As I’ve mentioned before, sometimes people give me ideas for Victorian Cut-out Theatre episodes. Sometimes these ideas bare fruit, but mostly they fall by the wayside. However, when Stephanie Yuhas sends you and article on Victorian dildos or the fact that tuberculosis created the hallmark for beauty in the 1800s, you kind of have to follow through.
Just as the “dildo episode”was drawn from real life, so is this one. “The Cure” is formatted in the style of a television commercial which works to its benefit, but it is also based on very real findings. Apparently, tuberculosis enhanced what was already considered beautiful in women (thinness, fair skin and red lips) and because the disease was prevalent in the 1800s it informed the notions of beauty and fashion aesthetic of the day.
Not much has changed, it seems. Over a century later, magazines, runway shows and commercials offer a vision of beauty that prizes the gaunt and fair skinned.
You can read more about this in this article from Jezebel that was originally sent to me by Stephanie Yuhas, who not only helped me write this episode, but also voiced the main character along with Chris Potako as “God”. I am very grateful that they both decided to do it.
I hope you’ve been enjoying this season of VCoT, please let your friends know and be sure to pass the episodes along.