It's no news that the media industry is an exclusive place for people who look a certain way, with little or no exceptions to its rule of "perfection" — a term that usually refers to an able-bodied, slim, preferably fair-skinned person
Growing up, I've never seen much diversity in the media and things haven't exactly changed today.
Let's take movies and television series as an example. If people who don't fall under traditional beauty standards or do not belong to a majority race are chosen to be part of the cast, they're most often made to play roles that fit stereotypes, e.g., the smart Asian kid, the fat, less good-looking, goofy best friend, the Indian gangster (local a bit lah), and the sassy/angry black woman.
None of these roles have character depth or focus on these people as individuals, it just plays on the existing stereotypes.
And then we have "makeover movies" that perpetuate unhealthy beauty standards.
If you're wondering what genre that is, it's basically movies where the underdog lead character has to go through an extensive makeover to be successful and happy.
Alaaa, macam Princess Diaries tu. The moment she discovers she's a princess, terus have to go through a makeover where she "transforms" from a girl with huge glasses, big messy hair, and "unruly" eyebrows to a straight-haired, contact lens-wearing princess.
Imagine the kind of impact that would leave on an impressionable young girl.
Tension lah. I have so many things to say/write about this issue but for now, I tolong sum it up for you guys in this video. Tengoklah:
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