What more could you ask for during your post-vaccinated hot girl summer than a show that is filled to the brim with erotic montages and scene after scene of sexual imagery? The daring and smutty new original Netflix series Sex/Life (no, not Sexy Beasts) is not for the faint of heart or the puritanical — it tells the story of a woman so bored with her married life that she fantasizes about sexual rendezvous with her toxic ex-boyfriend (we all have the one). But it looks like the show’s on-screen sexual chemistry is so strong it leaked into the cast members lives’.
When Sex/Life opens, we see the picture “perfect” nuclear, heterosexual all-American family. In a setting in the suburbs, a housewife, Billie, (played by Sarah Shahi) struggles with day-to-day ennui, pretending that this vanilla life of hers is something satisfying and enriching, even though all of the passion in her marriage to the nice-guy Cooper (played by Mike Vogel) is gone. She goes about her day fantasizing about her toxic and very appropriately named ex-boyfriend Brad (played by Adam Demos), complete with leather jacket. But, as all bad dating situations go, Brad turns back up in Billie’s life, stirring the erotic pot and throwing elements of sexual excitement and risk in Billie’s life — the sexual excitement and risk she has been yearning for.
Shahi herself is a mother of three children and has been in long-term relationships in the past. Shahi divorced Shameless star Steve Howey in 2020 after 11 years of marriage. She empathizes with her character Billie as to why she seeks out sexual liberation and freedom, Shahi herself asking those same questions.
Essentially, think of it as a Fifty Shades-type show for millennials, only without the rampant misogyny and perpetuation of abuse.
But as steamy as things are on-screen, the show’s sensuality has worked it’s magic on the people behind the characters. The scenes between Sarah Shahi and Adam Demos are intensely sensual, with Netflix leaving nothing to the imagination as to what goes on in Billie and Brad’s sex life. But, as the old saying goes, life imitates art and vice versa. Shahi and Demos are an item in real life, adding to the show’s tension where maybe there’s not much acting going on after all.
The Sex/Life actors’ social media posts are the window into the world of this relationship, with Shahi, 41, posting a picture of the couple together on December 31, 2020. It looks like they spent the New Year together, how romantic.
A couple of months later, Shahi dedicated a Valentine’s day post to Demos, 35, and in another picture, deemed Demos her “soulmate.”
Now it is up in the air whether or not Shahi and Demos’ budding romance began on set or beforehand, but one thing that can be said of the romance is that it has plenty of material to work with in the plot of Sex/Life. There’s no shortage of scenarios that spice up their love life both on-screen and off. It makes the romance that much more appealing to the audience, with fictional and factual intimacy intertwining, juicing up an already risqué show.