Jessica Simpson's The Price Of Beauty Doesn't Look Dreadful

Illustration for article titled Jessica Simpsons emThe Price Of Beauty/em Doesnt Look Dreadful

In the trailer (embedded after the jump) for Jessica Simpson's new show, Jess says, "Being in Uganda, I definitely saw and experienced a concept of beauty that I had never heard of." Then the Ugandan lady says, "Fat is beautiful."

One the one hand, just because Jessica Simpson has never heard of something doesn't mean it's revelatory. And as PopWrap's Jarret Wieselman points out, "Anyone who has watched National Geographic, The Learning Channel or a network that features endless streams of documentaries about cultural differences may not find much new here." But, he adds, "That's not exactly the demo this show is after."

He points out that many of the young women interested in watching the show (which premieres Monday, March 15 on VH1) might not typically be exposed to these kinds of programs. That seems true. And Jessica's message — that there's a big world out there, and a lot of it doesn't consider the people on The Hills to be the pinnacle of beauty — is a positive one for girls, and women.

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It is a little bit troubling that Jessica — white, blonde, pretty — travels to distant lands and comments on how "different" things are. Exoticism is not a new or constructive concept. But on the flip side, because she is white, blonde and traditionally pretty, she is the perfect example of Westernized beauty, so seeing her come face to face with challenging cultural standards could be really great TV. In the promo, she rehearses to walk on a fashion runway in Paris, and her face — a visage of anxiety, fear, determination and self-doubt — is one many women can relate to.



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First Look: Jessica Simpson's 'The Price of Beauty' [PopWrap]

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DISCUSSION

You know I have to give her props. She came up behine Britney and Christina, her dad is a is a grimey opportunist, and she went through a throught he douche baggery that is John Mayer. More than that though, she's really had her beliefs about sexuality challenged. She remained "chaste" until marriage as her father demanded, only to have that marriage crumble. What then? She had many public relationships.

She had very publicly and had to explore her sexuality and her morality (lord knows she probably wasn't celebate with some of those men she dated, or maybe she was). Her best friend is a gay hair dresser, even though her dad is a former Baptist minister. The point is she could be a Carrie Prejean asshole if she wanted, but she really is using her celebrity power for good, and not for evil and going on Fox News or CNBC being a pundit for what true morality looks like. I do find that admirable. I have respect for her.