Editor’s note: This opinion piece contains expletives.
This is part of a weekly series called “Pop Opinions” where The Lantern offers its take on the week’s pop culture news.
Bitch: Blatantly Indifferent To Conceptualized Hate.
It is an acronym I’d like to offer as a counter-definition to the contemporary swear word. A positive term that implies an unapologetic stance on one’s public opinion. Fiercely confident with a frank disregard for social consequences.
Upon speculation of three hotly discussed decisions made by three prominent female celebrities, I would like to use this week’s ‘Pop Opinions’ to highlight three famous women who are redefining what it means to be a bitch.
Katherine Heigl is a bitch.
The actress recently responded to rumors that she is a “rude” actress, but let’s get something straight. There are no rumors that claim Heigl is “rude.” The rumors state that she is a bitch. “Rude” is sugarcoating it. Katherine Heigl is a cold-blooded, mean-spirited succubus, and everybody knows it. You know it, I know it, we all know it. For years, it’s been her reigning reputation among co-stars and viewers alike. Katherine Heigl is an absolute bitch.
The actress is well-known for starring in lead roles on a long list of Hollywood rom-coms. Her characters often bare striking similarities to one another — they are often lonely, cold, career-focused women who reluctantly fall in love with men who they never really wanted. It’s a cookie-cutter formula that fits Heigl like a glove.
Perhaps that’s the reason so many critics jump to label her as a bitch, because she is almost always portrayed as one.
But I don’t know that she is — at least, not in the traditional sense. This past weekend, Heigl finally took a stab at defending her reputation. During an online Q&A with fans, one particularly brave soul presented the rumors to the star, asking for an explanation. Upon being asked to explain if she was a “rude” actress, Heigl claimed: “Honestly, I don’t think I am.”
And quite frankly, that’s all that matters. She’s happy with who she is. Nobody is forced into hiring her. She earns her roles, and her strategy is working. Katherine Heigl is a successful actress, and she felt no need to apologize.
I think the reputations are awfully presumptuous. Very few critics know the real Katherine Heigl. What we do know about Katherine Heigl is that despite the constant negativity that surrounds her, she is a woman who continues to push herself into the public eye. With new movies premiering every year and a lead role in a soon-to-air NBC original series, Katherine Heigl is doing something that is incredibly right.
And I think that’s fantastic.
Internet bullies have long been associating Australian rapper Iggy Azalea with Marlon Wayans’ cross-dressing character from the 2004 cinematic hit, “White Chicks.” Many claim the two stars share an uncanny resemblance, and to be fair, they kinda sorta do. The comparisons were recently rekindled. Among other jabs, Snoop Dogg posted a picture comparing Iggy to the “White Chicks” character. Iggy posted a slew of nasty retaliations that she then promptly deleted.
Now flash-forward to this past weekend, when Iggy Azalea dressed up as the “White Chicks” character for Halloween. Let me just say this: YES.
I love it when people, particularly celebrities, are able to make fun of themselves. I loved it when Taylor Swift wore a T-shirt mocking a meme that used her likeness for a (fictional) deceased marijuana victim, and I love that Jennifer Lawrence still jokes about falling down the stairs at the Oscars.
It’s a friendly reminder that the stars whom we so lovingly admire are not so different than we are.
So in light of Iggy’s clever costume, let me just say that she does, in fact, look like she walked straight out of a “White Chicks” casting call. She’s tall, her facial features are harsh and less-than-feminine, and she walks with all the swag of an alpha male gorilla mixed with rapper Kanye West.
But in absolutely no way am I claiming that I-G-G-Y is U-G-L-Y. In Iggy’s defense, her status as a woman in the male-dominated rap industry makes her an easy target. But if you know what Snoop Dogg looks like, and I’m assuming you do, he’s hardly a stunner. Hardly a credible source for doling out beauty opinions.
In a family of brutish older brothers, Iggy Azalea is the scrappy little sister. A laughing hyena in a pack of wolves. Marginalized, but unafraid to offer a taste of her critics’ own medicine. For that, Iggy Azalea has gained my vote as a true bitch.
Fans of Taylor Swift are likely aware of how difficult it is to find her music online. Leaks of her albums are promptly struck down within moments of surfacing, and you’d be hard-pressed to find an unofficial Taylor Swift YouTube video that hasn’t been pitch-altered to resemble the shrill squeals of a dying chipmunk.
So it comes as no surprise that as of Monday morning, Swift has removed all of her music from the wildly popular streaming service Spotify.
Angry fists have already been raised, condemning Swift for hoarding her work. There are rumors Swift is unhappy with the rates Spotify pays artists — and to be fair, she has every right to feel that way.
Not so long ago, Taylor Swift wrote an editorial for The Wall Street Journal defending the future of the music industry. In an environment where streaming services rule and file-sharing runs rampant, album sales are dropping like flies. But Swift argues that people will still continue to buy albums, so long as an appropriate amount of heart and soul is put into them.
Swift is most certainly speaking of her own albums, the latest of which has already broken multiple sale records. Swift’s success is also likely because of the restrictions she puts upon the sharing of her music. And because the music is hers, I don’t see any reason why she shouldn’t.
Taylor Swift works hard. She writes her own songs, she manages her own social media accounts and she spends more than a normal amount of time stalking her fans. Heck, the girl deserves a Nobel Prize for the effort she’s put into promoting her latest album. I don’t think I’ve turned on my TV once in the past month without seeing those smug red lips smiling across the screen.
Taylor Swift believes in music. In particular, she believes in her music. She knows it’s good, and she knows that she deserves every possible dollar for her tireless efforts.