I knew nothing about Gina Torres’ new show Huge when Whedonesque said it was premiering. As a matter of fact, I learned about it the day it actually was premiering. I don’t know what’s wrong with me that I’m not keeping up with my people the way I used to.
I set my DVR up to record the show, then promptly ignored it. If I haven’t mentioned it 100 times before, I’m picky about the television shows I watch, and I’m very rarely super excited to jump into a new one.
Finally, I watched the first episode last week. Then I promptly watched the remaining five episodes.
I absolutely freaking love this show.
Bypassing Gina Torres for a moment, let’s discuss Nikki Blonsky. I didn’t jump on the Hairspray remake bandwagon immediately. Zac Effron actually is a Whedon alumni (baby Simon in an episode of Firefly), and I’m a John Travolta fan. But it was a remake of a movie I hold near and dear, and how could anyone possibly take the place of Rikki Lake and Divine in my heart?
I actually bawled my eyes out watching Hairspray. I can’t help it, I’m a big beautiful bitch in my own right, and seeing fat chicks win the gold always makes me happy.
Cut to Huge. This show is actually REALLY depressing. Hell, in the first episode we lose a character because of Bulimia. It’s hard to get more depressing than that unless you show someone slitting their wrists after running over their pet kitten while staring at a picture of their dead mother.
The character Nikki plays, Will, is proud of her fat. Mind you, she’s proud of it as a defense mechanism rather than downright love of her poundage. And that’s okay, because this is ABC Family, for christ’s sake. They need to do something to make up for Pretty Little Liars (which I also record, for Bianca Lawson. We won’t discuss that train wreck)
But Will is a smart ass. She’s a “rebel”. She has fatspiration on her bunk, and she sells contraband Twinkies. There is no bad here. She’s snarky and mean spirited, but damaged. How much fun is this going to be?
Gina Torres is one of the top 10 most gorgeous women alive. She’s also a phenomenal actress. I’ve seen her in some truly horrendous roles (Cleopatra 2525, anyone?), but she plays with real integrity and sharp skills. I enjoy everything she does, and she doesn’t disappoint in this. Her stoic nature is brilliant as a camp director, and the quiet pain of dealing with her father and lying to her mother is just…she brought tears to my eyes, I’m not even going to lie.
It’s hard to focus on any of the other campers, just because there are a lot of them and I’m not good with their names. Mostly it’s “The girl who ___” and “The guy who ___”. I know Amber, solely because if I was a camper in this world, I would do everything in my power to make her life miserable because she’s the pretty one. But this is a wonderfully diverse group of actors. And it’s about damn time we saw some pudgealicious people on television.
I particularly enjoyed when, in the second episode, the bitchy girls squealed and giggled about the book that was an obviously thinly veiled reference to Twilight, then later in the same episode, the awesome girl (Becca, so says IMDB) is quietly reading Hunger Games. Now, I could cry foul that attention was paid to a rip-off of that shitty tripe. But then I realized, Twilight was never mentioned by name. Instead, the stupid girls are shown loving it. And the smart and lovely girl is shown reading the actual book. Awesomecakes.
That happiness was destroyed when two episodes later they watched the movie based on that book. But I rather enjoyed that the fake version was as cheesy and horrible as its basis.
More people need to be watching this show. It’s so enjoyable, and I truly hope it continues for many seasons.