The Weeknd has clarified that the sex scene between Tedros and Jocelyn in The Idol’s second episode was not supposed to be sexy.
After episode two of the musician’s new HBO show (available in the UK on Sky and NOW), which he created alongside Sam Levinson and Reza Fahim, aired on Sunday (11 June), fans have accused The Weeknd’s character (Tedros) of exhibiting an exploitative and misogynist attitude towards women.
One particular scene in episode two left viewers cringing. It shows a fully-clothed Tedros ordering a blindfolded Jocelyn (Lily-Rose Depp) to fulfil his sexual fantasies. At one stage, he instructs her to ”fuckin’ stretch that tiny, little pussy”. Viewers condemned the scene on social media, branding it “nasty”.
In a new interview with GQ (who branded the scene “the worst sex scene in history”), The Weeknd, real name Abel Tesfaye, has spoken about the controversial scene and revealed details about his character Tedros.
“There’s nothing sexy about it,” he said. “However you’re feeling watching that scene, whether it’s discomfort, or you feel gross, or you feel embarrassed for the characters. It’s all those emotions adding up to: this guy is in way over his head, this situation is one where he is not supposed to be here.
“The sex, it’s so gluttonous,” the singer added. “Especially in Episode two. ‘Gluttony’ is the only word I can think of [to describe it].
“[Tedros] can’t believe he’s there. He comes off like such a loser. Those moments are the humanity that you find in a psychopath, the chink in his armour.”
In the series, Tedros is a self-help guru and cult leader with a dark and enigmatic past. Jocelyn, meanwhile, is an aspiring pop idol.
Speaking of his character, The Weeknd said: “You look at [Tedros], and this is a score – Jocelyn might be the biggest score he’s ever had. It’s very obvious. He’s over-indulging, he walks into this house looking around like, ‘Goddamn, am I way over my head? This can be the biggest job I’ve ever done.’
“He’s despicable, a psychopath – why sugar coat it? There’s nothing really mysterious or hypnotising about him. And we did that on purpose with his look, his outfits, his hair – the guy’s a douchebag.”