So have you heard about the new ABC Family show “Huge” premiering on Monday June 28th, 9 pm (check your local listings)????? There are many stories and interviews out there!
I certainly am conflicted. I have issues that this is one of the first cast of plus-size people and it focuses on a weight loss camp. Cliché?
I had someone tell me on twitter: “I like that the show seems to promote positive body image, but doesn’t seem to promote health.”
My response was “I think it will be interesting how they do it. Remember a lot of shows with thin people do NOT address health either.”
Her response: “While that is true, shows with thin people mostly aren’t promoting body image. I want the best of both worlds: Health & Body Image”
I have another person on my Facebook page say: “for me, it’s debatable… I mean, its weight loss camp, so the show is telling us to change and NOT change at the same time. it’s sending a confusing message.”
I have to agree. I worry that this show is based on a premise of pressure to lose weight. That certainly doesn’t mean that this is the direction the show will go. I find it really challenging to write this post BEFORE a show is out, simply based on press and interviews. It is an incredibly sensitive topic, and it will be really interesting to see how the show will show/represent:
1) The parents who send their children to these camps
2) The methods the camp utilizes (ie diet? Exercise? Balance? Intuitive eating? Psychotherapy? Nutritionist?)
3) How they handle and create dialogues on health, body image, weight, weight loss, diets, eating disorders, fat stigma, etc.
Some things I am thinking about:
- Brings Diversity to television
- Could be positive for Body Image
- Will bring conversations that are current, sensitive to handle/approach to television
- I went to the Huge Facebook page and was amazed at the conflicting thoughts, some people felt heard, and represented, and others were saying some hateful comments and making assumptions that being fat was unhealthy, and that fat people are lazy. This is concerning and upsetting. I don’t know how the page is moderated, but as this show becomes more popular, will they try to fight myths and stereotypes of health/weight & stigma – and will they manage the page at all??
- How they will approach and handle eating disorders: obviously as an eating disorder advocate I have concerns, the media already has a lot of myths/stereotypes with regards to them, and I have to fight hard to dispel them
- What methods will they use at the camp?
- Will this feed the concept in the media that weight and health are ALWAYS related???
- Will this open the lines of communication in homes, between parents and children/teens?
I have a LOT of conflicting opinions, and concerns, and I am not sure how the show will approach these issues. In an interview with Nikki Blonsky, she states: “In this show, we don’t just deal with, “Oh, let’s go jogging and swim 20 laps and lose 30 pounds.” It’s not about that. I mean, eventually as you watch the show, you’re going to forget it’s about a weight-loss camp. You’re just going to get so invested in the characters. We deal with everything from eating disorders to body issues to sexual orientation to everything that every teenager is going through right now.”
I find it hard to forget it’s about a weight loss camp…….So I am skeptical. I also have concerns with the poster they used for this show. If you look at it what do you think? Feel? She looks scared, insecure, and uncomfortable with herself. Maybe this is a good platform, maybe they will address confidence, and body image, and show her in the beginning unsure and grow as the character develops in the show and as topics are covered. A person on my Facebook page said: “I wish they chose a cover where she was smiling and not all trying to hide herself with an insecure, unsure look on her face. It was just the first thing I noticed. I’m looking forward to see what they will do with this show. I’m really hoping it’s positive and enlightening.”
So what do you think?? What are your concerns? What are you excited about seeing? Any thoughts?
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