The November 2010 cover of GQ magazineBy Terry Hernon MacDonald
The talk lately is about Lea Michele and Dianna Agron, the attractive and gifted stars of the hit show, Glee, wrapped around their male co-star, Cory Monteith, on the cover of GQ's November issue,without many clothes on. (The two-girls-for-one-guy theme is about as fresh as curdled milk, and naturally, Monteith has plenty of clothes on.)
Apparently, some parents feel betrayed because Michele and Agron have opted to shake it for cash and prizes, and they don't want Junior subjected to female body parts (which reminds me of the dust-up last month about Katy Perry's objectionable breasts showing up with Elmo on Sesame Street).
What bothers me is not the body parts but the eagerness with which women still -still! - toss off their clothes to elevate their careers. I especially don't get it in this case; Michele, in particular, became a star because of her voice. Glee became a hit because of its knock-out talent. We can get T&A anywhere.
So, what compels women who have been recognized for their talent and abilities - as so many of of us long to be - to reduce themselves to sex objects? Wasn't posing to inspire men's lust once the method of desperate women who wanted to make it, not of those who already hit it big?
Some people suggest that the girls (I'll call them women; at 24, neither Michele nor Agron is a child) wanted to break out of their wholesome high school glee club image, but certainly just one supporting role in a major motion picture would have done that for them. And, with all the attention they've gotten over the past year, they must be fielding scripts.
Unfortunately, this willingness to turn oneself into the subject of a million masturbation fantasies is not limited to young celebrities. It's not news that the tween and teen girls who worship those celebs want boys to want them, too, and so do too many adult women who should know better.
On Monday, my postman Gary brought me Party City's Halloween catalog, and as in recent years, it's chock-full of costumes to assist any woman or teenage girl who cares to objectify herself. The catalog contains pages of shiny garments made of short, cheesy fabric with names like "Dirty Cop," "Cruise Cutie," "Charm School Dropout", "Joy Rider," and "Pin Me Up Sailor."
The irony is that my 15-year-old daughter came home last night from the mall with a costume cut from the same cloth, a cheap take on Alice in Wonderland, which includes a teeny, sheeny skirt and fishnet stockings. The costume was a birthday gift from her friend's mother.
And my dilemma now is whether to forbid my daughter from wearing it and risk rebellion (girls have been known to sneak out and wear something even worse), or grit my teeth and let her endure the creepy looks she'll inevitably get from sad middle-aged men (she is a bright girl and will not interpret them as flattery).
What would you do?