What This ‘Saturday Night Live’ Star Says About Quitting Twitter
Saturday Night Live continues to bring fame to aspiring comedians who are funny enough to land a coveted spot on the cast. Skyrocketing the careers of superstars like Eddie Murphy, Tina Fey, and Bill Murray, the sketch show is known as a launch pad to fame for those who can endure the rigorous schedule and tough critics (not to mention show creator Lorne Michaels).
One actress from the show who’s proving to be a breakout star previously shared that she dropped her Twitter account after receiving some horrific comments after portraying a certain political figure. She recently commented on how she feels about going Tweet-less.
Using a ‘Shrill’ voice to change the narrative
Actress Aidy Bryant has been been pulling double duty these days. Between being a cast member on Saturday Night Live and serving as executive producer, writer, and star of her Hulu series Shrill, the comedian is truly making a name for herself in show business.
Recently wrapping its second season, Shrill focuses on plus-size, shy journalist Annie (Bryant) who finally learns how to reject the negativity she receives from others about her weight. Created from Lindy West’s 2012 book of personal essays of the same name, Bryant partnered with West and Ali Rushfield to create the show and bring a different perspective toward women of different sizes.
The SNL actress was inspired to create the Hulu series due to her own personal experiences. “I think part of what compelled me to want to make this show was I got to Saturday Night Live and I thought, ‘I made it. I made it. I got the dream!'” she told NPR in March 2019. “And then I got there and I would do photo shoots with my cast mates, who are smaller women, and they would have 50 dress options and I would arrive and I would have two, and they both looked like something that the mother of the bride would wear — and I was 25 years old.”
It was then she had her ‘Aha!’ moment. “I just felt, like, this isn’t fair, and it’s not my fault. I came here. I did my job. I’m funny,” Bryant said. “I wrote my way to this position, and now a stylist or a magazine or whoever is responsible, like, it’s their job to dress me, and dress me appropriately for my age. Those were the kind of moments where I was like, ‘I want to talk about this.'”
Bryant revealed she dealt with some major cyberbullying on social media after after she portrayed former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, which prompted her to close her profile on a particular platform.
“I experienced [cyberbullying] on Twitter before I got off there because I played Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Saturday Night Live,” she said in an interview with Shondaland.com. “The thing that always blew me away was that when I would play her on the show, I would be inundated with tweets saying I was a fat, ugly pig who didn’t have the right to play someone as ‘brave and smart’ as Sarah Huckabee Sanders. The other half were tweeting at me saying I was too ‘beautiful and good’ to play someone as ‘vile and fat’ as Sarah Huckabee Sanders.”
The Shrill star felt personally hurt and offended while also sharing her empathy for Sanders. “It was brutal to me. It made me sad on both sides that she was being reduced to her looks, and so was I,” Bryant revealed. “It wasn’t good for any reason. I have the odd random person calling me a ‘fat piece of s***’ or a ‘fat pig’ or telling me that I ‘eat hamburgers’ on Instagram, but it feels less targeted… When you see stuff like that, it’s pretty revolting.”
Tweet-less and happy
When asked if she missed Twitter after quitting the platform, the comedian didn’t miss a beat. “Not a day,” she told Shondaland.com with a laugh. “Never. I have to say, it just wasn’t worth it to me. I do have Instagram. I get feedback about the show there and it means a lot to me. But I wasn’t finding anything worthwhile on Twitter.”
Now with her steady SNL gig and groundbreaking Hulu series, the actress is concentrating on moving forward in her career. Portraying Annie in Shrill has helped Bryant change her own perspective, telling NPR “the second I stopped being afraid of someone calling me fat, I was able to start to focus on my goals and my dreams.”
Shrill can now be streamed on Hulu.