Do you guys remember that thing when Elle Magazine chose four models for their November 2013 covers — Marion Cotillard, Reese Witherspoon, Shailene Woodley, and Melissa McCarthy? And they dressed three of them up so pretty in tight, form-fitting outfits with sexy flowing hair and sultry gazes? And the fourth one they put in a big floppy coat that left not one single square inch of her skin showing below the clavicle? Well even if you don’t remember who was who in that scenario, I bet you can guess who was wearing the coat. Yup! It was Melissa McCarthy.
Obviously even though Melissa is hilarious and talented and has one of the healthiest understandings of body image that I’ve ever come across, we all need to be shielded from her non-traditional size and shape. If people were to be made aware that she is anything more than a stick figure, she would instantly become unfamous and lose all of her mojo, so we must keep up this illusion, whether through Photoshop or by burying her under layers upon layers of profoundly floppy coat. This is our burden to bear, America.
But weirdly enough, a bunch of people noticed this inconsistency between the cover models and felt weird about Melissa McCarthy being treated differently because of her weight. As if she couldn’t look good in clothing at all, so she should just be covered up with a big coat. As if they didn’t know what to do with her, so they just…didn’t do anything. There was enough backlash that it got all the way back to the magazine, and they actually elected to give a statement:
“On all of our shoots, our stylists work with the stars to choose pieces they feel good in, and this is no different: Melissa loved this look, and is gorgeous on our cover. We are thrilled to honor her as one of our Women in Hollywood this year.”
You guys. I think we might have underestimated just how much Melissa McCarthy loves coats. I mean, she can’t get enough of them. She can’t keep her hands off them. A couple times we had to take them away from her because she was trying to feed them treats at the craft services table. She is obsessed with coats. But obviously Elle wanted her to wear something other than the coat just as much as we did. And they did their best to get her to try on any number of the blouses, skirts, pants, jeans, dresses, and swimsuits that they’d provided. Honestly.
At one point they even blindfolded her, spun her around, and released her in a room literally floor-to-ceiling in bikinis. There was barely even room to put your foot down without stepping on a G-string or a cut-out-one-piece, but one of the interns foolishly left one coat stuffed into the corner of the room, and Melissa wasn’t in the door more than thirty seconds before she sniffed it out. She rooted around until she found it, and came out of the room with it in her teeth like a golden retriever. What were they supposed to do, y’know? Not let her wear it?
SHE JUST LOVES COATS GUYS.
(Image: Elle Magazine)