Sex Education is not just about sex: Asa Butterfield

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Asa Butterfield plays Otis on Netflix's Sex Education.

Having worked with directors like Martin Scorsese (Hugo) and Tim Burton (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), Asa Butterfield has accomplished much more than his peers and it is probably this experience that allows him to efficiently play the lead role in Netflix’s Sex Education.

Since Otis is the central character who also moonlights as a part-time sex therapist, this role proved to be a complex one for Butterfield. The actor said in a statement, “Otis has had an interesting upbringing with quite a lot of psychological issues around sex thanks to his relationship with his mum. On one side, he is very comfortable with it, very knowledgeable and experienced. But he is also freaked out by it.”

Asa Butterfield also spoke about Otis’ relationship with his mother Jean, played by Gillian Anderson. He said, “The relationship with his mum, things that have happened in his past, it’s almost like PTSD. He is a virgin and unable to do anything about it. The thought of talking to a girl or having any kind of relationship with a girl terrifies him, so he has all this knowledge but no ability to do anything with it.”

Otis and Maeve’s ‘Will they-won’t they’ storyline kept the viewers hooked in the first season of Sex Education. But it looks like things will be different in the second season. “Maeve is the first girl he’s met who he’s felt anything toward, but even that’s quite scary. He comes to realise the therapy he’s giving is therapy he needs, trying to promote intimacy and communication, which are probably the biggest issues for him.”

Asa Butterfield believes that Sex Education comes from the right place and has a ‘lot of heart’. “Everyone has these issues and what we’re saying is, it’s normal. What teenager knows about sex? I hope it takes the pressure off people a little. But it’s not just about sex. It’s a coming of age story, a love story, a friendship story… It’s very funny, but it’s got a lot of heart,” the actor concluded.

Sex Education Season 2 starts streaming on Netflix from January 17.

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