Well, Britney Spears was in the news again this week, but not for the “right” reasons. She was in London promoting her European tour, when getting out of a car in a short dress she apparently flashed the camera with a crotch shot. Talk about an “Oops! it happened again” moment. The last time she was in the news for a crotch shot she had no underwear on with that black sheer dress on that infamous night out with Paris Hilton (2006).
There have been a few other overexposure incidences the last few weeks. At the recent Miss Universe beauty pageant, there was a leak that the sponsors where unhappy with Ms Colombia’s alleged propensity to wear short skirts with no underwear – drawing attention to herself with the occasional crotch shot. Naomi Campbell was recently snapped with a boob exposed in a somewhat sheer dress. Lady Gaga teased us (intent there is always up for debate) with a split in a dress on a promo event at summer’s end that apparently showed her sans underwear. If those aren’t titillating enough for you, there’s the whole genre of leaked images taken meant for private eyes – see Amber Rose and Rihanna for the more noteworthy examples.
Gossip like this has always been humorous to me. Why is this really making news? When I took a step back after reading this article in passing it made me think about a few things.
If you look at it from a moral point of view, there’s something inherently faux pas about getting out of a car and not remembering that the dress is short causing it to ride up or flash a crotch. Moralist would say that if the whole world is watching you, being more lady-like and making sure we don’t see your crotch as you exit a car with many dozens of paparazzi there makes sense. In Spears’ defense – this flash for the press could have been unintentional – I see some dresses here in NYC I wonder how some women walk in them, much less sit or move around without being overexposed. So yes, there is an art to wearing certain clothes and a need to wear what you want and be sexy when you feel like it.
Some fashion snobs might debate how well red cheetah print skivvies and lime-ish green dresses go well together, but who cares if the only thing the public is SUPPOSED to see was the DRESS in the first place?
What stood out for me the most is as consumers is how hungry we have become for negative press. Personally, I would take some issue with paparazzi using DSLRs and other high-powered equipment to zoom in and take pictures and videos of all body parts and actions if I were famous. I’d want my human moments to be left in the same level of anonymity that “average folk” have when they make a goof. I think all celebs feel that way, even though they know they traded away a lot of that anonymity once reaching some level of notoriety.
Perhaps what drives this hunger is the need for a distraction from the daily grind by ANY means necessary. Times are tougher now than in recent memory; in the face of a shaky economy and divided leadership, people are finding it harder to make a life. Stress levels are so high that it is easier to tap into that one common resource – making fun of someone is who is an a worse moment or position than us. For every slip up someone makes and people say “I’m glad I’m not like her or in his shoes”, you’ve got a hundred fold more posters venting when it’s a celeb involved. Some of us do this “hating” unintentionally, others are famous for it and that’s how they get paid. But, however we get it, many of us will take the opportunity to have that one moment where we feel better than someone else or a celeb because we would NEVER SCREW UP in manner that they did.
Celebs are still people at the end of the day, they too can have human moments. But unfortunately, if their brand is how they make money, since that brand is what most of is will see faux pas and falls from grace will always be headline news. Still, wouldn’t it be more interesting if we were more selective at WHAT faux pas was really headline newsworthy? Maybe we can hear more about the other gossip – the amazing stories of average people (or even celebs themselves) making a difference in the lives of others.