CBS criticised for playing up model's tumble on show

NEW YORK • CBS did not show model behaviour, viewers said, when it elected to play up Chinese model Ming Xi's tumble at the Victoria's Secret fashion show in Shanghai.

Last week, the broadcaster aired the telecast in the United States and some thought it might edit out the spill.

"Don't expect to see this moment in the final cut of the fashion show when it airs on CBS," People magazine had cautioned initially. "Victoria's Secret traditionally tapes two run-throughs of the show for this very reason, so the tumble will likely be removed from the final show."

Although the annual lingerie show had edited out embarrassing moments before, such as singer Ariana Grande getting hit in the face by angel wings, CBS doubled down on the incident.

Ming, thrilled to be in front of her hometown crowd, had strolled down the runway and waved her hands, encouraging the audience to get louder. Then her heel caught in her skirt and she tumbled. The crowd gasped.

For added drama, CBS spliced in backstage comments from producers: "Ming is down. Oh my goodness, can she get up? Is she okay?"

As she straightened her gigantic flowered costume and tried to recover, Brazilian model Gizele Oliveira offered her a hand.

Chinese model Ming Xi (above) took a tumble during the Victoria's Secret fashion show held in Shanghai last month.
Chinese model Ming Xi (above) took a tumble during the Victoria's Secret fashion show held in Shanghai last month. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

The audience roared as Ming got to her feet and walked to the end of the runway, where she struck a pose. As she walked offstage, she started sobbing - the cameras followed her as fellow models gave her hugs and offered reassurances.

Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr, who was performing a medley of Forever Young and Winter Song when the fall took place, also offered his encouragement backstage. "Happens to the best of them. Fall down seven times, get up eight," he said.

Viewers on social media gave CBS a dressing down when it broadcast the show a few days later.

"Pretty uncool... to not only show Ming Xi fall, but then also show her crying backstage," one person tweeted.

WASHINGTON POST

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 04, 2017, with the headline 'CBS criticised for playing up model's tumble on show'. Print Edition | Subscribe