So I recently saw this show (sitting home alone on a Friday night, watching back episodes on Lifetime online. I feel like the beginning of one of the network’s movies. When do I get a makeover and suddenly achieve all of my dreams at once?), and I have mixed feelings. Overall, I really like it and what the show is trying to do. ‘Love your body!’ Carson crows. ‘Flaunt it! Adore every inch!’ And that’s really what they want women to do. I believe that very firmly.
Do I think they totally achieve it or do it in the right way?
Eh, not so sure about that…so let’s discuss!
Here are some of the issues I have with the show:
- Use of the word ‘perfect.’ What is perfect anyway? Some might say it’s Gisele, others might say it’s Beyonce or J-Lo, and others might be drawn to the ladies with even more junk in the trunk. What’s wrong with thinking what we’ve got right now is perfect? (I don’t tell myself I’m perfect on a daily basis or anything, but I think it’s something we could all work on) It’s nice that Carson says the women are beautiful, but I almost think he devalues the sentiment by starting those statements with, ‘You’re not perfect, but…’
- Someone who has hated her body for 20 years changes her mind in 5 days? Without the help of a qualified therapist? Hmmmm… It just seems a little hokey to me. Anyone who has ever had body image issues (like 99.9% of us?) knows that it’s gonna take a little longer to get over that.
- The women only feel good enough about themselves to ‘flaunt it’ naked after they’ve had full hair and makeup done. So we learn to love our bodies, accept our curves, and embrace our uniqueness….when we have the help of professionals making the part above the neck look phenomenal. I feel like they aren’t REALLY naked, ya know?
- Once they get the makeover, Carson and Jude (stylist extraordinaire) exclaim, ‘Oh you look so different! Amazing!’ Wait, what? Aren’t these women supposed to be loving themselves for who they already are? Not for the glamazon that has been created?
- The lineup. Carson makes the woman in question place herself where she thinks she fits in a line of women. But he always asks them to place themselves in the order by size. First of all, the thing about this show is that it is always about size. There’s never anything about any other form of uniqueness. Maybe they just didn’t want to dig that deep, but I think the show lacks depth (pun totally intended) for that very reason. Anyway, this part always makes the woman realize that she was much smaller than she was imagining. I have a problem with this. I almost find it insulting to the bigger women in the lineup, and I think the women who are asked to place themselves do too, based on their hesitation to just jump in the line. And the fact that when a woman realizes she is much smaller than her perception of herself, suddenly her self worth shoots up and she’s happier with her body. Not helping with that whole ‘love every size’ concept. Because even in this show about loving your body, subtracting inches is still positive, and a decrease in size equals an increase in self esteem. It may only be in the woman’s head, but it’s still shrinking her and that is the part that makes her feel beautiful – not realizing that her differences are what make her amazing.
- When the picture from the final shoot is shown on the side of the building, they still cover her ‘trouble spots.’ Again, we’re not embracing everything here – just the good stuff and the parts Jude has worked his magic on. The same goes for when Carson helps the women choose new outfits to dress their bodies. ‘We have a lot of good to work with here!’ Which sounds to me like he just left out the part about how they need to camouflage the bad…implying that there is ‘bad.’
- I love that the show makes women want to love the bodies they have, but most of the women have parts of their bodies that they describe as ‘fat’ or ‘chunky.’ Although I can identify with these women a bit more, I think the skinny girls need some love too. What about the girls who try to gain weight because they too hate their shape, but stay bony or boyish no matter what? I mean, I can’t really commiserate with homegirl on that end, but still, I know there are girls who are just as unhappy with their lack of shape as other women are with their abundance of it. And while I usually agree with Carson that ‘zero isn’t a size, it’s a warning sign,’ I don’t know if there needs to be so much haterade being dumped on our slender sisters.
Anyway, what do you think? Have you seen this show? Do you agree with me? Or are you thinking my perception of the show is totally skewed? What do you think about body image shows like this? Spill!