Before I go any farther, please watch the following two videos:
And please look at these pictures:
And now, the brouhaha.
Several weeks ago, Lane Bryant released the commercial that you just saw for viewing during “Dancing with the Stars” on Monday nights, and “American Idol” on Tuesday nights. Both of those shows aired the Victoria’s Secret ad. The pictures above are also from those two shows. The dancer is ‘DWTS’ professional dancer Edyta Sliwinska, and the ‘American Idol Bikini Girl’ appeared on the show during the 2009 season.
Well, when officials at both ABC and FOX saw the Lane Bryant commercial, it was pulled from the lineup. Why? Several excuses have been bandied about, but the bottom line is that they felt that the LB Model, Ashley Graham, showed too much cleavage, that sex was implied because they showed the text that said, “Meet Mark for lunch”, and then she left the house in nothing but her undies and a coat.
Excuse me? Too much cleavage? IMPLIED SEX?
This is ABC we’re talking about, right? ABC, home of “The Bachelor”? Nope, no cleavage or implied sex there. None at all. And FOX, home of “The Simpsons”? There has been plenty of questionable behavior and innuendo in that show, which, it could be argued, is directed more at children than DWTS and American Idol combined. It’s a cartoon, after all. Fox also regularly airs NASCAR events. I watch those with Josh all the time. And what commercials do I see, at nearly every commercial break during the 3+ hour race? Viagra. Cialis. You want to discuss “implied sex”???
So what, really, was the problem with the ad?
Ashley Graham. Yes, Ms. Graham was the problem. That beautiful but full-figured (size 16, for the record) woman in the Lane Bryant ad. Apparently, the bigwigs at Fox and ABC don’t think that women over an emaciated size 2 should be portrayed as anything but obese and unhealthy. Certainly, they are not to be portrayed as women who are beautiful, self-confident, and able to get a date. They are absolutely not to be viewed as sexual creatures in any way. That’s reserved for the Victoria’s Secret models who have advertised on their shows for years.
And the dancers on their shows.
And the contestants on their shows.
And the cartoon characters on their shows.
ABC and FOX can hide behind their Standards and Practices departments all they want. They can throw all the ‘innuendo’ excuses in the book at us, but their hypocrisy speaks for itself when you turn on ‘Dancing’ and see cleavage a-flyin’. When you turn on ‘Idol’ and see the outrageous costumes that contestants wear, both on their own and during the finals when they are dressed by professionals. When you turn on ‘Bachelor’ and see barely-clad women crawling, sometimes two at a time, crawling all over some poor excuse for a man. When you turn on either show and see the Victoria’s Secret Models vamping in little more than lace-embellished dental floss.
The nice thing in all of this? The ‘censorship’ practiced by both stations backfired on them. The Lane Bryant commercial has gone viral. Ashley Graham has been on everything from Good Morning America to Access Hollywood. And her lovely curves are being hailed as refreshing and real.
So thanks, ABC and FOX, for being hypocrites. Full-figured women everywhere salute you.