As we heard the rumors stir for the past few weeks and months, the frontrunners apparently came and went in this year's Playmate of the Year race. There were fan favorites Jessa Hinton, Kylie Johnson, Ciara Price, and Amanda Cerny, all of whom were thought from time to time as being the eventual nominee.
But in the end, it was the one constant fan favorite who took it. For once, the controversy isn't quite as heavy as it has been in past years. We had some surprise candidates in the past years, the most recent being last year's Claire Sinclair or 2010 winner Hope Dworaczyk.
With Jaclyn Swedberg, though, we knew that her fanbase was huge from the start. Folks supported her in droves from the beginning, and it showed in every single poll on any site. She came in fourth in my own blog poll, but I even expected her to do better. Sure, I put her at #6 in my 2011 class ranking, but I knew all along that Jaclyn would be a strong contender, and for good reason. I never actually disliked Jaclyn, as her natural beauty and finesse are really quite endearing. It's actually her lack of talent and any solid photos that really took her down a notch for me.
As much as I was hoping that she would redeem her poor PMOM performance with a great PMOY spread, I do know better by now. We haven't really had a decent Playmate of the Year pictorial since Carmella DeCesare nearly ten years ago. Heck, we haven't had a truly talented PMOY who could put together a potentially explosive pictorial since Ida Ljungqvist (who didn't deliver, either).
Miss Swedberg's pictorial is underwhelming at best. Instead of trying to refine and accentuate Jaclyn's really endearing girl-next-door traits in any way, Playboy's editors just step on the gas and crush any hope of that. Instead, they try to rough her up a bit, getting her in more mismatched costuming and poor hair and makeup. On that note, they absolutely smother her amazing face with makeup, masking her innate beauty which could easily carry her in any photo set. What we have left is a pared-down model who is overly bashful and rarely shows any emotion.
In the end, though, it's all right. Jaclyn, while only being my sixth choice, is a fine candidate for Playmate of the Year. While she has never quite delivered, she's still a truly "good" model with plenty of good looks to balance things out. While the past years have given us women who have totally lacked the ability or looks to put together a good photo set, Jaclyn at least has the potential to do so. Although we'll never see much more from her again, that's something we can hang our hats on, as we say "maybe next year" once again. To 2013!
Here are the poll results from my blog. Thanks to all who voted!
#2. Jessa Hinton (15%)
#3. Tiffany Toth (14%) - PBC pick
#4. Jaclyn Swedberg (13%)
#5. Kylie Johnson (10%)
#6T. Rainy Day Jordan (5%)
#6T. Ciara Price (5%)
#8. Anna Sophia Berglund (5%)
#9. Sasha Bonilova (2%)
#10T. Iryna Ivanova (2%)
#10T. Mei Ling Lam (2%)
#10T. Ashley Mattingly (2%)