Over the past couple of weeks, actor Erin Moriarty — best known for playing the superhero Starlight in The Boys on Amazon Prime Video — has been in the news not because of any new project she's involved in, but because people online have been looking at pictures of her and speculating about whether she's had plastic surgery, often in a dehumanizing and belittling way.
To be clear, there's no conclusive evidence about whether Moriarty has had plastic surgery or not — a plastic surgeon opined that she hasn't had any "major surgery," for what it's worth — but if she has, so what? Moriarty is a public figure, but the discourse around her appearance has gone well beyond any "if you can't take the heat get out of the kitchen" sorts of excuses.
Case in point: former Fox news host and current online person Megyn Kelly talked about Moriarty on her podcast, saying Moriarty had an "addition" to cosmetic procedures, which Kelly said were a "social illness." She held up what she called a “relatively recent” photo of Moriarty which she compared to more recent one to prove her point. “I thought, ‘is this an AI-generated face’… but apparently it’s real,” Kelly said.
Moriarty responded on her Instagram, pointing out that the "before" photo Kelly used was actually from over a decade ago from "before I was of LEGAL DRINKING AGE...maybe do some research that would take 30 seconds."
Moriarty also called Kelly "Vought incarnate," referring to the amoral corporation on The Boys that has a very Fox News-esque media arm. After all of this, Moriarty has decided to step back from social media. “Social media was my ability to connect with fans,” she wrote. “To share news or updates. But I’m deciding to invest my energy into my work.”
"You don't have to believe me when I saw that these videos are absolutely false. [B]ut the way this has been spoken about, the way I have been spoken to, I will not accept."
The Boys will return for season 4 sometimes this year on Amazon Prime Video.