In an episode of Showtime’s series Weeds, Celia Hodes (Elizabeth Perkins) regularly weighs her daughter, Isabelle (played by 12-year-old Allie Grant), and as the scale tips, accuses Isabelle of sneaking food. The solution? Celia sneakily swaps part of Isabelle’s candy bar for a chocolate laxative, landing Isabelle in the elementary school bathroom and as the flatulent target of her peers. Isabelle’s father yells at Celia, “They called her, ‘Shit Girl!’”
“Well, better than ‘Fat Girl,” Celia replies. She continues, “It is cold and cruel out there for fat girls.”
Incidentally, the sour apple doesn’t far fall from the tree. Privy to her mother’s guile, Isabelle plants Immodium in Celia’s Trimspa bottle, rendering the bathroom-happy Celia as bloated, constipated, and enraged. As she makes camp on the toilet, reading, doing the crossword, filing her nails, chugging water, and even nodding off, Isabelle’s in bed, polishing off a chocolate bar. Her response to her mother’s frustrated screams: a smug, complacent, “Bitch.” Was Isabelle hungry? Maybe. Craving chocolate? Perhaps. But, it’s clear that rebellion trumps all else, that the chocolate bar is a prop in an ongoing family struggle that ultimately has no victor.