Fans love My Big Fat Fabulous Life for being really real about what it’s like to be a bigger person in today’s society. However, some recent random characters on the show have fans wondering just how real Whitney Thore‘s journey is after all.

TLC viewers started to wonder about the show’s legitimacy after Whitney had a run-in with an interesting person during her recent 8k fun run. When she started running out of steam, a stranger wearing the emblem of Whitney’s alma mater popped up with some words of encouragement, and the timing just seemed a little too convenient to be real for fans. “‘John from the Army’ just so happens to be mic’d up for the race and he’s wearing a shirt from Whitney’s alma mater Appalachian State University. Is that a coincidence?” wrote a clever reddit user who suggested John was an actor.

mbbfl, tlc

This also isn’t the first time that someone who isn’t part of the core cast seemed a little too awkward to believe. Remember when someone lashed out at Whitney for her weight during the parade? This fan does: “Kind of like the guy who was mic’d up and ready to insult her on camera at the [St. Patrick’s Day] parade last season. He wasn’t even convincing. It was the most uncomfortable, fake insult I’ve ever seen,” said one fan. Another chimed in saying, “Oh yeah, that guy was a total ringer too. Gotta give it up to MBFFL for employing so many people.” TLC hasn’t commented on whether or not these two characters were paid actors, but the practice isn’t unheard of in reality TV.

That being said, it’s unlikely that the show is actually scripted. Whitney has a big personality, and the show features her family and friends that she’s had since high school. Their love for each other can’t be faked, her struggle can’t be faked. Sometimes reality TV just needs a little push.