Monday, November 17, 2014

British Smiles

So I've been pondering a lot lately about this skinny/fit and appealing look the media demands for its performers. So many movies and TV shows I love are actually full of very beautiful women especially; now don't get me wrong, I believe all women are beautiful no matter how they look, but specifically as mothers, because I love and appreciate my own mother so much.
However, the women in these shows are extraordinary, not the run of the mill you'll meet in a usual step of day. And while I was spending time with my parents through Skype and watching a show with them, I noticed something - yes, they set me up on their iPad, point me towards the TV and we watch a show and laugh together (I love hearing both my Mom and Dad laugh). Anyway, their favorite stuff to watch for a good giggle is British TV comedies, and as I was saying, I noticed yesterday that these shows don't really subscribe themselves to the skinny/fit actor appeal.
No, British TV is full of very ordinary people, and I love it!
There's a few older shows to mention, "Are you Being Served," "Keeping Up Appearance," and "Black Adder," but even newer shows like Downton Abbey and Sherlock don't simply have the most elegant looking people.
Sadly though, the newer shows still have quite a few lean people parading around (particularly the women); the men somehow still get away themselves with having summer teeth (ya know, summer here, summer there) or looking a little goofy in their demeanor, or whatever you might be less appealing to American audiences. It is of course accurate to have fit and appealing actors in the mix. The world is full of all sorts, but that's what i want to see - all sorts of people acting, no matter their look, if they can act, then let them act. I don't believe audiences will care as much about looks as they would about an outstanding performance of protagonist/antagonist.
But going back to the concern of skinny/fit overly appealing female parts - these older British shows have all sorts of men and women in them: old, young, short, stocky, chubby, the common motherly-look, the soft bubbly aunt, and the grouchy uncle/father etc., and life seems to just display itself as you watch. I appreciate how real these characters are and am always feeling relieved in watching them have fun. It's a breath of fresh air and I would suggest to anyone looking for an acknowledge change on "who must be on the screen" to take a peek.
One actress in particular, who still does some shows today, Patricia Routledge (she's the main face on the Keeping up Appearance, & Hetty Wainthropp Investigates posters below), is always on my radar. She's wonderful, funny, intriguing, and all out happy with who she is; she doesn't need to be the most appealing image of fitness or femininity, she's just herself... and that's what makes her beautiful.
I wish we had more American shows and movies like with people like her in it :-)
Here's some of those shows and more that I appreciate, several are on Netflix:

Are You Being Served? (1972) Poster  Keeping Up Appearances (1990) Poster  The Black Adder (1983) Poster  Emmerdale (1972) Poster  Coronation Street (1960) Poster   The Office (2001) Poster   The Vicar of Dibley (1994) Poster   Hetty Wainthropp Investigates (1996) Poster

1 comment:

  1. I am a big fan of British TV and I agree that while they do a better job then we do it doesn't mean we all don't have a lot of work to do. Sadly, my belief is that supply and demand run the media and they supply what people want or expect to see. So changes have to start with more people reaching out and creating change that way.