THE BLOG
12/19/2013 10:21 am ET | Updated Feb 18, 2014

The Tummy Tuck

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There's an infomercial for the Tummy Tuck that has been occurring on a channel called Cozy TV which specializes in reruns of old television series like Magnum P.I. The infomercial occurs after shows like Magnum go off the air and offers the prospect of a flattened stomach without diet or exercise. The infomercial should be commended for its naturalism. It doesn't use the kind of perfect looking actors who are common on advertisements say for an all-inclusive resort like Sandals. These actors are even more true-to-life and less appealing than the older couples who appear in the ads that tout PDE5 inhibitors so you can be ready in the unlikely event the right moment comes. No this universe is nothing like the charmed world of aging models who are used in the commercials for Medicare Part B coverage. The Tummy Tuck commercials give you the real America, the people you see wheeling shopping carts full of junk food down the aisles of BJ's, the people with large rolls of hanging fat. The Tummy Tuck magically transforms them, but they are no more appealing with the rolls of fat gone. They're imperfect creatures who have led hard lives. In this sense the experience of seeing the infomercials for the Tummy Tuck is a little like reading a Zola novel like Germinal, dealing with the tough life of the miners in 19th century France. The only other referent for the enervating experience of watching the Tummy Tuck infomercial night after night is the experience of watching Jerry Lewis doing his annual Labor Day MDA Telethon which started in l966 and ran until 2010. It would be interesting to do a survey and find out how many of the actors in the infomercial watched Jerry Lewis telethons for the MDA when they were growing up.

{This was originally posted to The Screaming Pope, Francis Levy's blog of rants and reactions to contemporary politics, art and culture}

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