Even as a woman who rarely notices things like other women’s breast size, it’s hard not to notice Christina Hendricks’ breast size. And while it’s one thing to simply be aware that she has ginormous boobs, it’s an entirely different thing to actually ask her about them. But in a recent interview with The Guardian, Hendricks recounted how during her Mad Men days, her cleavage was all anyone ever wanted to talk to her about.
As Zoe Williams so elegantly writes, the initial focus of Mad Men was on the eponymous men: Men wanted to look, act, and dress like Jon Hamm’s Don Draper (who was really an a**hole, by the way). It wasn’t until later that the show’s women became more of a focal point for the press. And when they did, much of the focus was on their bodies:
Hendricks, along with January Jones, who played Betty Draper, came to represent so much. There was a great deal of rumination on their physicality, Jones as elegant as an afghan hound, Hendricks like the pin-up painted on the side of a bomber. What did it mean, people asked, that in the middle of the 20th century there were multiple ideals of the female form, whereas in the 21st century there was only one? How did that complicate the perception of gender equality as a steady march towards the light? Thousands of column inches went on that question—but, from the actor’s perspective, it was an annoying distraction. “There certainly was a time when we were very critically acclaimed, and getting a lot of attention for our very good work and our very hard work, and everyone just wanted to ask me about my bra again. There are only two sentences to say about a bra,” she says.
It would be one thing if Hendricks’ role on the show, which is regularly cited as one of television’s greatest series, was merely window dressing. But Hendricks—who earned six Outstanding Supporting Actress Emmy nominations for her role as badass office manager-turned-agency partner Joan Harris, née Holloway—was one of the show’s main stars. Even if her ample bosom sometimes seemed to be their own characters (remember the Japanese businessmen?)
Still, Hendricks has absolutely no regrets about her time on Mad Men, noting that: “It may eclipse anything I ever did. And, if it does, it was a good one and I’m proud of it. I got to bring who I was as a woman. I think I learned some of how to be a woman from Joan. No one would give a sh*t about me if it wasn’t for that show. I’d still be doing good work, but no one would have found me. If that’s the best thing I ever do, it was pretty good.”
(Via The Guardian)