The End of Superficiality?

Take two deeply unfortunate but unrelated situations—the recession is making people spend less on cosmetic surgery and Dr. Drew Pinsky has a book to plug—and you have the basic ingredients for the Daily News' marginally convincing state-of-the-nation argument today: that America has abandoned its obsession with beauty, glamour, and celebrities in favor of "what's important."

We're willing to overlook the fact that the accompanying photo of "superstar Julia Roberts" embracing "dressed-down style" shows her looking precisely as badly dressed as she's been since 1990. But the thesis really falls apart when the poor ratings of The City are marshaled as evidence: Not only is it preposterous to categorize Whitney Port's "brand of beauty" as "skin deep" when the closing scene of the season—when she told Jay she didn't love him—was a literal tableau of female empowerment, but Diane von Furstenberg's maxim, "absence is to love as wind is to fire"? Possibly the wisest words ever spoken on network television.

Forget plastic surgery - casual, Plain Jane style is set to reign [NYDN]