Go Figure

I read four articles on four different actresses this week which left me shaking my head again at how women are labeled according to their figures.

The first article was on Marissa Jaret Winokur, an actress in the stage musical Hairspray. She was a U.S. size 14 and “super happy,” but her doctor said she wasn’t healthy. 27 kilos (60 pounds) and 6 dress sizes later, she says, “There are moments in my life [where] I felt more comfortable in that body sometimes than in this body.” She also states she goes to auditions where actresses are “much skinnier” than her size 2 figure. “I still will be considered a chubby actress,” she says. A size 2 is chubby? In Hollywood, yes. Alas that so much of the world looks to Hollywood and believes that’s how we need to look.


The next article was about Melissa McCarthy, the Emmy-award-winning actress from the sitcom Mike & Molly. Melissa claims she is “at peace” with her body, though wishes she were a size 6. Melissa exercises and eats right and doesn’t understand why she can’t lose weight, but chooses not to berate herself about her weight so her young girls don’t pick up on it and develop a negative body image. Good for her.


Then there’s Jennifer Lawrence of Hunger Games fame. “In Hollywood, I’m obese. I’m considered a fat actress,” she says during an interview for Elle magazine. That confirms what Marissa said about a size 2 being big. It’s insane!


Finally, there’s Christina Hendricks, the busty, voluptuous lady from Mad Men. She’s a happy U.S. size 14 but felt offended when an Australian interviewer called her “full-figured.” The interviewer blogged about the incident, defending herself by saying “full-figured is defined as ‘amply proportioned’ and it does not mean fat or obese” and basically Christina was in the wrong. To make matters worse, the editor-in-chief of Plus Model magazine blasted Christina for feeling offended, saying, “She is a curvy woman and she is fuller than most women in Hollywood, so therefore she is a role model to plus-size women,” and “The fact that she made such a big deal about it shows truth about how she feels and how she feels about her plus-size fans.”

SERIOUSLY? In an insane media world where size 6 is considered big, this reporter and editor seem to think it’s not okay for someone who doesn’t consider herself full-figured to take a stand against being labeled as such. And point of fact, I watched the interview and Christina did not “make a big deal” about it at all. She was very gracious and laughed about it.

So there you have it. Instead of focusing on their talents, their charity work, or on other ways they try to make the world a better place, these four women must constantly come under media scrutiny for not being size zeros. Go figure

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