If you look at my own Pajiba 10 ballot over the last six or seven years, the roster of selections has changed, but there have been three constant presences on my list: Ira Glass, Kathryn Hahn, and Melanie Lynskey. I’ve always adored Lynskey — dating back to Heavenly Creatures, where that asshole Harvey Weinstein pulled her from the press circuit because, he thought, “nobody wanted to hear from [her].” That adoration turned into crush during HBO’s Togetherness, an underappreciated gem of a series from the Duplass Bros. that I absolutely adored. I was completely heartbroken when HBO pulled the plug on it.
That crush went full-blown after hearing her on Marc Maron’s podcast — she is one of the loveliest, sweetest celebrities in Hollywood, and she is married to one of the loveliest, sweetest men in Hollywood (Jason Ritter, who made a special appearance on her podcast episode with Justin Long) and even her ex-husband, Jimmi Simpson, is one of the loveliest, sweetest people in the world. She is the whole goddamn package, and I am heartened that she’s getting the due she has for so long deserved in Yellowjackets after underappreciated turns in Togetherness, I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore, and Castle Rock.
But also, who is this unknown producer on Yellowjackets that would dare to suggest that Lynskey should be anything other than what she is, which is perfection? Yet that is a goddamn thing that happened, according to a Rolling Stone interview, via Vulture:
Lynskey revealed that a member of the crew made a critical comment on her body during production. “They were asking me, ‘What do you plan to do? I’m sure the producers will get you a trainer. They’d love to help you with this.’”
How can we get this man’s ability to produce permanently revoked? Thankfully, Lynskey’s Yellowjackets co-stars came to her defense, as she told Rolling Stone. “Tawny Cypress, Christina Ricci, and Juliette Lewis supported her when she shared what happened; Lewis even wrote a letter to producers on Lynskey’s behalf.” Damn straight.
Lynskey, meanwhile, channeled her frustration into her Yellowjackets character, telling RS that she “did find it important that this character is just comfortable and sexual and not thinking or talking about it, because [she wanted] women to be able to watch it and be like, ‘Wow, she looks like me and nobody’s saying she’s the fat one.’ That representation is important.”
Indeed. Perfection should be represented onscreen.