Lifestyle

A Netflix exec has defended 'Insatiable' over fat-shaming accusations

Reviews for the show are under a strict embargo.

By Susannah Guthrie
insatiable netflix

It seems an angry petition and thousands of outspoken social media users are yet to dissuade Netflix from airing its upcoming show, Insatiable.

The series, starring former Disney actress Debby Ryan, has been accused of promoting "fat-shaming" for its depiction of a teenage girl named Patty who miraculously becomes popular after losing weight.

Once "skinny" and a pageant queen, Patty sets out to exact revenge on anyone who bullied her when she was overweight.

The show isn't due to hit screens until August 10, but it's already prompted a shit storm of outrage and a petition to have it cancelled has garnered over 200,000 signatures.

Now, someone from Netflix has finally responded and it seems they're sticking to their guns and releasing the damn thing.

Speaking at a TV critics conference, Netflix's vice president of original content Cindy Holland said the show was really about being "comfortable with yourself".

According to IndieWire, Cindy said Insatiable's creator, Lauren Gussis, "felt very strongly about exploring those issues, based on her experience, in an over-the-top satirical way".

She also said that criticism of fat-shaming was "embedded within the show".

Debby Ryan stars a Patty.
Debby Ryan stars a Patty.

Whether or not the show has managed to pull off this tricky balancing act is still unknown, because reviewers aren't allowed to write anything about it until the streaming service lifts the embargo on August 8.

But a brave few have hinted at their thoughts on Twitter and it's not looking good:

Gussis also released a statement defending her work, writing: "When I was 13, I was suicidal. My best friends dumped me, and I wanted revenge. I thought if I looked pretty on the outside, I'd feel like I was enough. Instead, I developed an eating disorder…and the kind of rage that makes you want to do dark things.

"I'm still not comfortable in my skin… but I'm trying to share my insides — to share my pain and vulnerability through humour. That's just my way.

"This show is a cautionary tale about how damaging it can be to believe the outsides are more important — to judge without going deeper. Please give the show a chance."

We will watch it tentatively, but we're bracing for disappointment.

Stay tuned because, either way, you'll have your answer on August 8.