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Drew Barrymore Isn’t Fat & So What If She Was

October 8, 2009

vegetarian-and-actress-drew-barrymore-hotAlright, I was over on Shapely Prose last night reading a couple posts and this one in particular caught my eye: Quick Hit: Sour Milk. The blogger known as Sweet Machine brings your attention to a feature on Spike TV’s website called The Top Ten Actresses Past Their Expiration Date.  

I agree that their are a multitude of on-screen performers that I am damn right sick of seeing, either because they suck or they have been portrayed in the media a ridiculous amount of time. Seriously, I need to see Tom Cruise’s face while waiting in line at the supermarket just as much as I need the obsessive recurring thought that my upstairs neighbors tub is about to fall through the ceiling and crush me to death in a gruesome freak accident, because my landlord won’t fix their damn leak. 

I might even find it acceptable to bring attention to the fact that Nicole Kidman and Meg Ryan need to stop with the plastic surgery, or that Teri Hatcher might want to consider eating a hamburger, but to go as far as saying that the ten actresses: Nicole Kidman, Teri Hatcher, Drew Barrymore, Helen Hunt, Renee Zellweger, Lindsay Lohan, Sarah Jessica Parker, Meg Ryan, Cameron Diaz and Julia Roberts, should be forever shunned from our screens, because they are either too old, too skinny, too fat, have too much plastic surgery or not enough, etc, is downright disturbing as hell. 

I almost finished that paragraph by writing: “Since when is the value of an actress/actor determined by their looks?”, but just the thought made me laugh. We all know that’s not true, even if it should be. 

I won’t go into all the dirty little details of the feature itself, because you can read it yourself and form your own opinion, but what I will mention is the complete and other contradiction between writing a feature that contains the idea that a beautiful woman like Drew Barrymore is  too fat and to then go on and criticize Helen Hunt for giving into the pressures of Hollywood and developing an eating disorder in her supposed quest to be thin. To quote Sweet Machine, it seems that “you’re acceptable weight range is somewhere in between Drew Barrymore and Helen Hunt”.

Now gals, it’s up to you to figure out exactly how much you should weight according to Spike TV and for crying out loud don’t grow old and when you do, please don’t try to fool us into thinking otherwise, because plastic surgery just makes you look pathetic. Really, the only course of action left for you is to retire from any kind of public life, so that we won’t have to look at you. 

Can I just say it again, DREW BARRYMORE IS NOT FAT! And even if she was by any standards overweight, what the hell gives anybody the right to use that  to publicly disparage her and by extension any other woman? Ok, to be fair the writer of this fabulous list didn’t actually use the word “fat”, but they did imply that she was just too chubby to grace us with her presence. Goddamn, shame on them for trying to instill shame in women about their appearance. 

11 Comments leave one →
  1. Turlich permalink
    October 9, 2009 2:09 am

    SpikeTV=a bunch of sexist boys who feel threatened by succeful women.

  2. Jessie permalink
    October 9, 2009 7:15 am

    that’s inSANO…but it’s almost like it doesn’t hold any value ya know?
    like it’s just another “Inquirer” for entertainments sake.

    I don’t think it’s entertaining, but people love to read about other people’s critiques of celebrities, no?

    It’s really sad and inaccurate anyway – I can think of WAY more all round, and in all ways annoying people constantly on screen than any one of those women. As a matter of fact, apart from Nicole, Helen, and Lindsay (for reasons far from the way they look)…they have all been women I have gotten great joy watching on screen!

  3. October 9, 2009 10:33 am

    You’re right, it doesn’t really hold any value, that’s for sure, but it’s all part of a bigger problem, I guess, and that’s why I find it shitty. These types of things hardly ever bother me anyhow, but clearly there’s a message being internalized by me and by so many other women. And that just kind of made me sad.

  4. October 10, 2009 1:26 pm

    I just think it’s really irritating that men are allowed to be as grossly overweight and unattractive as any creep you’d meet on the street, and can still be considered great actors, but god forbid a woman put on a few extra pounds. Suddenly she’s “past her prime” or needs to hit the gym, and obviously if she’s that big a whale she must not have any acting talent! Hello, double standard? Start putting those Hollywood fat men on the treadmill too, or shut the eff up about how some woman isn’t anorexically thin and is therefore “fat.” Honestly, if it’s all about appearances, then put up or shut up, y’know? I’m not lusting after fat male celebs any more than the average guy is lusting after chunky actresses, so let’s at least be fair in our mistreatment of public figures.

  5. wakingpersephone permalink
    October 19, 2009 3:54 pm

    “Start putting those Hollywood fat men on the treadmill too, or shut the eff up about how some woman isn’t anorexically thin and is therefore “fat.” ”

    I think it would be amusing for a major women’s magazine (or a tv show) to do a little experiment with this heh heh.

    Here’s my idea:
    A two page photo montage of all the male stars who’ve let themselves go a little too much. Alec Baldwin comes to mind. Do a little side-by-side comparison of him from the 90s and now and discuss his chubby face and puffy eyes and the fact that he doesn’t even look like the same person. How about his former sexiness James Spader? That would make a good one. Point out all of his flaws as he’s aged and…widened. Get really snarky just like these outlets like Spike TV and their ilk do about women and then extend it to all men out there and imply that we’re just sick of it. We’ve had it. We’re not being polite anymore. Get really over the top about it all. Throw in some good looking larger men too like Vincent D’Onofrio and that guy from that sit com King of Queens…Kevin James? Make it obvious that even handsome larger men are unacceptable.

    Something like that would get media coverage FOR SURE because it never happens.
    And then watch men cry fowl.

    It’s one thing for men to have to see images of perfection in Details and GQ and have it implied that one body type and general style is sexier than all others, but another to have women telling them they don’t measure up. They need to know it feels like crap and until THEY start writing in to the editors of these mens shows and mens mags it won’t change. Doing something like this might not change anything but it would get a dialogue going. And if not hey, it would be funny :p

  6. October 19, 2009 4:09 pm

    I see where you’re coming from, but I don’t really support being mean to people just to even the tab a little. It would be funny if it were done in a satyrical kind of way. I’d prefer seeing the people who write crap like that list on Spike TV’s website brought in for some kind of examination, at least we know they are assholes as opposed to some aging male celebrity who just happens to benefit from this double standard and form of privilege.

  7. wakingpersephone permalink
    October 19, 2009 11:24 pm

    I agree a satire would be funny. Men who support this kind of thing don’t see it as mean and until they do why would they ever stop or even think about what they’re doing? For that matter, it doesn’t even have to be worded “meanly” for it to be effective. In fact it would be better for a satire if it were very serious and not mean at all.

    I’m not suggesting that they just leave it out there as is but that they point out at some point that it was in fact a ‘social experiment’ or whatever. It would be even better if they could get the consent of the people they decide to use in the article AND used regular people as well as celebs <–that would rock. You know how Dove has that campaign about real women that's so great…it would fantastic if a company decided to do something like this or with this general concept about men; Make men feel like they are also part of what's going on with what women are subjected to by the media regarding body image because ultimately they are.

    "I’d prefer seeing the people who write crap like that list on Spike TV’s website brought in for some kind of examination, at least we know they are assholes"

    People at Spike TV get around what they do by claiming it's all in good fun. And will continue to do so.

  8. October 19, 2009 11:35 pm

    “People at Spike TV get around what they do by claiming it’s all in good fun. And will continue to do so.” Of course, there’s always the fact that people will claim that they don’t hold “real” women to the same standards has celebrities. For instance, I’m sure someone who writes that kind of stuff wouldn’t treat his mother, sister or girlfriend that way, because he simply doesn’t see them in the same light. I find that people are too quick to judge people who are in the public eye. It feels a lot like the argument that people use when trying to bring someone’s reputation to stand against an assault charge. Meaning, lawyers and the press will talk about how sexual active the victim is, which implies that since she’s given consent before, it goes to show that consent was implied in the assault situation. Total bullshit, but the same kind of reasoning is used by people who write fro tabloids or whatnot, i.e. an actor/actress put themselves in the public eye and in doing so they automatically forfeit any right to privacy or plain old human decency.

    I like the idea of it as a social experiment in which the people involved would have given their consent before hand. I think it would have much more of an impact if it was later revealed that Alec Baldwin or whomever was in on it and understands the idea that is at stake.

  9. jj1960 permalink
    November 1, 2009 10:13 pm

    Interesting that you should have put James Spader’s name out there because he has been ridiculed in the press often about his weight gain and turning into a Shatner clone. Some of the actors get the brunt just as much as the actresses, just not as many. It just seems as though the press likes to pick on certain people more than others. Its not right but that is unfortunately the way it is.

  10. November 1, 2009 10:36 pm

    It’s true that no one is safe from criticism when they are public figures (men included), but I would say that just because that it the way things are, it doesn’t mean that we can’t change things. I’m having an optimistic day…

  11. wakingpersephone permalink
    November 2, 2009 9:02 pm

    Has he really? I haven’t paid any attention really and just thought people hadn’t really noticed how drastically his appearance had changed in the last decade or so…or at least nobody has said much about it. You take Kirstie Alley and it’s the main focus when she’s mentioned in the press or on tv but the focus about James Spader is his talent. It’s bogus. (I realize Kirstie Alley turned that around and tried to make that into an advantage so it’s kind of become her image almost but even before the “Fat Actress” thing, that’s what people mentioned when she’d come up..)

    I don’t think the changes in Spader’s appearance make him unnatractive. They just make him “unconventionally attractive” if you will.

    And Kirstie Alley is a fox no matter what dress size she is just for the record 😉

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