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Culture Check: 'Insatiable' struggles with body positivity

by Baylie Clevenger The opinions and views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the opinion of Byte or Byte’s editorial board. With the body positivity movement on the rise, it is no surprise that the new Netflix original titled Insatiable has received heavy amounts of backlash. The show centers around a young girl named Patty, played by former Disney star Debby Ryan, who is overweight. She is constantly bullied for the way she looks and seems to be miserable because of it. In the first episode of the show, she is harassed by a homeless man about her weight. After he harasses her, she punches him in the face and he punches her back, breaking her jaw. This causes her to have her jaw wired shut for three months. During these three months she is on a liquid-only diet and loses 70 pounds. After her significant weight loss, Patty becomes a different person entirely. Even though she seems more confident now, there are many aspects of the show which are stereotypical and even dangerous for some viewers. I decided to examine these aspects of the show and talk about how they interfere with the idea and movement of body positivity.

1. The idea of an extreme diet and rapid weight loss

Image from Insider

Mayo Clinic

2. The idea that being overweight always means being miserable

“I spent my entire adolescence hating my body, the target of bullying and cruel jokes. So, while my classmates were out losing their virginity, I was at home, stuffing another hole, binging my brains out and watching every Drew Barrymore movie ever made. With Nonnie, my only friend.”

Image from Junkee

3. Beauty is the epitome of worth


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