The bisexual creator and star of Netflix’s number-one show defends criticism of the Baby Reindeer’s depiction of sexuality after sexual assault.

While most of the media focus on the popular British drama, Baby Reindeer, has revolved around whether Netflix did enough to protect the real-life identity of alleged stalker ‘Martha’, a recent NPR review takes aim at the show’s depiction of queerness.

The alleged true story sees wannabe comedian and scriptwriter Donny (Gadd) meet successful television writer Darrien (Tom Goodman-Hill) who offers career advice, before stupefying Donny with drugs and ultimately sexually assaulting him. Following this Donny starts watching harder pornography and signs up to a trans dating website.


“This, the series proceeds to argue – far too tidily – is the answer to everything,” NPR claims in their damning review. “It’s why Donny became the depressed, self-loathing man we’ve come to know… It’s why he’s since chosen to degrade himself by having meaningless sex with both men and women, doing more drugs, and by developing an interest in ‘extreme’ pornography.”

“The series repeatedly and clumsily conflates the horror of abuse with the simple fact of queer sexuality,” the review argues. “Purely for dramatic purposes, Baby Reindeer implies that Donny’s sexuality conforms to the laws of cause (the abuse) and effect (queerness). Worse, it does so in a way that seems specifically designed to reassure those audiences who believe queerness is something that happens to people, something that can be triggered from the outside.”

However in a recent interview with Vanity Fair published this week, Gadd (who identifies as bisexual) say he hoped the depiction would honor the people who experience ‘indefinitely unclear’  sexualities.

“A lot of people don’t fit into gay, straight, bisexual,” he told the long-running publication. “They actually go through life questioning and wrestling with it almost the whole time.”

“When I was going through everything in my early 20s, I remember fundamentally feeling confused: ‘Okay, today I’m going to go down the street and I’m going to be straight today.’ ‘Okay, that didn’t work, I still don’t feel good, so I’m going to get up and I’m going to be gay today.’ ‘Okay, I’m going to get up and I’m going to be bi.’ None of the labels sat right with me.”

He says he hopes that Baby Reindeer, “offering a lack of clarity around that area might provide comfort to people who spend their lives in a state of uncertainty.”