A Method in the Madness
I just can’t wait until I see the whole complete me.
—Barbara, makeover subject, How Do I Look?
I don’t feel like that [Before] person was ever me.
—Amy, makeover subject, The Biggest Loser
I guess we’ll know in a few seconds if everyone
likes the new me.
—Jeremy, makeover subject, Trick My Trucker
Are you you? Oh my gosh, you look great!
—Friend to subject Samantha, Extreme Makeover
I’m not a cold person. I’m warm and inviting, and
I want my kitchen to be warm and inviting.
—Angela, makeover subject, Color Correction
The makeover has long been a mainstay of advice columns and entertain-
ment literature targeted at women, yet in this new millennium television
has launched a seemingly unprecedented proliferation of makeover-themed
shows for the house, car, and body that preach the pleasures and possibili-
ties of transformation, rejuvenation, and alteration for everyone. The list
of makeover shows is extensive: from Makeover Manor, which specializes
in helping African American single moms, to A Makeover Story, What Not
to Wear, and 10 Years Younger, which perform “miracle transformations”
within the blink of a chemical peel and wardrobe change, to Queer Eye for
the Straight Guy, which has given new meaning to queering (or not) men,
to Look-a-Like, Style Her Famous, and I Want a Famous Face, which make over
into the makeover maze
introduction
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