Our education can continue! After a long hiatus from “Sex Education,” viewers can rest assured that not only can they hunker down and finally continue watching, but also that season two continues to be fantastically cringe-worthy yet endearing, while approaching important topics in a way that all viewers understand.
Where season one addressed questions of personal exploration and abortion, season two asks questions about the quality of an official sex education and deals with the issue of sexual assault. Jean (the mom of the main character, Otis) is asked to come and evaluate Mooredale High School’s sex education curriculum after a chlaymidia “outbreak” hits the school. It does not take long until this causes problems for Otis and the sex clinic. The students flock to Jean not only because she offers advice for free, but also because she is a true expert. There are some problems that Otis cannot fix, but Jean fixes them within minutes. This raises the question: is the clinic actually good? Or should Otis promote professional sex advice?
Throughout the season, while the characters explore relationships and intimacy, and we see a lot of things come together and fall apart, the show also looks at some pretty important issues such as sexual assault. One of the impressive things about “Sex Education” is that they manage to discuss these important issues without overwhelming viewers, while also emphasizing how important they are to discuss. After Aimee is assaulted on a bus, we follow as she progresses through phases of self-healing with the help of Maeve and some other not-so-likely friends.
After an amazing scene of female solidarity, viewers are left with a sense of hope, even though it was prompted by a scene of horror. One of the issues that Aimee deals with is a feeling that she was not “really” assaulted because it was “just some cum” on her leg. The show made the point that it does not have to be penis-vagina rape to be sexual assault — something that is often forgotten and even less often discussed in media.
Season two also spent more time focusing on the adults in the show and the ways in which their problems are not all that differ- ent from the problems some of their kids have. It explores the ways in which parents can have a large impact on who we are as people — either through them trying to be like their parents or the opposite of them. “Sex Education” does a good job of showing a wide range of these parent-kid interactions and a large part of that is because every one of the characters has depth. This show is not about Otis, Eric, Maeve and others; the show is about Otis, Eric, Maeve, Jackson, Viv, Adam, Jean, Ola, Lily, Jakob, Maureen and more. Every char- acter has a full story and because of that the world of “Sex Education” feels very real.
That truth of the world is very important to this show, and in my opinion the reason it is so successful in discussing important issues. Viewers do not feel as if they are watching an infomercial on sexual issues; instead they see a world of people that they can relate to going through these issues. The world is real, and in the real world sexually transmitted infections are misunderstood, sexual assault happens in big and little ways daily and all anyone is really doing is trying to find out who they are. Ultimately that is what season two of “Sex Education” does as well.