An outspoken comedian has slammed Dame Helen Mirren for being too “smug” about looking good in later life, criticising stars like her and Madonna for ruining middle-age for ordinary women across the globe.
Speaking to the Daily Mirror in the UK, comedian Jenny Eclair detailed the things that gripe her about growing older and accused celebrities, specifically singling out The Queen star Mirren, of setting unrealistic standards for women to remain “sexy until death”.
“Helen Mirren is a bit smug about middle-age,” the 58-year-old said. “I hate all this sort of ‘I’m still sexy ‘til I die thing’.
“During Madonna’s 60th celebrations, I felt like everyone was demonising the cardigan – it made me really angry. I can wear a sodding cardi if I want to.”
She added: “I hate the feeling that I don’t count because I am a dumpy middle-aged woman. It’s outrageous, not being able to get served at the bar, when, as middle-aged women, our need is greater.
“I get a bit upset and depressed every time I look in the mirror, or catch a glimpse of certain sides of me in the TV monitor.”
Mirren, who is 73 years old, still catches the eye of far-younger men, including US rapper 50 Cent who has professed his love for the Hollywood icon on numerous occasions.
Just last month he told American chat show host Conan O’Brien that Mirren’s alluring stare continues to capture his attention. “I just saw her in the south of France…she just looked at me and there was this interesting thing going on in her eyes,” the rapper said with a grin.
“There is this confidence thing there from being tested and proven. She looks at you like she knows she’s sexy.”
Eclair, who took part in the UK version of reality show I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! also discussed getting grumpier as you age, detailing her dislike for bad service in restaurants and how alert she has become to people with bad – or no – manners.
“People expect me to be a grumpy old woman and I’m often able to fulfil their fantasies,” she said. “I take umbrage at bad service and am very alert to manners – perhaps a middle-aged woman’s antenna is particularly acute.”
She added: “It’s also the small annoyances: the litter thrown out of a car window, the unexpected item in the bagging area, or trying to buy trousers. Some days conspire against you – you run yourself a bath and it’s cold, and then the WiFi doesn’t work and someone’s put an empty mayonnaise jar back in the fridge. That’s before breakfast, and by this time I want to kill, and it’s only ten past 9.
“I’ve got tendonitis from clenching my fist all day long, shaking it at presenters talking nonsense on breakfast television or rude people on public transport.”