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S03.E03: 12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer


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I got tomorrow off work, so I was able to watch the episode "live," as opposed to DVRing it. A black-and-white spoof on Twelve Angry Men debating Amy's hotness and comedic ability? And the show's star puts in a brief appearance and co-directs it? That takes guts.

 

For the record: I find Amy funny. I don't think "hot," but a woman with a great sense of humor can go far with me.

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I don't know.  I may be alone, but this season seems a little militant to me.  Is every episode going to be about how hot or not hot Amy is?  Amy does have a show, and a movie coming out, and her career seems to have not been held back by how hideously ugly she is (sarcasm).  It's getting a little bit vain and self indulgent to me.

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(edited)

It was well done, well acted. 

 

But the thing is Amy Shumer is flat-out gorgeous by almost any sane definition of the word. She's young, she's blonde, she's got big boobs. She's not rail thin, but she's not even hat people would consider overweight. So why does this show keep trying to stress the point that she's overlooked/judged harshly because of her appearance? She clearly hasn't been -- she's got her own TV show and she's got a movie coming out. There isn't a man in that room that wouldn't fuck her in a moment, so this idea of her being borderline pretty actually plays into the standards she's supposedly arguing against. 

 

If this sketch had been about Rachel Dratch, or Kate Miccuci, or Rebel Wilson or Mary McCarthy, I could see it having some validity in its point. Maybe even Nora Dunn or, back in the day, Gilda Radner or Ruth Buzzi. But Amy Shumer is as pretty as anyone in Hollywood, and it seems there's a constant theme of this show that is saying "See this very pretty woman? She's not pretty enough and we're going to keep making the point that she's not pretty enough even though she's as pretty as anyone you're likely to meet." 

 

Amy's very funny and I like the show, but to hit this point AGAIN (for 19 or so minutes, mind you) ... I don't get her point anymore. Her appearance clearly hasn't held her back in any way, so I don't know why she keeps implying that it has.  

Edited by whiporee
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I think it was a good sketch, and a neat way to pay homage to the movie. 

 

I actually think she has a point. It wasn't as much about is Amy hot enough for tv, it's that really hot women are famous and get leading parts regardless of their talent. I think the interviews on the street proved that. Kate Upton is not a smart woman and has no talent, but people would watch her on a talk show. Same thing with the line about Jenny McCarty: she's certifiably moronic and was a legit threat to public health. Did people listen to her because she was hot? 

 

Amy has a show, sure, on a small cable channel. Are the broadcast networks offering her development deals for her own shows? She's got a movie coming out because she wrote it herself and had a very successful producer in her corner. Is she getting leading part offers? 

 

I think she was using herself more as a framing device for a larger issue. Hollywood expects women to have a certain look. They were using the Facts of Life as a counterpoint, for example. 

 

I hardly think after 3 episodes that the entire season is about how hot or not Amy is. She did a sketch eviscerating football and rape culture, another on how women don't earn equal pay, and another on how extremely talented women in their 50s+ have limited option in show biz. I'm not seeing many other shows tackling these kinds of issues. I'm fine with it. 

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(edited)

 

But the thing is Amy Shumer is flat-out gorgeous by almost any sane definition of the word.

 

But not by Hollywood's definition. And what people have been conditioned to see as beautiful is what hollywood has pushed as beautiful.

 

edited to add: We can't have this discussion without bringing this in:

 

Edited by MrWhyt
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(edited)
But the thing is Amy Shumer is flat-out gorgeous by almost any sane definition of the word. She's young, she's blonde, she's got big boobs. She's not rail thin, but she's not even hat people would consider overweight. So why does this show keep trying to stress the point that she's overlooked/judged harshly because of her appearance?

 

I agree but I think Amy brings it up because she has heard and read hundreds or even thousands -- depending how resilient and/or insecure she is -- of those exact comments about herself. The Internet is full of people who aren't shy about calling her fat and ugly, even though she's neither.

 

She made a point during the skit of having one of the jury guys bring up her set list to prove that her act actually isn't entirely about sex and that she herself isn't really slutty, etc. But honestly, I don't know any comics, male or female, who talk about sex as much as she does. She's one of the filthiest well-known comics working. I usually find it funny, but that is the bed she's made for herself.

Edited by lordonia
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So why does this show keep trying to stress the point that she's overlooked/judged harshly because of her appearance? She clearly hasn't been -- she's got her own TV show and she's got a movie coming out.

so, you're saying that commercial success is directly correlated to a female performer's attractiveness?

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 Amy does have a show, and a movie coming out, and her career seems to have not been held back by how hideously ugly she is (sarcasm).  It's getting a little bit vain and self indulgent to me.

Amy does have a show--on basic cable.  She was deemed attractive enough for that. 

 

But those arguments those guys were having?  Those arguments exist.  I've seen them online.  About her.  About others they've mentioned like Lena Dunham.  That line about people being offended when she gets naked is so true.  Because she's not perfect, I've seen people online act as if she were committing some sort of crime against nature.

 

This season is a very feminist bit of work and every skit touches on something different women and/or women in Hollywood have to deal with.  Sometimes big things.  Sometimes little things.  Amy is using herself as a stand-in for many of these issues. 

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so, you're saying that commercial success is directly correlated to a female performer's attractiveness?

That seems like a radical interpretation of the text. 

 

The world has answered the question she keep asking: Yes. She is attractive enough to be on TV. This is proven by the fact that she is, in fact, on TV, starring in the third season of her own self-titled show. She is also the star of a major motion picture that apparently is based on the persona she's created through stand-up and the aforementioned TV show, and the plot of it (from the trailers, though I haven't seen it) does not appear to center around whether a good looking guy would be attracted to an ugly girl like her (it's not an Enough Said type set up). 

 

But Amy keep suggesting she - at the best -- is on the very edge of Hollywood acceptability. I think that is demontratably untrue. But her making that statement, I think, instead of challenging the standards, actually moves them. "I'm just barely pretty enough to be on TV," she keeps saying and it makes someone look at her point and say "Wow, those are some fucked up standards Hollywood has, if she's considered barely pretty enough to warrant attention." And they might be. But I don't think she's an example of beauty-ism, because she a) has not been held back because of her looks and b) her looks are pretty great. 

 

This might be a great argument for someone to make, and it's a great argument for her to make. I don't think it's a great argument for her to continually make, because I think it's been proven to be false. 

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(edited)

I think she is on the very edge of Hollywood acceptability within the context of Hollywood. No one is offering her movie parts. Her star is legit on the rise, but she still had to write her own movie, which is great, and still have the backing of a major producer. She wasn't getting it made on her own. If the movie does well, then it opens up new avenues for her. 

 

The guy in the show who voted her hot enough first made the point about subjectivity. There isn't subjectivity in show biz. 

 

She's saying that her success is based on that she's talented *and* attractive. Why should it matter that we have to consider her attractive in order for her to be successful if she's legit talented. 

Edited by ganesh
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How do we know no one is offering her parts?  Her entire persona is built on hardcore sex jokes and mocking herself for being so 'ugly'.  I find her hilarious but this season just seems self indulgent to me.  Didn't Amy grow up pretty wealthy and attached to a political legacy?  Maybe she should do more sketches on how that privilege allowed her to break into the business despite her hideous looks.

 

I think Amy is gorgeous, and hilarious.  She does have one of those 'baby fat' faces.  Are scores of men sitting around talking about whether or not she's pretty?  Do most men even know who she is?  I'm sure plenty of women are weighing in on her looks, or maybe she's just projecting her insecurities onto us.  Which is great, until it all gets a bit too political for a fun sketch show.

 

I had a problem with the 'Last Fuckable Day' skit for the same reason.  You had an Oscar winner, a woman who is producing her own television shows, and an Emmy winner who is the star of her own HBO sitcom sitting around complaining about... being fuckable?  I don't recall Roseanne Barr obsessing over whether men thought she was fuckable.  It's kind of pathetic to me that four women at the top of their games are diminishing all of their professional successes to respond to some haterade they read on the internet.

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(edited)

Everywhere I turn, there are Internet comments about Amy, and many other extremely talented women, criticizing their looks and questioning why they are on TV. "Why is [fill in the blank] on TV -- she's not even pretty."

 

Tina Fey makes the great point in her book that Hollywood producers don't give women roles because they're not "fuckable." That's the idea that Last Fuckable Day is based on. They aren't mad that these men don't think they're fuckable; they're mad that these double standards exist.

 

Who at that table (12 Angry Men) did I want to fuck? Maybe Vincent Kartheiser. That's about it. But no one questions why those actors have jobs—or at least, that kind of questioning isn't prevalent. With women, it's one of the first and most common things people say.

 

A woman's appearance is almost always part of the conversation. It's very strange and I am thrilled that Amy Schumer, Mindy Kaling, Tina Fey and Lena Dunham (who I don't really care for but can't deny she has some important things to say) are making comedy out of this double standard.

Edited by lovinbob
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How many of those men in the skit could you name?  How many have their own shows?  I think despite Amy's proclamations, she's doing quite well.  In today's culture, everybody famous gets mocked for their physical appearance.  Leonardo's dad bod is viral.  Do people pretend Jonah Hill doesn't have a fluctuating weight problem?  As you mention, there are a plethora of women of all sizes dominating popular culture now.  The only ones who seem to be constantly trundling out the charges of sexism and sizism are... these very same women.  We can't pretend these -ism's don't exist, but does Amy do more harm than good by being on the defense all the time for a problem that may not exist?  Cry me a river, white women who have dream jobs, are their own bosses, and have more money than God.

 

I love Amy's show, I'm just hoping this season isn't going to be twelve episodes about whether or not different people want to bang her.  She's capable of more.

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For some reason the dido thing wasn't as funny to me as in the original Twelve Angry Men when Henry Fonda, to make a point, pulled out a knife and stuck it in the table. I assume that's what the dildo was referring to. 

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Who at that table (12 Angry Men) did I want to fuck? Maybe Vincent Kartheiser. That's about it. But no one questions why those actors have jobs—or at least, that kind of questioning isn't prevalent. With women, it's one of the first and most common things people say.

 

She didn't exactly fill the jury with hunks who might, sociologically speaking, normally expect to mate with women of their own general attractiveness level, did she? ;)

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(edited)

It's not necessarily about having your own show. Giamatti has consistently getting good work forever because he's a good actor. I'm doubtful his looks get criticized.

Saying Amy has her own show and a movie, so why complain? Is kind of like, this is what you deserve Amy, so you know your place and stay there.

How much money she actually has isn't relevant as how much the market bears for male comedic talent similarly.

The first episode didn't have anything to do with this specially to Amy, but to Fey et al. Other than this one episode, I'm hardly finding the season to be all about Amy being hot or not. So what if she is? The fact that there is a double standard isn't even debatable, why shouldn't she address it.

Edited by ganesh
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How many of those men in the skit could you name?  How many have their own shows?  I think despite Amy's proclamations, she's doing quite well.  In today's culture, everybody famous gets mocked for their physical appearance.  Leonardo's dad bod is viral.  Do people pretend Jonah Hill doesn't have a fluctuating weight problem?  As you mention, there are a plethora of women of all sizes dominating popular culture now.  The only ones who seem to be constantly trundling out the charges of sexism and sizism are... these very same women.  We can't pretend these -ism's don't exist, but does Amy do more harm than good by being on the defense all the time for a problem that may not exist?  Cry me a river, white women who have dream jobs, are their own bosses, and have more money than God.

 

I love Amy's show, I'm just hoping this season isn't going to be twelve episodes about whether or not different people want to bang her.  She's capable of more.

 

First, I don't think 6 is a "plethora of women." Second, it's not just about Amy personally. She's using humor to make a larger point about the world we live in and men and women and double standards about appearance and about how angry certain men get that "unattractive" women even exist in the first place and etc.

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It's not necessarily about having your own show. Giamatti has consistently getting good work forever because he's a good actor. I'm doubtful his looks get criticized.

Saying Amy has her own show and a movie, so why complain? Is kind of like, this is what you deserve Amy, so you know your place and stay there.

How much money she actually has isn't relevant as how much the market bears for male comedic talent similarly.

The first episode didn't have anything to do with this specially to Amy, but to Fey et al. Other than this one episode, I'm hardly finding the season to be all about Amy being hot or not. So what if she is? The fact that there is a double standard isn't even debatable, why shouldn't she address it.

 

I'm not saying she has no right to complain.  That's totally her right.  As it is my right to view her complaints as empty and self indulgent.

 

Let's see... the first episode featured the video about her fat ass and 'last fuckable day', the second episode had the video about being hideous without makeup and also the skit about being so ugly she's invisible, this ENTIRE episode was constructed around her looks.  I'm hoping the upcoming episodes widen her focus somewhat, this season is very one note.

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(edited)

I think it's saying something though that these episodes and comedy scenes have broken out only in the last few years. Amy is the latest in a line of, what, four-five other women (and I'm being generous because I can only think of the three mentioned above) with their own shows who's got the opportunity to continually raise these issues in a big forum. And if Amy (and Mindy and Lena) aren't justified in keeping these conversations going (about themselves as well as the general standard of female beauty on television) then who are gonna raise these issues and do sketches about them? These women are lucky enough to have great talent and be hot "enough" (just) to be on television. Imagine how it is for other majorly talented women who aren't even in Amy's league (and light years away from standard Hollywood beauty). The women who might have even bigger reasons to make "12 Angry Men Inside..." aren't getting that half hour.

And let's be honest, there are plenty of people who would call Amy a fat cow even in your normal average society situation outside of television, so I can only imagine how much she had to endure to get to where she is today. If she wants to do a whole season about it then I'm all for it, personally.

Edited by joelene
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(edited)

Women having creative control over their own shows is rare at best. Shining a light on that is still quite new. You have Amy, Mindy, Lena, and the women on Broad City. Tina Fey had her own show. And who else?

 

Louis CK is hailed as a genius for his show. And I really like it. The show is rarely *funny*. He has complete control over the show. Literally. Writing, shooting, directing, all of it. No one is saying, he's balding and overweight so maybe he shouldn't have his show.  

 

I don't know if that's the right counterpoint. CK's career really took off once he got into his 40s, and I would question if that would be a viable path for a woman. 

Edited by ganesh
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The skit in the premiere wasn't about Amy's "last fuckable day". It was about Julia Louis-Dreyfus's last fuckable day. Amy was just there to witness the celebration.

The subtext was that Amy would meet the same fate.  The whole skit was unpleasant to me.  I was wondering, why would these powerful women be obsessing over who thinks they're fuckable?

 

And look at all of the names people have rattled off in this thread.  We are in a golden age of female driven entertainment, where talent is ranked higher than looks, yet we have Amy writing skits where she's posing in sexy outfits with Amber Rose and going on and on about who wants to fuck her.  

 

Issues like last season with the video game where she dealt with sexual abuse in the army in a comical manner - that's a relevant view of gender struggles being faced today, in my opinion.  12 Angry Men insulting Amy was not fun to watch for me - not to mention the other 'ugly' women that Amy dragged through the mud to make her point about how she's ultimately fuckable.  I'm sure Mindy Cohn didn't appreciate the Natalie jokes... yet a man didn't write and present those - Amy Schumer did.

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(edited)

The subtext was that Amy would meet the same fate.  The whole skit was unpleasant to me.  I was wondering, why would these powerful women be obsessing over who thinks they're fuckable?

 

And look at all of the names people have rattled off in this thread.  We are in a golden age of female driven entertainment, where talent is ranked higher than looks.

Perhaps the "last fuckable day" sketch was a bit "insider" because "fuckable" = "hireable" in Hollywood, which is run mostly by men.  I've heard showrunners, of both sexes, talk about how a nework can, and has, vetoed an actress for a part because at least one exec didn't find her "fuckable."*  These actresses, by the way, are usually considered very attractive but not attractive enough to someone with power.   No one asks that about the men being cast.  Where men get dinged is on their sexuality.

 

*In fact, I believe that's why Rachel Dratch got recast by Jane Krakowski on 30 Rock.  So Tina knows of what she speaks.

 

And that's what the sketch was about.  A bit of the irony is that these women in that sketch are very gorgeous. 

 

And for that reason I don't agree that talent trumps looks for women.  They may have been joking about their last 'fuckable' day but they're gorgeous and likely the reason they still can work as stars is that someone with power still finds them fuckable.

 

And of course Amy is pretty enough and talented enough to be on TV.  But there's still a faction of the audience that thinks she doesn't meet their standards. Hence this jury sketch.

Edited by Irlandesa
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How do we know no one is offering her parts?  Her entire persona is built on hardcore sex jokes and mocking herself for being so 'ugly'.  I find her hilarious but this season just seems self indulgent to me.  Didn't Amy grow up pretty wealthy and attached to a political legacy?  Maybe she should do more sketches on how that privilege allowed her to break into the business despite her hideous looks.

 

I don't actually think privilege broke her into the business at all - her family went bankrupt when she was 9, then her parents divorced and her father was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.  Her dad is Chuck Schumer's cousin, so I wouldn't call it a political legacy either. 

 

I don't think Amy Schumer actually thinks she's fat, or ugly, but I think she writes on that perception, because despite her success, people still bring it up.  She even mentioned it in her Ms Gala speech last year (it's an excerpt, but pertinent to the conversation at hand):

Now I feel strong and beautiful. I walk proudly down the streets of Manhattan. The people I love, love me. I make the funniest people in the country laugh, and they are my friends. I am a great friend and an even better sister. I have fought my way through harsh criticism and death threats for speaking my mind. I am alive, like the strong women in this room before me. I am a hot-blooded fighter and I am fearless. But I did morning radio last week, and a DJ asked, "Have you gained weight? You seem chunkier to me. You should strike while the iron is hot, Amy." And it's all gone. In an instant, it's all stripped away. I wrote an article for Men's Health and was so proud, until I saw instead of using my photo, they used one of a 16-year-old model wearing a clown nose, to show that she's hilarious. But those are my words. What about who I am, and what I have to say? I can be reduced to that lost college freshman so quickly sometimes, I want to quit. Not performing, but being a woman altogether. I want to throw my hands in the air, after reading a mean Twitter comment, and say, "All right! You got it. You figured me out. I'm not pretty. I'm not thin. I do not deserve to use my voice. I'll start wearing a burqa and start waiting tables at a pancake house. All my self-worth is based on what you can see."

 

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But Amy keep suggesting she - at the best -- is on the very edge of Hollywood acceptability. I think that is demontratably untrue.

 

 

But the point isn't really whether she can be on TV or not, it's the way people talk about her and how she's judged. Paul Giamatti isn't considered handsome either--but I'll bet if you googled conversations about him you wouldn't hear constant conversations talking about how ugly he is. I believe she even said one of her inspirations for this ep was overhearing two guys discussing whether or not they'd fuck Michelle Williams because that's how so many guys naturally talk about women, like that's a default question that must be settled about any woman in the media. She's not fishing for compliments or assurance that she's pretty enough she's recreating the conversation.

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And look at all of the names people have rattled off in this thread.  We are in a golden age of female driven entertainment, where talent is ranked higher than looks, yet we have Amy writing skits where she's posing in sexy outfits with Amber Rose and going on and on about who wants to fuck her.  

 

Seriously? "Golden age of female driven entertainment?" Seriously?

 

Women only make up 30% of speaking roles in movies. We make up 7% of directors,11% of writers, 23% of producers, 19% of executive producers, 18% of editors, and 5% of cinematographers. This is not good or "golden". This is shitty and needs to be talked about often. Amy Schumer is one of the few women who is in the position to be able to talk about this to a large audience. I want her to continue to talk about this and all the other crappy double standards that hold women back in and out of Hollywood.

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I just want to be entertained.  If I wanted to hear about the gender equality issues in the media or get bogged down in the statistics you just googled, I'd go enroll in a Gender Studies course at my local university.  We'll see though... if what Amy is currently selling is what is appealing to the public at large, then her ratings will increase and I'll obviously be in the minority.

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(edited)

Let's see... the first episode featured the video about her fat ass

Re "her fat ass" -- I didn't think that sketch/song was about *her* ass. It was (IMO) a take on the the music industry's obsession with making women's big butts okay. Every decade at least, there's a song celebrating asses. She took it to the next level and it was hilarious to me. It wasn't about her butt--she just happens to be the star of the show. And I'm not sure those songs are necessarily a bad thing, but it is interesting that I can't think of any songs commenting on the beer belly? (I'll prepare to stand corrected.)

 

Perhaps the "last fuckable day" sketch was a bit "insider" because "fuckable" = "hireable" in Hollywood, which is run mostly by men.  I've heard showrunners, of both sexes, talk about how a nework can, and has, vetoed an actress for a part because at least one exec didn't find her "fuckable."*  These actresses, by the way, are usually considered very attractive but not attractive enough to someone with power.   No one asks that about the men being cast.  Where men get dinged is on their sexuality.

 

*In fact, I believe that's why Rachel Dratch got recast by Jane Krakowski on 30 Rock.  So Tina knows of what she speaks.

Exactly.

Edited by lovinbob
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Re "her fat ass" -- I didn't think that sketch/song was about *her* ass. It was (IMO) a take on the the music industry's obsession with making women's big butts okay. Every decade at least, there's a song celebrating asses. She took it to the next level and it was hilarious to me. It wasn't about her butt--she just happens to be the star of the show. And I'm not sure those songs are necessarily a bad thing, but it is interesting that I can't think of any songs commenting on the beer belly? (I'll prepare to stand corrected.)

 

Exactly.

Don't get me wrong, I thought the Amber Rose video was hilarious.  But the lyrics are "Big booty's what they want and big booty's what I got" and I assume she wrote it, so I interpret it as being her point of view. I loved that vid, it's just hitting the theme over and over again this season is getting tiring TO ME... again, I'm not trying to convince anybody else.  The ratings will bear out whether the constant discussion of Amy's fuckability is engaging to audiences.

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The subtext was that Amy would meet the same fate.  The whole skit was unpleasant to me.  I was wondering, why would these powerful women be obsessing over who thinks they're fuckable?

All women meet that fate.  All women become first matronly, and then invisible.  Most men reach that point only when they are just too old to fuck anymore.  That dynamic exists in hollywood, corporate america, or just the cul de sac.  And it's all about society's perceptions of youth and beauty- predominantly female youth and beauty.  

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The point is that when they pass that threshold, they don't get offered great roles anymore. So it's not really obsessing. Limits to their marketability are being imposed on them, and it's got nothing to do with their actual acting talent. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

 

Who at that table (12 Angry Men) did I want to fuck?

 

I couldn't name them all, but there were a number of guys in there that I'd consider. The guy who was into Natalie from the Facts of Life, John Hawkes (love John Hawkes), Jeff Goldblum just cracks me up but still...

 

:)

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I just want to be entertained.  If I wanted to hear about the gender equality issues in the media or get bogged down in the statistics you just googled, I'd go enroll in a Gender Studies course at my local university.  We'll see though... if what Amy is currently selling is what is appealing to the public at large, then her ratings will increase and I'll obviously be in the minority.

Why can't Amy be both entertaining and and informative about gender politics. I never got into her show and had never watched an episode before this one. I came away thoroughly impressed. This episode was hilarious and clever. Even if you consider Amy to be hot enough to be on successful, isn't it still worth the conversation? Even if Amy doesn't typify the problem? I'm assuming Amy wasn't raped while serving in the military, does that mean she shouldn't have done the skit from last season? Even suggesting that Amy's looks are sufficient to furnish a career is basically conceding her point. The only women allowed at the table are the ones, irrespective of talent, who reach a sufficient level of attractiveness.

 

Re: fuckable. Maggie Gyllenhal recently revealed that at 37 she was considered too old to be the love interest for a 55 year old actor. This fuckable thing is real. It's absolutely horrifying.

 

Mindy Cohn and all the other "not hot" women mentioned in this episodes have faced this issue. I'm pretty sure this isn't the first or the last time Natalie from Facts of Life has been discussed in a somewhat derogatory manner. While that guy was teased for his love of Natalie, he ultimately stood by it.

 

I loved Vincent Kartheiser in this skit. From his subtle shading of that dude obsessed with Blake Shelton "You paid for that" in reference to a meet and greet to his emphatic "Pass" upon seeing a photo of Amy.  He was great.

 

I also loved the reveal that the dick who hated Amy the most was holding on to some teenaged angst about a girl who rejected him. It was funny and probably true to life. All those angry men on the internet who feel compelled to post about how unattractive Amy is have to be working out some kind of trauma.

 

Paul Giamatti really committed to this role. His character has really strong emotions about dildos. My favorite was his description of it being the "size of a midget's fist."

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 Paul Giamatti really committed to this role. 

 

I know! All the performances were priceless, but his was the most authentic, in the sense that it really could have been in the original movie and he wouldn't have had to change a thing! (Which of course made it all the funnier.) He really studied up on that late-fifties-version method acting style.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have always liked Amy Schumer, but the first three episodes of this season have been, in my opinion, fucking brilliant. She has quickly become the genius feminist comedic voice of our time

Paul Giamatti really committed to this role.

 

Yes! The way everyone, especially Giamatti, committed to their roles was truly outstanding. I could have watched a full 2-hour movie. The concept and execution were both excellent. Bravo.

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  • 2 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I just re-watched 12 Angry Men for the first time in over 20 years. As the film was starting, I turned to Mr. Khyber and said, "No laughing."  Of course, I was the one to lose it when the jury foreman knocked on the door to request the knife. We both lost it again when the second knife was slammed onto the table. The minute the movie was over we spooled up Amy's version to watch again. I hope they win a ton of Emmys for it.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've been wanting to catch this, but missed it the first time around, and it wasn't available on demand. I finally was able to watch the full episode via Comedy Central and logging in through my cable provider.

 

I was pretty happy with this, and impressed and pleased. Schumer can be about as subtle as a sledgehammer (I'm one of the few who found her "FNL" takeoff clumsy and overdone), but this was just terrific

 

If this sketch had been about Rachel Dratch, or Kate Miccuci, or Rebel Wilson or Mary McCarthy, I could see it having some validity in its point. Maybe even Nora Dunn or, back in the day, Gilda Radner or Ruth Buzzi. But Amy Shumer is as pretty as anyone in Hollywood, and it seems there's a constant theme of this show that is saying "See this very pretty woman? She's not pretty enough and we're going to keep making the point that she's not pretty enough even though she's as pretty as anyone you're likely to meet." 

I agree with your post in the sense that Amy is adorable and I think she's empirically plenty attractive.

 

But I do think she's spotlighting a double standard effectively here -- the fact is, because she and Mindy Kaling, for instance, are perceived (incorrectly, IMO) as chubby in any way, they're classed a certain way by some insane Hollywood standard. (I'll never forget Mindy on a talk show this past year and saying something like, "I work really hard to look this barely acceptable!"). In plenty of men's eyes, Amy and Mindy are firmly in the group of offbeat funny women you named above (many of whom were or are gorgeous women who seem to prefer playing down their looks for laughs). To many men, Amy Schumer is basically the same size as Melissa McCarthy or Rebel Wilson (both gorgeous women who are comfortable in their own skins) because the measurements for Hollywood women seem to run as either "thin" and "anything above a size 2."

 

I actually think she has a point. It wasn't as much about is Amy hot enough for tv, it's that really hot women are famous and get leading parts regardless of their talent. I think the interviews on the street proved that. Kate Upton is not a smart woman and has no talent, but people would watch her on a talk show. Same thing with the line about Jenny McCarty: she's certifiably moronic and was a legit threat to public health. Did people listen to her because she was hot? 

Good point. Just the sight of the idiotic Jenny McCarthy can still make my blood pressure skyrocket. Gah. Hotness can get certain women surprisingly far.

 

edited to add: We can't have this discussion without bringing this in:

 

Love the NewsRadio shoutout! Man, I still miss that show. And as with so much of Beth's dialogue, this was actually a pretty interesting discussion about how women view other women, too.

 

I agree but I think Amy brings it up because she has heard and read hundreds or even thousands -- depending how resilient and/or insecure she is -- of those exact comments about herself. The Internet is full of people who aren't shy about calling her fat and ugly, even though she's neither.

 

She made a point during the skit of having one of the jury guys bring up her set list to prove that her act actually isn't entirely about sex and that she herself isn't really slutty, etc. But honestly, I don't know any comics, male or female, who talk about sex as much as she does. She's one of the filthiest well-known comics working. I usually find it funny, but that is the bed she's made for herself.

I feel for her on the first aspect, especially since the Internet is just brutal.

 

But I also agree with you on the second as well, and that's why I most of the time just don't enjoy Amy at all. For me, most of her sketches have good (if very very obvious) ideas that repeat themselves then invariably kind of fizzle out. And I do think her bathroom humor gets tiresome. Even here, when the dildo was brought in, it didn't really work in the sketch for me because it was a clumsily written way to parallel the knife in the original. But it took me out of the scene (even if yes, Hawkes, Giamatti and everyone else were hilarious with it) because there's no realistic reason for it to exist or to be brought up within the context of the show.

 

It's a comedian thing: Schumer will go for the coarse, easy laugh every time, and to me it cheapens her humor and makes it crass. I watched a Hollywood Reporter roundtable the other day, and she was asked a serious question about her mentors or something, and she said, "My p*ssy," and I just rolled my eyes. Stay classy, Amy.

 

I had a problem with the 'Last Fuckable Day' skit for the same reason.  You had an Oscar winner, a woman who is producing her own television shows, and an Emmy winner who is the star of her own HBO sitcom sitting around complaining about... being fuckable?  I don't recall Roseanne Barr obsessing over whether men thought she was fuckable.  It's kind of pathetic to me that four women at the top of their games are diminishing all of their professional successes to respond to some haterade they read on the internet.

I liked 'Last Fuckable Day' because it illuminated a poignant -- if slightly insidery -- issue in Hollywood. Whether or not a woman is perceived as fuckable is literally what it comes down to most of the time in casting, to this day. Which means that after that last fuckable day, it doesn't matter if you're an Oscar winner anymore, you're gonna be most likely unemployed.

 

And when Barr's show burst on the scene, there was a huge amount of discussion about her age, weight, attractiveness, etc. And even without social media, there was significant backlash when she would do sexy photos or magazine covers, much of it outraged and kind of "how dare she?" (this was all before it began to appear that unfortunately, she was maybe a nightmare to work with, and she began to get a different kind of negative press).

 

Who at that table (12 Angry Men) did I want to fuck? Maybe Vincent Kartheiser. That's about it. But no one questions why those actors have jobs—or at least, that kind of questioning isn't prevalent. With women, it's one of the first and most common things people say.

 

That table was full of guys I find attractive, from Hawkes, Goldblum, Giamatti, and Kartheiser, as well as several of the actors whose names I don't know.

 

I don't think Amy Schumer actually thinks she's fat, or ugly, but I think she writes on that perception, because despite her success, people still bring it up.  She even mentioned it in her Ms Gala speech last year (it's an excerpt, but pertinent to the conversation at hand):

I remember that speech, and was very touched by it. Then I think she went on to say something filthy and crass and I probably rolled my eyes again, but I loved what she said, and think at heart she's saying some important things with her show and with sketches like this one, as well.

 

I couldn't name them all, but there were a number of guys in there that I'd consider. The guy who was into Natalie from the Facts of Life, John Hawkes (love John Hawkes), Jeff Goldblum just cracks me up but still...

I've had a crush on John Hawkes for EVER. Since back on X-Files, Deadwood, etc. I always thought he was oddly beautiful, and it's been great to see him break out as a star over the past 7 or 8 years.

 

Re: fuckable. Maggie Gyllenhal recently revealed that at 37 she was considered too old to be the love interest for a 55 year old actor. This fuckable thing is real. It's absolutely horrifying.

 

Mindy Cohn and all the other "not hot" women mentioned in this episodes have faced this issue. I'm pretty sure this isn't the first or the last time Natalie from Facts of Life has been discussed in a somewhat derogatory manner. While that guy was teased for his love of Natalie, he ultimately stood by it.

 

I also loved the reveal that the dick who hated Amy the most was holding on to some teenaged angst about a girl who rejected him. It was funny and probably true to life. All those angry men on the internet who feel compelled to post about how unattractive Amy is have to be working out some kind of trauma.

 

Paul Giamatti really committed to this role. His character has really strong emotions about dildos. My favorite was his description of it being the "size of a midget's fist."

Yeah, I saw that interview too, and it really shocked and saddened me. The double standard in Hollywood is ridiculous and just so, so strange. It makes me grateful for television, where I'm able to see women across a much wider spectrum of ages, body types, and ethnicities taking part in really smart and interesting stories.

 

I did feel that this sketch was one of the best Amy has done, and the writing, acting and cinematography were all superb. I loved how each "angry man's" motivation was shown to light, and especially loved Hawkes coaxing Giamatti to admit that, yes, if he was at home in bed, drunk, and without his glasses, he could get a "reasonable chub."  (I also laughed at the end when Judge Dennis Quaid overlooked Amy because he thought she was a "garden gnome.")

 

I also definitely think that the "angry" aspect of the sketch wasn't just a clever and inspired idea for an homage, it echoes back really deeply to the social media phenomenon of the moment, in which people DO get just incredibly enraged over the weirdest things, and there's definitely a misogynistic undertone to a lot of that anger. Why are the men so angry that Schumer isn't hot enough? Why are they screaming about it in the beginning? Because that's the Internet.

 

(Weirdly, this idea reminds me of that conversation Stella has in the second season of "The Fall," about disparity between men and women and what they fear in each other -- that men more than anything fear that women will laugh at them, while women fear physical harm.)

 

It was a great sketch, and a gorgeous showcase for the actors as well.

Edited by paramitch
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