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The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Review | U.K. Netflix series ‘Sex Education’ is one for the books

U.K. screenwriter Laurie Nunn concludes her high school drama series “Sex Education,” leaving a lasting impression on many viewers.
Dan MacMedan
Jan 5, 2020; Beverly Hills, CA, USA; Gillian Anderson arrives on the red carpet during the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel. Mandatory Credit: Dan MacMedan-USA TODAY

The students of Moordale High School are back on Netflix for the final time in this one-of-a-kind “Sex Education” finale.

In the first season released in January 2019, screenwriter Laurie Nunn introduces Otis Milburn, a freshman at Moordale High and the son of a sex therapist. With quick money in mind, he teams up with another one of his classmates to start a sex therapy clinic for his classmates.

From there, viewers are brought into a typical high school environment and are whisked away into the many ups and downs of love, friendship, and family through different points of view.

I liked how in the first season, I thought the show was only going to follow the main protagonist, Otis. As I kept watching, I slowly got to know many more characters.

None of the introductions were rushed. I never felt like I was going through a grocery list full of cast members; everything built up at a natural pace. Little by little, I learned about what each character’s backstory was apart from their role in and out of Moordale High.

For example, even though Otis’s mom, Jean Milburn, was his number one target for his frustration, I learned that she would go through anything for him to make him happy.

Their relationship throughout the series was muddled because of many misunderstandings and, because of that, there were many times I thought Jean would give up on Otis based on how badly he treated her. However, she never did even in the last season, and that, in my opinion, made her one of the strongest characters in the show.

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Apart from how deep the backstories were, I liked the underlying themes that were presented throughout the series. One of them was the virtue of honesty. Every single person in this show had to face the truth one way or another.

Most of the time a character tries to keep something from themselves, a friend, or their romantic partner, their prospective relationship derailed or didn’t go how they expected.

An example is Otis’s relationship with his best friend, Eric Effiong. Even though they were two very different people, they still made it work during each school year.

However, that boiled over in the last season. There was one scene where Eric had finally had enough of Otis’s lack of attention, so he decided to bring up the issue face-to-face. It did not end well because Otis didn’t really understand where he went wrong, so they had to take time away from each other for a little while.

Things like that have reminded me how much work, time, and effort are required for a basic friendship, and I thought it was important to apply that advice in my own life.

I can say that in addition to having a unique take on a high school series, Nunn effectively explored how to deal with both interpersonal and intrapersonal relationships. With “Sex Education,” she provides viewers with a guiding light towards a better and happier state of living.

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About the Contributor
Isabelle Lubguban, Arts Reporter
Isabelle Lubguban is a third-year student at the University of Iowa. She is majoring in English with a concentration of Creative Writing. This is her first year at the Daily Iowan as an Arts Reporter, and she enjoys doing photo and video editing in her free time.