[Critique] “Loto-Méno”: the unsuspected political influence of Véronique Cloutier

Véronique Cloutier has been an adored star for almost 30 years and has always refrained from talking about politics. But by advocating loud and clear for the reimbursement of bioidentical hormones in Loto Meno, she set foot on this ground that was considered too radioactive by several public figures. A few months earlier, the presenter had already gotten wet by siding with the Black Lives Matter movement, not without receiving criticism. Véro, the queen of entertainment, would she metamorphose into a committed artist?

Loto Meno maybe the perception some of me had changed. Maybe they see me as more serious, more committed. But when I’m engaged, it stays very small. I’m still not Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette,” jokes the main interested person.

The fact remains that the unexpected outcome of the adventure Loto Meno made her realize the political influence she could have. Until recently, she was more or less aware of it. Even in the months following the release of the first three episodes of Loto Meno Last year, when the taboo surrounding menopause became a hot topic, Véronique Cloutier refused to take credit. She wasn’t leading the fight, she was just the spokesman, she happily repeated humbly.

I don’t like to talk about what I don’t know. To be honest, my political views didn’t become clearer until I was in my 40s. It used to not interest me and I was ashamed of it. That’s why I said very little. Today I take some of my positions better, but I don’t want to reveal everything. I choose my battles.

“I have to say today that yes [j’ai un poids politique], confides Véronique Cloutier with candor. I say it, but I don’t quite believe it yet. I can’t believe the twist that is Loto Meno taken. Even in my wildest dreams, we haven’t gone so far as to make things happen so quickly on a political level. I thought people wouldn’t take me seriously, people would see me as a simple variety show host who showed up with her glitter. †

Out of his comfort zone

In the epilogue of Loto Meno, posted this week on the Véro.tv platform, Health Minister Christian Dubé launched a bombshell by announcing that two types of bioidentical hormones would soon come under the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec. A huge victory for those who have been demanding for years that these treatments are available to everyone, starting with Véronique Cloutier, who, however, is under no illusions about the electoral calculation behind this announcement.

The host was fully aware of it when she met the health minister in what she describes as one of the most stressful interviews of her life. “I used to be so nervous. Interviewing a politician is not the same as interviewing Marc Messier for his new one one man show† The function of a politician is to be skillful, to dodge questions. And we talked about technical details that I wasn’t 100% mastered. I am not a journalist and I am not a documentary maker,” acknowledges Véronique Cloutier humbly, who has the impression that she has reached the end of her register as a presenter with Loto Meno

There is therefore no question of making committed documentaries a niche for the rest of his career. Or Loto Meno is that the project started out of a personal quest. She wants to continue to use this political influence, the magnitude of which she has just measured, but sparingly. Like when she chose not to appear on the cover of the magazine that bears her name for the first time in the summer of 2020, and in the aftermath preferred to have 11 black women in the cover photo, in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. . of George Floyd’s death.

At the age of 47, Véronique Cloutier, while speaking out more often than before on social issues, remains hesitant to move on to more political issues. You will never hear her express her opinion on the third link or on the reform of Law 101. She will never publicly support any political party. Véronique Cloutier is not Lise Payette, who went from variety show host to minister to polemicist.

“I don’t like to talk about what I don’t know. To be honest, my political views didn’t become clearer until I was in my 40s. It used to not interest me and I was ashamed of it. That’s why I said very little. Today I take some of my positions better, but I don’t want to reveal everything. I choose my fights,” says the one who left school after CEGEP to become a VJ at Musique Plus.

Vero 2.0

In her own words, Véronique Cloutier was unable to name party leaders at the time, let alone situate left and right on the political spectrum. A lot has changed since then. Political or not, it’s clear that his public image has gained credibility as his palette has expanded. Certainly since Tou.tv launched the Véro.tv platform in 2016, which allowed it to conduct in-depth interviews with Mirrorand even to reconnect to the game with eye of the storm

It is also Véro.tv who gave him the opportunity to dabble in documentaries, with Loto Menobut also with the series Shadow and light, a reflection on fame. A third documentary, which will focus on rumors in the artistic community, is currently in the works.

Véronique Cloutier owes this risk appetite mainly to her husband, Louis Morissette, without whom she could very well have confined herself to the great varieties after Fury† “I never had a career plan. It was Louis who got me to do the stage, to do Bye, to launch a platform. Without him, my career would have picked up steam, because until recently the big variety shows were no longer popular ”, remembers the presenter, who will celebrate her 30-year career next year.

The moment she crosses this symbolic milestone, she will be at the helm of Zenith, presented as a major intergenerational music competition to be broadcast on Radio-Canada in January. A homecoming for the host.

Loto Meno

Available since May 25 for Tou.tv Extra subscribers

To be seen in video

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