Monday, November 08, 2010
Open Letter to Marie Claire regarding their missed Melissa McCarthy moment
Dear Marie Claire,
It's been awhile since I read your magazine(the print version,that is)but one of the things that I recall liking about it were the many interesting articles about women's issues,both here and abroad.
Along with the monthly book review/discussion and a decent round-up of current and upcoming pop culture events,Marie Claire was,in my opinion,more than just another flashy fashionista pack of pages at the newsstand.
That is why this whole Mike & Molly thing was such a surprise,not only to me but to other ladies who truly enjoyed reading MC,even if some of the outfits featured in your photo layouts didn't come in our size. What is really sad to me is that your editors and writers missed out on a golden opportunity to highlight actress Melissa McCarthy,a talented entertainer with a solid fan base,who is the leading lady of this series.
Melissa McCarthy is best known as Sookie St. James,one of the pivotal supporting players from Gilmore Girls,for the entire run of the show and who then went on to another nice ensemble role in the sitcom Samantha Who along with numerous film roles as a featured player such as the recent release Life As We Know It and last spring's The Back Up Plan.
I think you can see where this is going;Ms. McCarthy has been ,for most of her professional Hollywood career ,always the sidekick and not the leading lady. With Mike & Molly,however,she gets to be the main event as well as the major love interest.
Being romanced on screen is nothing new to her as Gilmore Girls gave her a charmingly down to earth love story to work with but seeing Melissa McCarthy as the star for once is encouraging to many of us out there in the audience that looked more like Sookie than Lorelai(and who appreciated the fact that Sookie's weight was only talked about during the pregnancy plot lines that her character went through as part of her happy marriage and home life):
Wouldn't it have been great if your magazine had done a positive piece about Ms. McCarthy's leap to a higher rung on the TV sitcom ladder? Since the premise of Mike & Molly does deal with weight loss,discussing that topic could have been tastefully brought into the article and addressed in an intelligent,thoughtful manner.
However,you chose to assign a blogger with body issues to give her two cents on the series instead. That was about as smart as asking a vegan to give an unbiased report on the state of the meat industry. Yes,an apology was later tacked onto to the post but it was too little,too late there.
This is a real shame,both for your magazine and the blogger in question. As a blogger myself,I understand the need to state a honest opinion but it would behoove many folks online and off to restrain themselves from expressing every stray thought they have for all the world to read. Especially considering that fact that most bloggers like myself don't have a professional editor to overlook their work,this rude write-up is rather beneath the standards of any respectable publication.
One of the few positive outcomes stemming from this controversy is that people from all walks of life,fat or thin,find this "aesthetically displeasing " attitude towards the overweight to be unacceptable and are speaking out about it.
While we can all agree that keeping healthy is important,there is no justification for such low rent behavior. There's a difference between stating your case and going out of your way to bluntly express your personal disgust with someone's physical appearance-one can be done without malice and the other is just plain mean:
It's really too bad that you didn't take the opportunity to shine a much deserved spotlight on such a sweet and smart actress like Ms. McCarthy when you had the chance,particularly due to the fact that she's not going to be the only plus size player on prime time anymore.
Surely,your magazine must have covered the success of the Lifetime dramedy Drop Dead Diva(it is a network that at least one of your editors is familiar with)starring Brooke Elliott that has had two successful seasons so far?
Also,as we speak,best selling author Jennifer Weiner is out in Hollywood working with ABC to get the pilot episodes of her potential series "The Great State of Georgia",which plans to have a large leading lady at it's helm,underway. While it may be soon to tell if that show will be part of the future ABC line-up,all the signs are there for this series to have a real fighting chance at a full run.
Basically,you really dropped the ball on this one,Marie Claire. While Melissa McCarthy is refusing to add any fuel to this fire at the moment,her co-star Billy Gardell gave a very classy take on this situation recently which further shows up your lack of finesse in this matter.
I have to admit that I haven't watched Mike & Molly,mainly due to concerns about the show possibly overusing fat jokes,but after reading a few reviews about the series and this awful brouhaha of late,I may give it a fair chance(as will many other folks out in TV land). One thing is for certain-I don't intend to give your magazine any such consideration. Even if you did a nice profile on Melissa McCarthy,it would be an obvious attempt to placate peeved readers and just as insulting as the original article was.
Hopefully,there will come a time where having a plus sized person as the headliner of a TV show or major motion picture is not such a big deal and that when they do,the main focus of the plot doesn't have to be all about their weight. That may sound silly to you,Marie Claire,but a girl can dream,can't she?:
Lady T and the other Melissa McCarthy fan girls
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