Sofia Vergara fires back at critics of her Emmy pedestal performance


Sofia Vergara was literally put on a pedestal during Monday night’s Emmy ceremony, in a bit meant to demonstrate the idea that television always gives its viewers something fun to look at.

The Modern Family star paired up with Bruce Rosenblum, the head of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Rosenblum gave a short speech extolling TV’s virtues while Vergara rotated.

The juxtaposition made for an amusing visual, and the audience in Los Angeles’ Nokia Theater hooted dutifully whenever Vergara’s backside faced it.

But a round of backlash awaited the duo the next day, as critics deemed the performance sexist and insulting. Chicago Tribune columnist Phil Rosenthal’s take was typical of the negative reactions:

The joke…ended up being that whatever rightful claim Rosenblum was making to television’s advances in many meaningful ways became nothing but white noise to distracted viewers. Some probably saw Vergara as eye candy. The rest saw her role in this as an affront.

For those critics, Vergara herself had two words: “Lighten up.”

And then, for good measure, some more words:

I think its absolutely the opposite [of sexist]. It means that somebody can be hot and also be funny and make fun of herself. I think it’s ridiculous that somebody started this—I know who she was—who has no sense of humor [and should] lighten up a little bit.

It’s not clear who the “she” of Vergara’s statement is. She didn’t clarify, and, since a whole host of critics, celebrities, and observers have raised questions about the pedestal, it seems like “she” refers to whomever Vergara heard offering criticism first.

One possibility: Katie Couric, who tweeted out her disbelief while the ceremony unfolded:

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