Miss Utah USA, Marissa Powell, set the interwebs on fire Sunday night when she completely butchered the answer to her on-stage question at the Miss USA pageant in Las Vegas.
The 21-year-old contestant was totally stumped when NeNe Leakes asked her an apparent brainteaser about women earning less money than men in most fields. Her answer: "Create education better."
Needless to say, she didn't wind up taking home the crown -- that honor went to Miss Connecticut Erin Brady.
Watch Powell's cringe-worthy moment below and check out a couple more pageant answers that left us scratching our heads:
The Pageant: 2013 Miss USA
The Contestant: Marissa Powell, Miss Utah USA
The Question: A recent report shows that in 40 percent of American families with children, women are the primary earners, yet they continue to earn less than men. What does it say about society?
The answer: Powell snuck in key pageant phrases like "education," "strive," and "jobs," but she lost the audience – and the crown – when she stressed the importance to "create education better." WTF?
The Pageant: 2007 Miss Teen USA
The Contestant: Caitlin Upton, Miss Teen South Carolina USA
The Question: Recent polls have shown a fifth of Americans can't locate the U.S. on a world map. Why do you think this is?
The Answer: The fact that Upton failed to answer the question was the least of our worries; her idea that our education system is similar to "the Iraq" or "South Africa" has us much more concerned. She ended her nonsensical rambling with a "for our children" comment, which probably scored her a couple pageant kudos. Right!?
The Pageant: 1992 Miss World American Contest
The Contestant: Nadine Tanega, Miss Hawaii
The Question: Why are you proud to be an American?
The Answer: From what we can gather, she's proud to be an American because she is from the great state of Hawaii and the state of Hawaii has some rugged shores, and the state of Hawaii has sand. Did she mention she's from Hawaii? Thankfully her teased-out tresses kept us distracted from her ridiculous answer.
The Pageant: 2010 Miss Universe Australia
The Contestant: Jesinta Campbell
The Question: Sun-related skin health issues are at an alarmingly high level in Australia, despite educational and awareness campaigns. As Miss Universe Australia and a role model to others, how do you believe you can make a difference?
The Answer: It's rare to see pageant queens get tongue-tied, but poor Jesinta, 18, could barely mumble out a solid answer without pausing every two seconds and letting out a nervous laugh. By the time she finished her statement, she looked like she might begin to cry. Despite her many missteps, Jesinta won the crown.
The Pageant: 2003 Miss Universe
The Contestant: Sanja Papic, Miss Serbia and Montenegro
The Question: If you could be either water or fire, which would you be and why?
The Answer: Sanja likely didn't understand the question since English isn't her first language, but her random response about how she is a "human being" and has "emotions" definitely confused viewers and didn't score her any points with the judges. In her defense, it was a really dumb question to begin with.
The Pageant: 2000 Miss United States
The Contestant: Cheryl Frasier, Miss Rhode Island (a.k.a. actress Heather Burns)
The Question: Describe your perfect date.
The Answer: You have to hand it to the pageant-flick "Miss Congeniality" for accurately portraying the intellectual shortcomings of some pageant contestants. It's not that baton-twirling Cheryl Frasier flubbed her answer; it simply never crossed her mind that the "perfect date" usually includes a bottle of wine and a long walk on the beach, not the average climate during the month of April. But technically, she did answer the question. Props to Miss Rhode Island!
- Miss Utah USA
- The Pageant