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S01.E07: Monster High

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In the wake of her life-altering revelation, Plum struggles to discover her true voice; a new attack threatens to unravel Jennifer's movement.

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Does anyone else feel like the Kitty stuff is taking place on a completely different show? Like it's a frothy romcomy type show about the inner workings of a women's magazine, while everything else is more about Jennifer and feminism and Plum's journey. Like Kitty should be played by Katherine Heigl or something. Also, I liked her in "The Good Wife" but I think maybe Juliana Margulies is miscast here? Like she's playing it campy when the rest of the show is satirical. I get what they're trying to do with Kitty, show different angles of feminism, but it doesn't work since that Miranda Priestly caricature is so cheesy and the show isn't making me believe it. And The show can't tell if they want Kitty to be a second waver who had to sacrifice everything or a soap opera villain. But she's the only one in the cast played by a name so she'll be prominent. 

 

The rest? I don't know how I feel about the show making it overt that Jennifer is a terrorist organization, and that's bad. Of course, Jennifer would be terrible in the real world, but this is TV. I remember when "Fight Club" came out (I'm an old) and no one acted like the movie was literally endorsing terrorism, like it was impossible to discuss the show without leading off that of course terrorism is wrong and what Fight Club was doing was bad and there's never a reason to blow up buildings. No, everyone got that it's a movie, that it's not meant to be taken literally, and discussed the actual message, about consumer culture and masculinity in the modern age (Also GOOD LORD is that movie dated now). Have we as a culture lost the ability to understand allegory? Commentary? That not everything is a police court transcript? Because that's really sad. Especially since the show specifically had Plum wear the Fight Club tshirt. 

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Maybe I'm missing something here, but am I supposed to think Plum is completely unlikeable now? Because I do, and that makes this show hard to watch.

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Much better episode. I prefer empowered Plum. She should drag that doctor's name on Twitter to cower him into giving her the back the money. So Leeta is involved in Jennifer and is using Juliet's writings as inspiration.

I was disappointed by Steven's attitude, even if he felt that way, he should have picked a better moment to talk to Plum about his feelings. I love how happy Ben was to see Plum. Other than her mother, Ben is the only person who loves Plum unconditionally.

Dominic needs to give it a rest and give Plum space to see if she can ever forgive him. I hope that he betrays Kitty to Stan. I hate both Stan and Kitty and hope that they destroy each other.

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Only a few episodes left, and I feel like by now I should be rooting for...anybody.  So I'm rooting for Joy & Adam to get their own show.  I'm still all in on a Castle-redo; switch roles!!  Even when he's begging & she's snapping back, they're still more interesting than anything else.

And I can't with that hour of force-feeding follow-up.  It's not helping.  It's taking me back to film school & those earnest grad student parties, where somebody who just discovered clove cigarettes is boring on about auteur theory.

*ambles off to fanfic the hell out of Castle: Now *He's* the Cop*

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2 hours ago, voiceover said:

Only a few episodes left, and I feel like by now I should be rooting for...anybody.

I'm rooting for a decent wig to suddenly find itself atop the head of Juliana Margulies.  Aside from that I'm still on the fence about the show overall.  It feels like it needs to pick a lane and stick with it at this point.

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13 hours ago, voiceover said:

And I can't with that hour of force-feeding follow-up.  It's not helping.  It's taking me back to film school & those earnest grad student parties, where somebody who just discovered clove cigarettes is boring on about auteur theory.

Ha! ; )

This Noxon quote about tonight's episode is just beyond:  "The Jennifer way of working and the more civil disobedience kind of way are both really valid. I'm also really interested in exploring,  like,  the cost of the action Jennifer takes. That even when you're super well meaning, you can be creating ripple effects."

So...wait -- what? -- Jennifer is not just a terrorist org, it's one that is morally equal to civil disobedience (wtf?) and this terrorist org is also "super well meaning" (wtf redux) but unaware that actions can have several consequences (because what female terrorist could possibly puzzle through the difficult moral equation that killing people and throwing bodies out of planes = ripple effects? Lady brains can't SEE that far ahead. Every damn morning, we wake up and have to learn complex thinking all over again -- and at night, we eat ice cream to soothe our sore brain stems after a long hard day spent killing porn stars to save women from sexual violence. The stupid, it burns.)  So disappointed this is the spine of the show. Exploring unintended consequences -- cultural and political twists nobody could easily foresee -- would've been fascinating, but this ain't that.

I did like Plum's drawing:  the fat signal over Gotham City ; )

Edited by film noire
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6 hours ago, SimoneS said:

Much better episode. I prefer empowered Plum. She should drag that doctor's name on Twitter to cower him into giving her the back the money. So Leeta is involved in Jennifer and is using Juliet's writings as inspiration.

It getting better but... I don't like Plumb or anyone else. I have to say I have zero sympathy for Plumb on the doctor, if indeed, there is a contract. I know she was so sure she was going to get the surgery but if she signed the contract, well. There are better ways to get the money back that don't include yelling at the receptionist and becoming a vandal.  Shocked she didn't blame her arrest on being fat.  Not to mention that I have yet to see her go down to unemployment. That would be better than the money.  Plumb just doesn't seem too bright... as she was telling me the story of e-mailing Kitty's girls.. I was thinking -- are you nuts? And turns out she is because she gets sued next week. Plumb you aren't batman... you need to go home, get a job and get on unemployment.  Stop acting like a spoiled brat. 

Dominic, what are they doing with him?  I can't stop thinking about you? (1) uh huh... and (2) he is married to the chief of police's daughter and still drummed off the force? He just went from possibly a bad guy to a complete jerk who I don't want to see anymore.   Confused as to why exactly he continues working for Daisy Chain after Kitty's behavior toward him. 

Steven, is it wrong that I mostly agreed with him? I had my little flirtation with fat acceptance but in the end I am back on the diet because of my health (something this show totally ignores). He was not wrong and was being a good friend by checking her as he did. At the same time, kind of thought he should have read the room a little better and waited - she was clearly in a mood.  Though I also had my flirtation with getting really thin and finding that I only attracted the negative attention of men and the positive attention, if it was coming, was hard to find and maintain at any size. So Plum isn't 100% wrong there that getting thin can bring a whole set of negative man attention. But Plumb does sound like a crazy person when she goes off on her porn theory. 

Sad this show tries to be fight club but FC was clever and made solid insights into the male malaise of the 20th century. This just makes women look bad. 

Edited by BooBear
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As soon as Plum whipped out that spray can, I was like GIRL, are you trying to get arrested? Even if there isn't a cop nearby, she was at an intersection (the traffic light was visible behind her) so there are likely cameras close enough to capture her vandalizing the doctor's photo. All they would have to do is show the video footage to the receptionist and she would be able to ID Plum as the angry patient who wanted a refund the same day that the sign was vandalized. I understand getting upset that the doctor is keeping your $10K deposit, but make smart choices aka don't do things that will get YOU in trouble because that isn't going to get your money back.

Clive seems like a nice guy. I liked when he told Plum to just keep scrolling and when she iddn't listen, his next bit of practical advice was to delete the shitty comments.

Stanley getting physical with Kitty when he said that he wasn't afraid of her sadly did not surprise me at all. Even a spaced out guy who gets stone massages will resort to physically hurting a woman to get his point across.

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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Random thoughts:

After watching this episode I have come to the conclusion that not only is Plum bipolar, but that she is also obsessive-compulsive, self-absorbed, incredibly immature, and completely unlikable.

Even if Varena thought that Plum was bipolar, I don't think she would tell Plum.  Plum would have to seek professional help and not rely on whatever ridiculousness Varena is selling.

Steven truly cares about Plum, and wants to be supportive of her.  But if she truly is getting winded just walking around, then Steven would be doing Plum a huge disservice if he didn't point that out to her.  He just can't be one of those people that constantly rags on her about her health/weight.

Plum should be happy that the detective bailed her out of her legal problem.   He didn't have to do that.  I am not sure if he cares about Plum or if he just feels guilty about not being honest with her about him being married.

Plum acted like a complete asshole when she didn't care about a whole bunch of football players getting killed.  Again she is self-absorbed.

Julia should have gone to the police and told them about the whole Jennifer situation.  Perhaps she could have gotten some sort of immunity deal.  Trying to handle the situation herself will probably get her killed.

Kitty is pure garbage, I don't care what happens to her.

 

ETA: I seriously doubt there will be another season.  The ratings are just horrible.  I hope there is a satisfying conclusion, I have my doubts.

Edited by icemiser69
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I'm still entertained and I still like Plum. 

Yes, she was out of control this episode, but she is newly awakened to a sense of freedom from society's judgement of her that she has never experienced before.  I expect her to calm down a little, being arrested was probably a wake up call.  Bipolar?  Nah.  Where were the manic episodes where she stayed awake for three days developing a  grandiose scheme of some kind?  Where was the resulting depression when she couldn't get out of bed for two weeks?  We all have moods to some extend, good days and bad ones, that doesn't make us bipolar.

Plum should have asked if the deposit was refundable before she put it down.  Most deposits aren't.  I  made a $1000 deposit for a 10K procedure and knew when I chickened out that the $1000 was gone.  I didn't even think to ask for it back.

I thought Steven was way out of line.  For one thing, it was one meal, it's not as if she's been in there ordering like that for months and he finally just couldn't resist an intervention.  Even then, as Plum says, her health is not his business.  Why is it only fat people  and smokers who bring out the amateur doctors?  I used to have perfect strangers approach me about smoking,( while I weighed 110)  all the time, then I quit smoking and my weight soared so fast that before the first month was out people were looking me up and down and telling me I shouldn't be eating that bagel. I would explain to them that I had chosen to allow myself as much food as I wanted until I was over the worst withdrawal symptoms, but it was really not their concern.

 

 Steven sells that salty, high-fat, sugar-loaded crap!  Who is he to judge?  Why doesn't he ask people if they have high blood pressure before he gives them a pickle?  Why doesn't he ask if they have diabetes before he gives skinny people shakes?  Lactose intolerance?  Chron's disease? Did you sing Happy Birthday while you washed your hands?  Did you wear your seat belt on the way here?  Nope.  He wouldn't dream of  saying that to any of his other customers but Plum's health issue shows on the outside, so she gets the lecture.  Over one fattening meal.

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12 minutes ago, JudyObscure said:

Yes, she was out of control this episode, but she is newly awakened to a sense of freedom from society's judgement of her that she has never experienced before.  I expect her to calm down a little, being arrested was probably a wake up call.  Bipolar?  Nah.  Where were the manic episodes where she stayed awake for three days developing a  grandiose scheme of some kind?  Where was the resulting depression when she couldn't get out of bed for two weeks?  We all have moods to some extend, good days and bad ones, that doesn't make us bipolar.

 

After clicking, the first paragraph pretty much sums up Plum.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bipolar_disorder

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On 7/10/2018 at 10:05 AM, JudyObscure said:

I'm still entertained and I still like Plum. 

Yes, she was out of control this episode, but she is newly awakened to a sense of freedom from society's judgement of her that she has never experienced before.  I expect her to calm down a little, being arrested was probably a wake up call.  Bipolar?  Nah.  Where were the manic episodes where she stayed awake for three days developing a  grandiose scheme of some kind?  Where was the resulting depression when she couldn't get out of bed for two weeks?  We all have moods to some extend, good days and bad ones, that doesn't make us bipolar.

Empowered Plum rocks! She was cracking me up. I was rooting her on as she took on the world. About time. No more meek and cowering, Plum.

 

On 7/10/2018 at 10:05 AM, JudyObscure said:

I thought Steven was way out of line.  For one thing, it was one meal, it's not as if she's been in there ordering like that for months and he finally just couldn't resist an intervention.  Even then, as Plum says, her health is not his business.  Why is it only fat people  and smokers who bring out the amateur doctors?  I used to have perfect strangers approach me about smoking,( while I weighed 110)  all the time, then I quit smoking and my weight soared so fast that before the first month was out people were looking me up and down and telling me I shouldn't be eating that bagel. I would explain to them that I had chosen to allow myself as much food as I wanted until I was over the worst withdrawal symptoms, but it was really not their concern.

Steven sells that salty, high-fat, sugar-loaded crap!  Who is he to judge?  Why doesn't he ask people if they have high blood pressure before he gives them a pickle?  Why doesn't he ask if they have diabetes before he gives skinny people shakes?  Lactose intolerance?  Chron's disease? Did you sing Happy Birthday while you washed your hands?  Did you wear your seat belt on the way here?  Nope.  He wouldn't dream of  saying that to any of his other customers but Plum's health issue shows on the outside, so she gets the lecture.  Over one fattening meal.

You nailed what I didn't like about Steven. You also nailed the attitude of judgmental nosy people who like to claim that they are just "genuinely concerned." They need to mind their own damn business.

 

On 7/10/2018 at 10:19 AM, icemiser69 said:

After clicking, the first paragraph pretty much sums up Plum.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bipolar_disorder

Nope because her therapist and the show says that Plum does not have a mental health illness.

Edited by SimoneS
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The first thing I learned is that an empowered Plum is a Plum who loses all fashion sense. She looked like a Cindy Lauper nightmare. 

Everything is so juvenile and cliched. The rant about being slim and still not being safe was stupid. Verena's advice to eat whatever you want and your body will find a balance was stupid. As an overweight woman whose appetite peaks after 8:00 pm, I have to learn to say no to that delicious bag of Utz rippled BBQ chips. 

Plum is becoming more obnoxious by the minute.

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1 minute ago, Iguessnot said:

The first thing I learned is that an empowered Plum is a Plum who loses all fashion sense. She looked like a Cindy Lauper nightmare. 

I loved that Plum stopped wearing dreary black and dark long clothes and embraced color. She is experimenting and will figure out her style eventually. 

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I'm still not sure if I like the show or Plum, but it must mean something that I'm still watching and still curious about this ever-expanding mess of a show.  To me, whether she is bi-polar or just manic or whatever, in this episode Plum behaved like an adolescent in every way.  The uncontrolled lashing out, the pure stupidity of spray painting the building in broad daylight in NYC, the neener-neener "I dare you to say something" attitude, and most of all the pure, 100% self-absorption all smacked of someone who is emotionally about 12 years younger than Plum is.  Even the phsyical presentation - the slouching, fidgeting, shifting - is like that of a young or pre-teen whose mom is still telling her to stand up straight and smile.   I get that Plum is not and has never been comfortable in her own body, but I thought this episode was pointing out just how emotionally arrested Plum is, and Joy Nash did a brilliant job of showing us that. 

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11 minutes ago, SimoneS said:

I loved that Plum stopped wearing dreary black and dark long clothes and embraced color. She is experimenting and will figure out her style eventually. 

See, this is sort of cliched to me. But the whole show is a simplistic cliche. The dark clothes looked good on Plum. The red dress she wore on the dates looked good on her. The current mismash of pickings from the teenage bin at Goodwill looks silly. Plum had a style. She could incorporate "color" into that style if that is the sole indicator of empowerment. 

I had a feeling they were going to make Plum dress like the woman who came into the waist watcher meeting.

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33 minutes ago, SimoneS said:

Nope because her therapist and the show says that Plum does not have a mental health illness.

I don't know if you are being serious or not.  Assuming you are being serious.

Plum was on anti-depressants, she went cold turkey and through threw them away and then she started to have hallucinations.  IIRC, she was also receiving some sort of talk therapy.  People don't receive that type of treatment unless they have mental health issues.

That was before she hitched her wagon to Verena.  BTW, what are Verena's qualifications as a mental health professional?

If you look up the definition of bipolar and compare it to how Plum is acting, anyone can easily see the similarities.

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8 minutes ago, icemiser69 said:

I don't know if you are being serious or not.  Assuming you are being serious.

I am being serious and slapping a mental health illness onto tv characters and real life people who don't behave the way society approves of without an official diagnosis has gotten tiresome. 

Edited by SimoneS
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3 hours ago, JudyObscure said:

Steven sells that salty, high-fat, sugar-loaded crap!  Who is he to judge?  Why doesn't he ask people if they have high blood pressure before he gives them a pickle?  Why doesn't he ask if they have diabetes before he gives skinny people shakes?  Lactose intolerance?  Chron's disease? Did you sing Happy Birthday while you washed your hands?  Did you wear your seat belt on the way here?  Nope.  He wouldn't dream of  saying that to any of his other customers but Plum's health issue shows on the outside, so she gets the lecture.  Over one fattening meal.

 

applause.gif

 

I still like Plum, too (just pissed the show isn't as smart and deft as Nash's performance). 

One bit of writing I did like last night was Plum's attitude (and clothing) in the doctor's office as a callback to Janice (the confident, boisterous fat woman) in the Waist Watchers meeting. 

Edited by film noire
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People take anti depressants for everything from anxiety to fibromyalgia-it doesn’t mean only bi-polar. I’m not even sure the pills she was taking were specifically named. This is a satire, so everything is exaggerated to make a point. Plum is on a journey and her various changes are a part of her path.

I thought it was out of character for Steven to bring up weight loss. He seemed to be the one person who loved her as she was. We never saw her huffing and puffing. I never believe the faux health concerns. Prove to me you are questioning everyone you know who has diabetes, cancer or anything else then you can talk to me about my health. 

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25 minutes ago, Madding crowd said:

People take anti depressants for everything from anxiety to fibromyalgia-it doesn’t mean only bi-polar. I’m not even sure the pills she was taking were specifically named. This is a satire, so everything is exaggerated to make a point. Plum is on a journey and her various changes are a part of her path.

I thought it was out of character for Steven to bring up weight loss. He seemed to be the one person who loved her as she was. We never saw her huffing and puffing. I never believe the faux health concerns. Prove to me you are questioning everyone you know who has diabetes, cancer or anything else then you can talk to me about my health. 

Two different issues. Random folks will wield the concern for your health hammer because the vision of a non anorexic body offends them. These same people show up on deal sites and give nutritional spankings whenever a deal is posted about a fast food restaurant or any tasty convenience food. They will not buy a certain cookbook because it features MSG or a place of business uses plastic.

There was nothing untoward about Steven questioning Plum when after going off the grid she comes back a sort of changed, loud talking and flippant about the murder of college students.  If I remember correctly, Steven didn't have a problem with her dieting, but had a problem with the surgery.  

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I can see him questioning her attitude and anger. I was talking about him being upset she was canceling her weight loss surgery and drinking a shake which he specifically mentioned. We hadn’t heard anything earlier about her having health problems, so it struck me as out of character. I agree he would wonder about her disappearance and general state of mind. 

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2 hours ago, Madding crowd said:

People take anti depressants for everything from anxiety to fibromyalgia-it doesn’t mean only bi-polar. 

Yeah, I don't get bipolar as the story being told here -- the validation of Plum's feelings (by the show) point to her emotions as a step in returning to a healthy state, not a byproduct of being unmedicated. If anything, I'm wondering at this point if Plum was medicated years ago as a substitute for confronting the shit making her deeply unhappy. Easier to prescribe a pill (or staple a woman's gut) than empower her.

Quote

 I’m not even sure the pills she was taking were specifically named. 

Plum was taking Y (a drug somewhere between X(anax) and Z (oloft)? A ref to why? None of the preceding? ; )

Quote

We hadn’t heard anything earlier about her having health problems, so it struck me as out of character

Yeah, that came right the fuck out of left field.  

Edited by film noire
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15 hours ago, voiceover said:

It's taking me back to film school & those earnest grad student parties, where somebody who just discovered clove cigarettes is boring on about auteur theory.

Oh my God, were we at the same parties?!?! I was the one holding a glass cup of whiskey (not drinking it because it tasted like toilet water) trying to figure out how many times I could use the word "bourgeoisie" in one sentence. My record was nine :)

So, this episode seems to be drawing a comparison between Fight Club and Jennifer (domestic terrorists raging against the machine), and while I can kind of see it, I cant say I think this show is pulling it off. Sometimes it feels like we`re supposed to be cheering for Jennifer, and sometimes we`re supposed to see them as bad guy. I think this episode is where they seemed to tip into being a full on villain ti most of the characters though. Except for Plum I guess, who is now pro suicide bombing I guess. But, the framing seemed to be playing a bit more coy, like they showed the guys in the locker room talking about the dead porn star and talking about spank banks (because its 2005 apparently) and, as this show is pretty convinced that porn and sex workers and everyone who watches porn are all evil, it seems to be, maybe, saying the suicide bomber had a point? That a bunch of 20 year olds who watch porn deserve to die for liking porn? I dont know, maybe thats part of the satire, and we are supposed to be questioning how to view all of this, or its supposed to be a story about how good intentions can lead to violence and things escalating, or if, like Fight Club, its more of a metaphor for societal unhappiness. Also, when you want to compare your show to an existing story, just have your main character wear the name of the movie on her shirt! 

I like pissed off and not taking it anymore Plum (except for cheering suicide bombers. Your not The Handmaids Tale, show, I wont cheer foryour suicide bombers), and the actress is just so great with every aspect of Plum. Her conversation with Steven was interesting, as I can see why he was concerned about her sudden change (I mean, its pretty much totally a cult, right?), but, its weird that he framed it all about her health. Like, why bring that up now if he was so concerned? Being healthy is a good thing, but one milkshake wont literally kill her. Why didnt they ever mention her health issues before? Its always about Alicia and being sexy and skinny. 

Something about this show that makes it kind of hard to watch is that some of the show is played very straight, and some of it is crazy over the top satire or possibly metaphorical, and its a bit hard to tell what its actually trying to say here. I appreciate a show that doesn't spoon feed its message to its audience, but it would be nice to get SOMETHING about what the fucking point of this is. Like, is this show really pushing a super hard anti sex, anti porn, anti cosmetics message, or do we take all of the anti porn/sex/looks stuff as part of the satire? Because, that doesn't really seem to line up with most current feminism (at least, the people I know and the stuff I read) that has a more nuanced view of that sort of thing. The whole "all porn is evil and rape culture" thing seems like a weird thing to focus on. Not the endless cases of rape, rampant sexual harassment, the glass ceiling, the trouble women have getting access to proper health care, or any other thing, but...porn. And its all apparently the female porn stars fault for being skanks. Again, if this part of the satire, or does the show actually think this? Because if it does, thats really creepy!

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10 hours ago, JudyObscure said:

I thought Steven was way out of line.  For one thing, it was one meal, it's not as if she's been in there ordering like that for months and he finally just couldn't resist an intervention.  Even then, as Plum says, her health is not his business.  Why is it only fat people  and smokers who bring out the amateur doctors?  I used to have perfect strangers approach me about smoking,( while I weighed 110)  all the time, then I quit smoking and my weight soared so fast that before the first month was out people were looking me up and down and telling me I shouldn't be eating that bagel. I would explain to them that I had chosen to allow myself as much food as I wanted until I was over the worst withdrawal symptoms, but it was really not their concern.

I thought everyone made good points out Steven and I think Plumb gave as good as she got there. That was a high point. However, I took it a little differently. To me it seemed like Steven had surmised from her eating that stuff that the surgery was off and she wasn't going to do anything about her weight and I think he felt concern, in part, because health is a very real issue even if she isn't sick now.  That combined with her going off grid, having that new look,  and being flippant told him something was very wrong.  I do think the argument got elevated. I thought he was out of line to compare being gay to being fat. Good on Plumb for telling him off. 

But if we are going to talk about Steven as a friend I don't think he is a good one. First I was shocked he told Dominic she was a virgin last week. He suffers from what I call *get the fatty laid* disease. I have had supposed friends so utterly desperate to get me laid or a boyfriend they have done insane things like offer to buy me a dress or call the guy to spout my virtues. Insulting things they would never do for / to a thin person.  Because your not a friend - your a project and they are so insecure about you sealing the deal it is like  they have to try extra hard. Then have you noticed that the young guy that likes Plumb, every time he is around, Steven tells him to go away get back to work. I also have these friends. Just like Steven I think it is that the young guy is an actual long term threat and could become something -- taking Plumb away from Steven. But Dominic isn't really going to be the one for Plumb though he might give them some fun in gossip etc. So Steven is fine pushing that. 

4 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

as this show is pretty convinced that porn and sex workers and everyone who watches porn are all evil, it seems to be, maybe, saying the suicide bomber had a point? That a bunch of 20 year olds who watch porn deserve to die for liking porn?

I don't think it is satire. Perhaps it is the dated nature of the book 2005 ish or so but I think they are dead serious. 

Quote

The uncontrolled lashing out, the pure stupidity of spray painting the building in broad daylight in NYC, the neener-neener "I dare you to say something" attitude, and most of all the pure, 100% self-absorption all smacked of someone who is emotionally about 12 years younger than Plum is.  Even the phsyical presentation - the slouching, fidgeting, shifting - is like that of a young or pre-teen whose mom is still telling her to stand up straight and smile.   I get that Plum is not and has never been comfortable in her own body, but I thought this episode was pointing out just how emotionally arrested Plum is, and Joy Nash did a brilliant job of showing us that.

She did. But I guess I can't like Plumb anymore for two reasons (1) this show seems really hung up on trying to highlight how nieve' Plumb is in a way that it almost seems like they are unfairly trying to suggest all large women are this way and (2) how can any mature intelligent adult - which I think I am -- really relate to a main character who is so stunted not in an anti hero way.  Plumb in the last few days you have been fired, punched, arrested, and had a major blow out with your best friend. Maybe it is you mmmkkkaaayy? In the first part of the season Plumb was relatable. Maybe she does need "Y".

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I like Plum and am still invested in her journey away from self-hatred and toward self-fulfillment. I loved how in the first episode she said her nickname was "Plum" because her mom said she was so round and sweet, just like a plum.  She is still round and sweet and worthy of love. I hope she becomes a fully realized and functional and happy adult who no longer punishes herself for not fitting into society's standard of beauty. 

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5 hours ago, BooBear said:

I don't think it is satire. Perhaps it is the dated nature of the book 2005 ish or so but I think they are dead serious.

I'm not sure exactly when Sarai Walker wrote Dietland, but the book was published in 2015.

11 hours ago, Iguessnot said:

Two different issues. Random folks will wield the concern for your health hammer because the vision of a non anorexic body offends them. These same people show up on deal sites and give nutritional spankings whenever a deal is posted about a fast food restaurant or any tasty convenience food. They will not buy a certain cookbook because it features MSG or a place of business uses plastic.

Although I know it's less common for super skinny people to be publicly judged or approached about their weight, it does happen. When I was in high school, I had a ridiculous metabolism and I was pretty physically active so I was under 100 pounds (ETA: this isn't a skinny brag - my metabolism caught up with the rest of me later!). Friends of mine would literally walk up to me and put sandwiches in my mouth because they thought I was too skinny. They wouldn't listen when I told them that I had just eaten a huge dinner at home before coming to practice. In college, I took a health class and when the subject turned to weight and eating disorders, this guy said that there was a very skinny girl he saw at the gym all the time so he wondered if he should approach her about having an eating disorder. I was like whoa, BACK UP THERE. Why would you approach any stranger about their weight or a possible illness? Like Steven's comments, he seemed to think that he was showing concern for her health but I was like no, dude, you're being really intrusive, inappropriate, and rude. You've never spoken a word to this girl and you're going to just walk up and give her your uneducated medical opinion? Just no.

On a related note, I just saw a bunch of comments in the forum for Kristin Cavalleri's new show that featured multiple "eat a sandwich" comments and I remember when people (both in real life and in the press) constantly suggested that Calista Flockhart had an eating disorder from the minute that Ally McBeal started airing. Even if a person DOES have an eating disorder (and I'm not saying that KC or CF did/do), having people gossip about it in the press or online is not going to change or fix anything.

14 hours ago, Iguessnot said:

Verena's advice to eat whatever you want and your body will find a balance was stupid. As an overweight woman whose appetite peaks after 8:00 pm, I have to learn to say no to that delicious bag of Utz rippled BBQ chips.

ITA - no matter how much you weigh or how healthy you are, Verena's advice was stupid. Even when I had a crazy fast metabolism and could eat ridiculous amounts of food without gaining an ounce, that doesn't mean I should have eaten whatever I wanted at all times. I can tell you that once my metabolism slowed down in my 20s, I really had to be more aware of how much I was eating because I was so used to being able to eat X amount of food and suddenly eating even half that amount of food made a difference. Yes, your body will tell you when to stop eating when your poor stomach is totally stuffed, but Verena's theory that your body will find a balance is total bull shit. If you've ever had a dog that managed to get into the kibble while you were gone and ate the entire bag and then threw it up all before you came home, you know that no, you can't just eat whatever you want and your body will find a balance.

I think that in some ways, Verena has been a good therapist for Plum to talk to because she has gotten Plum to really think about a lot of her issues and respond, but she is not a very good nutritionist. I'm not saying that she should tell Plum to get a food scale and measure everything she eats down to the gram, but it's very irresponsible of her to tell Plum to just eat however much she wants.

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3 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I'm not sure exactly when Sarai Walker wrote Dietland, but the book was published in 2015.

Ooops.. than not sure where the attitudes are coming from in the book. To me the whole thing seems very dated. 

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7 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I'm not sure exactly when Sarai Walker wrote Dietland, but the book was published in 2015.

Although I know it's less common for super skinny people to be publicly judged or approached about their weight, it does happen. When I was in high school, I had a ridiculous metabolism and I was pretty physically active so I was under 100 pounds (ETA: this isn't a skinny brag - my metabolism caught up with the rest of me later!). Friends of mine would literally walk up to me and put sandwiches in my mouth because they thought I was too skinny. They wouldn't listen when I told them that I had just eaten a huge dinner at home before coming to practice. In college, I took a health class and when the subject turned to weight and eating disorders, this guy said that there was a very skinny girl he saw at the gym all the time so he wondered if he should approach her about having an eating disorder. I was like whoa, BACK UP THERE. Why would you approach any stranger about their weight or a possible illness? Like Steven's comments, he seemed to think that he was showing concern for her health but I was like no, dude, you're being really intrusive, inappropriate, and rude. You've never spoken a word to this girl and you're going to just walk up and give her your uneducated medical opinion? Just no.

On a related note, I just saw a bunch of comments in the forum for Kristin Cavalleri's new show that featured multiple "eat a sandwich" comments and I remember when people (both in real life and in the press) constantly suggested that Calista Flockhart had an eating disorder from the minute that Ally McBeal started airing. Even if a person DOES have an eating disorder (and I'm not saying that KC or CF did/do), having people gossip about it in the press or online is not going to change or fix anything.

ITA - no matter how much you weigh or how healthy you are, Verena's advice was stupid. Even when I had a crazy fast metabolism and could eat ridiculous amounts of food without gaining an ounce, that doesn't mean I should have eaten whatever I wanted at all times. I can tell you that once my metabolism slowed down in my 20s, I really had to be more aware of how much I was eating because I was so used to being able to eat X amount of food and suddenly eating even half that amount of food made a difference. Yes, your body will tell you when to stop eating when your poor stomach is totally stuffed, but Verena's theory that your body will find a balance is total bull shit. If you've ever had a dog that managed to get into the kibble while you were gone and ate the entire bag and then threw it up all before you came home, you know that no, you can't just eat whatever you want and your body will find a balance.

I think that in some ways, Verena has been a good therapist for Plum to talk to because she has gotten Plum to really think about a lot of her issues and respond, but she is not a very good nutritionist. I'm not saying that she should tell Plum to get a food scale and measure everything she eats down to the gram, but it's very irresponsible of her to tell Plum to just eat however much she wants.

 Verena is talking about the intuitive eating concept, it’s been around for awhile. Geneen Roth has written several books on. The theory is that you listen to what your body wants and eventually you learn to eat right. This never worked for me because I’m more of an emotional eater rather than eating junk/large portions.

I think it could be helpful to Plum to make food choices based on what and how much she is hungry for, rather than over indulging or starving herself. 

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22 hours ago, Iguessnot said:

The first thing I learned is that an empowered Plum is a Plum who loses all fashion sense. She looked like a Cindy Lauper nightmare. 

Everything is so juvenile and cliched. The rant about being slim and still not being safe was stupid. Verena's advice to eat whatever you want and your body will find a balance was stupid. As an overweight woman whose appetite peaks after 8:00 pm, I have to learn to say no to that delicious bag of Utz rippled BBQ chips. 

Plum is becoming more obnoxious by the minute.

this show is strange. love the actress. when this is cancelled i hope we see her again.

she does need to lose some weight for health reasons. i hate the idea of surgery but i'm not in the position of having tried everything else. 

menopausal weight gain here . craving junk food even more. i used to not eat after 6 but now i have to fight to control myself.

utz honey bbq!

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8 hours ago, Madding crowd said:

I think it could be helpful to Plum to make food choices based on what and how much she is hungry for, rather than over indulging or starving herself. 

And food as outright pleasure (not just comfort and pain reducer --  like that moment early in the show when Plum remembered what it was like to eat something that gave her joy, before she knew she was in a body that made her pleasure in food wrong).  

It'll be interesting what happens to the culture if we find out obesity is all down to gut bacteria, and not a moral failing-- we'll have to find a  new weapon to use against women:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-gut-bacteria-help-make-us-fat-and-thin/

Quote

Ooops.. than not sure where the attitudes are coming from in the book. To me the whole thing seems very dated. 

I don't find the material dated -- from the health policing of fat women, to the surgeon telling Plum to eat under 700 calories a day (while ignoring her slow weight loss) to men feeling even more free to verbally/physically attack fat women due to their size, to a black woman feeling pressured to adopt whiter beauty standards, to Plum facing one moment of romantic rejection after another, to  (a certain kind of) radicalized feminist yearning to kill all the predators and seeing porn/sex workers as the enemy, to Plum feeling incandescently angry once the numb wears off  -- all of those conversations (and more) are happening all over the internet, today. 

My major issue with the show is with Noxon now equating the Jens to civil disobedience -- that makes the story less (good kind of) messy & less intelligent for me. They aren't the same -- killing and dropping a rapist out of a plane is not the same moral universe as facing down a water hose, going to jail, or taking the knee.  Don't try to make it more palatable by pretending they're both "valid" acts. They aren't.  I'm more complex than that in how I handle my fury at the brutal shit the world endlessly throws in my path  -- one more pedo priest destroying a village of children, a serial rapist/killer preying unchecked on prostitutes who are indigenous women -- so why isn't this show? 

Edited by film noire · Reason: spelling, dammit
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I agree with everything you said. One reason I really disliked the book and now the show is that it showed the Jennifer's as an acceptable way to protest and went as far as executing a woman who chose to work in the porn industry. On the show, Joy Nash makes a wonderful Plum and my interest is in her much more than Kitty or the Jennifers. I also feel the show is telling us to feel sorry for Kitty when she was 100% behind marginalizing Plum and feeding into the whole beauty is all mentality. 

As someone who was thin for her whole life until about nine years ago, and am now fat, my eyes have been opened to the rampant fat prejudice and shaming that goes on everyone (especially in anonymous forums like this). A personal example: My husband and I went to the same doctor a few years ago because we both suffered back pain. My husband was sent for an MRI, given a prescription for physical therapy and offered a pain reliever. I was asked to try anti anxiety meds. Period. As it turned out, my husband's back pain was temporary, mine was due to severe spinal stenosis, impinged nerves and multiple bulging discs, but it took going to several doctors to get the MRI. Plum and others like her face this crap every day.

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The problem for me watching this series is that I haven't read the book.  For some reason I thought this book was written in 1999 and not in 2015.  I don't know where I got that from.

In any case, all I can do is give my opinions on the show itself.  I haven't seen the movie Fight Club either.  I know that book discussion isn't part of this thread.  I do understand however that book readers have information that I don't have.  Until this series ends we will never be on the same page, no pun intended.  That is assuming that this series travels the same path as the book.  That wasn't the case for The Walking Dead tv series and The Walking Dead graphic novel source material.  They have at various points traveled different paths.  At least one character has died in that series that didn't die in the graphic novel.

That all being said, I still don't understand how Plum hasn't been diagnosed as bipolar. 

Plum was on anti-depressants, and she has anxiety issues and she has impulse control problems, often making bad decisions, acting out.

She started out being a stress eater.  She then ground her hotdog/bun into a guy's shirt who she was arguing with.  In this episode she smashed eggs in a bowl (not a big deal) and then she escalated her bad decision making by having her in affect throw another temper tantrum  (spray painting/defacing someone's property) because she did not get her deposit back from a surgery she no longer wanted.   Her destructive behavior is getting worse, not better.

It could be argued that she is finally standing up for herself, no longer being a doormat.  Perhaps to some extent that is true.  I am concerned that she isn't able to control her frustration/anger, much like she hasn't been able to control the stresses that cause her to overeat.

 

The good news, is for the 4th episode, roughly just as many people watched the show live 449,000 viewers, as those who watched it via dvr, 400,000 viewers.  The bad news, is that it looks like this episode had a viewership of 342,000 viewers without dvr numbers added in.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dietland_(TV_series)#cite_note-1.07-11

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I don't really think Plum exhibits the markers for being diagnosed bipolar in any way. Clinically depressed, sure, but unless she has had bouts of manic energy to which we have not been privy, how could she be classified as bipolar? 

I see markers of anxiety and depression only. 

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3 hours ago, film noire said:

It'll be interesting what happens to the culture if we find out obesity is all down to gut bacteria, and not a moral failing-- we'll have to find a  new weapon to use againt women:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-gut-bacteria-help-make-us-fat-and-thin/

I am all over the gut bacteria research.  I think we will find out a LOT more about how our gut bacteria actually controls us, and in some ways, our personalities.  What many attribute to "brain chemistry" could actually be the dictates of our individual gut bacteria. It's fascinating. 

But, never fear!  Even if every woman in the world were to take skinny gut bacteria transplant pills, as the "make Plum fuckable" episode taught us, there is a lot more than weight that women are expected to maintain.  All of those things - hair, makeup, nails, high heels, clothing styles, breast implants, nose jobs, botox, hair removal, etc. - will remain as something to bludgeon women with and make us feel inadequate.

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I found parts of the episode quite disturbing. 

I sure am glad that Plum entered the coffee shop and explained things to Steven.  The narrative helped me to figure out exactly what happened in the hell hole, I mean Calliope House. It's tough to follow.  I thought that Steven was on point and sadly, we can't save people from themselves.  

How old is Plum?  I would expect her to have at least some basic intelligence on how to conduct herself and to protect herself. To me, she's too focused on venom and not on facts and smarts. The medical staff lady told her that they generally didn't refund deposits, UNLESS there was some valid reason, such as medical condition or emergency that prohibited the surgery. It might have been advisable to read the contract and see an attorney and a REAL mental health professional for backup.  The mental health professional would likely confirm that due to her recent relapse in her mental state, Plum is not mentally fit for surgery and thus may receive her deposit back.  And, if she would have really wanted to pay her bills, she might consider that committing crimes, results in criminal records and some employers aren't too keen on those.  It's as if she has no real voice inside telling her right from wrong. All she seems to is focus on being a victim, which the show has just put over the top.  

Also, if she wants to ever work again, why divulge employment information about her work for Kitty to the public? Future, prospective employers, are going to view that as red flag.  They'd be afraid to trust you working for their company.  She just has no foresight and no sense of right and wrong. She appears to be too old to be that clueless and impulsive.  

If Verbena wants Plum to be so empowered, why not drop that nickname that seems to plop her into a category. 

Verbena is not doing Plum any favors.  Is she a licensed doctor?  She's very dangerous, imo.  How much malarkey could she get into that last session? Maybe, it's just me, but, to me someone with a racing mind and nervous body, lack of empathy, loss of touch with reality, and progression of criminal behavior, I'd suggest they get into a proper mental health facility for an evaluation and treatment, but, Verbena suggest that she take up a hobby......ok, Verbena....

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7 hours ago, film noire said:

And food as outright pleasure (not just comfort and pain reducer --  like that moment early in the show when Plum remembered what it was like to eat something that gave her joy, before she knew she was in a body that made her pleasure in food wrong).  

It'll be interesting what happens to the culture if we find out obesity is all down to gut bacteria, and not a moral failing-- we'll have to find a  new weapon to use againt women:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-gut-bacteria-help-make-us-fat-and-thin/

I don't find the material dated --  from the health policing of fat women, to the surgeon telling Plum to eat under 700 calories a day (while ignoring her slow weight loss) to men feeling even more free to verbally/physically attack fat women due to their size, to a black woman feeling pressured to adopt whiter beauty standards, to Plum facing one moment of romantic rejection after another, to  (a certain kind of) radicalized feminist yearning to kill all the predators and seeing porn/sex workers as the enemy, to Plum feeling incandescently angry once the numb wears off  -- all of those conversations (and more) are happening all over the internet, today. 

My major issue with the show is with Noxon now equating the Jens to civil disobedience -- that makes the story less messy/less intelligent for me. They aren't the same -- killing and dropping a rapist out of a plane is not the same moral universe as facing down a water hose, going to jail, or taking the knee.  Don't try to make it more palatable by pretending they're both "valid" acts. They aren't.  I'm more complex than that in how I handle my fury at the brutal shit the world endlessly throws at me -- one more pedo priest destroying a village of children, a serial rapist/killer preying unchecked on prostitutes who are indigenous women -- why isn't this show? 

 

Please keep posting on here, Film Noire.  Your posts are a pleasure to read.  You are on point with all of your comments.

I  have had no knowledge of Noxon  before Dietland, but I was also surprised that she equated murder to civil disobedience. In modern day, it should be obvious where you'd draw a parallel to with Jennifer, and its unacceptable. In history, though, she is almost totally correct, that when starting a revolution, blood will be shed.  And it was almost exclusively done  by men, in the past. There is a kind of karmic justice to Jennifer that I feel a lot of women, whether vocal about it or not, would not feel this was wholly unreasonable, and probably even acceptable. Just like Plum.

 

I'm a little disturbed at the arm-chair psychiatry going on on the fictional character of Plumb. For a few reasons.

She's not a real person, so if the authors haven't decided her to have a mental illness that isnt told to us, she simply does not.

Secondly,  women who buck the norms of society and culture have often been , and still are,  pathologized. Their behavior is deemed irrational, sick. You need look back no further than  the label "hysterical" applied to Victorian women (and onward).  "Hysterical", in fact, is almost a feminized word, as it has only been used to describe the 'derangement' of women (and certain men). Of course,  its now seen for what it was: pathologizing the normal behavior of women who didnt conform to their own mental, physical and spiritual imprisonment under a patriarchy.  Women who angry at the patriarchic system they were constricted by, and trapped under.  Its the culture that is sick, not the women.

And lastly,  'diagnosing' tv characters is seen as trivializing and stigmatizing the real sufferers of the mental illnesses being bandied about.  Let's all restrain from adding to the already abundant misinformation out there on all mental illnesses.

 

Plum is righteously angry.   Every single negative aspect of her life that has been portrayed, are things that 'fat' women have to endure. Whether it fits anyone personal experiences, is moot. Look up some comments on blogs dealing with these issues; they are all represented.  None of the material is dated. It seems like feminist thought and act has sped up inthe last few years. But #MeToo  would probably not taken off 3 years ago; and not without such an outrageous kcik off, as th e one provided by various sexual  predators being in the news.  We were headed there, but those things sped things up.

What Plum is shown having to endure, in such a short period of time, is enough to cause serious PTSD. In fact, I would say the cumulative impact of what she has endured through her life as a fat woman, shaped the 'meek'  Plum we see before her epiphany. She wears black to hide her body to not incur more abuse from strangers, she only walks a few blocks around her home for the same reason, she starves herself, denies herself pleasure or even a nice word to herself, in her own mind.  Plum has every right to be blazing mad, when she gains a voice for herself.

And she's right to not care about the deaths of some random football players, who were done in by a woman. That has a sort of karmic justice to it, when you consider how long the culture has deified football players, from childhood on up, at the expense of girls and women in this culture.  I think that this is where the author was alluding to the scores of football players who are so entitled, they have raped  and sexually harassed women, with no consequences. How the victims are pathologized ( the news reporter does this to the perp), blamed and vilified for 'ruining the lives of young men.'

This is a fictional book that is taking on the enormous scope of misogyny in our culture, so of course things are going to be condensed; especially in a tv show. The book, like the tv show, expects viewers to come to it with a modicum of knowledge on women's issues, and I dont think that's unfair This is not  a documentary.  Ig we were watching a character who 'acted correctly' according to societal rules, we would have turned the channel long ago. Thats not what I want in my fictional entertainment.

 

I thought Plum looked great in her new colorful outfit. One, she has seemingly worn black all her life. Largely out of fear. So seeing her express herself in clothes is wonderful. And  two, if you wore black all your life to hide yourself out of fear, you might have chosen her wardrobe , when given a chance to play. The colors lit up her face. The faux leopard coat and purple top and green tights looked marvelous on camera, too.

 

Stephan is a horrible friend. He is constantly policing Plum, and pulling the health card is a bullshit move on his part. Plum was eating less than 700 calories a day .  If you ate hardly any carbs or protein, youd pant during physical activity too She is moving a body her size, on little to no nourishment. He is full of shit.   The first time we meet him, he twists her arm into baking desserts for him, when he knows she doesnt want to because she's on a diet. He doesn't care about that, but now that he wants to chastise her for not caring that the football players were killed, he throws that in her face. On the surface, he's a character we 've grown to identify as sympathetic. As a gay, black man, we realize he is  a twice -discriminated member of the culture (as is Plum).

But like in real life, being a discriminated member of society, doesnt always follow that  they will be empathetic with another discriminated class of people. A lot of gay men identify with the patriarchy, and not women. Plum is correct that he doesnt understand what its like to be a woman in this culture, and doubly so a fat woman. Plum has not chastised Stephen for anything in this show, but he has felt that  he was entitled to police her every step.  

I dont understand the like for Plum's mom, either. She is manipulative and a nagging.  Plum is grown woman, and she treats her like a 5 year old.  So does Steven. Plum is frustrated to tears and outburst with them, because  they do not listen or empathize with her. They attack her, 'out of concern.'  What that is is gaslighting and manipulation.

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I wish they’d gone further when Steven called Plum out on his being black, gay, and from the South.  There’s a real question here the show isn’t dealing with about their relationship: from what we’ve seen, he seems to spend an awful lot of time listening to Plum’s problems, but is that relationship really recriprocal? The character of Steven is dangerously close to the “magic black man” or “magic gay friend” stereotype, whose sole purpose in a movie or tv show is basically to give advice, support, and a shoulder to cry on for a white and/or straight main character (you could also note that the only other at least somewhat prominent gay male character on Dietland is so familiar as a tv cliche he’s pretty much swiped directly from Ugly Betty).   While I liked that we finally saw some conflict between Plum and Steven, I think the show brings up really quickly a major subject about representation and entitlement it doesn’t really plan to deal with, because after that scene Steven again disappears for the rest of the episode.  

 

What’s kind of ironic here is that a different show that featured a sassy big girl who we only see every now and then and whose main purpose was to be  a sounding board for a thin woman or a man would be exactly the kind of thing Dietland would rightly criticize, but so far the show doesn’t seem to have these qualms when dealing with a different minority.

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The football players are linked to the murdered porn star, in that they both degrade women.  The porn star chooses to perform violent porn that the football players consume. She makes violent gangbang porn, and sells makeup to women under another name, therefore making innocent women complicit in the degradation of themselves. 

Whether or not she herself is a victim is not laid out for us.  According to some 3rd wave feminism, she chose to do do that kind of porn because she wanted to; it was her free will and agency.  A more nuanced look at porn sometimes dredges up some abuse or coercive behavior to justify  porn actresses as victims.  The Jennifers seem to be 3rd wave, as they lay the blame directly at her feet for being complicit.

When we are shown the footballers, they are discussing a murdered woman as an object used to 'spank it' to. There's no compassion for a murdered victim. First, they vilify her as a woman (she's 'old', and therefore gross an worthless at her murdered age) , then they sexualize her at her young age in porn. Shes an object; they dont give a crap she was murdered.

When the woman walks into the locker room, most of the guys take this as the beginning of a gangbang,  just like theyve learned to see women through porn, and especially the kind of porn the murdered porn star made. The s-bomber leads them to believe this is in fact the very scenario. She knows that;s how they will take it the moment she walks into the locker room. 

Is the viewer supposed to not care about the footballers getting murdered?  I dont think so. There are, like in most groups of men, the ones who dont  believe the situation is kosher.  But anecdotally. what we have seen is mostly men going along with the pack; not speaking out, not even trying to stop things, frequently, that turn into non-consensual sex.

Since porn is such a lightening rod in conversations on the net, and often seems to prompt irrational responses, let me just say I have nothing against porn as a concept.  I think the  author is pointedly showing the effect of violent porn. Cases like the recent one in Steubenville, have rapist footballers taking their cues from porn, including gangbang porn, to commit rapes and sexual assaults.  

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40 minutes ago, bobbyjoe said:

I wish they’d gone further when Steven called Plum out on his being black, gay, and from the South.  There’s a real question here the show isn’t dealing with about their relationship: from what we’ve seen, he seems to spend an awful lot of time listening to Plum’s problems, but is that relationship really recriprocal? The character of Steven is dangerously close to the “magic black man” or “magic gay friend” stereotype, whose sole purpose in a movie or tv show is basically to give advice, support, and a shoulder to cry on for a white and/or straight main character (you could also note that the only other at least somewhat prominent gay male character on Dietland is so familiar as a tv cliche he’s pretty much swiped directly from Ugly Betty).   While I liked that we finally saw some conflict between Plum and Steven, I think the show brings up really quickly a major subject about representation and entitlement it doesn’t really plan to deal with, because after that scene Steven again disappears for the rest of the episode.  

 

What’s kind of ironic here is that a different show that featured a sassy big girl who we only see every now and then and whose main purpose was to be  a sounding board for a thin woman or a man would be exactly the kind of thing Dietland would rightly criticize, but so far the show doesn’t seem to have these qualms when dealing with a different minority.

They  changed the character from a pregnant white woman friend, to a black man; so it's not in the original author's intent. And I had the same thought as you; that it looks suspiciously like a "magical negro" character, who has no inner life and  who is always right, and the sounding board for the main character (also see: gay BFF). 

I thought that before he "concern trolled" Plumb on her health.  Him doing that , now puts him in the category of people who dont really understand, empathize or  care about Plum; they just want to manipulate her.  Now whether or not the makers of the show realize this or not, I dont know. I do not like his character. 

Equally dumb though is the young guy who is ga-ga over Plumb. He is a total cliche of a character who loves the 'unlovable' heroine, for no describable reason, and she wont give him the time of day.  Plumb, who is so starved for affection that Julia touching her hand is something she comments on, would not have explored a mutual affection with that guy?  Unrealistic. That guy is the cliche of a marysue love interest; which is also unrealistic.

Its like a collection of traditional side-characters in one scene: fat girl friend, gay, black friend and marysue love interest.

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12 hours ago, Buttless said:

I love that Verena is being called Verbena !

You know, I noticed that after the fact, but, decided to just leave it. lol 

I agree about the cliche characters as described upthread.  Good points.  The more I see of this series, the more I feel as if the writers were not really informed on a lot of things and just copied and pasted themes, theories and characters in sort of a hodgepodge project.  There seems to be little introspection about how people really cope, process and behave.  Most characters are like caricatures, imo.  Like the opening trailer of the obese woman, I presume Plum, climbing the food mountain.  I don't even get the sense that the writers have much experience with obesity or even did much research on it. It's a complex issue and not really addressed in this series so far. They don't seem to understand the Civil Rights movement either, imo, based on how they seem to equate their version of civil disobedience.   

And while they seem to now have Julia trying to stop the extremists, I wonder if she really wants to.  Wasn't her first reaction to the school murders, that it was easy to condemn for a rich, white lady?  If Verena hadn't admonished her would she have taken a stand? 

What's the deal with Kitty's boss?  This was the second time that she has inferred that Jennifer might not be happy with him and yet he seems unphased. WHY?  Does he know that he is safe from Jennifer's wrath?  How?  Or is he just a silly, rich man who isn't capable of using his brain and heeding her warning?  

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On 7/9/2018 at 9:19 PM, SimoneS said:

Much better episode. I prefer empowered Plum. She should drag that doctor's name on Twitter to cower him into giving her the back the money.

Here's the thing, though. It doesn't matter that the doctor is a man. The doctor could have been a woman and Plum could have experienced the same result. Or she could have bought defective tires at CostCo. It's like there was a Ralph Nader moment in a show about feminism. So what? The worst part of that whole deal wasn't the doctor, it was the female receptionist.

16 hours ago, icemiser69 said:

It could be argued that she is finally standing up for herself, no longer being a doormat.  Perhaps to some extent that is true.

The key word here is "finally." It sure has taken Plum a long time to discover that one option is to be happy with yourself and ignore those who try to make you into something else.

19 hours ago, film noire said:

It'll be interesting what happens to the culture if we find out obesity is all down to gut bacteria, and not a moral failing-- we'll have to find a  new weapon to use against women:

And men.

Edited by Ottis
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13 hours ago, Buttless said:

I thought that before he "concern trolled" Plumb on her health.  Him doing that , now puts him in the category of people who dont really understand, empathize or  care about Plum; they just want to manipulate her. 

I agree here, though I'm not sure he realizes it. Also, I think it's important to note that Plum's youth is a factor here. If indeed she "huffs and puffs" sometimes, well, at her age, it's probably not a big deal, and even people who weigh less do it. If she were 60? Might be a more valid concern, though it should be framed in the sense of fitness and not weight. At some point for us geezers, the huffing and puffing is not a good sign.

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At the beginning of this episode, I found it interesting that Plum stated that she was punched in the face.  What she didn't say is what led up to her getting punched in the face.  She didn't deserve to be punched, but she did just about everything she could to escalate that situation rather than deescalate it.

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7 hours ago, Ottis said:

Here's the thing, though. It doesn't matter that the doctor is a man. The doctor could have been a woman and Plum could have experienced the same result. Or she could have bought defective tires at CostCo. It's like there was a Ralph Nader moment in a show about feminism. So what? The worst part of that whole deal wasn't the doctor, it was the female receptionist.

I didn't mean that Plum should publicly slam the doctor because he was man, she should done it to the doctor, period. Sometimes public embarrassment is enough to make people, especially businesses to do the right thing.

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2 hours ago, SimoneS said:

I didn't mean that Plum should publicly slam the doctor because he was man, she should done it to the doctor, period. Sometimes public embarrassment is enough to make people, especially businesses to do the right thing.

I wasn’t implying that you thought this because the doctor was a man. I meant the show seemed to, as it does in so many situations. 

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2 hours ago, SimoneS said:

I didn't mean that Plum should publicly slam the doctor because he was man, she should done it to the doctor, period. Sometimes public embarrassment is enough to make people, especially businesses to do the right thing.

But what aspect of victimhood should Plum use as a defense for not reading the contract she signed? There was no suggestion that Plum had been tricked. The receptionist reminded Plum that the contract outlined how refunds could be received. 

What we have here is an educated writer who entered into this contract quite some time ago (she's been dieting as a prerequisite), and walks into the doctor's and expects the receptionist to cut her a check for $10,000. And we learn she didn't read her contract. The public embarrassment in on Plum and she rightfully walked away.  I understand she's pissed, but that was her error. It would be nice if the doctor overlooked it, but he didn't do anything wrong.

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Anyone who actually knows anything about bipolar disorder would see that Plum is not bipolar in the slightest.  But it does entertain me when people diagnose TV characters based on what Wikipedia says.

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