Opinion
Get Opinion in your inbox -- sign up for our weekly newsletter
Opinion L.A.
Opinion Opinion L.A.
Opinion

Sofia Vergara's Emmys 'turn' was no more sexist than the red carpet

Sofia Vergara showing off her backside on the Emmys stage was inspired, not sexist

I’m giving TV star Sofia Vergara a pass for her turn — literally — on a slowly spinning pedestal Monday night onstage during the Emmys telecast. I don’t think it was particularly sexist, as outraged viewers tweeted it was. I think it was meant to be parody — and it worked. The idea of sending anyone the least bit distracting out onstage to vamp during the obligatory and predictably dull speech being delivered by the head of any “academy” during an awards show is an inspired bit.

As Bruce Rosenblum, CEO and chairman of the Television Academy, dutifully droned on about how “our academy is more diverse than ever before, both in front of and behind the camera,” Vergara slowly rotated around in a stunning form-fitting white Roberto Cavalli gown that accentuated her every physical asset. “No matter the device or platform, television has and will always be about great storytelling,” Rosenblum pledged as Vergara hammed it up for the audience, lightly patting her butt to emphasize its great storytelling appeal.

OK, in a night of clever skits, this one was a little dicey. (It’s unclear if “Breaking Bad” star Aaron Paul, caught on camera as Vergara began her spin, was chuckling because he thought it was funny or over the top.) But come on. Anyone who has casually tuned in to the much-Emmy-nominated “Game of Thrones” is practically hit over the head with female nakedness — in the service of storytelling, of course.

The entire red carpet arrival subjects stars — particularly women — to a microscopic, unforgiving assessment of their every bump, lump and wrinkle, whether the wrinkle is in a dress or on a face. E! Entertainment, which pioneered coverage of red carpet fashion, has deployed its 360-degree GlamCam to red carpet awards shows and asked stars to pose on a spot while a camera rotates to give TV watchers a 360-degree view of the stars’ form and clothes — not too unlike Vergara on the spinning platform.

Vergara, 42, is reportedly the highest-paid actress in television. Don’t forget that she soared to that fame and fortune adroitly playing a character in the hit sitcom “Modern Family” who is a Latina bombshell, one who understands the power of her looks but is not limited by them. She obviously put a bit of her character, Gloria Pritchett, on that pedestal.

On the other hand, it would have been monumentally awkward to put on that spinning pedestal, say, Julianna Margulies of “The Good Wife,” who had just won an Emmy for playing a tough-minded lawyer who has evolved over the seasons from loyal wife and dutiful law firm member. (Even though Margulies looked just as fabulous Monday night as Vergara.)

So next year, they’ll send up this whole incident and put the host on a spinning platform.

Follow the Opinion section on Twitter @latimesopinion

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • What's so offensive about Esquire's praise of 42-year-old women?

    What's so offensive about Esquire's praise of 42-year-old women?

    Tom Junod set the social web aflame with his article praising 42-year-old women. Never did one think that Esquire, a men’s magazine that’s stayed above the lad mag fray, could enrage so many people. But that it did, with people accusing Junod of sexism.

  • Return to New Orleans - an open hand, a welcome home

    Return to New Orleans - an open hand, a welcome home

    Like most people with people "at home" in New Orleans, I found myself both here and there in 2005. By late August, I was daily monitoring weather maps two time zones away. I watched how a "tropical system" gathered force, how it garnered enough ferocity to be granted a name. Katrina looked serious,...

  • Making the Gun Free School Zone Act better

    Making the Gun Free School Zone Act better

    For the last 20 years it has been illegal in California to carry a firearm within 1,000 feet of an elementary or secondary school or on the grounds of a college, trade school or university, whether public or private. The Gun Free School Zone Act, which paralleled a similarly named federal measure,...

  • A treasure hunter, an L.A. park and the curse of the severed hand

    A treasure hunter, an L.A. park and the curse of the severed hand

    Recently I took up metal detecting as a hobby. While Los Angeles is, of course, the greatest place to live in the world, our city parks are too new to offer much excitement for "dirt fishers." The East Coast, with its deep-rooted (though not-so-deeply-buried) history, is more fertile.

  • Baby boomers, don't be so quick to mock colleges on 'trigger warnings' and 'micro-aggressions'

    Baby boomers, don't be so quick to mock colleges on 'trigger warnings' and 'micro-aggressions'

    Everyone knows that kids find their elders deeply uncool. We'll reveal our own uncoolness by citing John Sebastian's 1969 song "Younger Generation" to prove the point. "Why must every generation think their folks are square?" he asks. The lyrics go on to offer an uncomfortable futuristic scenario:...

  • The hip dullness of Canada's politics

    The hip dullness of Canada's politics

    I spent part of August on vacation in Canada, only to find myself on what was once called a busman's holiday: Canadians are in the throes of a national election campaign, just like us. And, just like us, they're grouchy about the state of their democracy.

  • Weighing the Iran nuclear deal: far from perfect, but the alternatives are worse

    Weighing the Iran nuclear deal: far from perfect, but the alternatives are worse

    The historic agreement reached after 20 months of negotiations between Iran, the U.S. and five other world powers holds out hope that for the next 10 or 15 years the ability of the Islamic Republic to develop a nuclear weapon will be significantly limited. It is far from a perfect deal, it promises...

  • Hurricane Katrina and the tyranny of magical thinking

    Hurricane Katrina and the tyranny of magical thinking

    Floodwater was everywhere — muddy-brown and streaked in pockets by an oily film. It covered the streets. It covered the lawns. It covered plazas and parking lots. And it lapped softly up against my porch, threatening to crest the lip and continue on through my front door.

Comments
Loading
71°