By: Gabriela Medina
After binge watching “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls” on Amazon Video, I can honestly say that I am feeling “Good as Hell.” There was no better time than the month that honors women from different backgrounds to release this reality show.
When it comes to performing, Lizzo likes to shine, but her passion for getting other women who look like her on stage is just as meaningful to her. As an artist and an executive producer of the show, Lizzo was looking for dancers to make her performance all the more extravagant. After all, bigger is better, right? “I am a headliner now… I need more big girl dancers with me on stage,” Lizzo said in the first episode.
“Thin” backup dancers are common in the music industry, but that is not what Lizzo was looking for. “Girls that look like me don’t get representation. Time to pull up my sleeves and do it myself,” she said. She had 13 unique dancers who auditioned for her, and the girls had to give it their all as she was only taking 10 onboard.
Lizzo was kind to all of the girls who auditioned for her; she knew that some were born to be stars and others had the potential to grow into one. The relationships that she built with the girls in the eight episodes are truly heartwarming.
In the first elimination, Lizzo reminded the dancers that they either serve or get served, and these sassy queens definitely knew how to serve! They were passionate about dancing and have been dreaming of doing it professionally for so long. Dancing on an icon like Lizzo’s stage would be a dream come true.
The dancers who remained after the elimination all move into the “Big Grrrl Mansion” and, with a new living environment, have to learn to come together. “There’s a sisterhood there,” Lizzo said in an interview with Vanity Fair.
The mansion had many surprises like a walk-in closet full of accessories, a small gym with a bar, and more for the girls to feel comfortable. “It is important to me to put these girls in an environment where they can thrive. That is a safe space. That is chic and fly. So I want to treat these girls good. I want to treat them as good as I treat myself because that’s what they deserve,” Lizzo said on the show. “And I want to celebrate these women for the journey that they’ve had to this point cause they’ve all had journeys.”
The girls went through different challenges to train for Lizzo’s performances. At the end of their sessions, she gave awards to the two girls that stood out. One was to recognize a person who has the heart and overcame an obstacle, and the other was given to the girl who has put in the work, has drive and the potential to be a superstar.
Lizzo shared her experience as a plus-size, body positive celebrity on the show. “It’s hard to love yourself in a world that doesn’t love you back…I have received a lot of comments about how I choose to dress, how I choose to move my body, how I chose to show my body, about my body in general. I’ve been desexualized, humiliated on the internet… I don’t have time for negativity.”
The love and confidence that Lizzo has for herself has impacted so many other women who are “imperfect” in the eyes of society. You’ll definitely go on an emotional rollercoaster watching the show as you experience all that these strong women go through. With any audition comes nerves and fear, but for these ladies, there was so much excitement, happiness, and love for dancing, for one another, and most importantly, for themselves. The activities that Lizzo arranges for them not only inspire them to be a Big Grrrl, but to also love themselves first.
If you really get into shows like me, you fall in love with the characters and their roles in the series. However, these women are not characters; they are real people sharing their experiences and the struggles that they have faced. I nearly cried watching this show because I was able to empathize with the emotions the dancers expressed.
Lizzo gave women who are not often recognized a chance to show the world that they belong. They danced their hearts out and are role models for future generations to come.
The newest “Big Grrrl'' member, Crystal Williams, described her experience working for Lizzo and how she was in awe of the incredible woman that she is. “Lizzo is a strong, hardworking, talented woman. She stands for something way more than her singing and dancing abilities. She wants to empower women of all different shapes, different sizes, different ethnicities and I feel like it’s important for girls and young women to see someone who genuinely is 100% them and still be popping at the same time.”
I really enjoyed watching the show. Lizzo truly cares about her entire crew and wants nothing but the best for them. She took the time to actually get to know her “Big Grrrls” and welcomed them with open arms. As the show went on, it became difficult for her to eliminate a participant because of the bond she formed with them. She embraced each dancer and never made them feel less than.
At the end of the show, Lizzo shared her hope that more people will feel comfortable in their own skin and recommended that they share their stories. She also said she hopes that the plus-size people watching recognize that they are not alone. If you don’t love your curves, know that someone will. Regardless if you are big or small, tall or short, you are beautiful. Do not let anyone tell you any different.