Toni Collette's Wanderlust debuted in the U.K. earlier this month ahead of its October premiere on Netflix in the U.S., but it is already earning some startling reactions.
The graphic series' first two episodes have been described as "filth" and "smut" by viewers.
Wanderlust stars Collette and Steven Mackintosh as a middle-age couple who try to shake up their sex life with an "open marriage." Written by Nick Payne, the series is a collaboration between Netflix and the BBC.
It debuted on BBC One on Sept. 4 and hits Netflix outside the U.K. on Oct. 19. The series only runs six episodes, but based on the negative reaction from viewers in the U.K., it might not last longer.
"What is this utter filth I'm watching on Her Majesty's BBC1?" one viewer wrote.
What is this utter filth I’m watching on Her Majesty’s BBC1? #wanderlust— Huw Jenkins (@HuwJenkins79) September 4, 2018
"Wanderlust and Naked Attraction. Ladies and gentlemen welcome to television in 2018," another wrote. "Filth. I expect it from television x and such other stalwarts of smut but not from a channel I pay a license fee for and certainly not from one that shows The Simpsons. It's an outrage."
Wanderlust and Naked attraction.— Michael G (@ronniekray79) September 4, 2018
Ladies and gentlemen welcome to television in 2018.
I expect it from television x and such other stalwarts of smut but not from a channel I pay a license fee for and certainly not from one that shows the simpsons.
It's an outrage
One viewer compared it negatively to Catastrophe, the acclaimed Amazon/Channel 4 series starring Rob Delaney and Sharon Horgan.
This is really bad. Jumped up, over-privileged wankers being self-indulgent. How vanguard for the BBC. Oh and let’s over-soundtrack it with cool bands to make it relevant. Whoever commissioned this had obviously watched Catastrophe, but didn’t really observe or listen #Wanderlust— Nick of the North (@PeripateNic) September 4, 2018
Critics have also not welcomed the series with open arms. The Guardian's Sam Wollaston gave the show three stars out of five, criticizing the show's pace, but praising the performances by Collette and Mackintosh.
The Independent's Sean O'Grady also gave the series three stars, writing, "I have always thought that an 'open marriage' is like an open sandwich – superficially mouth-watering, but inherently unstable and prone to falling apart at the first bite. Wanderlust, so far, has vindicated that belief."
The series also gained attention for including the first scene of a female orgasm on the BBC.
"Someone told me I was the first woman to have an orgasm on the BBC... and I'm happy to take the accolade," Collette told the Radio Times.
The Hereditary actress said it was important to include the scene to give an honest portrayal of middle-age women in their sex lives.
"It's so honest and fresh in the way the women are portrayed. To be a middle-aged woman, to be in a long-term relationship and to be alive, dealing with a lot of things – it's tough," Collette said. "Certainly a middle-aged woman's sense of self-esteem, of sexuality, is not often talked about."
Wanderlust will be available for U.S. viewers on Netflix on Oct. 19.
Photo credit: BBC