Music Box: The Incredible Shrinking Women


I’ve always hated Christina Aguilera’s histrionic melismatics and pretentious, over-the-top trilling, so when she flubbed the lyrics to the “The Star Spangled Banner” a few months back during the Super Bowl, as funny as it was, her memory lapse didn’t offend me as much as the overall performance did (there’s rarely a half-note she doesn’t deem worthy – despite the unworthiness of the result – to elongate into five. Besides, in my opinion, “The Star Spangled Banner” is a heinous song that shouldn’t be our national anthem anyway. I’ve long been a proponent that “America The Beautiful” should immediately replace it as our country’s anthem – but that’s another conversation).

So, as a non-fan, when her BURLESQUE film – far and away the worst film of 2010 – was critically reviled and royally flopped, I couldn’t have cared less. It deserved to be loathed and unseen.

It didn’t phase me, too, when her “Bionic” CD – far and away the worst CD of 2010 (I’m sensing a theme here…) also bombed. It was a fiasco of epic proportions. Again, when shit is, well, shit, it should be called out as such.

And, while divorce may be tragic, it happens to everyone, and maybe more so in the entertainment industry.

So, you might ask why I bring up all these tidbits about a performer I think of only once a week while watching NBCs “The Voice”? Well, she talks about all these issues in the new issue of W magazine.

Still, why do I care? Well, I don’t.

What I DO want to know, though, is WHERE THE FUCK did the other half of Aguilera go?!

Now, before I’m accused of being cruel, this is not meant to be an insult to Aguilera. This isn’t about mocking her size, which she vauntingly displays. It’s about the Curse of Photoshop.

I know that photo-shopping has been the norm in magazines for years, but this is beyond specious. I mean, bad enough it’s 2011 and the press is still defining beauty/glamor/style by the waistline of our female stars. And we all know Aguilera recently gained weight as the mother/maturing woman she has become. But are the editors at W that stupefyingly, uhhhh, stupid that they don’t realize that we can see as such every week while watching “The Voice”?  The girl has curves, and she flaunts them. I wonder, has Aguilera approved this cover?

Is this really what a girl wants?

Recent magazine covers of other plus-size female artists have also been photoshopped, if to a lesser degree. If you were unaware of her already, perusing recent tabloids (e.g. Rolling Stone, Q, Elle, Out) you’d never garner that the prodigiously gifted Adele was a lusciously plump powerhouse. And Britney Spears and Janet Jackson are amongst the most blatantly airbrushed/photoshopped female entertainers of the past decade or so, trimming inches off their bodies. Following Mariah Carey, of course.

It’s not a new phenomenon, as I already noted, and it’s not merely for the overweight either (paging Madonna…). But the acceptance into our pop culture mindset doesn’t make it any less offensive.

Perhaps , even 42 years after she first said it, Yoko Ono was right… “Woman Is The Nigger Of The World…”


  1. We still fear the FAT…fat is the word no body wants to be called or spoken to about…being a man of Girth all my life, I’ve been called FAT a million times and still when I see someone who is muscular and sexy, but putting drugs up their nose, I think is eating that cheese cake slice just the same? But we don’t respect our type,size or colour…we are told we aren’t good enough if we aren’t on a treadmill working off that take out we just had…we aren’t good enough if our partners don’t look just like we do…or we look like them…Mirroring back a standard of I don’t fuck fat, I fuck thin…and peeeeeffffect….but I say Screw you madison ave…take your airbrush and paint on a soul and maybe a heart…we just have to love ourselves…AMEN!

  2. I agree…that cover is a mind blower. As a mom of two tweens who is continually trying to reinforce positive body image, this aint helping…

  3. I completely agree. Christina has major cleavage now and that photo doesn’t even look like her at all. Adele on the other hand is both beautiful and talented. Love her.

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