Lizzo in a thong is just too much for some people to take.

The "Juice" singer attended the Lakers vs. Timberwolves game on Sunday, but the Lakers' win was not what drew the most attention. Rather, the 31-year-old's outfit seemed to invite the Internet to have an opinion on the propriety of forward fashion, what's "family friendly" at a sporting event, and whether body positivity can go too far.

Lizzo's black T-shirt dress with cut-outs on the back exposed her thong and fishnet stockings, which she skillfully showed off by twerking along with the Laker Girls' performance to her song "Juice." Her choice of apparel has since been called an "incident" that's spurred "outrage" and "controversy," as well as praise that Lizzo continues to embody the "brazen confidence and joie de vivre we should all take into 2020."


"This is how a bad bitch goes to the Lakers game vs Minnesota," Lizzo said as she walked through the stadium. "You bitches can't even spell Minnesota!" Plenty of fat-phobia and fat-shaming colored comments on social media, from criticisms of Lizzo "showing her bare ass" at a "family-friendly" event to comparisons to the professional wrestler Solofa Fatu Jr. known as Rikishi (who even trended on Twitter, along with the Grammy-nominated singer).

If anything, Jezebel noted the real problem with the outfit: "Here's the truth: the dress is a cool, good, fun look. She should be able to trot around with her butt out at a family-friendly event; Americans could stand to be less prudish. However, I cannot stop thinking about her exposed ass and... other sensitive areas... sitting on a stadium seat... I can only hope someone reminded her to protect her vagine?"


Lizzo Rishiki WrestleTalk

But seriously, the sheer amount of scrutiny being applied to Lizzo's outfit is indicative of the minute criticism that women of color, especially plus size women of color, face in the public eye. The impulse to derive moral or personality flaws from a woman's fashion choices comes from misogyny's history of biased beauty standards, which still mar our perceptions and media today. So however "loud" Lizzo has been about her body positivity activism, it can't be "too loud" or "too far" when there are still such discrepancies in how we treat women of different races and different sizes. As Lizzo told People, "If you saw Anne Hathaway in a bikini on a billboard, you wouldn't call her brave."

Truly, the same daring fashion statement would have been mostly praised if it were worn by a Kardashian–or perhaps any white woman with a slim figure. Remember Khloe Kardashian in an entirely mesh outfit? Remember when Taylor Momsen (Gossip Girl) forewent pants to wear long T-shirts and fishnets on a regular basis (much like Lizzo)? Whether going out to dinner, attending a party, or a watching a public sporting event, what deep moral consequences are there to women wearing revealing clothing? If the argument is that she's sexualizing her body by revealing it, then how is that different from centuries of patriarchal shame and censorship that condemned the image of women's bodies (including, at one time, ankles and wrists) that didn't already do that?

Khloe Kardashian

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Culture News

Tyra Banks Channels Willy Wonka in "Modelland" Theme Park

The Santa Monica attraction is promised to boost people's confidence, revolutionize beauty standards, erase Banks' movie Life Size, and fix Lindsay Lohan's career.

Tyra Banks is finally realizing her dream of becoming the Willy Wonka of unrealistic body standards by opening a "supermodel-themed amusement park."

Open later this year in an open-air shopping center in Santa Monica, Modelland (which is also the title of her 2010 young adult novel based on, what else, herself), will feature interactive entertainment, retail shops, and dining options. Banks told Variety, "It's my calling to bring modeling to the masses." But what could that mean when modeling is already foisted onto the public in Clockwork Orange-style blitzes of ads, photoshop, and constant feelings of inadequacy?

Among the few details available, the ticketed attraction will offer guests costumes created by Hollywood designers and stylists. The park won't feature fashion shows, as that's "low hanging fruit," according to Banks. She's aiming to "redefine what a model is. It's all about inclusiveness." So the park will be a place "where everyone can be a model" and "all beauty is celebrated"—clearly, with the help of touch-ups and better-than-yours fashion that Modelland can provide.

Banks told WWD, "I've always been insanely inspired by attractions like Disneyland and Universal Studios and have wanted to bring that spirit of adventure and storytelling to the world of modeling...Men, women, families, all generations can come and enter this model world for a day, have a fun shopping experience, and an eventful meal." Banks channeled her best Walt Disney-meets-Jim Jones energy in her Instagram announcement: "My dream for you will soon be a reality. #ModelLand. A place where everyone can be a model. A place where all beauty is celebrated. I can't wait for you to Step Into Your Light."

The model-turned-mogul told Variety, "When people leave Modelland, we want them to feel overjoyed and empowered." She added, "of course, there will be an elevated social media component that will allow for our global community to engage and get delightful tastes of Modelland. That is crucial. The extra special treat is at the attraction, in the flesh." It's unclear what Banks is planning for the park's "interactive entertainment," but her emphasis on "elevated social media" makes it sound like a multi-level shopping mall filled with Hollywood glam photo booths where you can film your own confessional video about being prettier than your roommate, America's Next Top Model-style.

Banks seems certain the Santa Monica location will only be the flagship of many similar attractions. Despite revealing few concrete details, she waxed poetic about its power to boost people's confidence, revolutionize beauty standards, erase Banks' movie Life Size, and fix Lindsay Lohan's career. "Modelland is not just a place to us; it's a movement," Banks said. "Yes, it's an attraction and a destination, but above all, it's the genesis for people with all types of different beauty to feel seen and validated. Modelland will empower them to embrace, celebrate and adorn their own unique beauty in ways they never thought possible."

But just as Willy Wonka tricks Charlie into winning the chocolate factory, Banks' overinflated sense of purpose is well-intentioned. She states, "I created Top Model to expand the definition of beauty based on my own pain of being told 'no' that I couldn't do something because I'm curvy or I'm black." While it's a nice intention to bring more inclusivity to modeling, an amusement park offering makeovers isn't going to disrupt an industry with over a hundred years of saying "no" to all but one percent of the population.

Stay tuned for when this 21,000-square-foot doll house will become available to the public.


Meg Hanson is a Brooklyn-based writer, teacher and jaywalker. Find Meg at her website and on Twitter @megsoyung.


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