Friday, April 4
Why I Love Ugly Betty
It could be because I have just put braces on my teeth, that I can sympathize with her oral pain.
But no...It is for other reasons much more profound.I love Ugly Betty because she symbolizes integrity and ethics.
The original version of Ugly Betty hails from Columbia. This Latin soap opera caught my attention when it was shown on RedeTV here in Brazil. Albeit dubbed into Portuguese and shown at bad hour of the day, it had a cult following.
Fast forward to 2006 and the American version was launched.Produced by Salma Hayek, the American version is flashy and fast. My heroine Betty is thrown into the cutthroat world of magazine publishing, more specifically the fashion world.Riding the 'major interest in the fashion world' craze which started with "Sex and the City"(or even "Ab Fab" for the true insiders)and was carried on with "The Devil Wears Prada",the series "Ugly Betty" appeared at the right time.
While most people in my generation went on to university, my formative years were spent modelling in the fashion capitals of Paris,Milan and New York. I have seen fashion editors have orgasmic clapping fits at the site of a new hemline. I have seen backstabbing at its best(or worst, if you will) I learned photography from the best photographers in the world (Albert Watson, I will always be grateful for your wonderful insights on photography, Sasha for teaching me patience, Patrick Demarchelier for teaching me that doing something that pleases you above all is the best reward) My experience in the fashion world was rich with adventures and stories that could become a movie one day...(this is usually when I secretly hope that some Hollywood director reads my blog and thinks "Hey, why doesn't she write a screenplay, I could film it"...and then I get some life altering phonecall..)But I digress....
Back to Betty..
Betty is hired by the publisher of Mode to be the assistant of his airhead, women- on- the -brain -and -in -the- pants son, Daniel. As Betty is obviously 'ugly', the publisher hopes his son will concentrate on his work and not be distracted by his assistant long enough to take over the publishing empire one day. Latin soap opera drama here,drama over there. Betty is the second daughter of an illegal Mexican immigrant,her sister has an effeminate son from a one night mistake 13 years ago, her mother has passed away and they all live in the same house in Queens.Novela novela novela.....
The world has become obsessed with the fashion world, and the superficiality of it that has ALWAYS existed, and will continue to exist. The evil backstabbing is real,yet exaggerated for cinematic effect on Ugly Betty, and there really are people that are THAT shallow, I have seen it myself, but I will not mention names for fear of a lawsuit on my back.Betty is treated mostly with contempt from her ditzy and shallow co-workers, yet they eventually realize that Betty is alot more than meets the eye. Her ethics and moral standards are intact. She is loyal to all around her. She cares, and wants to make the world a better place.
There is nothing Ugly about that, Betty....