Jillian Michaels calls her GoDaddy ad “tragic”; Joan Rivers says it’s her body

Departing The Biggest Loser trainer Jillian Michaels appeared in ads for GoDaddy that aired during the Super Bowl last night, as did Celebrity Apprentice winner Joan Rivers. Like most of the company’s ads that objectify women for absolutely no reason at all except to be edgy and drive traffic to its web site, the ads featured both women partially naked–and Joan Rivers insists that the body in the ad was her own, not a model’s.

Joan Rivers’ ad features her as the surprise ending, as she’s revealed by Jillian Michaels and Danica Patrick to be the latest “GoDaddy girl,” i.e. woman who’s willing to let the company pay them to show their body but pretend that it’s not just for titillation. After it aired, Joan insisted on Twitter, “Yes, yes, yes, it’s my body in the GoDaddy ad.” But Access Hollywood reported that “the spot that features the 77-year-old’s head on the body of 25-year-old actress/model Tabitha Taylor.”

The second ad has Jillian and Danica pretending to object to being objectified: “We are not doing it!” Jillian says, even as Danica reflects on all of the previous objectification she’s done. That scene, which also includes an appearance by an effeminate male stylist (because why reduce just women to stereotypes?), ends with them going to the set and people freaking out, because they appear to be naked. They do this reluctantly because they are “contractually obligated,” someone says.

The reveal, in the ad posted online, is also shown in Jillian posted a photo of that non-televised part to her Facebook page: she’s wearing part of the company’s logo to cover her body. Jillian marked that with the caption “tragic” and tagged it “notquittingmydayjob.”

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.