As soon as Netflix dropped the trailer for its new show Insatiable starring Debbie Ryan and Alyssa Milano, the entire internet erupted with rage, and for good reason.
The trailer portrayed a young fat girl who lost 70 lbs in three months after getting her jaw wired shut. Once she’s skinny and “pretty” by society’s standards, she decides to enact her revenge on all the people who wronged her.
Based on the trailer, it seemed clear that just everything about it was wrong. The show seemed to celebrate and reward classical beautiful people and mock big girls. It was pretty bad.
After all of this went down, the creator Lauren Guiss went on interview after interview trying to defend herself. She told Refinery29,
“It was very important to me to tell that story through comedy because that’s just my way — and not through a traditional hero or heroine. I worked on Dexter for the entire run of the show. I learned to tell stories through the dark mind of a killer and still make an audience root for that person. So I wasn’t afraid of pushing some buttons and making people a little uncomfortable in the interest of getting them talking.”
She added that the show was inspired by her own experiences growing up big and getting bullied for it. She said,
“I was so angry for such a long time and that was the thing that separated me from other people. I was hoping this would be a way to bring people together instead of making them feel separate.”
So after all this, I decided to see for myself. My goal was to make it through at least the first three episodes so I good get an accurate view of the show. But I couldn’t even make it more than 30 minutes into the pilot. Yes, it was that bad.
Let’s put aside all the body shaming for one moment, just for a minute.
The script was terrible, the acting was bad, the fake accents were appalling, and worst of all, it just wasn’t funny.
The creator claims she wants to use humor to explore dark topics, even if it makes people uncomfortable. But all the jokes fell flat and the jokes were just plain stupid and frankly lazy.
I really appreciate when creators and writers are willing to tackle complicated subjects, even if it’s controversial. Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why actually does an amazing job of this by revealing the shocking realities of teenage suicide. So done right, TV can be a great medium to tackle relevant issues.
But Insatiable is just so incredibly bad in every single way. The creator has convinced herself she’s doing something edgy, but in reality, she’s creating pure crap.
Before you can tackle tough issues, like society’s warped beauty ideals, you have to have a solid foundation. That means good writing and great casting.
I hope this show dies and dies hard. And if you were thinking of giving it a try, don’t bother.
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Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, and Tiger Beat. Her favorite Housewife is Bethenny Frankel (by far!), but when she’s not watching RHONY, you can probably find her hanging with her kitty Tom or tweeting at Sen. Chuck Schumer.