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You’re beautiful, now go work out: Yahoos giving mixed messages

July 1, 2010

Perhaps you don’t watch Mad Men and don’t know Joan Holloway, the badass and foxy head of secretaries at Sterling Cooper, played by actress Christina Hendricks (who is inevitably referred to as buxom or voluptuous or zaftig in every damn article ever written about her ever).

If not, here you go:

I was recently reminded that she showed up in a couple episodes of Firefly too, as Saffron, the grifter who marries the captain.

When Mad Men won at the Golden Globes earlier this year, there were inevitable strings of terrible write-ups and puns the next day about Christina Hendricks’s ability to fill out the top of a dress WAY BETTER then most of Hollywood.  I skimmed or skipped them all, because I don’t need to absorb extra messages about how fat and terrible-looking we all are — there are enough of those floating around, thank you.  Which is why I got extra mad today when Coya Paz pointed out a yahoo newsarticle on the actress.  I don’t want to give them any link love, so most of the content will be here anyway, because I don’t give a fck about yahoo right now.

First off, let’s start with the headline.

Christina Hendricks: “I Felt Beautiful” Gaining “15 Pounds”

Ok, excessive quotation marks, I see what you did there, editor.  You are implying that these things MUST be direct quotes, they cannot possibly just be true facts on their face value.  Annoying, but typical.  Bring on the part where she talks about being hot and eating, simultaneously!

Now, here’s the article, sans advertising links inside the text:

“Mad Men” star Christina Hendricks says she’s always been proud of her curvier figure.

“Back when I was modeling, the first time I went to Italy I was having cappuccinos every day, and I gained 15 pounds. And I felt gorgeous!” Hendricks, 35, tells the July/August issue of Health. “I would take my clothes off in front of the mirror and be like, Oh, I look like a woman. And I felt beautiful, and I never tried to lose it, ’cause I loved it!”

In February, the actress came under fire when the New York Times posted an article that slammed the star for flaunting her assets at the Golden Globe Awards. “You don’t put a big girl in a big dress,” the critic wrote.

“I made the grave mistake after one awards show of reading comments online about what I wore, and I was like, ‘Oh my God, people are so mean!'” Hendricks reveals. “I still remember all those negative comments, despite all the wonderful positivity. That’s why we’re all in therapy!”

Because of the criticism, the newlywed admits she’s surprised to learn she’s often cited as one of the most desirable bodies in Hollywood.

“Really? They dont say Jessica Alba? ‘Cause that’s what I say!” she laughs. “It’s such a compliment, because of all those times I had agents who were like, “You have to lose some weight,” and all of a sudden, people are celebrating it.”

But the buxom redhead — who admits she could “sit down with a bag of chips and French onion dip and go to town” — also makes an effort to stay healthy by varying her gym routine.

“I get kind of bored on the treadmill, but I do it. And I do a little bit of weight training,” she says. “I’m really into the BOSU ball. You have to balance on it, and I do weights and squats on it. I’m pretty good at it — I feel sort of like a ‘Karate Kid!'”

So, a typical 300 word throwaway piece for an entertainment site, except this is big news because, get this, she feels beautiful when she gains 15 pounds.  What?!!  That can’t be true.  So to completely undermine what she says, the website inserts four links within the article.  FOUR.  Every other paragraph is interrupted by spam.  Aesthetically this is horrifying enough, but it gets worse because all of the ads are about, you guessed it, getting six pack abs and fighting food cravings and losing weight and achieving bikini bodies.

If I wrote about every instance where pop culture smacks me in the face with body hatred in some form, I would have a very busy blog and no time to even go to therapy to counteract all the horrible things told to me everyday about my imperfections, so for the most part I try to maintain my own sanity.  Sometimes I have to stop and say it though:  Shame on you, Yahoo.

P.S. I love using the bosu ball at the gym, too, Christina.

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14 Comments leave one →
  1. coyapaz permalink
    July 1, 2010 10:24 am

    Love this, Raymond!

  2. July 1, 2010 11:19 am

    thanks Coya!

    I also forgot to send this out to Yahoo too:

  3. tanyadiva permalink
    July 1, 2010 11:27 am

    She had me at chips and onion dip…Now, if they had a link to the Lipton recipe, we’d be square biz. Amirite?

    Love ya, Chrissy. Hate ya, yahoo.

  4. July 1, 2010 11:36 am

    @tanya, the chips and dip remark made my heart flutter a little, too.

  5. July 1, 2010 2:43 pm

    apparently her favorite french onion dip is to put the dry soup mix in with plain yogurt. how could yahoo leave out such critical information??

  6. tanyadiva permalink
    July 1, 2010 3:42 pm

    @raymondj, Mais non! You must use sour cream, (Breakstones is best), not yogurt! Christina, this will not stand!

  7. Alyx Vesey permalink
    July 1, 2010 3:49 pm

    Grrr, that Yahoo article got on my nerves! Thanks for sharing how it got your ire up too. I feel like eating a bowl of onion dip in her honor. Two more things.

    1. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I seem to remember reading/hearing somewhere that they actually pad Hendricks’ costumes to on Mad Men — thus the zaftigness Joan supposedly exhibits is enhanced from Hendricks’ (what like size 8-12?) frame.

    2. I know that Hendricks is on a show about the early 60s and thus her red carpet wear tends to be “old Hollywood glamour” (C). But I always get frustrated by only seeing her in sweetheart bodices and the like. This seems like the only sanctioned look for female celebrities larger than a size 4. So as much as I love Hendricks’ assets, I liked seeing them played down in this photo with Rich Sommer.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/03/christina-hendricks-breas_n_599562.html

    To be clear, I don’t like the shame HuffPo seems to be doling out here with words like “covered up” (the URL seems to have breasts on the mind as well). I’m just talking about her outfit. I totes would wear that coat and those boots.

  8. July 1, 2010 4:10 pm

    She had me at chips and onion dip…Now, if they had a link to the Lipton recipe, we’d be square biz. Amirite?

    Omg, I effing love you.

  9. July 1, 2010 6:35 pm

    @Alyx that padding would explain why I find Joan Holloway hot, but sometimes don’t recognize her in photos of Christina Hendricks!

  10. July 1, 2010 7:25 pm

    Hendricks’ outfit in that Huffpo story is shutting it down. Love them boots!

  11. July 1, 2010 9:29 pm

    I’m not a fan of onion dip, usually, but Ms. Hendricks could get me to eat a tub of it….

    I can identify with how she felt when she gained weight…granted, when I gained weight, it was a lot more than 15lbs, but I felt (and still feel) more comfortable in my body than I did when I was smaller.

    I hate that yahoo ruined what could have been a perfectly awesome and body-positive article with their excessive quotations and over-exuberance for exercise and weight loss.

  12. July 2, 2010 1:21 pm

    Oh the perils of Interneting! I am shocked at the ads that get generated for me all over the web. A failure of bad tagging, key words, bad advertising, and shitty cultural view of weight overall.

    That Lipton mix is unstoppable. Does anyone actually make soup with that stuff? I’ve never seen it as soup. It is dip and always will be. Sweet, sweet, creamy, delectable dip. Damn, now I need some ripple Lays!

  13. July 2, 2010 1:25 pm

    Lipton mix seems like the last edible thing in my house, when even the quick oats are having a party inside the canister and the coffee smells rancid.

  14. July 8, 2010 1:38 pm

    And since I was sent a link to it, I present the body of work of Christina Hendricks on MTV’s “Undressed.”

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