Netflix’s Insatiable has been under fire since the first trailer presented the dark comedy show as extremely insensitive and fat-shaming.
As The Daily Beast points out in its review headline, that’s the least of Insatiable‘s abundant and horrifying problems. There was instant, vocal backlash asking for Netflix to cancel the show before its premiere, but said premiere is now upon us.
The pilot episode alone is a doozy – beyond fat-shaming, there’s slut-shaming, molestation jokes, and at least two near-deaths as plot devices.
We hated it, and we made a list of the worst things in it. We watched so you don’t have to.
1. Patty is ostracized
The implication is that this is because of her weight, but it’s a truly thin character exercise from the outset.
2. A child molestation joke?
We are minutes into this episode when we learn that Bob was kicked out of the pageant circuit because he was accused of inappropriately touching an underage contestant. The moment is played for drama and laughs, but it’s cringeworthy. And…
3. It makes light of #MeToo
Bob was falsely accused, which is terrible, but given the decades of toxic rhetoric discrediting victims of sexual assault when they come forward…this isn’t a good look.
4. Patty’s mom convinces Bob to be their lawyer by showing her cleavage
5. Patty apparently watches the news
Her only redeeming quality to Bob (other than that she is now skinny), is that she isn’t totally out-of-touch with current affairs. When Bob asks her what world issues interest her, she names a few, and even feigns concern for all of three seconds before our cast of exceedingly selfish caricatures return to being terrible people.
6. “Pretty girls don’t have to settle”
He means in and out of court. Hahahhahahaha. :[.
7. Patty calls Bob a DILF
8. Another molestation joke
When Patty’s best friend is shocked to learn about this crush (correct), she says “He’s a child molester!” Nonnie believes the victims, and Patty responds saying this means she has a shot. NO!!!
9. Informed of the crush, Patty’s mom is fine with it
She even tells Nonnie to lay off.
10. Patty’s friend responds poorly
She slut-shames mom. Yikes!!
11. Patty makes out with the convenience store owner who reportedly saw her punch a homeless man
There is a term for this and it’s “witness tampering” and heck yeah it’s illegal.
12. Bob’s wife describes Patty as “underage hooker”
13. Patty is pretty rude to Coralee too
“Bob’s wife was a shrew,” she says in her voiceover (in the same breath as the phrase “Long Island Lolita”).
14. Bob saying “Seduce me” as they practice for her hearing
There has to be a better choice of words.
15. Patty: “I’m afraid if I get fat again, you won’t think I’m beautiful.”
Okay, this is a very real sentiment to anyone with body image issues and might work on its own as a line or theme to be explored. In context, Patty says this to Bob, who is, I cannot stress this enough, a middle-aged married man accused of child molestation (yes he didn’t do it, but Patty doesn’t know that and is fine with the idea that he did).
16. Mom: “You got skinny, that’s enough”
17. Patty’s mom is palpably jealous and bitter
This might have worked as additional character depth or nuance, but it’s pretty much all we know about her after the pilot and it’s painful to watch.
18. Magnolia seducing Bob
In a truly twisted revenge subplot, a teen pageant queen recruits Bob to be her coach but takes off her clothes when he visits her house to talk about it. And then…
19. …it turns out she used to date his son
Brick arrives during the squeamy seduction and his father leaves through Magnolia’s open bedroom window.
20. Patty plans to use sex as a weapon
Her grand revenge plan against the homeless man who punched her is to have sex with him (she has never had sex before) and then…what, exactly? Humiliate him publicly? Accuse him of child molestation (you’re underage!!)? Oh…
21. She almost burns him alive
She douses the man in alcohol and lights a match, while at the same time…
22. Bob is about to shoot himself
At an ostensible low after nearly being seduced by his teen son’s ex-girlfriend, Bob pulls a pistol out of his glove compartment and holds it to his head. He doesn’t pull the trigger because Patty calls him right as he’s about to. Now they’re friends! An odd couple! This is the show!! No thank you!!!
Insatiable is streaming on Netflix (proceed with caution).