Monday, September 26, 2005
Junkie Couture, anyone?
Dear God, lock up the children and have Condé Nast halt presses on December's Vogue!
Models caught doing blow, film at 11.
News that walking mannequins indulge in nose candy is about as surprising as pro athletes cheating on their wives with silicone enhanced Hooters waitresses. The open secret of "don't ask, don't tell" has raised nary an eyebrow with well connected fashionistas since the dawn of disco decadence. Can we stop the gratingly transparent revival of Nancy Reagan's "Just Say No" campaign of the 1980's to decry her self destructive behavior? The cries of "we wuz duped!" while feigning cross-my-heart innocence rings about as hollow as the Brit icon's cheeks. The glamorous life renowned for its stiletto dance with the underbelly of la vida loca served to cultivate Moss' rock 'n roll image, then turned on her once that image matched reality.
A mere two weeks ago, Moss was still a viable name brand in an industry where you're considered over-the-hill in your late 20's. Strolling down the runway at New York's Fashion Week and being chosen as the face of Dior's new fall accessories collection in print ads slated to hit newsstands within days. But faster than you could fix a snagged hemline, the rug was pulled out from under her with concrete proof that the nasty habit she claimed was behind her had stayed a part of her routine, and there would be no easy denials, no publicist spin doctoring or future libel suits to make it all go away.
Lucrative contracts with Burberry and Hennes & Mauritz have been severed effective immediately. Her longtime partnership with the grand dame of designer imprints - Chanel - expires next month and will not be renewed. Rimmel London cosmetics are going over their legal loopholes for a "get out of hot water free" card with a fine-tooth comb. Now she's teetering on the edge of Gia Carangi-dom. Another cautionary footnote to the next eager crop of doe-eyed ingenues with America's Next Top Model dreams entering the Sodom & Gomorrah of couture and cocaine.
Kate's big mistake wasn't doing coke, but getting caught red-handed in the act. The cardinal rule has always been dowhatchalike, just don't wind up with your hand in the cookie jar while the camera's rolling. Halston, Calvin Klein, Donatella Versace, Marc Jacobs, James King and Naomi Campbell all are among the marquee names who have battled addiction. Add in the vast amount of lens men, stylists and makeup artists who are also frequent users and the figures shoot up (no pun intended) exponentially. How else can the questionable sources of inspiration that show up on catwalks from Paris to Milan be explained? You think looking like a lampshade trapped in a psychedelic wet dream is a stroke of genius?
"If someone is going to be the face of H&M," the spokeswoman, Jennifer Uglialoro, said, "it is important they be healthy, wholesome and sound."Right. We're all well aware that the lampooned supermodel diet of cigarettes, caffeine and coke is the epitome of product representatives who embody looking healthy, wholesome and sound.
Don't get it twisted, my heart doesn't bleed for Katie poo's public flogging. The damaged nostrils alone could power the next citywide blood drive all by her lonesome. However, the blatant hypocrisy really gets my Cosabellas in a twist. When she single handedly led the anti-glamazon revolution by becoming the face of "heroin chic," criticism grew to such epic proportions that even President Clinton stepped in to urge the fashion industry to stop glorifying emaciated body images shortly after the overdose of photographer Davide Sorrenti in May 1997. Now the same culprits who touted pallid complexions, sunken eyes and jutting bones as desirable are running scared from the woman who forever defined it. This from the same business who prize prepubescent frames above all others because garments hang like a seamless second skin without alterations.
When Dove decided to roll out their new line of firming products this summer with a provocative campaign featuring "real curves" in all their imperfect, fleshy glory, more than a few men and women alike recoiled in horror. For all the cries of challenging the conventional boundaries of attractiveness, the sight of lumps and bumps made more than a few folks uncomfortable with getting such an up close and personal view of average, everyday women. As Chicago Sun Times reporter Lucio Guerrero writes, "See, ads should be about the beautiful people. They should include the unrealistic, the ideal or the unattainable look for which so many people strive. That's why models make so much money. They are freaks -- human anomalies -- who need to be paid to get photographed so we can gawk at them."
As the mother of a 3-year old daughter, invariably the high and mighty will trot out the ever grating "bad influence on young women" excuse in the wake of her freefall from supermodel to public pariah. However, isn't it interesting to note that the media machine taking potshots simultaneously revel in splashing the bacchanalian revelry of celebrities all over their pages to assure readership. And just like a hungry pack of wolves, we eat the payback up with voracious consumption, all the while snug in the comfort of wearing "I told you so" like a Michael Kors pashmina.
And since cover girls are held up as the template for all that is glitzy and gorgeous, the unpretty truths that airbrushing can't hide are extolled with the same passion when the mirror reveals flaws in the presumably flawless.
However the fetishistic and disposable approach to women's imagery that's been ingrained in Western culture overall could use a much needed 12-step detox program. After the furor of being the sacrificial lamb dies down, a retreat to some exclusive mountainside rehab center alongside spa treatments will return the luster to her tarnished career. But how many OD's of mixed messages is it going to take for us to confront our own dishonesty?
- commented at 10/03/2005 01:46:00 PM~
That was deep. I'm sure ole girl will return to stardom soon enough ... as soon as someone else gets caught up in something.
- commented at 10/05/2005 03:30:00 PM~
why is everyone acting surprised, haven't people known for years that there is mega drug abuse in the modeling industry?
- Angie commented at 10/08/2005 08:41:00 PM~
hope you dont' mind, but used this post of yours to highlight you over at blogsbywomen.blogspot.com
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