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HUGE Mistake

So, I kept hearing about Huge. A friend told me about it, and I saw it mentioned around the internets. But I ignored it or shrugged it off.

Why? Because I totally had it CONFUSED with that other fat comedy coming out, Mike & Molly, which I won't even bother linking. I had seen a preview for Mike & Molly, and it made roll my eyes so far back in my head that I could see my brain explode. It also made me want to cry, especially since Melissa McCarthy is involved. But I forgot the name, thought that was the show people were talking about (you gotta admit two shows about fat people is rare), and therefore I never actually read anything about Huge.

Then I was reading Lesley's shift in attitude about it over at Fatshionista, along with bits of an interview with Nicci Blonsky, and I was all, "Wait, this can't be the same show. Nicci Blonski? Fat camp? What happened to Melissa McCarthy?"

And that's when I decided I HADN'T seen previews for it and that what my friend said about the mention of fat-acceptance in a preview for HUGE could be, like, not a joke. Then off I went to see what all this was about.

Fat-related shows go in one of two three four boxes for me---1) You've got to be kidding me, so much fat hate...headxplosion (think Biggest Loser). 2) Errr, fatpos fail (think More to Love). 3) Mmmhmm, okay, there's something to this but it's also problematic and will probably irritate the piss out of me (think Drop Dead Diva). Or 4) Wow, this is kind of impressive, possibly radical enough for my tastes. I'm very fucking interested.

Let's be real, a TV show has never fallen in the 4th category. Not ever. Until now. Nicci Blonsky had me with her bad attitude, her purple blue-striped-hair and her generally rebelious temperment. The deal was sealed when they said it comes from the creators of My So-Called Life. A fat show in the vein of MSCL? I am THERE. I am also intrigued the an almost-all-fat cast.

Go here or here to watch the previews/videos, read the interview with Nicci Blonsky, and then tell me what you think.


PS--"I feel like inside me there's an even fatter person just trying to get out," may be one of my favorite lines ever. It also makes me think someone up in there might have a clue. I'm also interested in the gender/sexual orientation issues they are going to address, but admit I'm a little cynical about how that will turn out.

Help wanted | HUGE Misrepresentation

mailbean June 25th, 2010 | Link | Hmm. I don't know. Maybe the

Hmm. I don't know. Maybe the series wants to be cool and fat-accepting, but the question is: will it actually get it right, and if it does, will it be allowed to do so?

If you click on "Live Huge" on the bar on top of the ABC page (http://abcfamily.go.com/specials/live-huge/), you get a page that says: "...Here you’ll be given tips on how to eat nutritious snacks and meals, add exercise into your busy life, and build a stronger, more positive sense of self -- because living a healthy life means having healthy self-esteem too!"

That may sound a bit like HAES, which is fine. (Although, IMHO, giving diet and exercise advice on the related website kinda takes away from the self-acceptance message.) But then there's a recipes section with recipes from none other than Jamie Oliver....!?

I also noticed that it seems like the reason the main character doesn't want to lose weight is because her parents are "weight loss gurus". So, it seems like the theme with that character is that she's fat to spite her parents (and possibly that it would be possible for her to lose weight if she wasn't so rebellious?)

CarrieP's picture
CarrieP
June 25th, 2010 | Link | I'm cautiously optimistic

I'm cautiously optimistic about this one, if for no other reason than it seems to fairly accurately represent some of the things that I experienced at fat camp. The part about sneaking candy was a little cringeworthy buuuuuut...it did actually happen a few times at the camp I went to, so it'll all come down to how it is handled on the show. We'll just have to see.

I will say that it's nice to see a black female character who isn't a sassy stereotype. Also it's nice to see a whole fat cast with different kinds of fat bodies instead of just the one fat character. It makes it possible for us to see them all in terms of their actual personalities and characteristics instead of just fat.

withoutscene's picture
withoutscene
June 25th, 2010 | Link | The *really* optimistic

The *really* optimistic person inside of me hopes they use the scene about sneaking candy to point out the fact that if food's weren't FORBIDDEN people wouldn't hide shit and/or binge.

Notblue June 25th, 2010 | Link | Yes, I must agree with you.

Yes, I must agree with you. I had written off fats on t.v. ages ago...but? I dunno, I love the gal from "Samantha Who?" who's now going to be in "Mike & Molly" so I may actually watch an episode of it to really see if it's terrible (hopes not up). As for "Huge"? My expectations are low, but I'm hopeful. The poster is certainly different than the norm.
"Kind words are short and easy to speak but their echoes are truly endless." Mother Theresa

TigerHawk310 June 28th, 2010 | Link | The NYT Review is promising,

The NYT Review is promising, even if the review itself is a detestable attempt to link gainers/feeders with FA as a whole, despite them being completely irrelevant to the show which has no feederism in it. And we get wonderful lines like this:

But in truth the series can go only so far because a real sanctioning of teenage obesity would feel like a renewed condoning of the subprime mortgage market. Will is by no means a happy girl; she longs for parental approval, and implicitly we understand that if she had it, she wouldn’t be fighting the world one pint of ice cream at a time. Ultimately the message that only the discontented plunge their spoons ever deeper into the sundae remains intact.

No, Ms. Bellafonte, the point is that we shouldn't have to starve ourselves and submit to your humiliating programs to win approval. Maybe you could try living off an 800 cal/day diet for a few months and then come back and tell us about how important and wonderful weight loss is.

nycivan's picture
nycivan
June 28th, 2010 | Link | wondering about "Huge" as an educational opportunity

BTW - this is my first comment on BFB.. I feel like I am finally sitting at the FA cool kids table in a high school cafeteria Smiling

anyway about "Huge"

The show is about to start and I am daring to hope that they might get it right here, although, I do not think so.

That being said, I think the internet traffic from this will include lots of young adults and adolescents who have no idea that there is a Fat Acceptance movement. I hope that there are some that get a proper welcome to the Fatosphere and do not have to wait to age 42 (like me) to find out that FA/SA exists.

Cheers,

Ivan

moxie3's picture
moxie3
June 29th, 2010 | Link | I watched the show but my

I watched the show but my DVR cut off the very end and the preview for next week's show so I'm kind of interested in the direction it's taking since her character, spoiler alert, wanted to come back to camp and I'm not sure with what intention.

Anyway I did enjoy it and thought considering the other crap that is on TV representing girls of that age and how all seem to be a size 0 or less it was refreshing even though they naturally had to make a statement as to "why" they're doing a show with fat girls. Having daughters I know the pressures that they went through during HS years and after and although not a perfect mom one of my main objectives was never to make their weight a bad thing but of course they pick up their cues from their mom's actions not her words and also from the world they live in. Life in HS can be very stressful and to have a child be fat today and have a great self-esteem to me sadly is a rare thing.

Anyway I hope the show continues to have a good message and not morph into some lecture on fat=bad which of course we are used to on the tube, Moxie.

Bilt4Cmfrt's picture
Bilt4Cmfrt
June 29th, 2010 | Link | Same deal here Moxie. Think

Same deal here Moxie. Think the Broadcast Co.s aren't down with peoples ability to zip/skip commercials, so they start shows early or late and you miss the start or end. Bad TV Drone! Bad! That or Cable Co's really just don't care anymore.

Anyway, the show seemed. . . well, ok, i guess. It was nice to see more than one or two fat folk on the screen at once (Yes we DO exist) and the usual humor-at-fattys-expense was conspicuously avoided. As most fat people are aware, even in the EXTREMELY RARE show that DOES take up the subject of fat people, a show with no back-handed fat humor just is not the norm. I'm looking at you 'Mike and Molly' which is starting to smell like, yet more sitcom droppings (Whatever happened to the 'Roseanne' writers. Did they fall off the face of the earth or was that just ALL Roseanne?). Prove me wrong guys and I'll endorse you from the rooftops but I'm not holding my fat breath.

'Huge' does have a lot of potential, i think. They were a little heavy handed with the maudlin depression angle of the kids but it is a premier. There's a lot to get across in the first show while, at the same time, you've got to leave room for the characters to develop into. I'm hopeful, but I'm holding out a thumbs-up until I see more.

Why wouldn't I? I'm fat not stupid. I've been burned before. And, no, not by the hot food people are always assuming I stuff my face with.

"No matter how cynical i get, I just can't keep up. . . ."
-Lily Tomlin

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