“You are a WOMAN and you should decorate yourself however it pleases you” – Julia, Dietland
I’m just going to come out and say it. I was skeptical when I heard that AMC was adapting Dietland, Sarai Walker’s 2015 novel, in to a television series. Did I really want to watch another story about an unhappy overweight woman? I had to find out.
Set against the backdrop of the beauty industry, Plum Kettle, the heroine of the story, is a ghostwriter advice columnist for a teen magazine who is trying to lose weight as she prepares for gastric bypass surgery. Are you still with me? Good. Because what starts as a typical plus-size fairy tale turns to a roller coaster of WTF. While Plum is recruited by two organizations dedicated to changing beauty norms, a mysterious third group known as “Jennifer” (!!!) is kidnapping and killing men who are known for abusing women. Have a look at the trailer.
As you can see, there is more to this story that meets the eye. You can catch up on past episodes online here and then watch new episode on AMC every Monday at 9/8c.
In in the mean time, here are five reasons why I think you should be watching Dietland.
- Joy Nash, who plays Plum Kettle, is the real deal. Not only is she brilliant on screen but she is no stranger to body positivity movement. Prior to being cast in this role, her “Fat Rants” video, which she wrote and directed for YouTube, was a viral video that garnered international attention.. Check out her videos here and here.
- The show conveys issues that ALL women, of ALL shapes and sizes face today (body image, sexual harassment, the #metoo movement, mental health).
- The writers poke fun at diet culture and it’s pretty hilarious. While Plum’s “Waist Watcher’s” meeting is a stretch to what an actual Weight Watchers meeting entails, even someone trying to lose weight will find the humour in Dietland (and I’ve always maintained that you need to have a good sense of humour on this journey).
- Because it drives home the point that the body acceptance movement is truly about accepting yourself at every size.
- It presents fatphobia as a very real form of degradation, humiliation, and violation, especially when it comes in the form of street harassment, unwanted touching, and/or “concern” from total strangers.
So there you have it. Are you planning on watching Dietland? Let me know what you think and jump into the conversation below.
Until next time,