In a segment on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" this week, the late night comedian took a look at the overabundance of sexy women's Halloween costumes, commenting on how the holiday costumes had become "oversexualized." After pointing out a story on Fox News about costumes that make women look like a "hussy" (sparked by none other than a Halloween costume inspired by Miley Cyrus' twerking outfit from the MTV VMAs), Stewart brought in senior correspondent Kristen Schaal to talk about the continuing objectification of women. But, as Atlantic Wire reported Oct. 23, Schaal didn't see the costumes as regressive and before the "Sexy Halloween Costumes" segment was over, trotted out a walking vagina -- all in the spirit of "progress."
"Isn't it great?" she told Stewart and the "Daily Show" audience. "The fact that women get this one night, only one, out of the whole year to be viewed as sexual objects. And we get to choose what kind!"
Schaal noted that it was great that women had so many costumes to choose from for Halloween. She listed several: Sexy pirate, sexy nurse, even sexier nurse, sexy defense attorney, sexy prosecutor...
The latter two prompted Schaal to have a mock court battle (with herself, dueling in sexy voices). "'You're out of order.' 'No, you're out of order.'" But being sexy leads to other things. "'Oh, let's just make out.' 'Yeah.'"
"Why would I be upset about progress?" Schaal asked. "Back in the oppressive olden day of the last generation," she said, her mother only had two costume options: sexy secretary and sexy meter maid. "But," she said, "in these modern, liberated times a woman is free to be a sexy whatever the hell she wants."
There's the sexy guitar, the sexy carrot, and the sexy pizza slice (with the the carrot and the slice's point vee-ing in the voluptuous models' crotches). So what does everyone really want to see a woman dressed up as? Schaal said women were being too "coy" and should take the Halloween costume to the "obvious next level." And that would be? Apparently, a walking vagina, which Schaal had christened, appropriately enough, the "Sexy Vagina."
Jon Stewart looked a bit self-conscious when the mobile Georgia O'Keefe painting stepped onto the "Daily Show" stage, muttering that he didn't know if that particular costume could be shown on television. Schaal insisted that women should just jump from trying to look sexy and simply wear a costume that reflected where sex happens.
After Stewart protested somewhat, calling the costume "degrading," Schaal even made it perfect for the host, who had commented earlier on enjoying the pizza costume (because you "don't need cleavage to make pizza sexy"): She pasted a pizza slice on the walking vagina. "Does the cheese match the crust?" she asked. "She'll never tell."
But is Schaal's costume idea a bit too far? Or is her point made -- that women should simply skip the pretense, the sexy this and the sexy that, and dress up as the true object of men's desires? Or is the message a bit too blunt? Or too offensive? Where is the line to be drawn?
Probably at costumes that reflect true poor taste. Surely the sexy vagina Halloween costume isn't as offensive as Anna Rexia, another example -- and an extreme one as well -- of the end result of the objectification of women. Besides, there's nothing sexy about Anna Rexia (or anorexia).
Although five-and-a-half-foot-tall vaginas might stretch the limits of what constitutes "sexy" as well...