Saturday, January 15, 2011

What have they done to Sela Ward?


Decided to check out CSI: NEW YORK last night. Hadn’t seen it since a friend was killed on it a few years ago. I won’t watch CSI: MIAMI because David Caruso is such an utter joke. And the original CSI is just not as good without William Peterson. But if it’s on and I’m already seen this week’s HOARDERS, I will check it out. It’s amazing the budgets those police forces must have. They each contain every piece of whiz-bang equipment ever invented. Those labs must cost two billion dollars. They’ll have a giant Hubble telescope type contraption that measures tire wear based on skid marks. How often would you use that? Who approved that acquisition?

So I sat down to watch CSI: NEW YORK. I don’t know the characters but so what? They’re all interchangeable. You got the male star who once had a feature career, the female star, and a gaggle of J. Crew models who serve as the field investigators along with cute television-acceptable nerds who work in the lab. Gary Sinise is solid. He’s like Greg Kinnear but always better.

What I didn’t know was that Sela Ward is now on the show. I have to say that when she first came on the screen I let out an audible gasp. My God, who did her face work? I was horrified. Squinty eyes, skin pulled way back – whatever softness and expression she once had is gone. With her bone structure and plastic surgery she now looks like Jack Lord. I found this so sad I could no longer enjoy the program. No matter what she said she had this odd smirk on her face. She’s consoling a grieving mother and involuntarily smiling.


Sela Ward is a beautiful woman. Yes, she’s now in her mid-50s but so what? Without any help, she’d be beautiful in her 70s. So she’ll never be offered the part of Gidget? Big deal. The real beauty of Sela Ward was how real she was. She always played smart, she always played sexy, but you knew there was a real person in there. Now she’s a Real Housewife of Beverly Hills.

Maybe television won’t let actresses age gracefully. And with HD you can’t get away with soft focus anymore. Perhaps if Sela Ward didn’t dye her hair jet black and have her cheek bones lifted to above her eyes she couldn’t have gotten that role on CSI: NEW YORK. It can be an ugly heartless business. So it saddens me that talented people like Sela Ward have to sign a Faustian-like contract with the devil… known to some as Beelzebub, known to them as Botox.

47 comments:

Ed Blonski said...

In response to the title of your post, "they" didn't do anything to Ms. Ward.

I mean, I highly doubt they tied her up, sedated her, and performed plastic surgery on her.

She chose to do this to herself.

An argument can be made that she feels she HAS to do this to stay employed and competitive in the business.

Which, in the overall scheme of things, sucks the big one.

Ed Blonski said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Blaze said...

Hollywood is just the shiny, sharp spear tip of the whole youth-worshipping, age-fearing society we live in.

I heard a couple of 50 year old peers debating the musical merits of Lady Gaga vs Katy Perry. At our age, it was as ridiculous and irrelevant as listening to them debate about the merits of finger painting vs play-doh. Each stage of life has its own rewards and merits. Just embrace it and quit focussing on the one "golden time".

=====
A recent episode of "Criminal Minds" shot a zinger that summed up the "CSI" gaggle for me. The two FBI agents are in Nevada, looking a trampled crime scene with scorn. One offers "It's these crime scene techs playing cop again."

"CSI: NY" is the worst for having lab monkeys hunt down suspects, conduct interrogations, and lead SWAT teams thru doorways. All while using equipment, as you say, the starship Enterprise couldn't match.

Anonymous said...

Friday night ... where veteran shows go to die.

Anonymous said...

David Lee here.

This brings to mind the time said actress was on an episode of FRASIER I directed. At one point she called and left a message at my office. My assistant Jeff misunderstood her as the note said the "The Seal Awards" had called.

Nathan said...

I not a fan of the CSI franchise, but I watch one of them every once in a while. Last week, I noticed that the regular cops weren't even getting called to the scene when the crime was in progress.

I'm assuming that paying for all of those shiny props has used up the budget for uniformed day players who only get to say, "Nothing's been touched. The scene is just the way we found it".

Kelly said...

My husband has always had a thing for Sela Ward. We are not CSI NY watchers, but I did think about tuning in last night. When I noticed that Ward was on the show, I decided I wasn't in the mood to see my husband's hungry labrador face. Apparently, I needn't have worried. Frankly, I'd take my husband's eager visage over Sela's mask-like one.

Dana King said...

That's depressing. You ruined my day.

I remember back when she was doing cell phone ads. I forget which company, but they also happened to be my carrier. They pissed me off once, and i said I'd only renew if Sela brought my new phone to me personally.

I ended up switching companies.

Anonymous said...

Related to what Ed Blonski said - I'm sure she does feel she has to resort to plastic surgery to stay employed. I'm an actress and I see it constantly. I'm 22 so the pressure around my age is more of the stay-anorexically-thin variety but it's hard because you see what the girls look like at your auditions, and what the people who actually get the jobs look like. There's a lot of pressure to keep up, whether it's something you want for yourself or not.

Anonymous said...

Oh and I guess I should add - I'm already scared to death of aging at age 22. Growing older in Hollywood sucks.

Gary said...

She was the best supermodel, biologist I've ever seen.

VP81955 said...

From that pic, it looks as if she mutated into a brunette Marcia Cross (nothing against Ms. Cross, an attractive and bright woman, but her "look" isn't transferable to Ward's).

Stan said...

Agree with you 100% on this one, Ken.

It always amazes me that aging celebrities - female or male - who get horrific cosmetic surgery (which is most of it) actually think they're getting away with something, i.e., making themselves look better or, at least, more "marketable".

I'm sure we can all think of examples of actors and actresses who have "marketed" themselves right out of the business because they are virtually un-shootable from any angle.

Getting old sucks, but you have to choose your look:

"Mature" or "Mutant"?

Jen said...

I was watching the show with my mom last night and she made the exact same comments about her plastic surgery.

It's sad if she feels the need to get it to compete, but I don't understand why people would do something that would so obviously change their face, and sadly, for the worse.

Marg Helgenberger also has a totally different face now and I find it hard to watch her on screen.

William C Bonner said...

When Sela Ward came on CSI:NY I watched, and wondered why I'd remember ogling her. Perhaps I should dig out my copy of The Fugitive and see what she looked like before. Maybe then I'd remember how good she looked.

Quite often I have the pessimist view of beauty, in that I see how a woman may look at age 60 when she's only 25. A major part comes down to how a person carries themself.

-bee said...

Being that the super-duper, futuristic high-tech crime lab in CSI New York is like a plastic-surgerized version of crappy real-life NYC police buildings - perhaps ALL the regular cast members on that show should have mandatory plastic surgery so they will better fit in with their surroundings.

Charles H. Bryan said...

If I knew anyone who was considering cosmetic surgery, I'd have two words to say:

Bruce Jenner.

Ref said...

The whole CSI thing has had a negative effect on criminal prosecution. Many prosecutors now begin their opening statements to juries with "Real life is not like CSI." They have to explain how hard it is to get evidence processed, that the best they can frequently do is rule out some possibilities, rather than finding a certainty, and that crime labs like those don't really exist.

benson said...

I remember Sela Ward from one of my favorite episodes of Night Court, where she played Marky Post's old friend and they all end up partying with Mel Torme.

I realize no one stays the same, but it's sad that Hollywood pressure forces these beautiful women to disfigure themselves. Can anyone find any actor or actress who truly looks better than they did before the surgery? And Marlo Thomas' nose job doesn't count.

RCP said...

I imagine it must be hard not to give in to the pressure - and I suspect most regret doing so once they see the results.

As with every rule, there are exceptions. Bea Arthur (granted, not everybody's idea of a "babe") looked better in her 60s than she did in her 40s. I think even Angela Lansbury and Betty White have had some modest work done - either that or they have great genes. Jacqueline Bisset and Julie Christie look in the vicinity of their ages, and if they've had anything done it's not obvious. Both are beautiful in a more transcendant way (does that sound patronizing? It's not meant to) - and still working.

Joey H said...

For another example of horrible plastic surgery, check out piics of Nikki Cox. Her lips are frightening.

Tony said...

This remnds me of something about a similar show, NCIS: my dad's job sometimes takes him to the real NCIS, and while Hollywood portrays it as a slick modern office with all the technology in the world, he tells me the real NCIS is... a trailer.

Anonymous said...

Botox face is all the rage in television and film. It makes me sad and breaks my heart. Sela Ward looks desperate and ridiciulous now. Pathetic. The cast of Desperate Housewives is am hour long advertisement for Botox cosmetic and injectibles aka fillers. Have you looked at the faces of our local newswomen? They all look like pornstars and hookers. Porn pout and frozen fugly face. Whatever happened to aging gracefully? With DIGNITY? Nicole Kidman, once a great natural beauty also went downthe path of face altering madness. The only thing I have altered on my person is my haircolor. I would never put Botox in my body. My breasts are real. I am the minority. Most men also plug into the face madness. Someone mentioned Bruce Jenner. The list is long. Ken, you are right. Please write more on this subject each week. Please and thanks!

Tom Quigley said...

Maybe they could explain the way she looks by including the following dialogue in one of their episodes:

MACK: My God, where did you get that face?

JOSEPHINE: Oh, I just took it from someone in the morgue who didn't need it any longer.

Phillip B said...

If you believe their bios Kim Cattrall, Carrie Fisher, Geena Davis, Joan Allen, Linda Hamilton, Dana Delaney, and Mimi Rogers were all born in 1956 - the same year as Sela Ward.

There are not enough CSI spin-off's to employ them all, but with the possible exception of Joan Allen you can imagine anyone of them might be happy with a supporting role on network television in 2011.

Baseball players start to be referred to as grizzled veterans in their mid-30's, and it may well be hard to be an ingenue beyond that age as well.

Life is not fair. Tom Hanks was also born in 1956....

DwWashburn said...

Isn't it ironic that you are slamming Hollywood because they are superficial and nearly force actresses to have plastic surgery and the entire article is about how Ms. Ward looks?

I have never met the woman but I know she is from the South (score one for Sela -- I'm from the South too), I have read her book Homesick and found it to be touching and moving, and I know Ms. Ward set up a telethon to help our Katrina victims that were not living in the highly publicized New Orleans area.

These things make Ms. Ward beautiful. And no cosmetic surgery will change that.

rhl said...

Don't forget Marg Helgenberger on the original CSI. Compare the way her face looked when she started on the show with its frozen, plasticized appearance in more recent years. It's another transformation of a beautiful woman into a scary simulacrum of her former self.

mcp said...

The problem all CSI shows have is that they use gadgets to handle exposition. Their writers use them as a crutch. They'll have an actor bat around windows on a giant plasma while telling us boring facts.

The worst instance of this was on CSI Miami. Two techs were at a crime scene. One says to the other that they have to get videotape back to the lab to analyze it. The other says that's not necessary because he brought the "AV Hummer," which is a entire special effects house that can go off road.

This isn't new. In the novel "Goldfinger" Ian Fleming has Goldfinger explain his his plan to rob Fort Knox with the help of a simple map. In the movie, Goldfinger turns an entire room into a scale model of Fort Knox.

jlhpisces said...

The Jack Lord comparison is priceless, maybe she can get a spot on the new Hawaii 5-0...

Jeremy Dylan said...

mcp wrote:
This isn't new. In the novel "Goldfinger" Ian Fleming has Goldfinger explain his his plan to rob Fort Knox with the help of a simple map. In the movie, Goldfinger turns an entire room into a scale model of Fort Knox.
1/16/2011 6:15 AM

Yes, but to be fair, they also made his plan actually make sense in the film.

Matt Patton said...

The comment about Tom Hanks reminds me that Sela Ward was one of his co-stars in the film NOTHING IN COMMON. By the way, Hanks looked like a paunchy salesman at the Golden Globes tonight.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a police officer, but I would like to ask you some questions.

Anonymous said...

Thank you all for your comments. I loved Sela Ward on House; I was curious to see how she looks now. I was startled by her cosmetic surgery and googled to find whether I was hallucinating or someone else could confirm how she's destroyed her unique beauty. Her formerly gorgeous face now looks distorted. Sad.

Anonymous said...

She got new work for the later episodes to repair the bad work you see on the earlier episodes of CSI:NY

Anonymous said...

Sela Ward has said she never had plastic surgery-Only Botox its not permanate. Hollywood is a youth driven business.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with your assessment. The Jack Lord comparison made me laugh -- and makes me sad. She's hard to take on this show, and I've always loved Sela Ward. But she looks so overly done (which is very sad and unnecessary) AND her Southern accent seems intentionally overplayed here. She's from the South, but I've NEVER heard her sound like that before. She seems to play on that as part of her role, which is so one dimensional -- just like her flat, expressionless face. And I hate how from day one she acted like she was big buddies with everyone on the cast, even though they'd been together for years. It all seems so fake. Sadly her character totally matches her new look.

Anonymous said...

Sela Ward is one of the worst actresses ever! Emily Proctor of CSI Miami is probably the worst actress but Sela Ward is a close second. Neither changes expressions and merely reads the lines of the script like a first grader.

Donna said...

Sela Ward's plastic surgery is not very becoming of her. I just started watching the movie "Stepfather" and thought I was watching a Sela Ward look-alike. But the more I watched, the more I knew it was her with very bad plastic surgery. Her face looks "stretched"; her lips look thinner; her nose looks crooked; her eyes look pulled back and she just looks like she's lost all warmth in her face. She's not beautiful anymore and that's sad.

LLLighthouse said...

Ken, you are right spot-on about Sela's appearance...sad...very sad. She had such a unique beauty and, I believe, would have aged very gracefully. I, too, could not watch.

Anonymous said...

Where is the picture of the ugly Sela Ward? I think she is still gorgeous. I don't see what you're talking about!!

AnimaRising55 said...

I just happened to watch a couple of episodes shot 12 months apart and thought she had to have cancer or something. Facial bloating like that is indicative of major emotional or physical trauma, called dock reaction (Hans Selye, The Stress of Life). My worry for her turned to shock when reading about the Botox. It has aged her, taken all the chiseled classical lines of her features and turned her into a hydrocephallic shaddow of her former self. While relieved to find she isn't terminally ill am horrified she would distort her lovely countenance for fear of a few character lines. C'mon Sela, Jessica Tandy never resorted to such nonsense neither should you.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm surprised at some of the comments about Sela Ward's appearance! I actually ended up here after doing a search trying to find out what type of cosmetic surgery she's had done because I think she looks great! I know I'm watching the same CSI-NY episodes as everyone else because there aren't that many with her in it. I'm very impressed with whatever work she's had done... I only wish I knew exactly what? I think she looks better now than she ever has.

ddblue said...

I just saw the House finale and the only way I knew the actress was Sela Ward was by her voice. What a shame. She was unique and attractive and now just looks like a freak.

Anonymous said...

Man, you need to take a couple of Tylenol and take a nap. Maybe you'll get up on the right side of the bed and your eyes will feel better. If you feel this way every day, maybe take the whole bottle.

Anonymous said...

I think you are all jealous that you don't have the money to keep your age from showing. I think if a person wants to have plastic surgery at any age, it is their business and no one elses. I think Sela Ward is a beautiful as she always was and she was on TV for many years on Sisters. Elaine

Holly said...

I, for one, am fascinated by Sela Ward's face. Sometimes she looks so scary and unnatural and yet,, other times she looks great. Most recently there was an episode where she was consoling another character who had cancer and her character was so sad, tears rolling down her face, etc. If you paused the screen she looked exactly like she was smiling, though. That's what is scary, I guess. As humans we can appreciate that something looks pretty or symmetrical or smooth but we are also naturally creeped-out by faces where the expressions do not match the emotions. Anyway, the thing that irritates me is how all of the CSI shows constantly degrade and made fun of corpses who have had plastic surgery. CSI Las Vegas just ridiculed this one TV newscaster. I wonder how the women on the show (most of whom have clearly had work done) feel towards the script-writers. No judgement either way, I just think the show shouldn't be making fun of the very thing they apparently require.

Anonymous said...

I actually gasped when i saw Sela Ward's face for the first time. It's the Joan Rivers look. And that is NOT a good thing. Heartbreaking. I look away when she is in the frame.

Look at Gary Sinise's face. Being who you are isn't part of Hollywood I suppose but I love the fact that he is getting older and looks it. Aren't we all getting older?