Sunday, April 15, 2012

Media Moment: Is Rachel Dratch Too Ugly for Hollywood?

I recently came across an article on the Huffington post web page that discusses, what I believe to be an interesting topic of discussion in light of our recent look at Roseanne. Rachel Dratch has been widely seen on TV and film, mostly known for her career on SNL. Though even on SNL Dratch was placed in more character type roles such as "Debbie Downer" rather then "attractive" lead type roles that co-star's such as Tina Fey were placed in. Since then Dratch as the article points out has had difficulty finding work in lead type roles, having unsuccessful pilot shows and even losing her lead role in 30 Rock to the vivacious and seemingly more physically attractive Jane Krakowski....

"I am offered solely the parts that I like to refer to as The Unfuckables. In reality, if you saw me walking down the street, you wouldn't point at me and recoil and throw up and hide behind a shrub. But by Hollywood standards, I'm a troll, ogre, woodland creature, or manly lesbian..."

 In the article, columnist Torie Bosch argues that despite the evidence to support Dratch being victimized by hollywood, an effort should be taken to consider that Dratch's acting style might just not be for everyone. 

"Delightful as Dratch is in interviews and in her book, there is something uncomfortable about this framing. If we accept the premise, that Dratch hasn't cracked Hollywood because she isn't good-looking enough, then there would seem to be a feminist obligation to support her, to buy all her DVDs, go to her movies on opening night, protest the studio heads who reject her..."

Bosch continues with her case even asking herself despite her support of Dratch if she is "betraying feminism if I say Im not a huge Rachel Dratch fan?". Yet looking at Roseanne as a model for a progressive character type for the image of women in the media, can Dratch's situation warrant her response to Hollywood's framing of her? After reading this article I was torn as to my feelings and position, because while I would love to take a feminist position and full out support Rachel Dratch as a victim of Hollywood misogyny I also can easily take a more observant role of her talent. This though seems a tad bit naive considering how we've seen women portrayed in the media across all races as sexualized attractive beings. It is also naive then to consider Bosch's position or as an audience do we embrace both outlooks on the subject?    

1 comment:

  1. We would have to think about why this columnist even decided to ask this question. It's a ridiculous question, if anything she should be asking, why is it that I'm not a huge Rachel Dratch fan? Is it perhaps because she has been portrayed as repulsive or annoying. As an audience we always have to consider both outlooks, but we don't have to embrace both of them.