to wonder why the female co-presenter on Countdown has to dress like a stripper

(309 Posts)
hamtastrophe Mon 21-Jan-13 15:08:38

Just that.

Is this 2013? Just utterly depressing.

hamtastrophe Mon 21-Jan-13 16:38:06

I agree murderofgoths that maybe my title thread was a little to personal about that individual presenter. To be clear I have no gripes about her as an individual. She is an intelligent beautiful young woman. But I despair at a society where she has more professional and monetary success because she chooses to wear what she does. If she chose to wear tweed suits and pearls she would not be anywhere near as successful and that is wrong. She is successful in large part due to the fact that she is 'a babe'. This is depressing and teaches our daughters a wholly unacceptable lesson in life.

I am particularly struck with this show, as it's something I used to watch as a girl of 12 / 13, and something that I've not seen for many many years. I happen to have seen it in passing quite often recently and have been struck by what Rachel wears each time. I have very clear memories of being impressed with Carol's maths as a youngster but having no thoughts relating to her appearance at that age. I wonder what a 12 year old girl watching Rachel would make of it all. Would her only reaction be 'Wow, that woman is really super intelligent' or more realistically would it also be 'That woman has a perfect body, that I can never aspire to and is what women are meant to look like'.

The rates of self harm, self hatred, eating disorders, depression etc in young women is sky rocketing and I think this is all part of that picture.

Hobbitation Mon 21-Jan-13 16:38:36

I used to wear sleeveless blouses under a suit when I was a lawyer, in summer. Proper blouses though, not summer tops.

Hobbitation Mon 21-Jan-13 16:40:40

^ have very clear memories of being impressed with Carol's maths as a youngster but having no thoughts relating to her appearance at that age.^

Whereas if the internet had been around then, older people would be saying the same as you are about Rachel.

piratecat Mon 21-Jan-13 16:42:21

when i first saw her clothes I thought, they looked like a cheap sack of shit tbh.

drjohnsonscat Mon 21-Jan-13 16:42:58

No they wouldn't. She wore quite modest clothes - suits and jumpers. This was before she had her makeover and went "hot".

Hobbitation Mon 21-Jan-13 16:45:50

She looks like she is wearing the 80s equivalent of what Rachel wears i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00781/carol-vorderman-460_781520c.jpg

piratecat Mon 21-Jan-13 16:45:55

Yeah it's just a coincidence that here and on breakfast tv and most other shows there's an old fella as the main and a young woman in sexier dress as his sidekick. It's all just a coincidence and any objectors are
A. Prudes
B. jealous
C. don't get feminism.
Hmmm

drjohnsonscat Mon 21-Jan-13 16:46:41
hamtastrophe Mon 21-Jan-13 16:47:19

Well I'm not sure hobbit because when I was young (a million years ago) Carol just dressed 'normally'. It was quite a big deal when she got all 'sexed up', at which point maybe they would have been.

It was probably around the same time as all the older female newsreaders were sacked and suddenly we had Kirsty Young perched on a desk.

Why can't being intelligent be enough, why does dressing like your in TOWIE mean that you are more successful? Why do women defend this fact? I genuinely don't understand it.

I wish my daughter was growing up in a world where her attractiveness was not going to be a key factor in her professional success in a way that simply won't apply to my sons.

Aw, she looks lovely.

Hobbitation Mon 21-Jan-13 16:49:12

Anyway, she seems a lovely woman and very much empowered IMO. If you want to make a feminist point she's a poor example to choose, and I'm afraid it just looks rather catty.

drjohnsonscat Mon 21-Jan-13 16:51:22

I knew someone was going to say empowered. Funnily enough that's what pole dancers say about themselves too.

Then "catty" (meaning jealous really). This is kind of unfeminist bingo.

hamtastrophe Mon 21-Jan-13 16:51:49

Fair enough hobbit, that is pretty similar.

I remember her more as drjohnsonscat picture.

or thisisaeuphamism having body issues and wanting all women to wear a 'birker' hmm

MooMooSkit Mon 21-Jan-13 16:51:57

I don't think it's too revealing, she can wear what it wants. I've always thought she dresses like she's going clubbing tho or to a wedding.

HotPanda Mon 21-Jan-13 16:55:08

I work in a city office. Tight shift dresses are pretty standard here, as are pencil skirts and sleeveless tops. We all manage to be intelligent AND wear clothing that we like.

LesBOFerables Mon 21-Jan-13 16:55:23

I agree with you, OP- I've long thought this. The clothes aren't even fashionable- they are generally selected, it would seem, purely on the basis of being 'body-con' and thus eye-candy for not-terribly-fashion-conscious elderly male viewers. Anyone who thinks the production team are not the main impetus behind wardrobe decisions on television is a bit naive and has obviously never seen much which goes on behind the scenes in television. If you had, you wouldn't give much credence to that blog where viewers vote on the outfits (puke), trust me.

Hobbitation Mon 21-Jan-13 16:59:50

I'm a feminist and certainly think the television and film industry is sexist and ageist. But I don't have a problem with Rachel. Yes it's unequal that women show flesh and men on the whole don't. But I'd argue that men's fashion and most men's dress sense is ridiculously conservative and boring and they need to be liberated in this respect. Especially all the worry about appearing effeminate, WTF? Also equally requiring women to dress modestly, or saying that only modest dress is valid is a bit biblical.

And there is nothing wrong with actually wanting to look attractive. Feeling that this is the only value you have or that this is obligatory or the only thing in your life is wrong.

But knowing and revelling in your own sexual power is absolutely terrific fun.

hamtastrophe Mon 21-Jan-13 17:04:23

Well sorry if it seemed 'catty', as I've said above my primary point was not about her clothes, as the society that we live in that demands such clothes.

I don't think she seems 'very much empowered' at all, I think that if she was genuinely empowered she would make different choices. But that's obviously just my reaction to it. I honestly doubt that lots of men looking at her in this sort of outfit would think 'oh what an empowered intelligent young woman'. I think she is doing herself a huge disservice.

Actually, I was about to link to the 'dress' website, but having read the vile comments on there I am not going to give it a free advert. Believe me, none of them were commenting on her intelligence or personality.

weeps a bit

drjohnsonscat Mon 21-Jan-13 17:04:40

hobbitation I completely agree with you about men's clothes. There is very little leeway and I think the fear of being seen as effeminate is a big limitation (that's a whole thread on its own).

I also agree that sexual power is a pleasing thing to have. But as I think we have (mostly) all agreed, it seems to be only women who are expected to display their sexuality in order to progress on TV. Men can take their sexual power for granted and just trade on their wit, their intelligence, whatever. Not many men in ordinary tv presenting jobs are trading on their sexuality and even at the more showbizzy end of TV, they don't have to look as overtly sexual as women have to (back to Bruce again).

fluffyraggies Mon 21-Jan-13 17:04:42

When people start insinuating women who question sexualisation issues of being jealous, it always reminds me of blokes crying lesbian at women who don't want to go out with them.

Grimebuster Mon 21-Jan-13 17:06:42

I guess she must be happy knowing she's essentially porn fodder for the over-60s.

ArtsMumma Mon 21-Jan-13 17:09:44

Interestingly, if she decided to wear a trouser suit that would be acceptable, and yet if the male presenter decided to wear a lycra dress people would be up in arms.

She can wear what she wants because women have that kind of freedom now - but can he?

Love that! fluffyraggies

LesBOFerables Mon 21-Jan-13 17:12:07

<weeps with hamtastrophe and hits the gin>

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