Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The Littlest, Perkiest Loser

Dear NBC:

Last night I watched the season premiere of The Biggest Loser on DVR. Loved the 50 states theme! That could have gotten hokey, but you kept it on track. Loved that Caroline Rhea is back! She seems sincerely interested in the well being of the contestants and she isn’t some stick figure herself, which makes her even more endearing. Loved that Bob returned! He’s a great trainer, he’s genuine, and did I mention he’s hot? (A note: I think Bob finally coming out of the closet would make a super addition to the finale this year.)

And then the lady trainer came zipping down next to Bob. And my inner dialogue went like this:

Yay Jilli-…wait…. that’s not Jillian!
Who the hell is that?
Why is she so damn perky? And why is she doing that cheerleader jumpy thing?
Does she really think we’ll believe those boobs came with her body?
SHE’S going to be the tough-as-nails trainer?
But what about her hair? She can’t sweat and keep her hair like that?

NBC, I am ashamed of you. You dump a great person like Jillian for this fluff? It’s not hard to figure out what happened here. Jillian was terrific- but not tremendously “feminine”. Her gravely voice and lean, cut body weren’t unattractive, but hardly conventional female beauty. She was aggressive in training the contestants; nobody would have ever called her sweet. (Not that she was uncaring. Oh, and she got the results!) Again, not typically “female”.
She’s been replace by a large-breasted conventionally pretty woman who is (so far) the portrait of stereotypical kindness and caring. She’s been replaced by a woman who is so keenly aware of how she appears to everyone that she has to constantly remind us all that she’s “not a Barbie.” Jillian was replaced by a softer cuter kinder version of the female trainer that will be more palatable to gender-norms-obsessed conservative America.

And this from a tv show that’s supposedly sending a message of self-esteem and acceptance regardless of appearance?

Shame on you, NBC.
Bring Jillian back.

One Disgusted Female Viewer

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