Before you start reading this article, assume that I am not nor will I ever be okay with "fat-shaming" since I myself had experienced being bullied because of my body shape. There's no doubt that the new Netflix drama Insatiable has received serious backlash when the trailer was released and I wasn't surprised. When I first watched the trailer, I felt an ache in my stomach as I remember the things that I've experienced while growing up as a chubby girl, and although I have lose a lot of weight during my college years, the insecurity didn't leave me that easily.
I was sure that I didn't want to watch it, until my curiosity got the best of me as I started watching the first episode. Just from the first three episodes, I already realized that my assumption about this series was wrong. Truth be told, it did have fat-shaming moments. However, they did not support the idea–it's actually about going against it. The main character Patty Bladell (played by Debby Ryan) was bullied for her body so when she lost weight, she thought she would start being happy but she ended up not being content with anything.
But other than that, the series also focused on fake relationships and presenting how awful our society's beauty standards are and why it should change. There were also characters who were nice to her and reminded her that her body shouldn't affect the way she looks at herself, proving that most of the time it is her who's bullying herself. It's a series about self-confidence issues rather than fat-shaming, and that's why I don't regret giving Insatiable a chance. Here's more of what I learned:
*Disclaimer: Spoilers ahead.*
1. Real beauty should be defined on what's on the inside.
As the series goes on, her best friend Nonnie revealed that Patty may be nice but she also gets way ahead of herself when she's feeling insecure, proving that Patty is not the meanest person you'll ever meet but she's also not the nicest. She had also shared all the things Patty had made her do and as she goes on she realized that Patty was full of herself. Patty always thought that when she loses weight, people would start to treat her right, but most of them still didn't. It was because she was a selfish person and even though she had lost a lot of weight, her personality didn't change. Sadly, as much as we put importance on what's on the inside, most people still take that for granted.
2. The characters should learn that respect begets respect.
One of the things that I noticed with most of the characters especially Patty and Bob Armstrong is that they don't actually show respect to other people. When Patty described Bob as her soulmate because they have the same beliefs, that's not the only thing they have in common. They're also both so insecure and selfish, and I couldn't stand the fact that they're making themselves the victim when in fact most of the time it's them who start the drama just so they could get what they want. I can't attest to the Patty that was fat before, but she definitely is an awful person now. They don't like Dixie and Regina, but they're also doing the same to others. The only character that I think is respectful here is Nonnie, she's nice to the people that's nice to her and doesn't take the people around her for granted which is something most of the characters did.
3. They showed us that suicide is never an option.
There were a lot of times that Bob planned to kill himself because things got out of control. Instead of focusing on ways to solve the situation, the first thing that comes into his mind is ending his life which luckily gets stopped every time Patty calls him. Yes, they're each other's life saver. I still haven't figure out why they were so alike or is their experience just foreshadowing what would happen to their relationship in the future, but the series just showed that suicide should not be a solution to anything. If Bob did continue killing himself, what would happen to Patty now? They might have made the topic a bit satire, but we get the message. After all the mishaps that keeps on happening to them, there's always a silver lining at the end of it.
4. Loving ourselves should be our number one priority.
There were a lot of misconceptions about the series focusing on making their lead skinny for her to finally get everything she wants. But truth be told, it was the complete opposite. Patty and the rest of the characters were a representation of our society, they care so much about their image to the point of ruining themselves just to please other people. From making sure they look pretty and rich to lying about who they really, they forget to focus on what would truly make them happy which is loving themselves.
After watching the series, Insatiable is truly a show about problematic people. The characters have terrible personalities and I admit that there's a lot of issues that were played as satire that some scenes had become too much to watch. But before you attack Insatiable, we shouldn't forget that it's only a series, not a reality show. Just like Riverdale and 13 Reasons Why, we shouldn't be mad at the stars who played the characters nor the people behind it. There's a lot of awful things happening to our society and we think the show just showed it in a way we would understand more instead of sugarcoating it from what's sadly controlling our lives—our beauty standards and fake relationships.
ALSO READ: #GlowGurl: How I Learned To Embrace My Natural Beauty
Photos from Netflix Media Center