On Monday morning, Schumer tweeted the image above. It was taken by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz for the 2016 Pirelli calendar, both a cutting-edge technology and noted feminist document. Salon columnist Elias Isquith wryly noted on Twitter that a few hours later, the internet was unanimous: the photo was good. It was good for Schumer. It was good for the sisterhood.
To paraphrase Elle Woods, the laws of social media traffic are simple and finite. Famous female proper name + vaguely pro-woman uplift + a little skin = viral success. Just don’t think too hard about it. “I felt I looked more beautiful than I’ve ever felt in my life, and I felt like it looked like me,” Schumer says in the promotional video for the tire company’s promotional calendar. Pirelli usually features naked models, but this year features women with more diverse and powerful jobs, such as actresses, and only two are naked. Progress!
“Beautiful, gross, strong, thin, fat, pretty, ugly, sexy, disgusting, flawless, woman,” Schumer tweeted. If you squint really hard and are on a deadline, you can find some real deep meaning there. The tweet “shed light on what it means to be a woman,” Bustle argued. “The real power in our existence as women is that we get to decide which labels we embrace or completely ignore, and that’s more beneficial than anything society can project onto us.” Sure, why not. Who cares what Janet Yellen does to interest rates? I want to know that she feels flawless.