Insatiable season 1, episode 1 premiere recap: Pilot


Insatiable is odd, peculiar, and is living up to the criticism it has received prior to its release–and we’re only at the pilot.

Insatiable has been the topic of conversation ever since its first trailer dropped not so long ago. It has been criticized for fat shaming, treating eating disorders lightly, and pushing the idea that it is reasonable to seek revenge once you are “prettier and skinnier”. That is the gist of the sentiments one feels after watching the pilot episode, and it never really goes away.

The pilot episode begins with Patty (Debby Ryan) narrating her journey as an overweight young woman, and the issues it has caused her. Perhaps what is quite disturbing about this beginning narration is the dark humor that is infused within the words. Patty goes on to talk about being obese and being one of those girls who was sitting at home stuffing her face, while kids were out losing their virginity. Hmmm, is that really a message you want to make fun of?

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But then it was almost hard not to relate to Patty either. Sometimes, especially in high school, making fun of yourself or a situation was really the only way to get through it. So while we can understand where she may be coming from, it’s still odd to see it being said so nonchalantly in Insatiable.

As we learned about Patty, another pivotal character was introduced by the name of Bob Armstrong (Dallas Roberts), a lawyer who used to coach beauty pageant contestants until one day he was falsely accused of molesting one.

He and Patty cross paths after she gets punched and punches a homeless man and it results in a lawsuit. There was a moment here again that the series could have taken the idea of someone being falsely accused, and used it to rather reflect on someone telling the truth.

Long story short, Patty’s altercation with the homeless man leads her to getting her mouth wired shut. Fast forward some months, and she is now skinny, sexy, and oozing with confidence like never before. So much so that when she crosses paths with the homeless man again and he doesn’t recognize her, she decides she will seek revenge on him by sleeping with him and then dumping him. It’s quite a drastic change in personality, and just doesn’t make sense.

Perhaps the most genuine depiction of Patty’s struggles is the moment she is standing in front of a mirror and staring at her body. She is still riddled with the fear, struggles, and shame of what she once was, and it’s finally a real moment for this character that is otherwise not making a whole lot of sense.

Credit: Netflix

By the end of the episode, Patty has realized that Bob is the only one who understands her as a person, and as twisted as it feels, Bob feels the same. He is trapped in a life where people doubt him and suspect him and after the whole allegation dilemma, Patty may be his saving grace.

Insatiable may not have sold us on the story just yet, but there may be potential there as the story continues to build on these central characters and the topics the show is trying to tackle. The manner in which topics like bullying, weight, suicide, and the like are being discussed feels crass and harsh, but perhaps that’s the point. Maybe the people struggling with similar issues will watch the series and not feel alone in their problems.

Next. Insatiable season 1, episode 2 recap. dark

Time will tell. But one thing is certain after watching the pilot episode of Insatiable, seeking revenge doesn’t make the inner problems disappear, and until those are not dealt with, nothing else will make one feel better. Maybe, just maybe, that is what this series is trying to teach us.