Miss America 2016 Winner

Miss America 2016: Betty Cantrell of Georgia Wins the Crown

Step aside, Kate Middleton, there’s a new royal in town — and this one can saaaaang.

After kicking off the 95th annual Miss America competition on Sunday with a performance from Vanessa Williams — followed by an unspeakably awkward apology for maybe-maybe-not pressuring her to resign in 1984 after those butt-sniffing photos leaked — the initial crop of contestants was quickly whittled down to the final 15. (But don’t worry, the 35 dismissed ladies got an excellent consolation prize: “the best seats in the house to cheer on your friends!” Yeah, OK.)

Then came the swimsuit competition — which, believe it or not, is still a thing in 2015 — followed by the “talent” portion of the evening: There was a performance of “Climb Every Mountain,” allegedly a tribute to Julie Andrews, despite the fact that Maria doesn’t sing that song in The Sound of Music; a monologue about Alzheimer’s and night terrors; and an interpretive dance to The Matrix‘s “Clubbed to Death” sequence, just to name a few stand-out routines.

The question-and-answer portion was also full of surprises:
* Miss Colorado thinks Ellen DeGeneres should be on the $10 bill.
* Miss South Carolina doesn’t support the ban of military-grade assault rifles.
* Miss Tennessee remains in favor of federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
* Miss Alabama believes Republicans should be “terrified” of Donald Trump.
* Miss Georgia does (or doesn’t) believe Tom Brady cheated. I honestly couldn’t tell.
* Miss Mississippi says Kim Davis violated the law by not issuing same-sex marriage licenses.
* Lastly, Miss Louisiana did a pretty good job of dodging the question of whether she believes “Black Lives Matter” is a hate group.

And now, for the reason you’re all here: the butt-sniffing photos winner! unlike the real Hunger Games, only one contestant emerged victorious Sunday night. And she is… Miss Georgia, Betty Cantrell! Just look at how excited she is:

Meanwhile, Miss Mississippi (Hannah Roberts) will be standing by as runner-up in case Cantrell is unable to fulfill her duties. Or, you know, if she happens to suffer an unexpected “accident.”

Americans, do you believe the right woman was crowned? Drop a comment with your thoughts on this year’s winner, as well as the entire ceremony, below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Kathryn Roberds says:

    Yes!!! She is amazing!!

  2. iHeart says:

    excuse me, but didn’t she lose her crown in 1984?

  3. Yes she is beautiful, loved her talent!!!!

  4. MsDaisy says:

    Seemed a little fake to me. And her “I couldn’t hear the question” excuse gave her almost 20 seconds to compose herself before answering her question and then she still gives the lamest answer of the night. At least her talent beat last year’s winner’s talent of sitting in the floor and flipping red plastic cups.

  5. Ashley says:

    Should’ve just given the crown to Vanessa Williams and called it a day.

  6. Ash says:

    Her dress was beautiful and her talent was amazing and she is beautiful but she should not have won. She tripped during the evening gown competition, but whatever. But her answer was awful to the Tom Brady cheating scandal. I think she even thought she bombed it. She rushed off stage looking like she was about to cry. Her answer made no sense and I felt embarrassed for her. I looked at my boyfriend and said “that was the worse answer I’ve ever heard in a miss America pageant” then…5 min later she won, wth! Makes me think they already had miss America picked out from the start

  7. Mick says:

    That actually asked if Black Lives Matter is a hate group. I can’t. Also Daja Dial is gorgeous.

  8. Joyce Petz says:

    Thought the women were beautiful. Happy to see not every contestant a size zero. Disporportion of races represented…almost all were caucasion blond women. Thought some questions were inappropriate and obviously skewed toward a biased liberal agenda.

  9. Sally McLinn says:

    I watched the show for the first time in decades and found it very entertaining. Liked that they had a recording of Burt’s version of “here she goes”.
    I was rooting for Miss South Carolina, Florida or Colorado to win — but after S.Carolina hit some bad singing notes, I knew she wouldn’t win. Then Ms. Colorado named Ellen Degeneres for the face on the dollar bill? WTF??? What was Ms. Colorado thinking?
    And what was the answer Miss Georgia gave about Brady? I dunno, and I honestly don’t know how SHE won.

    • NJMark says:

      They’re judged more on how they handle the question than the specific answer. How many people off the top of their head, could name someone (who hasn’t already been mentioned over and over again) IMMEDIATELY, and formulate a reason WHY they chose that person?

      I can’t even quickly formulate a cogent answer “which celebrity would you most like to bang?”

      • Kenny says:

        Miss GA should not have won, but even stranger things have happened in the pageant over the years. Yes, she almost fell TWICE during the evening gown competition. Yes, her talent was excellent–might have even been the best–but not that much better than two or three others. Yes, she got another 20 secs to compose her thoughts to a very tricky question. Yes, her answer was absolutely lousy, the worst of the night. And for those reasons she should not have won. Well, at least she seemed like a nice person!

  10. carol murphy says:

    No the right girl did not win. Makes believe the whole miss america system is fixed and a sham. So sad to see so many young women go home not a winner. Loved miss south carolina