Fox News To Female Comedians: “Be Pretty And Stupid”
In an article published last week, Fox News took some pretty despicable swipes at female comedians who dare to think their wits are more important than their tits.
The piece was supposedly documenting current female comedians who “combine funny bones with banging bodies,” but was really a platform for a pandering VH1 host and a bogus “celebrity expert” (both of whom just happen to be frequent Fox News guests).
“People who stereotype you are just revealing their weakness, which I’m happy to exploit,” said Carrie Keagan, host of VH1′s Big Morning Buzz Live (the picture of her above was featured with the article).
Exploit is the key word here. She hosted a show literally built around her breasts.
Maybe Keagan’s never been given a real chance to do humor, but all she does is laugh and mistake dirty talk for jokes. You can almost see the real female comedians (Mary Birdsong, Nicey Nash, Wendy McLendon-Covey, and Kerry Kenney-Silver) trying to find ways to kill her with her own spandex tube top.
The article also draws heavily on quotes from “entertainment expert” (and Weight Loss Hypnotist) Patrick Wanis, who conveniently attacks some favorite Fox News targets:
For women, frump isn’t funny any longer…. Rosie O’Donnell and Janeane Garofalo will be relegated to playing the female versions of Chris Farley. Hollywood doesn’t want a woman that is not sexually enticing like Rosie; it wants the sexual alpha female.
By the way, this is what Fox News considers “a voice for women,” according to his Web site.
“The same trend is being seen on reality TV [with] Snooki and all the Housewives,” Wanis added, once again showing his deep concern for the role models young women see in society.
The article also shows an astounding lack of perspective and history, as Wanis smugly states that “Lucille Ball would never have played” a sex-crazed comedic character.
Lucille Ball was the ultimate alpha female, fighting to have a career that was unimaginable for a woman at the time. She pioneered comedy in the 1950s, when she couldn’t say “pregnant” on TV, and she and her onscreen husband had to sleep in separate beds. So maybe your comparison makes no sense, huh?
The piece also throws a condescending bone to “old-skool” sexy comedy ladies like Jennifer Aniston and Jane Krakowski. Just to remind these 40-somethings that their time is past, but we still appreciate all their work.
Not content to just physically objectify women, the article also reminds them that nothing is less funny than brains.
Keagan, whose VH1 show features celebrity interviews, said its the stars who aren’t smart enough to laugh at themselves who, often inadvertently, end up being the funniest.
Fox News, that’s called laughing at someone, not with them. I guess you missed that day of second grade, or didn’t go at all.
The even bigger issue is that the article works on the unstated premise that female comedians are their own, separate category; it assumes there are only so many roles, and Rosie and Anna Faris have to fight for the same one.
Tina Fey advises women to see through this trick in her brilliant book, Bossypants:
[People will tell you:] “You’re up for a promotion. If they go with a woman, it’ll be between you and Barbara.” Don’t be fooled. You’re not in competition with other women. You’re in competition with everyone.
And she’s frumpy, sexy, smart, and in her 40s.