With Monday's unveiling of the July Vanity Fair cover, Caitlyn Jenner was introduced to the world and (faith in humanity restored) she was largely welcomed by the public, from fans to celebrities, politicians to media pundits. But as much as the conversation was positive, there was one thing that didn't escape Jon Stewart's notice: how much the focus was on Jenner's looks. On Tuesday's episode of The Daily Show, Jon Stewart praised Caitlyn Jenner for her brave transition but blasted the media for covering Jenner the only way it apparently knows how to talk about a woman.
Dubbing Jenner a "Brave New Girl," Stewart begins with a montage of media outlets commenting on the significance of her coming out and the role she plays in transforming people's perceptions of transgender people. For a moment, Stewart is taken aback — whoa wait, are news commentators actually having a real discussion about a real topic?
It's really heartening to see that everyone is willing to not only accept Caitlyn Jenner as a woman, but to waste no time in treating her like a woman.
But just when we thought we were safe — cue the barrage of folks exclaiming at how great Jenner looked on the cover. Because hey, apparently when it comes to talking about women, the media welcome wagon stops at the surface.
"So sexy it hurts!" ... "I'm a little jealous. She looks better than I do!" ... "She is stunning." ... "She looks amazing." ... "Caitlyn is hot!"
Without a doubt, the Vanity Fair cover is gorgeous, but let's talk more about what the cover really represents — a face for the transgender community, a woman finally free. With his most spot-on observation, Stewart says when Jenner was presenting as a man, the discussion was always about his accomplishments as an Olympic champion and American hero. But now?
Caitlyn, when you were a man, we could talk about your athleticism, your business acumen. But now you are a woman. And your looks are really the only thing we care about.
Which, according to Stewart, starts Jenner's second phase of "comparative f***ability." Pundits are shown debating the level of Jenner's attractiveness and comparing her to doppelgänger actress Jessica Lange, ex-wife Kris Jenner, and even stepdaughter Kim Kardashian. There just isn't enough room at the top for all women, according to Stewart.
Look, we want to give a woman a compliment here. We just need to make sure another woman gets taken down a peg in the process. It's how we maintain the balance.
Oh, and the final stage of Caitlyn's media transition? A reminder that she looks "good for her age."
Remind her she has an expiration date now. You came out as 65. You've got another two years before you become invisible to society.
Of course, the public treatment wouldn't be complete without a little slut-shaming — apparently the white corset is too "Playboy bunny-esque" for some. And hey, no one can look that good. Blame it on the Pho-o-o-o-o-o-otoshop!
I mean, you take away the corset and the makeup, and I don't know if anyone wants to bang her.
From the income gap to red carpet sexism, there's a reason why Stewart's comments hit home. Jenner will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYs in July, and without a doubt, it'll be a triumphant moment for her and her story. But I bet the most popular question of the night will be, "What are you wearing?" Seriously, can we #AskHerMore? In Jon Stewart's final words:
Caitlyn Jenner, congratulations. Welcome to being a woman in America.
Images: The Daily Show/Comedy Central