One of the major problems we have in our culture, especially when it comes to women, is the idea that we have to be a certain size. Any woman who does not fit into the minuscule sizes prescribed by Hollywood, Madison Avenue or the fashion industry is essentially told that she is wrong for not fitting into their vision of how a woman should look.
Lizzo is one of the newest and hottest stars in the music industry at the moment. She is also not a size 2.
Recently, she has been the recipient of criticism because of her size. Television personality and trainer Jillian Michaels (known for TheBiggest Loser) publicly berated the singer for her size.
Granted, there are valid health risks when someone is overweight.
However, the idea that someone who is thin is healthy and someone who is overweight is not healthy is a fallacy. But my main problem with her criticism is that if Lizzo was the same size as Beyonce or Taylor Swift, no one would say anything about her size.
But because Lizzo looks more like the average American woman than 99% of Hollywood, she is called out for her weight. The problem with this criticism is that it sends the wrong message to women, especially young women. Eating disorders affect too many women who embrace the idea that they have to be a certain size to be loved or to be successful.
I understand that Michaels was not speaking out of malice, but out of concern. But I wish that she and others would realize that not every woman is meant to be a size 2 and a healthy body comes in all sizes.
*For the foreseeable future, some Character Review posts may not be published every Thursday as they have in the past.
*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series Roseanne and The Conners. Read at your own risk if you have not watched the show.
There is something to be said about a well written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front of us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.
In this series of weekly blog posts, I will examine character using the characters from Roseanne and The Conners to explore how writers can create fully dimensional, human characters that audiences and readers can relate to.
As I see it, the best thing about any art form is that among it has the ability to reflect the world of its audience. On Roseanne and The Conners, Dan Conner (John Goodman) is the all-American guy. He is an easy-going and hard-working husband and father. Married to his wife, Roseanne (Roseanne Barr) for decades, they have four children: Becky (played by Alicia Goranson and then by Sarah Chalke), Darlene (Sara Gilbert), DJ (Michael Fishman) and Jerry Garcia Conner.
Dan is a solid blue-collar guy. Over the course of both iterations of the television series, he has held a series of jobs from construction to vehicle repair to business owner. When the day is done, he comes home to his family and is very much a hands-on father. When he is ready to chill out, he can be found watching his favorite sports teams on television with a beer in his hand or playing poker with his buddies.
To sum it up: Viewers love Dan Conner because as a man, a husband, and a father, he is completely relatable. Though he has his moments (as we all do), Dan is an all-American every-man. He is all of us and that is why we love him.