Today we celebrate the end of the 30 Rock era. I’ve had so many good times with Liz, Jenna, Tracy, Toofer, Kenneth, Matt Damon, Cerie, Dennis the Beeper King, Grizz, Dot Com, Lutz, Jonathan, Gay Will Arnett, Peter, Frank, Dr. Spaceman, Greta, and my all-time favorite, Jack. I’ve spent many nights in bed with a large bowl of spaghetti or a stack of processed cheeses or a bag of doughnut holes, laughing like a horse at the hilarious irony of Liz’s life and it somehow related to mine, different as our lives actually were. While the show will forever live on in my little heart, I know I will have to find other shows to fill the enormous void it has left in my life. And I know I’m being a little dramatic but only a little.
Clearly I’m really sad about the show’s end but I’m also pretty excited to see what other writers are coming up with next (and praying to the movie gods that Tina will write another movie as incredible as Mean Girls). Mindy Kaling’s The Mindy Project is floating along well (I’ve heard it gets better, if you didn’t like the pilot), and Girls has everyone from Steven Soderbergh to James Franco tuned in (maybe not the greateast contrast to drive my point across but basically a lot of people like the show). In general it seems like women in television are making outstanding headway (my instincts are telling me to include the word, “Homeland” somewhere in this post, though I’ve never seen it). Sure, we still have a very looooong way to go but let’s not be pessimistic — right now the number of smart, sometimes self-deprecating, likeable women I see on TV, and in the media, is really, for lack of a better word, refreshing. Please note: I’ve carefully excluded any mention of New Girl because I don’t like the show and I don’t find it refreshing.
I’ve been wanting to write a piece celebrating some of the wittiest, silliest, most honest women I’ve seen pop up in the media as of late. There are quite a few, beyond TV or film that are worth mentioning. They make it okay not to be the hottest person in the room, mostly because they’re having too much fun cracking gratuitous jokes, flashing ugly faces at the camera or making dry remarks about how easy it is to work with a naked Ryan Gosling. They make me laugh as they laugh at themselves and they demonstrate how a sense of humor and the right amount of taking yourself seriously is all you need to seem attractive and be likable. We all know about Tina and Amy and Kristen (Wiig). But here are some other women I’m talking about:
1. The Fashionista — Leandra Medine
I salute the East Coast for breeding women like Medine. Being that I’m a West Coast native, Leandra is the type of New Yorker I find admirable and fearful all at the same time. She’s articulate and well-read. She worked hard to build her blog beyond a catalog of stylish insights into a well-respected brand. She’s insightful, the way a thoughtful, good girlfriend might be and silly, the way said thoughtful and good friend ought to be (see photo). She’s a prolific writer and journalist by training. Plus she owns one of the best closets in America, hands down.
You know. I really should hate her but surprisingly, I don’t.
I remember first coming across her blog, The Man Repeller, a while go and very angrily thinking to myself, “Why the hell didn’t I think that?!!? It’s brilliant!!1!” I didn’t because, well, Medine did first. She inspires a lot of us to not give two shark farts what we wear or how we wear it as long as we think it looks good — this usually works because most women are dressing for women anyway. (Most women, not all)
Her Instagram captions alone could write 30 Rock’s successor, this time about a woman who completely cares about fashion and is now happily married but doesn’t mind acting the fool sometimes. On par with her fashion sensibilities are her thoughts on womanhood, marriage, friendship and other stuff most ladies my age care about, all of which she writes about on her site, with an air of total approachability. She just has a certain je ne sais quoi, in my book.
2. The Actress – Emma Stone
I think Emma Stone is beautiful, in all senses of the word. Physically she’s ravishing. I’m partial to redheads but really her physical beauty is pretty undeniable.
Beyond that, rarer still is her personality, which only serves to bolster her work as an accomplished actress. I don’t remember the last time I saw pictures like this of other so called Hollywood “It Girls”. She says meaningful things like, “I just always thought I’d be a comedian. It was way more important to be funny or honest than to look a certain way.” Or, “I can’t think of any better representation of beauty than someone who is unafraid to be herself.” Preaaach. This is why she was the perfect cast opposite The Gos in ‘Crazy, Stupid, Love.’ — that was the epitome of Hannah. These are Stone’s thoughts on working with Mr. “Hey Girl”: “I really like his brain.” Okay girl, get out.
3. The Bathing Suit Model — Chrissy Teigen
Readers, meet Ms. Chrissy Teigen, soon to be John Legend’s BFL (Boo for Life — I ought to trademark that). It’s really easy to hate her: she has a bangin’ body (you can’t quite tell from this photo but she models for some mag called “Sports Illustrated” and wears tiny bikinis for a living). She has flawless skin. She is an actual BEAST in the kitchen (and blogs about it here, with the sub-head: “personal random ramblings from a girl who loves bacon but can’t be fat.” Go figure). Other enviable qualities include being engaged to someone with a voice like sweet honey from the bear bottle, and having wit sharper than a Wüsthof knife. She is the full package. And I’ll stop making annoying food/cutlery related comparisons.
Most of my knowledge and perception of Teigen comes from following her on Twitter and Instagram which, ten years ago, would be really creepy but today is completely acceptable (though seemingly less so as I type it out). The photo above is courtesy of the latter and it perfectly depicts the type of humor I fawn over. How can someone be this hot and this funny? I wonder that a lot to myself as I read her Twitter roasts toward hip hop’s dishonorable icon, Chris Brown (and valiantly strikes down any and all of his Twitter minions with equal dexterity). She scathingly retorts to less-than-savory comments about her and her chosen profession. And anything about anticipating or dealing with her menstrual cycle is a goldmine of comedy. (I’m too lazy to find examples of these Tweets but just follow her, she’s frickin’ hilarious. And a lil craycray).
She has a brain and that’s something a lot of us wrongly assume bathing suit models lack. I know. I guess some of us were just blessed with both inner and outer awesomeness. I’m not going to sit and figure out what her major flaw must be since she also real good at taking ugly photos (see “Sexting with Brooklyn [Decker]”). It’s worth noting that she is half-Thai and you just don’t see a lot of Thai people, half or otherwise, in showbiz. And back to the food bit: during the presidential campaign, she cooked up an Obama-themed election party replete with “Sloppy Joe Bidens”, “Malia Quesdillas”, and “Obamacare-rot Cake”. Clearly John saw something good and put a ring on it.
4. The Sexy Trekkie — Mila Kunis
So I’ve liked Mila Kunis since the days I fell in love with JGL (Joseph Gordon Levitt, have you heard of him?) (Jamesquas?). Read: a very long time ago. Even then, when Kunis was probably 14, she was pretty but also spunky (at 14 I clearly remember looking hideous and being uncontrollably awkward). You could tell she had a toughness to her, which obviously came out in her role as Jackie. Later in life I would realize pretty tough girls typically have more layers than one which is why I wasn’t particularly surprised she’s pretty passionate about politics, pretty agile as an actress, seemingly pretty down to earth (most interviews touch upon this) and a pretty big Trekkie. And what I actually admire about Kunis is the fact that she lacks the shame a lot of Hollywood celebrities (men and women) guard with mighty vigilance. Being shameless (in the right way) and being pretentious-less can make all the difference in how people perceive you.
Also I pretty much absolutely fell in love with this dress at the 2011 Oscars. Basically Kunis seems like the ideal girlfriend and girl friend — down for anything (she was Meg on Family Guy, after all), self-aware, vocal but not annoying about it, and interesting. (Hey, interesting individuals are lacking these days)
Image: This site
5. The Clothing and Sometimes Lingerie Model — Cara Delevingne
So that is the first image that pops up in a Google search for Cara Delevingne, who is not only a supermodel but younger than my youngest sister (and my youngest sister was born in 1990). Currently she is the face of Burberry and probably amasses more income in one year than I will in 20 (make that 93) but I guess that’s what happens when you look like Delevingne. And when you’re Googling a model, I don’t think most image searches render photos like that. So for that reason she’s making this list.
Truthfully I don’t know much about Delevingne other than the fact that she did not date Harry Styles, one of the members of that British pop band, One Direction. This I gathered in the quick Google search that generated the image above. As I mentioned, the reason why I’m including her in my list is because she’s making it fashionable to be a model who doesn’t take herself too seriously. (Or maybe this list is just becoming a list of people who are willing to cross their eyes and do the duck face, I don’t know) She wears beanies, dresses like a hipster-gone-hip hop fangirl from Brooklyn (the two are actually one and the same — though in actuality she is from a highly recognized British family) and seemingly has a pretty good sense of humor. Honestly I would much rather hang out with Delevingne today than, say, some of the models I grew up with.
Wow. Did I really just write that much on celebrities I don’t even know? … Oh well. Tell me now: who would you add?
A Few Honorary Mentions:
- The Girl Who Shouldn’t Only Play Supporting Roles — Anna Kendrick. She’s a stellar actress and hugely underrated.
- The Sloth Lover — Kristen Bell. Great actress with a magnificently unapologetic nerdy side.
Top image: Buzzfeed