Yesterday, I got to go to something kind of cool. Lifetime/Sony had a bloggers meet and greet with the stars of their new show Drop Dead Diva, Margaret Cho and Brooke Elliott.
I was excited to go because I’ve always thought Margaret Cho was hysterical and amazing (and she is). Beyond that, I was a bit wary. I’d read the description of the show quickly on Lifetime’s homepage and thought, “oh, no”. It’s a show about a skinny, shallow woman who dies and is sent back to earth to inhabit the body of a smart, cool fat chick (I’m so sure the people at Lifetime wouldn’t approve of that description – check out my link to read the ‘more appropriate’ one). Brooke Elliott is the fat chick in question and Margaret Cho is her assistant.
Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised (Not that I’ve seen the show yet – and probably won’t for a while. As my regular readers and twitter followers know, I don’t watch much regular TV but instead am addicted to hulu for when I can’t sleep – I’m always a few years behind everyone else on TV.). But I liked the way they talked about the show. Rather than being about fat jokes (which I feared it might be, because in TV and movies fat usually equals funny and self-mockery) the show is more about self-acceptance and different images of beauty. Which, of course, makes me think it won’t last past a season and will land on everyone’s shows that were awesome but cancelled list.
Two themes came up in the discussion that really hit home for me (yeah, I know, I’m one of those skinny bitches who eats fried foods and cookies all day – so how dare I relate?). At one point one of the other bloggers mentioned the fact that it was kind of a shame that the only way Lifetime could/would do a show with a plus-sized heroine was to do it around the gimmick that she has a skinny girl trapped inside of her. And that wasn’t it funny/odd/sad how this was exactly what so many overweight people say, that they have a skinny person trapped inside of them just dying to get out.
Brooke Elliott replied that she doesn’t think that’s what all overweight people really mean when they say that. The “skinny” person trapped inside of them is really shorthand for the beauty that they know is within them and it may be related to losing some weight (My addition. She did not mention losing weight. Everyone there very specifically did not ever mention losing weight, which honestly I think was unrealistic. I know very few people are naturally my size. I am small boned and right now have a speedy metabolism and so I am tiny. But my mom was overweight and I know that one day my metabolism could slow down and I might put on weight. I doubt I’d work hard to stay my current size. That seems unrealistic. But IMHO, everyone has a size that they can feel comfortable and beautiful and happy at and for some people that’s a 6 and for others that’s a 12 and for others that 16 and for others… I think, just as it’s unrealistic for everyone to aspire to be a size 0, it’s unrealistic to think that someone who is overweight might not want to lose some weight as a way to feel physically better and better about themselves) or just investing more time in their appearance.
Anyway, this skinny person trapped inside concept and how it just represented the beauty trapped inside a person sent my mind back to The Top 3 Things I Learned in Dating Boot Camp. Number 2 on that list was that men are attracted to confidence. I can think of a lot of women I know who are in the size 12 plus range who have no trouble attracting men. And it’s because they know they’re beautiful. They’re not stuck on the idea that they have skinny women trapped inside of them. They’re happy with the bodies they have.
OK, I’m pretty sure those last two paragraphs were incoherent. Sorry, need more coffee.
The other thing that really stood out for me is that Brooke’s love interest on the show will be a total hottie. And that we pretty much never see in-shape/hot guys with overweight women on TV or in films (whereas we see plenty of the reverse). This is something we’ve talked about on this blog, several times, in the comments. I think it’s pretty damn awesome.
Tags: blogger, dating bootcamp