By Emily Mitchell
Here are a few more fun, quick thoughts from Cyrus Frakes, given at the end of our original interview. Frakes is the star of TLC’s new reality series King of the Crown, premiering Sept. 30.
You are at a magazine rack and can pick three magazines. What are they?
People magazine. I love People magazine. That’s fun! Out of the fashion magazines, I love InStyle and Details.
Do you have a favorite sports team?
The Carolina Gamecocks. That’s my college alma mater. If you drag me to a game and make me go to it in person, that’s the one I would go to.
When was the last time you were starstruck?
When I met Jessica Simpson. She was more beautiful in person. See, I’m in the beauty business so I’m really fascinated by people that are just physically beautiful. And [its] nothing that they do; they were just born that way. And she hopped off the tour bus without a stitch of makeup on and her hair in a ponytail and I was just shocked at how little she was. There is no photo I have ever seen that has done her justice to the way she looks in person.
What bores you?
I jump around a lot. I can’t pay attention to a lot of things at one time. What bores me is having nothing to do. I don’t like to sit around.
If your TV only carried three shows, which three would you want?
I love Cold Case. I love American Idol. And I like Law & Order and CSI and all of those shows. And believe it or not, I do like Toddlers & Tiaras.
Speaking of, what do you think about all the children’s pageant shows and children’s pageants in general?
I think that a lot of people think that a lot of that is made up. That’s very reflective of the glitz pageant system. My one rule of thumb where little girls are concerned is I want them to understand the difference between winning and not winning. As long as they have that basic understanding, then I don’t mind working with little girls. I don’t mind little girls being in pageants because I do think it’s a way for them to build confidence, but I don’t like to judge pageants with little girls because I think it’s too hard. It’s hard enough when you watch a 17-year-old crash and burn. It’s really hard when you watch a 5-year-old crash and burn. So I don’t criticize the shows because I think they show a part of what’s realistic in pageantry. And a lot of these girls start really young. The little girl pageants are like T-ball for boys. Nobody seems to criticize little Johnny because he can’t hit the ball off a pole. They just tell him to keep trying. Yet you put one little girl in a pageant and she doesn’t do well, and all of a sudden everybody thinks they are horrible parents for sticking her in that pageant.
But if they [children’s pageant shows] didn’t do well, they wouldn’t be on television. And people are fascinated by pageants, I think, whether they are little girls or adults — after all these years we still have Miss America, Miss USA. They are still televised. And look at all these other countries that have all these pageants. I mean, it’s big business. It really is big business. I don’t want to sound, like, cliché, but as long as girls have goals and dreams in their hearts that they can achieve through doing pageants, then pageants will never go away. And if you can see what really goes into just one girl getting ready, one girl, no matter how great or how poorly she is off the bat … I think the general public will have more than appreciation for what these girl do. That’s what we are working really hard to show.
What is a hobby you have?
I love photography. I grew up taking pictures. I actually shot fashion photography for a little while, and that’s what helps facilitate the pageant business. I like to shoot people — I’m not big on shooting scenery or animals or anything like that — whether they are dressed up or not dressed up.
What do you do if a girl comes to you and is, well, hopeless?
I think there’s a pageant for every girl out there. Not every girl who walks through the door is going to be perfection and ready, and that’s what I pride myself on. So many people put whether a girl can win or not on their physical attributes. I put a girl’s ability to win on their desire or their passion to do it because I’ve got some really pretty girls that can’t win a pageant because they really don’t have the desire or the passion. They’ll do it once or twice, they place, and then they move on. Then I’ve got some girls that lose weight, they get their hair cut, they get the right makeup artist, they find the right dress. They learn to communicate.
So I guess what I’m saying is I don’t think any girl is completely hopeless. I think there are girls that have more challenges than others, and as long as they are willing to put forth the work, then I can get them ready to be in a pageant. Now can I crown them? No. I can only make them the best person they can be. It’s up to a panel of judges to decide who the winner is. And another thing that we pride ourselves on is we try to find the right pageant for a girl. For example, if I have a girl that comes in and she’s overweight or she has the genetic makeup that’s never going to make her the perfect swimsuit body … there’s just pageants you would never put her in because she would never get past the swimsuit competition, but there are other pageants designed for girls who don’t have the perfect bodies. It’s about finding out what a girl’s challenges are. They’re only hopeless if you convince them they are hopeless.