Thursday, November 8, 2007

Another girl's self-esteem in the toilet thanks to Tyra Banks

America's Next Top Model is my secret TV shame. I started watching it because I got hooked on the show recaps written by Potes of Television Without Pity (who I have a total word crush on, because she is hilarious beyond belief). The recaps by themselves are a panic, but I decided that they would probably be even funnier if I actually saw the show, and I was right. So now I come home from work on Wednesday nights, twitching in anticipation of the latest bouts of bitchery from the model wannabes. They rarely disappoint.

I hadn't picked a favorite yet this season, but I was sort of pulling for Sarah, who is witty and pretty, and also the token "plus-size" girl of the group. But Sarah got the boot tonight, going the way of every other plus-size girl in the history of the show. Just about every season, they make it seem like this is finally the time the plus-size girl will give those skinny skanks a run for their money. These poor, unsuspecting girls start the show brimming with confidence, ready to be an example for non-stick-figured women everywhere. But after weeks of struggling as a size-8 float in a the size-0 parade, their self-image erodes, and inevitably they break down. This week, Sarah broke. Her biggest issue: She was losing weight, and thus Tyra and her merry band of judges were climbing all over her case for being too skinny to be a plus-size model, and too hefty to be a regular model. In other words, she'd probably dropped to a size 6, a size that I and most of my friends would seriously consider lopping off a limb to be again.

I want to make it clear that I'm not exactly outraged over this outcome, because for one thing, I think the show is bullshit and I don't like to get too worked up about it. I also concede that Sarah was taking only so-so photos, and her heart probably wasn't in the whole thing anyway. But I just had to remark upon the absurdity of Tyra harshing on someone for being too fat and too skinny, then criticizing her for having some visible issues with that. Tyra, who fancies herself as some sort of champion for women's self-esteem issues. (Potes calls her Typrah Winbanks, which is so right on.) But Sarah seems to have her head screwed on straight, so I'm confident she can overcome the Top Model mindfuck that has taken down many an aspiring Cover Girl shill. Good luck, Sarah. I still think you're purty.


HW said...

well put. I agree.

Teli said...

Great work.