This site will work and look better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device.

Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"It may be you could wrest some information from that dread machine."
11976 members | you are not logged in | 28 March 2020


September 09 2009

'Dollhouse's' Miracle Laurie doesn't conform to Hollywood body standards. According to an Orlando Sentinel blogger.

I can't say much except to give a massive WORD.
Miracle Laurie is AWESOME! She's so pretty and does such an amazing job on Dollhouse. I'm so glad they cast her.
She is gorgeous :D I hope we see her again in Season 2!
I completely agree.
And thank G-d for that.
Another one of these... but of course, I agree. Amazing!
Yay, infinite diversity of beauty!
Awesome!! Love Miracle!!
I find it sad that there is so little diversity in body types that she is the "exception." Remember when Sara Rue- another curvy beauty- had her own show called "Less Than Perfect." (Yeah, the irony wasn't lost on me) We heard the same types of stories then but it doesn't seem like much has changed. I can only hope that people will see articles/actors like this and start demanding more variety from the networks.

I'm with Pointy- hooray for infinite diversity!!!
Shades of Amber Benson. But Miracle is a treasure.
A friend of ours met her at the luggage carousel after a flight back from London last summer and emailed us the picture. Even after a sooperlong flight with no makeup she was gorgeous! He said she was really sweet too. :-)
Miracle Laurie and Amber Benson are proof you don't have to look like a twig to get a gig as an actress on a cool show. You can look like a real, attractive woman, with actual CURVES, someone who doesn't look like they have an anorexia problem.
People must watch different TV than I do, because I see lots of not-twigs in the shows I watch.
Yeah me too, wondered if it was a UK thing but apparently not (unless Portland is twinned with Britain or something ;). And I guess if you take a quota approach then average sized women (or people in general) are disproportionately under-represented on primetime US TV.

Plus, she's lovely and saying so doesn't seem to be getting old.
Nothing against Miracle, but I find it troubling that an actress who stands 5'9" and weighs 145# is considered so far outside the "norm" that she must be singled out for observation, even if it is praise.

I'm also bothered by the fact that the writer hastened to add that ML "isn't fat" if having someone in the cast who is indeed overweight might be unacceptable.

For that matter, why can't any of the dolls have bodies that are more reflective of the majority of members of our society? Is the show saying that anyone who isn't fit and trim isn't capable of carrying out their assignments? And if someone wants to make the argument that larger people can't pull off a fight scene, I'd like to point them toward Hong Kong martial arts star Sammo Hung, thank you very much.

Sorry if I got a little ranty there.
Shiai, I seem to remember hearing Joss saying that he wanted a more diverse-looking group of dolls in the dollhouse, but Fox said nuh-uh and they got rid of several characters. Anyone else remember hearing that?
There was an amusing remark on one of the DVD commentaries from Joss about his repeatedly sending back Doll extras because they all looked like porn actors. That gave me the impression that the Dolls we do see in the background are actually the middle ground in terms of incredibly idealized looks versus realism. Which is a pretty awful datapoint on the appearance filter that is tv casting, if true.

Also I think he said it was hard to find people who could act like Dolls? I'm less sure that was a real comment and not an amalgam of interview/commentary remarks in my brain.
5'9" and 145 pounds is a BMI of 22, which is in the lower half of the range that doctors conside normal and healthy.

I have a generalized gripe against casting practices in US TV. The British shows I watch on PBS frequently cast ordinary-looking character actors for roles, including lead roles, if there is no specific reason why the character should be especially good looking. Most of the British dramas, scifi and crime shows that I have watched have casts whose appearance ranges from dumpy and homely to plain to mildly attractive to gorgeous, just like real life.

In American TV, the rule seems to be reversed. If there isn't a specific reason for the character not to be good looking, they cast someone who looks like a model. One sees ordinary looking people mostly in comedies, very minor roles, or as villains. This is especially true for females. It's galling to me that typical crime shows like the various incarnations of CSI and Law & Order contain recurring characters who aren't handsome, but nearly all of the female leads are very good looking, even though it's unlikely that a typical police station, law office or crime lab would have so many stunning women working in it .
I am in complete agreement about the appearance of US TV and film actresses. In general I am bored with perfectly symmetrical actresses, and I find that I am drawn to and understand more those who are not perfect.

While the lady who plays Bones (Emily Deschanel) is quite skinny and model-esque, she does not strike me as a perfect looking person and I therefore seem to identify with her much better. The same is with Kaylee, from Firefly. She is not the skinniest character, and therefore I identify with her much more.

The visage of a man in a TV show seems to reveal his character. The visage of a woman seems to have no connection with her character.
Miracle Laurie is wicked hot. She's got a glow about her.

And yes, I was once called a "chubby chaser" for saying that.
I was watching FoxNews Wed morning and they had a model that was called Plus Size and she wore a size 12. She was 5'9" 165 pounds. That is my height and weight and no way could I get into a size 12. But she was great looking..looked like a real woman, not a stick.
I guess Eliza and Dichen are fake women then and "twigs" like them should just be dismissed. Just saying.
I, too, am getting really tired of this "real woman" label. Because most often the people throwing it around claim that anyone who doesn't have curves is anorexic or starving themselves, or in some other way artificially maintaining a smaller size.

How 'bout we just are naturally smaller? Or maybe some of us work out and watch what we eat and are healthy and fit? Hmm?

I'm Amber's height and weight but she has "boobs and hips" that she's proud of. (Those are her own words, from her famous reply to the attack on Tara & herself on the old Bronze posting board.)

People come in every shape, size and color, and labelling them diminishes them as a person. As a friend of mine says, it's not the package that matters, but the gift inside.
ShadowQuest...Hacksaway...I don't think anyone was dismissing or disparaging Eliza, Dichen, or any other actress their size. But if there have been any insults made, it's to women who are not that size, whenever a television show or movie insists on casting actresses who are of that size and insisting that is the only norm for females, and anything else, therefore, must be 'abnormal'.

If Eliza and Dichen both added about ten dress sizes to their frames, that wouldn't diminish one iota their talent, nor diminish them as human beings.

What bothers so many people is that if the two of them were "plus sized", there's most likely no chance whatsoever that either of them would be cast members of Dollhouse...nor any other network program of this kind. Because in Hollywood, all too often the most important attribute on a woman's resume is her dress size, and that had better read as close to zero as possible.
I was assuming that hacksaway was pointing out that this comment could be read that way, even though I also presume that's not the way the linked comment was intended.

But the underlying point is fair: There's been a rather unfortunate habit in conversations defending quote-unquote heavier actresses of it apparently being okay to speak disparagingly of thin ones.

ETA that I admit I am perpetually confused as to why in these discussions it's okay to say something like "someone who doesn't look like they have an anorexia problem" but wouldn't be okay to say "someone who doesn't look like they've forgotten how to put the bucket of chicken down".

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2009-09-10 06:19 ]
It's not any more or less OK, it's just that as with a lot of topics, people overcompensate in favour of the "persecuted" viewpoint (whatever it may be) and end up treating the other "side" as if they're not just different but actually wrong or deficient in some way (so actresses that aren't closer to the average size can't just be thin, they must be too thin). It's one of our least endearing traits as a species IMO.

Being unhealthily thin is obviously bad for you, so is being unhealthily overweight. Miracle Laurie is neither and fit with it (that's the UK slang 'fit' BTW ;), good for her.
It'll be interesting to see, in-show, whether November 2 is of a similar frame. Does the Dollhouse stock one model for men who prefer curvy women? (Also, will November 2 be a sleeper Active?)

[ edited by Liam Mars on 2009-09-10 11:23 ]
And will November spawn a monster?

This thread has been closed for new comments.

You need to log in to be able to post comments.
About membership.

joss speaks back home back home back home back home back home