Mad Men actress Christina Hendricks’ size 14 figure always inspires oohs and ahs from audiences and fans, but her curves received a new height of accolade from Lynne Featherstone, Britain’s Equalities Minister, who issued a recent statement saying that Hendricks is an absolutely fabulous role model for young girls. Her suggestion that Hendricks-like curves become the new epitome of beauty came in the context of criticism air-brushed, over-thin models who pose an unrealistic physical ideal. Sure, we like that there’s something other than size 0 models to look up to, but we’re not sure that telling girls they should all aim for well-proportioned curves and a 36C bra size will boost their self-esteem, either.
Hendricks chalks fanfare up to her Mad Men character’s brassiness and verve, not her curves. “They like to see a woman standing up for herself, especially in this atmosphere in 1962. Joan’s sassy. She snaps back. […] Men love her because she’s in touch with her sexuality and femininity. The men in the office can play with her a little bit. They can tease her, and she’s not going to be in the bathroom crying later.”
What do you think? Should we idealize Hendricks’ body, her character, or neither at all?