Good news for anyone who enjoyed the 80’s shenanigans of Freaks and Geeks and the more recent 90’s shenanigans of Everything Sucks! This newest Netflix original titled Sex Education is essentially the same style of show except they’ve now moved on to the 2010’s. With 8 episodes in total, each running just under an hour, there is laughs, heartbreak, and awkwardness packed into every single minute of it.
The show starts off with a scene of a high school couple having sex (seriously what did you expect from a show called Sex Education?) except this relationship flips the classic stigma of women faking orgasms on its head because it’s the man (who we later find out to be Adam) that is forced to fake it when nothing seems to be happening for him.
From there we cut to one of our main protagonists of the story which is a scrawny 16 year old boy named Otis. This short (seemingly random at first) introduction scene is a staple in this show as it gives us a look at one of the issues that is going to be addressed at some point during that episode.
The story with Otis is that he is sexually repressed kid who ironically has a sex therapist for a mother. Unfortunately Otis is plagued with the inability to ever even touch his own penis in a sexual manner because doing so sends him into a panic attack.
It’s through an unfortunate incident in biology class where an old video of Otis’ mother performing a demonstrational sex education seminar is played to everyone that Otis and the female main protagonist Maeve first have their real interaction together. Meave is essentially the opposite of Otis in every single way possible. She is well known at school, sexually active, and has an edgy punk look that she consistently rocks all the time.
Through a very funny and extremely awkward incident involving Adam (the guy from before who turns out to be this dickhead bully) and some ingested viagra pills, Maeve and Otis realize that if they team up together they can form a secret sex education clinic to other students at school to help them deal with any sexual issues they might be dealing with (for a small fee of course).
From here the story arch progresses with Otis, Maeve, and Otis’ best friend Eric all trying to keep their friendship and business partnership together while dealing with the struggles of high school life in England.
The dialogue and physical comedy is done really well in this show, and you are pretty much guaranteed to laugh out loud several times throughout each episode (except possibly episode 5 which gets pretty real and sad). How the relationships between characters are developed throughout the show is very reminiscent of other high school comedy dramas (such as the aforementioned Freaks and Geeks) so if you like that style then you will love this show. I personally enjoy this style of writing, although even I can admit that it’s getting a little played out at this point.
That brings me to my only real complaint around this whole show, which is that it is at times a little too predictable. I found myself guessing what would happen about 15-30 minutes ahead of when it actually did a fair amount throughout the show. In fact, there’s one big development in the show that I predicted back in episode 2 which is actually revealed until episode 8 (but I was right, as always).
Overall, I give this show 4 out of 5 sex ed classes.