TV Review: I May Destroy You

The best TV show of the year? Definitely so far…Michaela Coel’s I May Destroy You is just superb

“Just look in the mirror, you know what I mean? It’s really uncomfortable and unnerving for everyone”

Has ‘the grey area’ ever seemed so interesting? Probing into the complexities of real life and fully embracing the fact that there are rarely ever any simple answers, Michaela Coel’s I May Destroy You has felt like a real breath of bracingly fresh air.

Sexual consent for straights and gays, dealing with trauma on a personal and institutional level, the perils of buying into social media hype, portraying the scale of casual sex and drug use whilst acknowledging its inherent pitfalls, examining how we bury memories from both the recent and distant past and that’s just scratching the surface.

© Various Artists Ltd and FALKNA – Photographer: Natalie Seery

The real achievement of I May Destroy You though is make this all feel organic as it is threaded through a tale of friendship between Arabella (Coel), Kwame (Paapa Essiedu) and Terry (Weruche Opia), through its natural ebbs and flows as their various life trials intersect with their relationships. 

And they connect powerfully with discussions about power and particularly how it intersects with race and sexuality. Is this ok? Is that ok? We’re shown how few times this is genuinely asked or even considered and it feels like an epochal moving along of the conversation from token representation. There really is no fucking excuse – Coel has raised the bar, it is time for others rise to her level. 

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