Jennifer Aniston hits out at media bodyshaming of female stars

As news broke that Angelina Jolie had filed for divorce from Brad Pitt, the third top trending topic on Twitter worldwide was not either of the individuals involved, nor, say, the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants, nor even the six-year anniversary of Harry Styles's X-Factor audition. No, the third trending topic was 'Jennifer Aniston', with over 50,000 tweets already having been sent about the actress, and many thousands more to come.

The internet seems obsessed with the idea that Aniston, perpetually portrayed in the media as a lovelorn, moping singleton, would be celebrating the news in utter elation.

This response demonstrates the overwhelming power of the media to spin such a strong narrative about Aniston; that this immensely successful career woman is still assumed to be obsessed with her ex-husband's circumstances over a decade after their divorce.

In reality, however, Aniston more than likely had her mind on other things...

Her own marriage

In all the massive rush to proclaim Aniston vindictively triumphant at #Brangelina's demise, we seem to have forgotten that not only has she had 11 years to forget about her ex-husband, she is actually married to someone else. Yet the media image of poor, heartbroken Jen is so strong in the public consciousness that we still collectively seem to imagine her poring over Pitt's every move like an LA Mrs. Haversham. In reality she probably hasn't even heard yet. Or she did, but the first question she asked was: 'Sorry, Brad who?'

Her career

Much like Jolie, whose achievements are rather wider than her marriage (as one headline writer astutely pointed out), Aniston already has more than enough on her plate. With two films due for release this year, she is unlikely to be giving much thought to some guy from over a decade ago.

Jumanji photos

Even if Aniston was online at the time the news broke, her attention was just as likely to have been caught by the first photo from the new Jumanji remake, released by Dwayne Johnson on Instagram. (Being a woman in Hollywood, Aniston might quickly notice that one of these costumes is not like the others).

Sexism on Twitter

If Aniston did pause to look at the social media chatter, she was probably more likely to raise an eyebrow at the inherent misogyny in the conversation than the news itself. There was more than a whiff of sexism about the posts, many of which delighted in the idea of Aniston's triumph while deriding Jolie as a 'bitch' and a 'homewrecker'. Meanwhile, Pitt mysteriously seemed to attract far less criticism. (Of course, there were posts weighing in on whether Aniston was a slut or a bitch too, because Twitter.)


Anyway, she was probably much more interested in the adorable picture of one little girl, who finished treatment over the summer at the Children's Hospital Aniston has supported for many years, embarking on her first day of third grade.

The terrifying spectre of a potential Trump presidency

While many seem to think that the Jolie-Pitt divorce is the harbinger of the apocalypse, Aniston, as an American citizen, is far more likely to be concerned about the potentially devastating impact of a potential Trump presidency. Especially while sexism continues to dog Clinton and the Trump camp continues, in the words of Julia Louis-Dreyfus, to turn "political satire" into "a sobering documentary."

Invasive media

Having written eloquently about the ridiculous pregnancy 'rumours' that have dogged her for years, if Aniston is aware of the Brangelina furore at all she's far more likely to be concerned with the slavering media attempts to invade a family's privacy at a difficult and upsetting time than with celebrating somebody else's divorce. Because, contrary to what that same media would have us believe, Aniston isn't a one-dimensional, eternally-rejected, baby-obsessed robot. She's a human being, with a heart, and about a million other things on her mind.