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Gingersnap
07-26-2010, 02:58 PM
'Mad Men' shares a lesson on beauty

The women of the 1960s and their 'period bodies' with normal proportions are rare today, and something to be envied.
By Meghan Daum

July 22, 2010

The fourth season of "Mad Men" starts Sunday, and with it another round of opportunities to both marvel and gasp at how much things have changed since the early 1960s. Much of the genius of the show, of course, lies in its ferocious attention to period details. From the entrenched womanizing and nonstop drinking and smoking (even while pregnant!) to children who play with plastic dry-cleaning bags and family picnics that end with a flourish of litter shaken insouciantly onto the grass, "Mad Men" leaves no antediluvian stone unturned.

That includes body types. Watch some of the commentary features on the DVD editions and you'll hear the show's creator, Matt Weiner, refer to "period bodies." What he means is that just as the show applies painstaking care to finding sofas and kitchen appliances exactly like those you would have seen in that era, it also seeks bodies particularly female ones quintessentially of the time. That means no ripped abs or fake breasts, no preternaturally white teeth. (A lot of people wear eyeglasses too the horror!)

Despite such buzz kills, "Mad Men"-inspired fashion, with its pencil skirts, skinny ties and cashmere sweater sets, is all the rage. The show's costume designer is developing her own line for QVC, and Banana Republic, which has "Mad Men"-themed window displays, is even sponsoring a contest in which a customer will win a walk-on role on the show next year.

(snip)

In other words, if "Mad Men's" uber-curvaceous Joan Holloway were working on Madison Avenue today, she might visit a plastic surgeon rather than rely on a highly engineered bra. Instead of enduring summer days in stockings, she might endure time in a tanning booth or pay for a spray-on tan. In other words, the Joan Holloways (or Peggy Olsons or Betty Drapers) of today are likely to be goaded into attempting self-transformation on a much larger scale than in the 1960s, when no one bought into the notion that beauty was effortless.

For that you can blame the other 1960s. A friend who came of age then actually in the early 1970s talks ruefully about how she used to dye her (naturally dark) leg hair blond so she could then not shave her legs. The goal was to be in step with hippie-centric fashion and its mandate to "be free" but only within certain bounds. Sure this sounds crazy now, but it's a first glimpse of today's tyranny of apparently natural gorgeousness that is anything but.

Maybe that's why we harbor just a tiny bit of envy toward the women of "Mad Men." Deprived of "advantages" like Pilates classes and fat burners and ever-more common surgical procedures, estranged from the feelings of inadequacy that come from "failing" to achieve physical perfection despite the vast array of tools at hand, their "period bodies" amount to something that, especially when it comes to our idols, is rare today if not downright taboo: normal, regular proportions.

And you thought kids playing with dry-cleaning bags was shocking.

I've thought about this. A lot of women today want to 'look good naked'. The truth is that most people don't actually look good naked and there's absolutely a lot of wear and tear from childbearing and aging. Instead of wearing beautiful clothes that make them look better, they wear sloppy clothing that would make a Venus look ratty. Then they spend all their free time getting hairs ripped out, dyeing their skin, maintaining odd-looking hair dyes, and having surgeries.

Women have once again gleefully grabbed the short end of the stick.

LA Times (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-daum-madmen-20100722,0,2604285.column?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+latimes%2Fnews%2Fopinion%2Fco mmentary+%28L.A.+Times+-+Commentary%29)

noonwitch
07-26-2010, 03:07 PM
Spanx (or the cheaper Assets version at Target) and underwires go a long way toward looking good with clothes on.


The only thing is that underwires set off metal detectors, as I found out at the downtown court building this morning. I removed all my jewelry and the thing still went off. The security guard said it had to be an underwire when she was "wanding" me.

warpig
07-26-2010, 08:32 PM
A lot of women today want to 'look good naked'. The truth is that most people don't actually look good naked and there's absolutely a lot of wear and tear from childbearing and aging. Women have once again gleefully grabbed the short end of the stick.

LA Times (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-daum-madmen-20100722,0,2604285.column?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+latimes%2Fnews%2Fopinion%2Fco mmentary+%28L.A.+Times+-+Commentary%29)


OK I'm gonna go out and start a study about how naked women "look" and I'll get back to you.
On grabbing the short end of the stick.....................:rolleyes: too many things come to mind.

Gingersnap
07-26-2010, 08:45 PM
OK I'm gonna go out and start a study about how naked women "look" and I'll get back to you.
On grabbing the short end of the stick.....................:rolleyes: too many things come to mind.

If you still haven't seen any naked women in real life, your short stick is the least of your worries.

warpig
07-26-2010, 09:07 PM
If you still haven't seen any naked women in real life, your short stick is the least of your worries.

I have 2 kids so I've seen at least women naked at least twice................:D However I'm sure I could get a government grant to "extend" the study..........

jediab
07-27-2010, 10:19 AM
I love women with curves like Christina Hendricks. Eva Mendes is another sexay uber-curvaceous woman. :p

To me women with no defining curves aren't as attractive.

ralph wiggum
07-27-2010, 10:35 AM
If you still haven't seen any naked women in real life, your short stick is the least of your worries.

ROFL!!!!!!! :D

jediab
07-27-2010, 12:17 PM
If you still haven't seen any naked women in real life, your short stick is the least of your worries.

Most of them I have seen naked were either behind the glass in a booth or up on stage. ;)

aerojarod
07-27-2010, 12:22 PM
Most of them I have seen naked were either behind the glass in a booth or up on stage. ;)

So you have a thing female convicts?

PoliCon
07-27-2010, 12:24 PM
Speedy - delete your damn porn image. :mad:

jediab
07-27-2010, 12:35 PM
So you have a thing female convicts?

Conjugal visits are where its at man! :D