Half-Naked Women are on Italian TV

13 Mar

Alternately titled: Most Obvious Thing to Blog About in Italy

Second Alternate Title: If it’s good enough for Francesco Totti’s wife (dignified woman standing on right), it’s good enough for me.

Why on God’s great Earth has it never occurred to me to write a post that would shamelessly glorify the cult of half-naked women on prime-time “respectable” Italian television?

Holy crap, people! I mean?

Well, leave it to Love & Luce to tweet me her lovely Thing She Learned in Italy as thus: “It’s appropriate to have dancing girls on a news show.”

Why, yes.
Yes, it is.

And that, @DolceCarla, is a damn good idea for me to post on.

Ok. This is why. Because, as I learned in my very prestigious Master of Social Work program at the University of Washington, one of the top 10 schools of social work in the entire U. S. of A., this is apparently akin to why I was never aware of my white privilege either: a fish doesn’t know it’s in water.

Also known as: when you see half-nekkid dancing girls on TV every night, it becomes sort of, well…normal. (In a very non-normal sort of way.)

So now, just for frivolity (and to give me a valid excuse for using the word “frivolity” — yay), I give you:

Italy’s National Treasures, as observed by me.

No longer a weather reporter. Oh, stop! That’s so old fashioned. No, people. We have “meteorine.” Little meteors? Well, meteo means “weather” so like… little weather cutie pies? I don’t know. Just watch. (Look away! Look away! Remove young children from the room!)

All I know is that short fringed jean skirts add a ton of credibility to a board that is supposed to give me a weather report but looks more like some kind of 1st grade class project. I could give you this weather report in my pajamas after not having showered for 3 days because there are too many little kids running rampant underfoot. This is how it would read:

“It’s going to be cloudy, and sunny. And in some places on the top cloudy AND sunny at the very same time. Wait? What’s that you say? Thunder bolts somewhere in the middle?”

The end.

Then there are the truly half-naked dancing girls who are there for no other reason than to simply be half-naked dancing girls in prime time television on a game show with the Italian equivalent name of Password.

Freeze frame at the end of Berlusconi’s son’s girlfriend. Good stuff. Classay, yes indeedy!

But truly, my heart will always, always be with ex-George Clooney girlfriend Elisabetta Canalis, and her blonde counterpart Maddalena Corvaglia, who, when I arrived in Italy in late 2001, were the “veline,” the head cheerleaders of the half-naked dancing girl movement. They were my introduction to half-naked-dancingness and I was in awe of their … moves.

It’s quite unfortunate that I can’t share any videos of that period with you because either I’m not capable enough of searching soft porn on You Tube or no one has any clips left over from 2001. There was a really good dance they used to do with a fake shower and tinsel substituting as water. (NO I’m not kidding, do you think I would joke about something like this?)

And, can someone explain to me the creepy and inexplicable incongruity of a jolly red monster snuggling up to them every evening? God only knows.

Oh please, you still don’t believe me? As a gift to families all over the country trying to digest their dinners in peace in front of the TV, the marketing geniuses decided that a competition was in order to choose the new couples of dancing girls. I don’t know if they still do this or not, and frankly I don’t have enough masochistic tendency to spend any more time researching this line of thought.

However I do believe that if I ever go for a degree in psychology here in Italy, I could write my thesis about the red dancing monster frolicking with the half-naked girls.

Truly–it’s a gold mine, folks, I’m telling you.


22 Responses to “Half-Naked Women are on Italian TV”

  1. Liz March 13, 2012 at 11:09 pm #

    Elisabetta has stepped up her game & is now dating Steve-O of Jackass fame. ClASS

  2. Beth March 14, 2012 at 2:59 am #

    You must see this film-Videocracy. You can see a trailer here-

  3. Francesca Maggi March 14, 2012 at 9:23 am #

    imagine – and the camera adds 10 lbs…!
    these women could never bear children…

    F.Maggi, Author
    Burnt by the Tuscan Sun

  4. Elizabeth P. March 14, 2012 at 9:29 am #

    You are hilarious! This post is sheer brilliance. When I landed on these hallowed shores–back in 2000–those early years were marked by an inane show called “Quiz Show” (pronounced reprehensibly in italiano as “queetz shoh.” Ick.) which featured Amadeus (don’t even get me started) and the inscrutable, mute (’cause that’s how they like their women), scantily-clad (ditto) Donna Fortuna.

    see clip in case you don’t remember this gem:

    I had the immense (dis)pleasure of seeing my cretinous FIL slaver over this woman every night at dinner. Not a pretty sight. And I’m still scarred from the experience.

    Thanks for the hearty guffaw 🙂

  5. Catherine March 14, 2012 at 11:26 am #

    I think I got carried away on this topic in my book ‘The Divorced Lady’s Companion to Living in Italy’. Not meaning to promote here, but my protagonist is horrified to see half-naked women used to haul in the male audience at all hours of the day (while women do the washing up). I realise my character is reflecting my deep fatigue at this syndrome, that it is fine to perve at Belen’s crotch on the news, that bald men wear suits while botoxed girls wear bikinis. (I once saw Belen’s lolling in a pool with a plastic toy, on a stage surrounded by people, while whatever the show was went on. Huh?)

    Try and watch Italian prime time TV for thirty minutes without seeing some bum cheek or the shape of a breast. Not possible.

  6. Un'americana a Roma March 14, 2012 at 11:29 am #

    That looks totally fascinating. I am always looking for explanations for Italian cultural behavior. Thanks for the tip, I’m on it!

  7. Un'americana a Roma March 14, 2012 at 11:29 am #

    Wow, yeah, Steve-O versus George Clooney, mmm, it’s a tough call, isn’t it?

  8. Un'americana a Roma March 14, 2012 at 11:31 am #

    And yet, amazingly, Posh Spice continues to breed. Mysteries never cease.

  9. Un'americana a Roma March 14, 2012 at 11:33 am #

    HAHAHAHAHA, or, as we laugh in type here in Italy: AH AH AH AH! Thanks for the compliment. Sheer brilliance, wow that is an unsolicited ego boost. 😉 Who is Donna Fortuna?? Wow. Queetz. I always find that funny too. Along with Jattz. (jazz, which I always thought they were saying “jets”)

  10. Un'americana a Roma March 14, 2012 at 11:35 am #

    Oh honey I haven’t watched Italian TV since I’ve been back in June of last summer, with the exception of cartoons for my kiddos. Which is another weird blog post (some Japanese, tragic and totally inappropriate for kids…but other channels totally ok). I marvel at this phenomenon. I know I shouldn’t promote it, but if you can’t beat em…

  11. loquensmachina March 14, 2012 at 11:54 pm #

    A fellow UW alumna! I knew I liked you.

    It’s funny, because I always feel under-dressed when I’m in Italy, like I wear jeans too much and I never have the right shoes. But then I see that meteorina (!), who is outfitted appropriately for washing a car, in my opinion, and think, “hey, maybe I’m not too casual after all.” And then I realize that although Italians often do go casual, it is carefully calculated. And I will never be the right kind of under-dressed.

  12. Un'americana a Roma March 15, 2012 at 8:48 am #

    Firstly, HUSKY PRIDE! (Unfortch I left the program a year prior to graduation for my move back to Rome. Boo. I was at the Tacoma campus. LOVE UW. Loved everything about it.)

    Secondly, you are so right on the ball about the “carefully calculated casual.” (Between you and me we can call it CCC.) So true. I noticed when I first moved here (Gawd, 10 years ago), that no one wears Nikes out and about, only tourists. Why? They tell me, with this look like I’ve been living under a rock for years…”Well, they’re gym shoes, Shel. Therefore, you wear them at the gym.” (Felt like they were trying to potty train me or something. Der.)

  13. loquensmachina March 16, 2012 at 6:16 pm #

    Oh, UW is the best. I miss it especially now that I’m at a blah Cal state school doing my masters. The Seattle campus is breathtaking.

    I’ve only been to Rome in spring and summer, so I end up wearing flat sandals and getting dirty, blistered feet. I will always be in awe of the women who walk around in heels. Maybe if I were there in ‘boot weather’ I could pull it off? Somehow I don’t think I’ll ever truly blend in. I just don’t have…IT. Whatever it is.

  14. Un'americana a Roma March 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm #

    No we foreigners always stick out. I used to wear heels when I was the programs director of the UC study abroad center and they’d always get stuck in the cobblestones. I do have clumsiness.

  15. Sarah May March 24, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    Have you watched Women’s Bodies? It is a great documentary about this strange form of entertainment and how women are totally complacent.

  16. Un'americana a Roma March 26, 2012 at 12:58 pm #

    No I haven’t watched that but I should, it sounds interesting.

  17. Roselyn May 29, 2012 at 1:34 am #

    Thank you, I’ve recently been sehcraing for information about this subject for a long time and yours is the best I have came upon till now. But, what in regards to the bottom line? Are you positive concerning the source?|What i don’t realize is actually how you are now not really a lot more smartly-favored than you may be right now. You are so intelligent.

  18. ricky October 19, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

    Oh yes, the Veline competition was on this year too.


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