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Culture > Entertainment

A Fat Person’s Goodbye to Kat From Euphoria

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCF chapter.

I’m fat. And no, that doesn’t mean I want you to say “Oh my gosh stop! You’re gorgeous!” It just means exactly what I said: that I’m fat. Even on TV, a lot of media plays into the idea that fat = ugly. But it isn’t totally the end of the world, and the media shouldn’t portray it as such. When starting HBO Max’s hit show Euphoria, I was expecting more of the same. Here came another show that claimed to accurately depict serious and realistic topics relevant to their younger audiences. Not only is that a lofty claim, but it’s also a common one. So, I didn’t have high expectations regarding their portrayal of a fat character. However, Euphoria diverged and actually got a few things right with their plus-size representation through an iconic character with integral storylines: Kat Hernandez.

Kat Hernandez was desirable, sarcastic, bold, confident and multidimensional, serving as the fat role model I had waited almost my whole life for. She was one of the main characters in the first two seasons of Euphoria. She was just a normal teen girl, you know? Hooking up with guys, fighting with her friends, battling insecurities, dating and going to school. Although a few unrealistic aspects were there, such as her findom arc, she was ultimately an incredibly relatable plus-sized character that teen girls, such as myself, desperately needed. 

Seeing a fat woman portrayed as a multifaceted being, one whose personality did not rely solely on humor, changed how I view and consume popular media. The way Kat was written finally framed her size not as a defining character trait, but simply another physical characteristic such as hair color or height. Yes, the show does touch on fatphobia, but it does not hold Kat back as a character. She’s not the butt of the joke and her fatness does not define her nor does it keep her from greatness. 

Kat being shown as desirable and worthy, despite her size, was weirdly life-changing. Up to that point, I didn’t actually realize how much of my life I spent watching shows where girls half my size would get dragged for their so-called “fatness.” Sadly, it was ten times more shocking to see a girl who looked even remotely like me be portrayed in a positive light, or even as a whole person.

But all good things, including this one, must come to an end. Barbie Ferreira, the actress who plays Kat on Euphoria, recently posted on her Instagram story saying goodbye to the show as she will not be returning for season three.

“After four years of getting to embody the most special and enigmatic character Kat,” wrote Ferreira “, I’m having to say a very teary eyed goodbye. I hope many of you could see yourself in her like I did and that she brought you joy to see her journey into the character she is today. I put all my care and love into her and I hope you guys could feel it. Love you Katherine Hernandez.”

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After I read this, I looked down at my phone in utter shock as the screen glowed at me unrelentingly. Was I sad? Hurt? Angry? I mean, I don’t really know. I just know that her absence is leaving me with a sense of emptiness in terms of how I view the upcoming season. No other show, at least that I’ve seen, has any other character that could even compare to the lasting impact that she left on how I view the media and myself. And I can wholeheartedly say I am not alone in this sentiment. Kat’s departure creates a hole not only in the media I consume but in the world of every other plus-sized girl out there desperately seeking someone to relate to.

So I guess I have to say goodbye, goodbye to Kat Hernandez, goodbye to being represented in the media, goodbye to the shred of confidence that her character lent me, and goodbye to Euphoria as I will not be watching any new seasons after the injustice that is her departure. 

Krizia is a fourth-year student at UCF Majoring in Human Communications and Minoring in Psychology. She is passionate about writing, fashion, art, music, etc. She hopes to pursue a career in marketing and communications by garnering unique experiences such as this one.