As many of us gear up for the next instalment of Sex Education, others might be tuning in for the first time and wondering: is it set in America or the UK? Are the characters in the present day or have we been transported to the 80s?
There's no denying, the show's got a vibe: Eric's colourful shell suit jackets, the mustard hallway lockers, and not to mention the décor and furniture that looks like it belongs to a Coronation Street set three decades ago.
But then, there are smartphones and just like that, we're thrown.
Is this Sex Education show on Netflix set in an alternative dimension? It's England but looks like America and it's 2018 but looks like the 80s :joy:
- George Thomas (@JustGeoUK) January 14, 2019
Speaking to LADbible back in 2020, writer Laurie Nunn and director Ben Taylor said the surreal, otherworldly aesthetic was not only intentional, but also integral to the show's narrative.
Referring to the stylised format, Nunn said: "I think part of that is just to do with the way I naturally write, but also a lot of my references were kind of from American film and TV shows that I loved when I was younger.
"When Ben came on board the project and we both met each other for the first time, he had a shared passion for all of the same American teen genre stuff.
"And we both got really excited about how we could create this fictional world that felt very elevated and aspirational."
She went on to explain that it was much more than paying homage to those teen films of yesteryear though, adding: "I think the hook of the show is so heightened - you know, obviously about the teenager giving out sex advice in a toilet cubicle.
"But it really felt like that needed a heightened world to match that.
"In my mind, Moordale is not a real place. Even though we shoot the show in Wales, it's very much a fictional place.
"We see it like a teenage utopia, and I like to think of it almost like a comic book world where these teenagers exist."
Agreeing with his colleague, Taylor added: "It came early on when we all started to put our heads together.
"Everything was very deliberate and distinct because when I first read the script it read like a world that would not just benefit from it, but it would make sense of the characters and the high concept."
The third season of Sex Education will premiere on Netflix on 17 September.
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