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Walk a Mile in My Runway Shoes Part 5

Inner Beauty and the Biz

Madalyn on "Good Luck Charley"

I mentioned in Part 3 that I went to a fund raiser for a Christian Teens Group. Something the head speaker said there rubbed me the wrong way, and it’s been on my mind ever since.

He was talking about the effect of media and moguls like Disney and Nickelodeon on our youth. He mentioned that they perpetuate the standards of what is cool in our teens these days. They set the standards and drive the popularity of certain styles, activities and music. They mandate what is “cool”. Then they change it the next year and the next year, ad infinitum. They do this because they own the recording contracts, the clothing manufacturing and the entire image of it’s Disney stars. Okay, I can agree with this.

He mentioned that most of the shows have little to no respectable adults featured and show no respect for authority in any way. Okay, I won’t argue this.

The next point he made brought him to tears. He said our culture is teaching our young women that “Their bodies are their biggest asset and they should use them to get everything they want.”

Now, I was sitting in the crowd, ready to squirm in the first place. I know people who handle the music scene for Disney, and frankly, they are kind hearted, knowledgeable, charitable, and live in the Christian faith. They do more good for kids in the arts than anyone I have ever seen in this area.

That last comment made me squirm more when I started thinking about the modeling industry. Was I, in fact, someone who believed that people should use their bodies to get whatever they want? Then I started to realize that the real people in this business say nothing of the sort. Yes, it is your outward appearance that can open a door, but without the business savvy and a positive attitude, you won’t get very far at all. Our physicality is merely a tool we have, it is not our only worth. I have never seen anyone in the industry speak that way to anyone else, ever. What kind of an outsider perspective is this?

Then I got more defensive and upset. This male speaker was a top football player in college. His son is following in his footsteps. Wait a minute! Isn’t using your body to play football a way to get what you want? Why is that okay when it's actually dangerous, but TV, Film and the Industry is harmful?

So, if his message was meant in a sexual nature, I never saw that message in a Disney show, did you? Am I missing something subliminal? I’m not easily confused, but I was confused sitting in that room. Every professional I have ever met has laughed at the idea of someone actually thinking the “casting couch” is a real thing. Most of the time, that notion is brought up by some slutty talent trying to seek out a casting couch and not by an industry professional who would seriously rather not jeopardize their years of long hours and hard work for a ten to fifteen minute fling. The result is the ridiculously, unprofessional hopeful gets kicked out of the office and security is alerted to never let them back in again. Where does slutty behavior get you? The same exact place in the biz as in the real world, on the sidewalk, in the gutter, and worse off than you were before.

Then, I look back on history in TV. Have you watched the old "Little Rascals" episodes lately? They are filled with violence. So is Tom and Jerry and Popeye. Did anyone who grew up watching this stuff blame the shows for thier behavior? I don't recall hearing any controversy of the sort when I was a kid.

I would love to see the backstage of the Disney shows featured reality series style. I would like for the press and general public to view the kid friendly staff that is on set and watch the Disney coaches work with those kids to positively affect their confidence. I wish more people could witness the character building that is caused by long hard hours of dedication and perseverance. I wish they would spotlight the supportive and not pushy parents that the industry LOVES, instead of sensationalizing the stage parent. I wish that people wouldn’t criticize TV and films while hailing the theater which has much racier messages in it’s musicals that are being performed by Fine Arts High Schools all across America to the applause of the kids own parents.

Why don’t we take the blame for today’s youth off of the media and put it back where it belongs, in the hands of the parents? If you have positive parenting, you will have upstanding children. No matter what hobbies you place them in. Character is built at home. If you can’t parent your children and leave that job up to a comedy sitcom, there is no one to blame but yourself.

I sometimes act like a sitcom parent. I can be forgetful. I can make a blunder from time to time. I can have a ditzy day, and I can be the buddy to my kids, too. They are also completely aware, that I can dish out the discipline. I can teach them moral choices. I can be the one in charge of their activities. I am a parent.

I also can sit an watch a Disney show with them and tell them what is reality and what is a joke. Can everyone cease finding fault and blame in others and learn to have a sense of humor please?

Alright, enough of my ranting. I think I need to go slip on something in the kitchen now.

Anyone interested in assisting others to obtain training to be a part of this wonderful opportunity of the modeling or acting industry, please view our page. We are standing by our controversial method of coaching by giving. We have ten Elite students who will be coached for an entire year, and room for new faces in Print, Runway, Commercials, Sitcom and more. Please view the webpage to learn how to support the hopefuls or to be included in the coaching.

This page shows an accurate assessment of the funds taken in since the campaign began. We have a long way to go, but believe that this training is as essential as any arts program for young people. We want to change lives for the better by sharing. Join us today.

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