'Chewing Gum' Now Streaming on HBO Max After Netflix Removal

In an unprecedented move, the Netflix Original Series Chewing Gum is moving from one streaming service to another. Created by, written by and starring Michaela Coel, Chewing Gum was an eccentric British comedy that ran for two seasons from 2015 - 2017. Coel plays 24-year-old Tracey, a deeply religious working-class girl who is on a quest to lose her virginity. A joyful and weird show, Chewing Gum was an international hidden gem.

Coel explained that Tracey's naivete makes her like "a child." "But then she's not, obviously, because I can't play a 14-year-old," she told The Guardian. "She becomes very stunted in her adolescence. Maybe her naivety is something that I had even at the time of writing it. I'm still acting kiddish, which I don't want to lose." Coel revealed that Chewing Gum started out as a one-woman play that she wrote during her final year of acting school at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Coel was struggling to find a role that really fit her, so she wrote one herself. "I was trying to be someone else and actually failing. I could feel, 'This isn't good. I can do better than this,'" she said. "So I thought, 'Let me, for once, tell my story.' I started writing memories from secondary school and found I could formulate a story from that."

However, despite being a Netflix Original Series, Chewing Gum left the streaming giant in April 2020. This odd removal came just a month after it was featured on the Netflix Twitter account as a favorite of Mindy Kaling, who called it "one of the most original comedy series of all time." However, the sitcom found a new home on HBO Max as of February 2021. This makes sense as a new home for the show since HBO made Coel's critically acclaimed follow-up, I May Destroy You.


I May Destroy You was one of the most powerful shows of 2020, and there was a major backlash online after Coel and the rest of the production went unrecognized by the Golden Globes when the universally loathed Emily In Paris earned multiple nominations. Despite the lack of awards notice, Coel is being hailed as a creative genius, but she's not letting the praise get to her. "I try not to think about it too much," she told Elle in July. "It's just an idea or a belief. You can't really engage with that. It's not real. So, I can't take it on. It's better that I leave it over there because, if that was true, then what now? I might as well do what I've been doing every day, which is sitting down. I've bought a plant."