THE BLOG
04/17/2013 07:02 pm ET Updated Jun 17, 2013

Rebel Wilson's Fat Jokes

We've already talked about Rebel Wilson's vagina joke at the MTV Movie Awards this week, but a piece by Dina Gachman at Forbes Women criticized another element of Rebel's hosting -- her fat jokes.

Gachman writes: "[T]he fat jokes (made by her and at her expense) got old, quick. It's not funny if you have to constantly point it out to people. It not only gets old, it gets uncomfortable, and no one is laughing."

Meredith Lepore at The Jane Dough wrote a piece agreeing with Gachman's point of view, stating: "Rebel seems to not only embrace the fat jokes but promote them and she needs to stop."

I'm not sure how I feel about fat jokes. I do think it's important that Rebel acknowledges her weight publicly because I think we need to talk about the kinds of female bodies we see in the media. There's so little diversity on the big and small screens that when a woman who is not white or thin or blonde gets a lead role, when a woman of size or color is not playing the awkward friend, when she helps shift what we think of when we think of women allowed to be on screen, there has to be some commentary -- including from her. I don't think it's enough to show up and be looked at.

For example, though I'm not a fan of "Girls," I think Lena Dunham is doing important work in the way she displays and talks about her body. She's aware of the space she's making for herself, and she has talked about that explicitly in a way that doesn't involve putting herself down.

As for the jokes, I understand why Gachman and Lepore were put off. They read Rebel joking about her weight as Rebel ridiculing herself for her size and therefore validating public criticism of her and other plus-sized women's bodies. To some extent, I agree with them. Because it seems to me as though Rebel's jokes are at her own expense, and not at the expense of fat-shamers. It's not her body she should be making fun of, but how people react to it. I wish her jokes targeted those reactions more explicitly.

What do you think about Rebel Wilson's fat jokes? Sound off in the comments below, or tweet us @HuffPostWomen!

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