Anger After Elle Covers Up Melissa McCarthy

She's on the cover ... in a huge coat
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2013 10:36 AM CDT
Anger After Elle Covers Up Melissa McCarthy
Actress Melissa McCarthy arrives at the 64th Primetime Emmy Awards at the Nokia Theatre on Sunday, Sept. 23, 2012, in Los Angeles.   (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)

The good news: An unspoken taboo was broken when Elle put a plus-size actress on its November cover. The bad news: The magazine draped Melissa McCarthy in an enormous coat on said cover. (Alternate covers feature slimmer actresses in tight and/or skin-baring outfits; a Go Fug Yourself poll finds McCarthy is by far the favorite cover star.) Critics aren't happy, Fox News reports. "It is sending the psychological message that hiding is what full-figured women should do," says one psychotherapist. Others are complaining on Twitter: "oh look, it's melissa mccarthy on the cover of @ELLEmagazine let's cover her up in the LARGEST COAT POSSIBLE," wrote @roundraglanroad.

Let's not give Elle any credit for this, writes June Thomas at Slate. The coat is so huge that McCarthy could fit her Mike and Molly co-star underneath; plus, her "hair covers a quarter of her gorgeous face, and with her hands stuffed deep into her coat pockets, the only visible flesh is a tiny triangle between the coat’s lapels and the briefest glimpse of calf." On Bustle, Marie Southard Ospina agrees this is no victory for plus-size women. "McCarthy is a voluptuous and confident plus-size woman, but you wouldn’t know it looking at the cover photo," she writes. But on, former Cosmo editor Mia Freedman defends the cover: When magazines "take a baby step in the right direction, we need to encourage them," she writes. (More Elle Magazine stories.)

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