The Internet Is Calling Mindy Kaling's Cropped Elle Cover Racist and 'Fat-ist'

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Mindy Kaling's "Elle" magazine cover is being called racist and "fat-ist."

Elle magazine is in hot water yet again over fat-ist claims.

For its February 2014 Women in TV Issue, the fashion mag staple awarded individual covers to funny ladies Zooey Deschanel, Amy Poehler, Allison Williams, and Mindy Kaling.

But one of these things is not like the other.

Kaling, the creator and star of Fox's sitcom "The Mindy Project," is shown in a closely cropped, black and white photo, while her comedienne peers dazzle in full-color, fully-body shots. 

Jezebel and the Twittersphere are harpooning Elle for its artistic direction, which sends the message, "If you're not white and skinny, smile for your monochrome close-up."

Kaling's been on a meteoric rise to fame since her early days as confident and clueless Kelly Kapoor on "The Office." She wrote a New York Times bestselling memoir, hooked 2.6 million followers on Twitter, and created Fox's sitcom, "The Mindy Project." The sophomore series was snubbed for a Golden Globe nomination, but has secured a cult following, similar to Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's diehard fan bases.

This isn't the first time "Elle" has triggered an Internet firestorm for its treatment of curvy women.

In October, it covered up "Bridesmaids" star Melissa McCarthy in an oversized gray trenchcoat. McCarthy later said that she picked the coat out of the fashion closet.

Back in 2010, Oscar-nominated actress Gabourey Sidibe graced the 25th anniversary of the magazine's October issue. Bloggers accused them of botching her weave and lightening her skin tone in the photo.

Clearly, the brand hasn't learned its lesson.

Here's "Girls" actress, Allison Williams.

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And "Parks and Recreation" wonder woman, Amy Poehler.

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amy poehler elle magazine cover

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Even Leslie Knope gets a little frisky.


"Elle" released this statement to E! News:

"Mindy looks sexy, beautiful and chic. We think it is a striking and sophisticated cover and are thrilled to celebrate her in our Women in TV Issue."

Kaling also defended the cover, taking to Twitter on Tuesday:

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Twitter/@mindykaling

Some are speculating that, like in the McCarthy incident dubbed "Jacket-Gate," Kaling could have requested these specific art choices. The Gloss' Julia Sonenshein writes:

"For all we know, Kaling directed the whole shoot. Does it matter? The message is still the same: we treat a certain type of woman differently than the other celebrities in her cohort. Kaling is different  based on an arbitrary set of rules, so we’ll treat her as such."

Do you think Kaling really stamped it with her seal of approval? 



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