We’re pleased to bring you “While You Were Out”—the Verily editors’ quick takes on the happenings of this week.
MTV Movie and TV Awards Totally Shook Up the System
This past weekend, the MTV Movie Awards (which has now been renamed to include TV) awarded gender-neutral Best Actor honors; rather than separating the categories by sex, all nominees were judged together. Emma Watson won Best Actor in a movie for her role as Belle in Beauty and the Beast. Meanwhile, Best Actor in a show went to Millie Bobby Brown for her work as Eleven in Stranger Things. The young star teared up as she thanked her support system for helping her play the part of a “bad-ass, female, iconic character.” Judging by the bold white cowboy boots Brown wore, she’s a bad-ass in real life, too.
Other notable wins included Best Hero, which went to Taraji P. Henson. Henson also celebrated alongside the cast of Hidden Figures, which won another new and trailblazing award known as Best Fight Against the System. This Is Us fans had to expect that the beloved show wouldn’t walk away popcorn-less, and sure enough, it did not. Looking back to one of the season’s most touching moments, when Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) does push-ups with a young Randall (Lonnie Chavis) on his back to prove his fatherly love and support, This Is Us won the Tearjerker category. No surprise there! —Megan Madden
Little Women Miniseries Planned
Good news, Little Women fans! PBS and Masterpiece are teaming up again. We didn't think we could love anything as much as Downton Abbey, but this has us more excited for a new TV series than we’ve been in a while. If you're a fan of Louisa May Alcott's iconic novel, then you'll love how PBS veteran Heidi Thomas (creator of Call the Midwife) has reimagined the March sisters for TV. “Little Women is one of the most loved novels in the English language, and with good reason,” Thomas said in a statement. “Its humanity, humor, and tenderness never date, and as a study of love, grief, and growing up it has no equal. There could be no better time to revisit the story of a family striving for happiness in an uncertain world, and I am thrilled to be bringing the March girls to a new generation of viewers.” —Emily Mae Schmid
France’s Ban on Too-Thin Models Takes Effect
In an attempt to address the unrealistic body standards of the fashion industry, France has officially passed a law to ban too-thin models. Joining Spain, Israel, and Italy in implementing a more diverse depiction of women in the media, models working in these countries are now required to be of healthy body mass index. French minister of social affairs and health, Marisol Touraine explained, “Exposing young people to normative and unrealistic images of bodies leads to a sense of self-depreciation and poor self-esteem that can impact health-related behavior.” With the hope to reduce the number of women affected by eating disorders (40,000 reported in France in 2008), this law will hopefully encourage the much-needed evolution of the fashion industry and its infamously negative body image ideals.
So how will this law play out? It’s hard to imagine every fashion show and photo shoot being monitored by officials, but with a fine of $4.1 million and six months in jail as a threat, designers and modeling agents will most likely avoid the risk. Models will have to present a medical certificate from a doctor proving their healthy BMI, and ads that have been photoshopped must be labeled as retouched. —Lilly Bozzone
Actress Patina Miller Is Pregnant, so Madam Secretary Writers Included It in the Script
In a recent episode of Madam Secretary, one powerful scene shows the main character Elizabeth McCord giving an uplifting word of encouragement to a character Daisy, who just discovered she was pregnant. When Daisy described the complications of the situation—as it happens in this drama, the father of the children is dead, and her parents wouldn’t approve—Elizabeth helps her curb her fears. “You are one of the strongest women I’ve ever met,” she says. “You may not feel that way because you're drowning in a sea of hormones, [but] it's a beautiful world, Daisy. And the best ride is about to start.” What makes this extra-special is the fact that Patina Miller, who plays Daisy, is pregnant in real life, and that news influenced the screenwriters to include it in the script. —Mary Rose Somarriba
‘13 Reasons Why’ Renewed for Second Season
In less positive TV news, Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why was renewed for a second season this week. The first season of the series was adapted from the novel by Jay Asher, but the content of the next season is unclear. For Verily this week, Maria Walley interviewed Brooke Fox, the psychotherapist whose initial comments against the series went viral when the first season was released in April. Read the insightful interview here. —MRS
Instagram Is Joining the Mental Health Movement
May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, and Instagram has joined the conversation. #HereForYou, Instagram’s hashtag and campaign that aims to highlight people who are sharing their struggles with mental health, might cause some of us to raise our eyebrows. Instagram has a reputation for presenting a glossy filter on life, causing many users to experience feelings of inadequacy and dissatisfaction with their own lives. Not only that, Anxiety.org lists Instagram as one of many social sites that can cause mental health issues. Whether or not Instagram’s campaign is in reaction to its own anxiety-causing reputation, props to The Gram for making efforts to change the culture. Now it’s up to us to internalize Instagram’s message as we like and share. —Monica Gabriel Marshall
Channing Tatum Pens Letter of Empowerment for Daughter, While Announcing ‘Magic Mike’ Live
In Cosmopolitan’s June 2017 issue, Channing Tatum writes an article he imagines his 3-year-old daughter Everly reading in her late teens or early twenties. Sweet, right? Well, it left us scratching our heads. In it, Tatum shares his highest hopes that his daughter will be brave in being her authentic self rather than looking to the outside world for answers. Lucy Collins writes for Verily, “What Tatum’s saying isn’t exactly wrong. Women should be heard and respected and loved.” But he connects these thoughts with the launch of his new show Magic Mike Live Vegas, based on the movies about male stripping. In this context, Collins says, “The sentiment gets a little muddled. Is the goal now to let women be the ones idolizing the body? . . . That makes it sound like the aim is equal opportunity objectification, not inherent human acceptance.” When did authenticity become synonymous with sexual imagery? We appreciate the sentiment, Mr. Tatum, but while many others are being sold on this conflicting definition of empowerment, we just aren’t buying it. —Krizia Liquido
Sixteen More Reasons to Love Trader Joe’s
On Monday, Business Insider published a list we’ve all been waiting for: fifteen secrets Trader Joe’s shoppers should know. Even hardcore TJ fans will learn something new, like what those ringing bells mean and that you can ask TJ’s to come to your neighborhood (apparently, property within one mile of a Trader Joe’s increases home value by more than twice the median home in the rest of the U.S.). According to TJ’s website, “Being wanted matters to us.”
Yesterday, Trader Joe’s gave us yet another reason to love it: It handles major setbacks responsibly and honorably. After one customer complained about peanut butter in a chocolate mochi package, TJ’s did what it always does for recalls: immediately take down and destroy all possibly affected products and announce it wherever possible—via email and newsletter, through the recalls category on its website, and signs posted at every cash register. When dealt with thoughtfully, risky situations like these can create rare and powerful moments of truth. Thank you, TJ’s. —KL
GQ’s Painful Cover Story with Brad Pitt
In weird-interviews-that-should-probably-never-have-seen-the-light-of-day news, Brad Pitt is GQ's summer cover star. "[H]ere he is, alone, a 53-year-old human father/former husband smack in the middle of an unraveled life, figuring out how to mend it back together," the article reads, alongside photographs of a gaunt-looking Pitt with tears brimming in his eyes, seemingly lost in the wilderness of a national park. That gives you a pretty good idea of the general tone and approach of the interview. The whole thing has provoked sneers and embarrassment from various quarters: The very public breakdown of a relationship is awful enough as it is, without the whole world being given access to every changing expression on your face as the experience is dissected with a journalist. There are undoubtedly some moments of beautiful insight in the article, like when Pitt reflects on letting go of the crutch of drugs and alcohol: "I've got my feelings in my fingertips again. I think that's part of the human challenge: You either deny them all of your life or you answer them and evolve." If only we could have these moments without the indignity of the rest of it. —Sophie Caldecott
Happy Mother’s Day!
Wishing all the moms and motherly a happy Mother’s Day! Here are some movies to celebrate every type of mom.