Last night's episode of Louie on FX, titled 'So Did The Fat Lady,' is causing a huge stir on the internet. A Google News search for the episode turns up nearly 100 results from the past 12 hours, and more think-pieces are sure to follow.
The general consensus is positive: the episode reveals the hypocrisy of telling fat women, "You're not fat!" Saying that, especially to someone who knows they are overweight, is actually more insulting -- it's reinforcing the idea that being fat is something vile, something no woman would want to be, and something you should never call her. We should tell women they're not fat because fat women are unloveable. It's a point that really resonated with plenty of analysts -- The A.V. Club gave the episode an A and Vulture wrote a glowing review.
However, some viewers weren't quite as enthusiastic. While there's very little outright hatred of the episode, it wasn't nuanced enough for Willa Paskin of Slate, who thought that Vanessa's character was more of an overweight manic pixie dream girl than an actual human (don't worry -- that negative headline obscures Paskin's thoughtful and balanced article), and Danielle Henderson's piece for Vulture reminded us that "not all of us fat girls have a secret speech stored inside of us."
One thing is certain -- the episode has people talking about the way fat women are treated in life and on TV. Louis CK is allowed to be fat and call himself fat, and it's not a damning word for him. Don't women deserve the same?