The unnamed protagonist in “Fleabag” is a lot of things. A small-business owner. A woman who understands the importance of a good haircut. A trend-setting jumpsuit-wearer. But is she ... a sex addict?
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She is according to Ben Stiller. In a bit before presenting the Emmy for supporting actor in a comedy series, the director of “Escape at Dannemora” described “Fleabag,” nominated for 11 Emmys at Sunday’s ceremony, as “a show about a sex addict.”
The comedy follows a character played by Phoebe Waller-Bridge who narrates her wild bedroom exploits directly to the audience and uses outrageous humor to disguise profound grief.
Some observers on Twitter were not pleased with this characterization.
Fleabag is as much a show about a sex addict as it is about a fish riding a bicycle— rachel syme (@rachsyme) September 23, 2019
Ben Stiller: "Fleabag: a comedy about a sex addict." Extremely reductive. #Emmys— Marina Fang (@marinafang) September 23, 2019
I have less hope for Fleabag winning anything than I already did if the #Emmys think it's "a show about a sex addict"— Caroline Darya Framke (@carolineframke) September 23, 2019
Waller-Bridge did not exactly clear things up when she accepted the Emmy for writing for a comedy series.
“It’s wonderful to know and really reassuring to know that a dirty, pervy, angry, messed-up woman can make it to the Emmys,” she said.