It’s payback time ! South Africa should host the MU pageant soon ! Why can’t they? They had a great 3 year run !

    • @ Gasgazini Y not?

      They already hosted MW.

      And this year, Janjep Carlos also gave us a sandwich win in South Africa. 🙂

  4. Zozibini may be an atypical pageant beauty, but, oh boy, her personality transcends universal acceptance. I thought Leila Lopes was the most beautiful black African Miss Universe has ever crowned. Zozibini is in the league of her own. Kudos to Miss Universe South Africa Organization for sending this outstanding beauty in Miss Universe. I love her.

    Anyway, I just watched Shandy Finessy and Susie Castillo’s Pageanthology Miss Universe 2019 recap on Youtube. This tandem always gives fairest assessment on the top beauty pageants, such as Miss USA and Miss Universe. They don’t sugarcoat. Their discussions are so meaty, in that you would not notice that you soon get over the 40-minute talks of these former Misses USA. Susie said Gaz was her favorite to make in the top 5, but her Top 20 statement did injustice to her. They thought that this year’s Miss U was tough not because of the quality of the girls, but of the poor staging of the pageant in Georgia. They did not like the way Steve Harvey owned the show. If you are a beauty pageant enthusiast, you better not miss an episode of Pageanthology 101. It’s the best.

    MUO’s recent pull out of the MUP franchise from the Araneta Group and the BPCI impacts landscape in the Philippines’ beauty pageant industry. I reckon that I saw a lot of advantages in doing such. The birth of the new MUPO gives refreshing thrills and goosebumps, especially on the way it will present a modern brand and the roster of beauties in the annual selection of MUP. I just hope that they will choose a top beauty with exquisite personality.

    That’s all.

    • @ Ana Winter One trend I would certainly welcome is the globalization of Nationals. Yes! As it is, MUSA was already something my Gen looked forward to on the Telly, aside of course from MU.

      i hope the Araneta Group can use this upheaval as an opportunity to RELAUNCH, and through deft-savvy marketing elevate the “BBP Beauty Pageant” into a Nationals even our ASEAN neighbors at the very least will look forward to viewing, every year, as well.

      GLOBALIZE. 😉

      Leila Lopes is biracial; she holds a British passport, fyi (thanks to C2F for sharing). Zozibini Tunzi is “pura”, So was Fezlie Mekhize, btw, whom not a few say was the true winner of MrW, and not the Brit.

      South Africa is truly a rainbow nation. A Caucasian DLNP, the (also) biracial Green Tamarind, and now beaute noir. Fellow Africans would consider ZT a plain Jane at home. But bring someone like her or Adut Aketch or Alek Wek to the West, and overnight a star is born.

      • Hi FT dear,

        When I said black, I meant the color of the skin from the African continent and not the race per se. I knew very well that Leila Lopes was raised in England, thus made her English accent a little sexy.

        Contrary to your belief that Zozibini is a plane jane in South Africa, the people there are the proudest on Earth insofar as the identity of their color is concerned, and having Caucasians around make them feel a lot standout. Did you wonder why The Elizabeth Taylor chose to live in South Africa half of her life? That is because she wanted to live an ordinary life there. She did not believe that White live a superior life there and that South Africans would treat her a Hollywodd queen.

        Yasss! I also hope that BPCI takes advantage on that latest development by making a reboost on their brand. While MUP is the top title to lose, BPCI has nevertheless retained integrity as the most adored brand in the face of the beauty pageant industry in the Philippines and in the whole world.

        That’s all.


      • @Flor, Zozibini is definitely not a plain Jane– sorry to contradict you this time. Her physical attributes represent what Africans consider most beautiful. I should know. I am an expat in Africa.

    • @ Ana Winter and @ scorg Points accepted. I submit to your scholarship.

      Sudan, apparently, is very different from South Africa, in a manner of speaking. In an article I read long ago, Alek Wek said she looks like any girl in the street back home.

      But yes, at least tokenism is not the thing in MU. And something MI will hopefully get over.

  5. sa Pinas Taeland Indonesia
    Colombia Venezuela lang naman sikat yang MU

    si Demi nga papakasal dun sa closeted gay para lang sa pera and fame.

    USA eh walang paki
    so okay lang

  6. Miss South Africa’s win is a testament that indeed there is no universal beauty standard as the concept is culturally defined. What is universal are intellect and character, the inner qualities that radiate outward to make one’s physical beauty sparkle. That said, Miss South Africa represents the true beauty, someone to listen to more than to gawk at.

  7. Sometimes I cannot help but ask myself if Ms. South Africa wanted the Miss Universe Title badly to serve as a platform in addressing these issues or were these issues raised as a matter of strategy just to win the title.

    • @ Edge If it means anything to you, better perhaps to throw your question to the ME pageant. -)

  8. It would be interesting to see though if winning the Miss Universe will help at all in addressing these issues. Otherwise, everything becomes useless.

  9. Enjoy while it last…..
    I’ll give it a couple of months…
    Yung mga langaw pumapaligid na😉

  10. MUO picked the right winner. This is the way the org can modernize itself, by elevating candidates with determined points of views and causes that personally resonate. Glamour and sexiness are not without merit, but they should be secondary considerations. The best woman for the job will have all of these inner and outer qualities.

    • It would be interesting to see though if winning the Miss Universe will help at all in addressing these issues. Otherwise, everything becomes useless.

      • I think any movement of the needle helps when it comes to the fight for equality, education, and recognition. One small step at a time is still a step up the ladder 😉

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