‘Insatiable’ stars talk about PH impressions, Gloria Diaz, and pageants


Posted at Oct 09 2019 04:26 PM | Updated as of Oct 09 2019 09:07 PM

Dallas Roberts and Debby Ryan judge a beauty pageant featuring fans of “Insatiable” in Manila. Handout

MANILA – The two lead stars of “Insatiable” finally got to visit the Philippines for the first time as they promote the second season of their Netflix series.

In separate roundtable interviews with ABS-CBN News and other local media, Debby Ryan and Dallas Roberts shared their thoughts about the country, working with guest star Gloria Diaz, and their view about pageants, which is a central theme in “Insatiable.”

Here are excerpts from their interviews:


Ryan: “I find it beautiful. I’ve always wanted to go and this is my first time in Manila, or in the Philippines in general. The first crush I ever had was this boy in class, he was so beautiful and he was Filipino. And so ever since then, I had this in my mind that [Filipinos] are the most beautiful [people]. And I love anything tropical, give me a palm tree or a citrus dish and I’m happy.”

“Dallas gets to go and I have to run back home. He gets to stay and have some fun so I’m going to make him send all the photos from the time he’s here. I want to come back and make a full trip out of it, now that I know it’s awesome.”

Roberts: “When I’m done doing this (work), I’m going to go to Palawan… I invited a guest to come with me.”

“We’re going to stay in like a tent on a tree. We’re gonna go from this hotel to the sand and the earth and big hats. I can’t wait.”


Ryan: “She’s such a force and so formidable… We were aware that the show was received beautifully in the Philippines, which was so humbling and so exciting. So then, as we studied the culture, Gloria is an undeniable part of pageant culture here. So we will have a different version of her in the show.”

“She was regal and she was professional, and she wanted to do the right job. Just because she was this legacy doesn’t mean she didn’t come in just like every other actor and wanted to do a good job. And that was inspiring.”

Roberts: “I read in the script that this diva of beauty pageants comes and he (Bob, his character) is super intimidated by her… You just read it on the page and you’re like, ‘Oh, it better be someone cool.’”

“And it’s Gloria Diaz! It’s like you don’t have to act at all. She was really intimidating and beautiful and regal, and it was amazing.”


Ryan: “I didn’t know enough about it, but there was never a part of me that’s like, ‘Ugh, pageants.’ When I sat down with some of these women who competed in pageants, I asked them, ‘What do you feel is the biggest misconception? Where do you think are you portrayed incorrectly?’ And they were like, ‘I don’t like that we’re portrayed as dumb, as mean, or as superficial.’”

“And the more that I got to know these women, what they care about, and their platforms, I realized that these are women looking for a community, a sisterhood. These women are looking to overcome their fears and their anxieties, and they’re doing a very brave thing that’s very exciting and pointing to the betterment of humankind. And it’s hard not to be impressed by that.”

Roberts: “I grew up in the South so there were ladies I knew who were involved in pageants… I hate to bring it up but that poor girl 10 years ago or whatever just completely flubbed in answering a question. She came off the rails, and you get that kind of stereotype.”

“But the show (‘Insatiable’), the impetus of it is a New York Times article about a real guy who was a lawyer who coached pageants… I met him and we’re friends now. So he taught me the value of looking past the Vaseline on the teeth, or the tape here, or the tucking here, and towards empowerment and being able to find yourself and move out into the world. So that’s what changed [in my perception of pageants].”