In today’s day and age, we are taught to love ourselves and love the way we look, and now whatever form we are in, we are being appreciated and loved. However, as a plus-size woman myself, the same can’t be said for these TV shows/movies that put plus-size characters in a really offensive and senseless light. So here are the instances of the offensive portrayal of plus-size characters.
TRIGGER WARNING (Eating Disorders):
1. The Entirety Of “Insatiable”
What made people hate this series so much is the concept where a girl is constantly bullied for her weight and is nicknamed “Fatty Patty.” She then gets into a fight with a thief, which causes her to get stitches for her jaw, causing her to not eat for an entire summer, resulting in her losing weight. The most offensive part is that this show sent a message that you will be skinny and beautiful if you don’t eat anything, resulting in the viewers filled with anger and rage.
2. That! Episode Of Channel V Show “Gumrah”
Gumrah is one of the pulpiest, guilty pleasure shows that ever aired on Channel V. It depicted teen crimes in India. It kind of exaggerated some of the concepts in it. One of them being about a plus-size girl named Nidhi who was constantly fat-shamed by her peers. Just because she was 80 kgs doesn’t mean she was obese, which the episode portrayed her as. Then her friend forced her to do a crash diet, and then at the end, she betrayed Nidhi in a really horrendous way by playing a prank on her and humiliating her.
What makes this portrayal worse is that they put up “fat” stereotypes onto her like she loves food (who doesn’t?), she can’t get partners, and dresses don’t suit or fit her.
3. Janice in “Mr. Robot”
Janice was introduced in the fourth season of Mr. Robot. She was a Dark Army taxidermist assigned as Dom’s handler after Santiago’s death and was obsessed with killing or torturing Darlene. While she was written as an evil psychopath and unlike any more lovable sociopaths on the series such as Leon, Joanna, and Irving, she had no backstory and personality other than being evil and sadistic, and it seemed like that was the only thing that motivated her to do the Dark Army’s bidding. I even remember most fans calling her “fat bitch” like it was so offensive. Her character fell onto the “fat/plus-size people are unpleasant/evil/scary” stereotype.
4. Hanna’s Eating Disorder Storyline In “Pretty Little Liars”
One of the most offensive portrayals of someone suffering from an eating disorder was in Pretty Little Liars. Back before Allison went missing, Hanna had suffered from a severe eating disorder and was also forced to do harmful things by Allison by making her throw up whatever she ate. Then there is a stereotype where Hanna becomes popular and pretty by losing weight. She even got nicknamed “Hefty Hannah” and was constantly fat-shamed. And what’s even worse is the fact that her eating disorder was quickly brushed off.
5. The Whole Fat Monica Arc On “Friends”
Friends is one of the most beloved sitcoms of all time, and it is the most-watched sitcom even today. But we can’t deny that it had many offensive jokes and punchlines back then, especially Monica’s weight. Her past as a plus-size girl was made a punchline for every joke made in the series, and it constantly showed her eating something or getting tired and sitting down.
6. How Regina Was Treated In “Mean Girls”
Mean Girls is one of the most iconic and quotable teen movies, and Regina George is the most iconic mean girl of all time. The issue here was how most of the characters began to treat her when Cady tricked her into eating weight-gaining bars, which caused her to gain weight. She ended up eating carbs and wore sweatpants, and this caused her posse and others to treat her differently and put up a rule saying if someone gets fat, they become undesirable.
7. The Entirety Of “Shallow Hal”
While the message of Shallow Hal was to love people for who they are and not what they look like, the way they played it out was not so good. Hal is hypnotized into loving people for their inner beauty and falls in love with a plus-size girl he sees as thin. Not the right way to spread the message, guys.
8. Jill’s Overeating In “Mom”
In one of the seasons of Mom, Jill was shown to gain copious amounts of weight. While the reason was to hide her actress Jaime Pressly’s pregnancy, the way they did it was really offensive. They showed her to be overtly obese and constantly overeating wherever she was.
9. Rhonda In “That 70’s Show”
While That ’70s Show had many problematic storylines, “Big Rhonda,” like the characters called her, had to be one of them. While it was good that Fez and Rhonda loved each other for who they were, the way her character was portrayed was horrible. She was portrayed as an awkward, gross, rude, and tomboyish person until in a dream sequence where she lost weight and had a much mature personality after that.