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I promise this is the last one of these entries for now, but I have some thoughts that didn't quite fit into either of the previous two, one more it is. Again, this entry involves pop culture critique along political lines, and if that's not your thing, you should skip it.

You may remember when I said that I would probably only watch Prime Suspect episodes when I was in the mood for a cop show. That hasn't been my actual approach. I have, instead, watched every episode. I still don't care about it as a cop show; I find their cases very uninteresting. But I find everything else that happens around the edges of the show fascinating. There are two particular points I want to talk about in comparison to my previous two entries.

First, the approach to cultural practices. Spoilers for Prime Suspect and H50 )

Second, although she was very much in the background, this show had a neutrally presented fat woman. Details/Minor Spoilers )
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This entry moves from gushing to contemplative and critical to critical. This is an entry comprised mostly of pop culture critique along political lines, specifically around issues of sex and race. If that is not fun for you, or you don't think that's a worthwhile use of fannish energy, you should skip this entry.

This entry includes spoilers for all aired episodes of all three of these shows.

Rizzoli and Isles

Have you ever watched a buddy cop show and thought, "If only this were about women"? If so, Rizzoli & Isles is the show for you. Angie Harmon plays detective Jane Rizzoli while Sasha Alexander is medical examiner Maura Isles. Together, they solve cases. They're also the kind of buddy cops who are practically married. They go undercover in a lesbian bar in season one and pretend to be together (unfortunately badly) in season two. They bicker and talk about fashion and facts and people. The show also does a fantastic job of including Jane's family. And I like the male cops. My two favorite things from this season: Spoilers )


Earlier this year, [ profile] norwich36 linked me to an anonymous thread about shows with strong women characters to catch up on over the summer. Haven was one of them, so I started watching it. I was fascinated by how many people commented back about it when I tweeted about it, particularly for a show I'd never even heard of before. It's really good. Those of you reading this might also like it: the lead character is a woman, and there's a fantastic slash pairing. (Nate/Duke forever! Where is my story where they're exes?) But in the context of this post, what I want to talk about is how Audrey is interestingly nonsexual and nonsexualized, which is not something you see in women on TV. Spoilers )


In case you haven't noticed, I love Suits. The plot is stupid and gets in the way of a really fun show, but the fun stuff is enough to make up for it. My strategy has been to watch it once, and then only watch the fun parts again. But that's not what this post is about. This post is about women, so let's talk about the women on Suits. Parts of fandom (including me) are very excited about the women: Gina Torres as Jessica Pearson, lawyer whose name is in the firm name and who got Harvey out of the mail room and into law school in some fashion we haven't been made privy to yet; Sarah Rafferty as Donna, Harvey's fantastic assistant who gets all the best lines; Meghan Markle as Rachel Zane, paralegal who's smarter than most of the firm but with test-taking anxiety that's keeping her from taking the LSATs; and Vanessa Ray as Jenny, Mike's best friend Trevor's girlfriend who later becomes Mike's girlfriend. (Okay, fandom isn't as fond of Jenny. I think there are strong possibilities for some interesting stories there, but fandom's "OH MY GOD A WOMAN" thing means no one's likely to write them.)

But what I haven't seen yet (largely because I haven't gone looking for Suits conversation outside of the two email threads I'm on) is any discussion of the ways in which the show's portrayal of women is problematic. I think there's a layer of sexism on the show that's particularly insidious precisely because it's under the surface. Details/Spoilers )
rsadelle: (Default)
This is the seventh in an occasional series.

I said I would tell you if I knew. ) I've never been able to put a picture to people's weights, but now I don't have to. Kate Harding has worked up an awesome illustrated guide to the BMI. You can see how much crap it really is.
rsadelle: (Default)
This is the sixth in an occasional series.

Remember when Gap jeans weren't working for me? Well, soon after that, I got some pants from Eddie Bauer, and they were too big, which finally knocked some sense into my head.

When things don't fit, my first thought is that the style doesn't work for me. I never think to try a different size.

So I finally went to JC Penney and tried on jeans two sizes below what I was wearing, and with my coupon, bought all four pairs of this year's versions of what I wore last year that they had in stock.

I now wear a size 8. 8! That's a single-digit number! I almost couldn't buy the pants. If I hadn't had a coupon that expired that day, I might not have.

Some time after I bought jeans at Penney's, I went to Old Navy without much hope of finding anything pants-wise, but browsing anyway. I discovered that some of their pants come in lengths short enough for me to wear. So I was trying one a pair of them, a stretchy kind, and they didn't fit right. Because I had finally realized sizing might be an issue, I went out and got the next size down. And then nearly panicked because their size 6 stretchy pants fit me, although I actually didn't like the style on me. I had half-heartedly planned to do more shopping that day, but I had to go home instead.
rsadelle: (Default)
This is the fifth in an occasional series.

When all my pants were too big, I decided I would wait until fall to buy new ones because I would just wear skirts all summer. The flaw in this plan is that it's freezing in my office (something that was not true last summer), so even when it's 100 outside, I'm wearing jeans and socks and shoes to work. (This is also why I gave up my hunt for good sandals. If I'm only wearing them for a few hours on weekends, I can wear the cheap, mildly uncomfortable ones.)

I can no longer stand my pants. All my jeans are one size too big, and my khaki-style pants (which I have to wear once a week because I don't own quite enough jeans) are two sizes too big. I hate them all. And, of course, Penney's no longer carries either pant, so I can't just replace them with the same thing in a different size (which is how I prefer to shop).

My strategy, the last couple of times I've been in Penney's, was to find any pants in my size in a fabric I didn't hate and try them on. Last time I was there, I tried on a pair of pants, looked at myself in the mirror and thought, "Oh, yeah, I've tried these on again." They're actually extremely comfortable, but I don't like the style. Between the cut and the vertical pinstripes, they make my legs look weirdly skinny.

I've been reading all sorts of blogs recently (possibly more on that later), and one of them was raving about Gap jeans, so I thought I'd go try them on and see if they were worth it. The second pair I tried on had the same weird skinny effect on my legs. Then I put on my own jeans, and they didn't look that different.

Here's my revelation: When I look at myself in the mirror, I'm usually only looking at my top half. If I'm using the long mirror in my closet to look at the top and bottom halves of myself, I'm usually wearing belly dance clothes, which means harem pants or a large skirt.

It's not the clothes; it's my body.

This, of course, shot my concentration all to hell, and even though I tried on a few more pair of jeans, I have no idea which styles would work for me. (This is hard to determine anyway because they don't carry petites in store, which means the space for the hips hits below my hips and looks weird.) Once I thought about it, I realized that I'd actually noticed this in the context of the pool. Last summer, I would swim laps until I was tired, backfloat for a bit, then swim more laps until I was tired, and then get out. This summer, I'm just swimming laps and then getting out of the pool, but I still like a little relaxation in the water after my laps. I no longer float. Or rather, only the top half of me floats. My legs just slowly sink into the water. Presumably this is because muscle is more dense than fat, and a lot of the fat in my legs has been converted to muscle. So yay to muscle, but boo to not being able to float anymore.
rsadelle: (Default)
I found this via Our Bodies, Our Blog, which is a regular roundup of women's health news.

I'd do as she suggests and tell you how much I weigh, but, as I've mentioned before, I don't own a scale, so I don't actually know how much I weigh now. I weighed 165 in September 2006.


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Ruth Sadelle Alderson


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