Nicole Byer as Nicole Byer and Michelle Buteau as Mavis in “Survival of the Thickest.” Courtesy Photo: Jocelyn Prescod/Netflix ©2023

Renowned comedian Michelle Buteau has taken the spotlight on Netflix with her uproarious comedy series, “Survival of the Thickest.”

Alongside co-creator Danielle Sanchez-Witzel, Buteau’s sharp wit and infectious charm have struck a chord with viewers, making the show an instant hit that blends humor with thought-provoking themes.

Within the realm of comedy, “Survival of the Thickest” is soaring high, consistently delivering side-splitting laughter that resonates deeply with its audience. Each episode showcases Buteau’s comedic genius, leaving fans eagerly waiting for more.

The Netflix original series has garnered widespread acclaim, with viewers expressing their love for Buteau’s magnetic presence and her ability to effortlessly blend humor with relevant social commentary.

From relatable anecdotes to insightful observations, “Survival of the Thickest” has something for everyone, ensuring an enjoyable and engaging watch.

However, despite the show’s undeniable popularity and critical praise, some disappointment lingers among fans due to Netflix’s decision to release only eight episodes.

Many viewers argue that this exceptional series deserved a more substantial order, given its strong appeal and Buteau’s undeniable comedic talents.

Social media platforms have been abuzz with praise for “Survival of the Thickest,” with hashtags like #SurvivalOfTheThickest and #MichelleButeau trending as fans express their desire for an extended season. The show’s unique blend of humor and relatable themes has fostered a dedicated and enthusiastic fan base.

Michelle Buteau, the co-creative mind behind “Survival of the Thickest,” takes center stage as the charismatic fashion stylist, Mavis Beaumont. Through all eight episodes, Buteau immerses herself in the character, guiding viewers through Mavis’ journey of self-discovery and empowerment. Her mission to dress plus-sized women, nurturing their inner divas and fostering self-confidence, resonates powerfully within today’s society.

The unraveling of Mavis’ long-term relationship with a well-connected photographer (Taylor Selé) exposes the fragility of love and trust. Forced to reside in a shared Brooklyn apartment, where privacy is a luxury, Mavis embarks on a challenging quest for financial stability and clientele. Alongside her two loyal best friends, Khalil (Tone Bell) and Marley (Tasha Smith), she navigates the complexities of love, friendship, and self-acceptance.

The chemistry between the trio is electric, a testament to the exceptional casting choices made for the series. Their interactions, set against the backdrop of modern-day New York, offer an authentic and down-right interesting portrayal of real-life issues. Khalil and Marley, both fascinating characters in their own right, deserved further exploration to deepen our understanding of Mavis Beaumont’s world.

With a runtime of just four hours, “Survival of the Thickest” endeavors to encapsulate Mavis’ journey, leaving little room for in-depth exploration. From navigating the complexities of dating to the introduction of an Italian beau (Marouane Zotti) and the revelation of Mavis’ Caribbean immigrant heritage, the series touches upon profound themes such as identity and the complexities of familial relationships. Notable guest appearances, including Garcelle Beauvais as Natasha, an aging supermodel seeking Mavis’ expertise, and a delightful array of celebrity drag performers, further enrich the tapestry of the show.

While I hesitate to step into any spoilers which exist inside the more comedic moments, it suffices to say that “Survival of the Thickest” boasts an abundance of comedic genius. Genius family — genius.

“Survival of the Thickest” is a wonderfully audacious creation, expertly balancing humor with thought-provoking social commentary. Its only flaw lies not in its content, but in the limited episode count imposed by Netflix. This series deserves more seasons.

“Survival of the Thickest”:

  • Co-Creator/Executive Producer: Michelle Buteau.
  • Co-Creator / Showrunner / Executive Producer: Danielle Sanchez-Witzel.
  • Executive Producers: Linda Mendoza; Ravi Nandan and Alli Reich for A24, Anne Hong (Mosaic) .

Starring Michelle Buteau, Tone Bell with recurring guest stars Tasha Smith, Taylor Selé, Garcelle Beauvais, Marouane Zotti, Liza Treyger, Anissa Felix, Anthony Michael Lopez, Monnae Michaell, Usama Siddiquee, Allan K. Washington, Becca Blackwell, Peppermint, J. Riley Jr., Anna George, Michelle Visage, Donovan Louis Bazemore, and Ambre Anderson.

Watch “Survival of the Thickest,” now streaming on Netflix.

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