“The Conversation” and Busy Philipps on Body Image

24 Jul

It’s hard to escape the wall-to-wall news coverage surrounding the birth of the Royal baby and while this isn’t going to descend into an article about how the polka dot dress that Kate Middleton wore to unveil her son didn’t hide her post-labor bump, it has reminded me of an interview that Busy Philipps gave on the web series The Conversation a couple of months ago.

The Conversation is hosted by Amanda de Cadenet and the mission of this series and their website is “to explore, nurture and empower the modern woman, through interviews and topics ranging from: health and wellness, beauty, style, fitness, diet, parenting, sex, love, truth and wisdom, career and finance.” The interview with Busy Philipps is one that is particularly relevant this week as it highlights the unnatural expectations that are being heaped on women both famous and non-famous with the obsession that has grown regarding body image and post-pregnancy weight loss.

You don’t have to go far to see headlines about Kate Middleton’s “mummy tummy” with the same site posting photos of Busy Philipps (who recently gave birth to her second child) stating that she’s “embracing her new curves” and is in “no rush to slim down.” These comments might not appear to be all that venomous but there is an inherent value judgement, particularly as tabloids love to do “My Body after Baby” spreads – something that Philipps mentions in her Conversation episode.

It’s not just post-pregnancy ideals that Philipps discusses as she also talks about a time in her mid-20s when she was asked to lose weight for a pilot and how body image could be considered the “last frontier of feminism.” In a recent behind the scenes look at how The Conversation is made de Cadenet explains that this series believes it is “important to be honest because otherwise we are comparing ourselves to unrealistic lives.” This topic is covered in the Busy Philipps edition and it is important to untangle ourselves from these unrealistic expectations that some publications peddle to us on a daily basis.

There is a reason why the Freaks and Geeks episode “Kim Kelly is my Friend” is one of my favorite episodes of TV and a lot of that is to do with Busy Philipps’ performance; the candid nature of this character is something that appears to be shared with the person who plays Kim.

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