Reality TV

The Media Failed Jessica Simpson


Recently, we’ve been reexamining how certain famous women have been mistreated in the media, including Megan Fox, Britney Spears, and Janet Jackson. But, you know who also deserves a serious apology??? Jessica Simpson. Here are the receipts:

1.

When she was forever labeled as a “dumb blonde” for her antics on Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica, when in reality most of them were staged by producers.

2.

Specifically, when she was publicly crucified for her “Chicken of the Sea” comment, and Justin Timberlake mocked her on SNL.


NBC

Hmmm, there seems to be a pattern with JT, no?

4.

When Nick Lachey painted himself as the victim during their divorce, and Jessica as the selfish villain even though it seems like that wasn’t the full picture.


Kmazur / WireImage

Nick said in interviews that he still loved Jessica, claimed he didn’t know if she’d cheated (but also kinda insinuated that she did), and even “wished” that she HAD cheated so the divorce would be less confusing for him. He even said in a documentary about his solo album — which included many negative songs about Jessica — that he would be open to reconciling.

Meanwhile, Jessica wrote in her memoir Open Book that by the end of the marriage, Nick “didn’t like [her].”

5.

When the media fetishized her virginity, sexualized the hell out of her, and then slut-shamed her any time she did anything remotely sexual.

6.

When John Mayer, her ex, made a ton of disrespectful comments and compared her to “sexual napalm” in a now-infamous Playboy interview:


HufftPost/Playboy

Fun fact: John Mayer also broke up with Jessica minutes before she was about to perform at the 2006 Kennedy Center Honors in a tribute to Dolly Parton, which caused her to self-medicate right before and stumble during her performance.

7.

When the media hyper-scrutinized her body as she prepared for her role in Dukes of Hazzard in 2005, and then made that the “gold standard” for what her body should look like for decades after that.


Warner Bros / ©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett Collection

In her memoir Open Book, Jessica wrote, “The Daisy Duke moment created a gold standard Jessica. The ‘before’ for every ‘is she fat or is she thin’ story for the rest of my career.”

8.

When P!NK mocked her for washing a car in a bikini in the music video for her single “Stupid Girls”.


Columbia Records, RCA records

I understand that this was P!nk’s very 2000s attempt at female empowerment, but women slut-shaming other women is never okay. Plus, Jessica’s own music video was promotion for Dukes of Hazzard, and she was probably just trying to get paid.


9.

When Bam Margera bragged on Howard Stern’s show about allegedly having sex with her while she was filming Dukes of Hazzard.


M. Von Holden / FilmMagic

When Howard asked if she looked good naked, Bam responded, “She looked good. I can’t deny that.”

10.

When media outlets everywhere body-shamed her for the infamous “mom jeans” performance in 2009, when in reality she looked absolutely amazing.


Logan Fazio / Getty Images

11.

Particularly, when a Vanity Fair article commented that she’d held her microphone “like a turkey leg” during the performance.


Logan Fazio / Getty Images

12.

And, in that same article, when the author claimed he couldn’t focus during his one-on-one interview with Jessica because of her weight.


Jamie Mccarthy

The author Rich Cohen wrote: “She didn’t want to talk about her weight so, of course, that’s all I could think of. It gilded each question in my mind: What are you working on now [that you’re fat]? Do you see yourself as part of a class, with Christina and Britney [or are you too fat]? Do you feel that your relationship with Tony Romo has affected his performance as a quarterback [because you are fat]?”

13.

When the public blamed her for her then-boyfriend Tony Romo playing poorly at a Dallas Cowboys football game she attended — and called the team’s loss “Jessica’s Jinx.”


Joe Robbins / Getty Images

14.

And when George W. Bush — the US President at the time — decided to chime in on the “Jinx” with a super-tasteless joke.

15.

And finally, when she was drunk in a 2017 interview with Ellen DeGeneres because she was in the throes of addiction and Ellen basically just poked fun at her:


Ellen Degenerous/EllenTube

Ellen might not have known that Jessica was intoxicated but, either way, her actions during the interview really played into the whole “dumb blonde” stereotype that Jessica’s been branded with her entire career.

Jessica, we are so sorry. You deserved so much better and I’m so glad to see you happy, healthy, and thriving!

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