As we head into 2019, unfortunately sexual education is still stuck in the past—especially in Ontario. The ongoing debate about what is taught in schools, versus what *should* be taught in schools, is still raging, and recently, Netflix Canada joined the conversation.
since the Ontario sex-ed curriculum has gone back in time, you can “learn” about sex the way teens in the ’90s did: all the American Pie movies are now on Netflix
— Netflix Canada (@Netflix_CA) December 5, 2018
When there’s a lack of sex ed in schools, many kids and teens end up learning about the birds and the bees from TV and movies. So, we decided to shed light on some sex-positive Netflix picks that are informative, educational and totally bingeable.
Synopsis: This eclectic, star-studded anthology follows diverse Chicagoans fumbling through the modern maze of love, sex, technology and culture.
Cast: Aubrey Plaza, Judy Greer, Jane Adams
Why you need to watch it: Named by Decider as one of the most sex-positive shows on TV, this Netflix original highlights a range of relationships, from a married couple exploring an open relationship to a same-sex couple navigating their new romance. You’ll get an intimate look at modern love and sex through these in-depth characters.
Synopsis: Teenage friends find their lives upended by the wonders and horrors of puberty in this edgy comedy from real-life pals Nick Kroll and Andrew Goldberg.
Cast: Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Jessi Klein, Maya Rudolph
Why you need to watch it: Let’s just say we wish we had this LOL-worthy adult comedy when we were growing up. Not only does Big Mouth normalize talking about sex, bodies and everything in between, it also approaches it in a totally light-hearted way. The cartoon is so good at tackling everything from consent to masturbation that sexual health educators are among its fans. And here at FLARE, we’re still obsessed with The Bachelorette-style “Miss Conception” scene where 16-year-old Jenny has to pick her contraception of choice.
Synopsis: Unable to revive their fading sex life after many years of marriage, a therapist and her husband decide to start dating other people.
Cast: Toni Collette, Steven Mackintosh, Zawe Ashton
Why you need to watch it: This brand new drama explores the trials and tribulations of an open marriage. Toni Collette’s character completely owns her sexuality and fights for her right to pleasure and a fulfilling sex life, which is something everyone, especially women, should be taught in sex ed.
Synopsis: This smash-hit comedy follows four high school seniors as they strive for the most eagerly anticipated rite of adulthood: losing one’s virginity.
Cast: Jason Biggs, Chris Klein, Thomas Ian Nicholas
Why you need to watch it: As Netflix’s tweet would suggest, the American Pie movies were how pretty much every 90s teen learned about sex. It’s hilariously awkward (read: that talk Jim had with his dad) and perfectly portrays the slightly embarrassing journey of sexual discovery in high school.
The Sex Ed Episode of The Office
Synopsis: Michael, believing he has herpes, contacts all his ex-girlfriends. Andy tries to play on Erin’s compassionate side by holding a sex education meeting.
Cast: Steve Carell, John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer
Why you need to watch it: Sure, this episode is more for laughs than for learning, but we had to put it on the list because The Office proves that talking about sex doesn’t have to be so darn serious.
The Female Orgasm Episode of Explained
Synopsis: The female orgasm is more elusive when a man is involved. Discover the reasons why—and how women are embracing hands-on solutions.
Why you need to watch it: Praise be! There is 18 whole minutes dedicated to the female orgasm on Netflix. This episode of the documentary series from Vox takes you through the history of female ejaculation, masturbation, the G-spot, the clitoris and so much more. This should be mandatory viewing for everyone, tbh.
Christiane Amanpour: Sex and Love Around the World
Synopsis: A contextual, acculturated dive into how adults in six, big global cities celebrate love and accentuate sex. CNN’s Christiane Amanpour reports.
Why you need to watch it: From plural marriage in Ghana to trans identity in India and divorce in Lebanon, this fascinating documentary sets gender, sex and relationships on a global stage, while taking a more journalistic approach to sex education.
Synopsis: Inexperienced Otis channels his sex therapist mom when he teams up with rebellious Maeve to set up an underground sex therapy clinic at school.
Cast: Asa Butterfield, Gillian Anderson, Ncuti Gatwa
Streaming: Drops January 11
Why you need to watch it: There is already so much buzz surrounding this highly-anticipated British dramedy—and Netflix hasn’t even released the official trailer yet. With an all-star cast and intriguing plot line, we can’t wait to see how this show will break the boundaries of how sex ed is discussed in pop culture.
6 Canadian Women on Sex Ed: “When I First Learned About Sex, It Terrified Me”
What’s Coming (and Going) to Netflix Canada in January 2019
11 Underrated Shows on Netflix You *Probably* Haven’t Watched Yet, But Definitely Should