Scarlett Johansson is the latest celebrity to be wrongly suspected of pregnancy for having a lump out of line. The actress was snapped jogging with her new (old) boyfriend, Sean Penn. A small protrusion is visible above the waistline of her skintight leggings. Not sure who’s working at Us Weekly, but apparently none of them have actually worn skintight leggings. Or maybe they’ve just never seen a picture of themselves wearing them. While running.
People, have you forgotten that one the most-appreciated things about Scarlett Johansson was her curvaceous figure? The thing about curves is, they aren’t made out of plastic. If you move, they will move. If you bisect them, they will bloat. Were Johansson pregnant, her belly might actually be less malleable.
Speaking of People, the magazine decided to use this story to explain how celebrity pregnancy rumors come to be. Sort of.
Step 1: Catch the celebrity at an awkward angle
“She’s outside running and it’s simply the placement of her shirt that is misleading,” her rep, Marcel Pariseau, tells PEOPLE of Johansson. To avoid this very problem, [Carrie] Underwood said recently that she chooses her wardrobe carefully, saying “when I wear something a little baggier, I’m like, nope, people are going to think I’m hiding something.”
[note: but Scarlett’s shirt was tight, so that kind of means any shirt could make you look pregnant at the wrong angle]
Step 2: Single out the one photo that portrays her as a mere mortal
“She was followed and photographed for over 20 minutes and I’m sure there are other photos in the series that show and prove that she is not pregnant,” the rep points out.
[note: but the magazines aren’t interested in the other 87 photos, just the one where she looks pregnant.]
I appreciate the attempt to save face, but I don’t buy it. “Capturing a celebrity at an awkward angle” is not accidental. Photographers are out there hunting for something they can sell, and a photo with a whiff of a bump is eminently sellable. I don’t actually even think people at the magazines necessarily think the actors are pregnant. They just seize the opportunity for a sexy story. Because, as we all know, nothing’s sexier than a sexy celebrity, except a pregnant sexy celebrity. But I truly hate the way any ounce of “extra” flesh seen on a famous person is immediately a possible sign of pregnancy. It’s not just the invasive nature of these uninvited bump-watches. It’s the message that sends to all the non-pregnant women out there who are sporting similar lumps and bumps. Do we look pregnant, too?
What do you think, does this look like a baby bump to you?