In what amounts to a reversal of the current "Ideal Body" Hollywood is beginning to push away from the era of the Big Booty and returning to the 90's obsession with the classic "Guess Girl" pinup, vintage Jessica Simpson body type.
Wether or not marketers will be successful with this latest body-type sea-change is another matter. The most recent incarnation of "the perfect body" comes in the form of Charlotte McKinney, The top-heavy Wilhelmina model who just returned from Louisiana, where she filmed her part in the David Spade comedy Joe Dirt 2, that will air on Crackle, the streaming service owned by Sony Pictures.
Sunday, McKinney will be seen nearly naked in a Carl’s Jr. Super Bowl ad cooing, “I love going all natural. It just makes me feel better. Nothing between me and my 100 percent, all natural, juicy grass-fed beef.”
As for comparisons to Kate Upton, McKinney says, “I’m a curvier bombshell.” Ouch.
What I find fascinating about all of this, is that somewhere, a bunch of totally pretentious creative advertising types actually sat at a boardroom and debated the merits of using this body-type over say a Victoria's Secret type, or any of the other standard beauty ideal types that exist in their casting catalogs.
This got me thinking - how many beauty ideal body types are there on the shelf in Hollywood central casting?
Here are a few off the top of my head:
- The Victoria's Secret Angel (I'm convinced VS is actually a dating agency for DiCaprio)
- The "All American" Blonde Bombshell (Kate Upton)
- The "I'm still a Virgin" Pop Starlet (Think early Britney Spears)
- The Quirky "Not Quite Beautiful" Girl who in Reality is Totally Gorgeous (Think Shailene Woodley)
- The Megan Fox - or current reigning "Most Beautiful" actress in Hollywood that is used as eye candy in the trailer of whatever horribly shitty Michael Bay Movie she is in.
- The "Body" - Jessica Alba, Jessica Biel (there are a lot of Jessica's on this list) The script calls for prolonged and gratuitous underwear scenes.
- The "Booty" - Nicki Manaj, Kim Kardashian, Amber Rose and everyone that has risen to prominence in this most recent age of the Booty and reality Tv.
This is not an exhaustive list - but it doesn't speak to a lot of inclusiveness does it? And whatever beauty type is currently be foisted on us by the media, it's being decided by just a handful of self-important people. I'm willing to bet that some of these people have patted themselves on the back for casting Charlotte McKinney because they are embracing a "curvier" ideal that no doubt will appeal to "real women" everywhere.
Of course this is bullshit. They are selling hamburgers oozing sex, and they are targeting the Male 18-35 demographic who makes up the largest share of the Super Bowl audience by literally smothering them in cleavage. We get it - and it's not even that we particularly object - but it's important to keep a level of awareness about what is going on and how all of this is constructed. Because it's precisely that kind of awareness that allows us as women to step back and realize that at the end of the day it's up to us to decide for ourselves what is beautiful, and to hold ourselves up to a different, more authentic standard of value - something that you won't find in an ad, on a movie screen or at the drive thru at Carl's Jr.
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