Sex Education Episode 3 strays away from the sex clinic and focuses more on developing the characters — a move that pays off.
This recap of Sex Education Season 1 Episode 3 contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
What I liked about Sex Education Episode 3 is the willingness to move away from the sex clinic storyline and expand the depth of the characters. Chapter 3 is an outstanding episode, highlighting the point that Netflix has made a superb move bringing this story to their platform.
It turns out Maeve (Emma Mackey) is pregnant after all, and for most of episode 3 she is preparing for her abortion and sitting in a clinic. Sex Education offers sympathy to the misunderstood character, as she realizes she hasn’t got anyone feasible to be there for her during her procedure.
She calls on her newly found friend and business partner Otis (Asa Butterfield) to attend the abortion appointment, who has just embarrassingly had a sex dream about her, much to the interest of his mother Jean (Gillian Anderson).
Meanwhile, we get insight into the man who made Maeve pregnant, Jackson (Kedar Williams-Stirling). He has been in the background since the pilot, but in Sex Education Episode 3 we are offered new information about his character. He’s an up and coming athletic swimmer, with a demanding mother, and the headmaster dotes on his abilities, much to the dissatisfaction of his son Adam (Connor Swindells).
What elevates Episode 3 above the others so far in the series is its ability to invoke the atmosphere of the abortion clinic. Sex Education cleverly inserts a wild patient into the mix who is loud, sweary and boisterous in the waiting room, much to the amusement of Maeve. The addition of this extra character for a one-off episode added a tinge of sadness to the entire ordeal, where laughter and profanity masked the sheer depression of what these women have to go through.
Sex Education at this point has bedded in the characters, with their relationships looking natural. Otis flagrantly has a crush on Maeve, which will become a problem later. As for his best friend Eric (Ncuti Gatwa), he continues to be the comedic character; a girl offers to have sex with him in his bedroom, much to his shock, and he handles it by offering to show her gay porn.
If Sex Education continues in this vein, we may have a formidable Netflix series on our hands.