Two girls stand before me, but I have only one Thrill feature in my hands.
That was the voice of Tyra Banks coming to me, as she often does, when I met with Anna Hampton and Delilah Draper earlier this week. Both first-years, and both blonde, these ladies are competing to be Kenyon’s Next Top Doppelgängers.
On this week’s episode, you’ll meet these two contestants, who certainly seem to have a lot in common. At first glance, they’re both blonde-haired, blue-eyed, and fair-skinned. At second glance, Delilah’s eyes are actually green, but as Anna said to her, “I feel like you could come off as a person who has blue eyes,” a statement Delilah could not object to.
I sat down with Anna and Delilah on Wednesday night. We met in Peirce, and before I could even get out my tape recorder, Anna and Delilah wanted to know who thought they looked so much alike that they should be on Kenyon Doppelgängers. Well, in an unexpected twist, I just so happened to be sitting next to Nate Winer, the Thrill’s Executive Editor and the very dude who thought Anna and Delilah looked so much alike that he suggested they be on Kenyon Doppelgängers. He had a whole story about how he thought they were the same person on Facebook, and feeling the pressure to explain himself, he told the whole thing directly to Anna and Delilah’s similar faces.
“Facebook suggested I friend both of you, which I didn’t do, but should definitely do now that we’ve had this conversation,” he said. He was flustered. They were skeptical. Everyone else at the table was comparing their facial structures. The whole thing was chaos, and I thought to myself, boy, is this good television.
After that dramatic scene in New Side, Anna, Delilah, and I decided to go somewhere calmer to do the interview. We chose the brown sofas outside the ADR, a truly neutral spot, and it was there that Anna and Delilah told me how looking kind of similar has affected their lives at Kenyon.
Neither Anna nor Delilah would call each other doppelgängers, but they admit that they have commonalities. “On a basic level we have similar features,” said Anna. Delilah agreed, adding, “We’re both small blonde people.” And they’ve both been mistaken for the other before.
“I’ve definitely been called Delilah at least once,” said Anna. Recently, someone went up to Delilah and complimented her on the performance Anna gave in Rocky Horror Picture Show. “They were like, ‘You were really great in Rocky!’” Delilah said. “And I was like, ‘that wasn’t me!’”
Both girls are involved in theater at Kenyon, and Anna suspects it’s that, and not so much their looks, that most contributes to the confusion. “In the first few weeks of college of people were like, ‘What is going on! Blondes who do theater!’” she said.
People have also assumed Anna and Delilah are related, since the two friends are often seen together.
“I’ve had a lot of people ask if we’re sisters,” said Delilah. “I should just start saying yes.”
Then they asked me whether I think they look alike. I admitted that, while I can see how people get them confused, I don’t think they look much alike at all.
But I’m also a light-haired, blue-eyed, fair-skinned girl, and I also do theater. And if watching all 442 episodes (so far) of Law & Order: SVU has taught me anything, it’s that the more someone looks like you, the better attuned you are to the details in their physical appearance, which is why cross-racial identification is inherently flawed form of evidence and also why I don’t think Anna and Delilah look anything alike.
We ended the interview by musing about this phenomenon. For example, there’s a seemingly endless stream of Kenyon boys who resemble each other in the same superficial ways as Anna and Delilah do. They’re all tall, skinny, dark-haired, and wear glasses, and they all look the same to Anna and Delilah.
“I’m sure they have different faces,” said Anna. “But I’m not tall enough to see their faces.”
It sounds like The Thrill needs to go interview some new contestants. In the meantime, congratulations to Anna and Delilah. You’re both still in the running towards becoming Kenyon’s Next Top Doppelgängers.