Penn Badgley Doesn’t Want to Have Sex on TV Anymore

Season four of “You” is going chastity mode

penn badgely on the Sway in the Morning show on SiriusXM
The actor talked about the change on the latest episode of his podcast.
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Penn Badgley has been busy teasing details about the remaining episodes of season four of You, primarily how it’s going to feel more like a mystery than a psychological-thriller-turned-rom-com. But it turns out “teased” is all fans are gonna get because there will be a serious reduction in sex scenes in this upcoming chapter, at Badgley’s own request. The heartthrob will be leaving horny fans high and dry this season after a conversation with one of the show’s creators wherein he requested to take Joe Goldberg’s “intimacy scenes” — the very scenes that were once so core to the premise of the show — from “100 to zero.”

On the latest episode of his podcast, Podcrushed, the Gossip Girl alum revealed that he is getting a little tired of being typecast as the “romantic lead” and that it’s something he’s been thinking about before he even agreed to do this show. The actor, who married singer Domino Kirke in 2017, added that “fidelity in every relationship — especially in a marriage — is important to me.”

Penn Badgley Knows His “You” Masturbation Scenes Are Creepy
According to the Netflix star, that’s the point

That’s why, ahead of the fourth season, he approached You creator Sera Gamble with the idea of cutting out the sex altogether. In a show about a lust-driven psychopath, Badgley realized abstinence would be a tall order. Before speaking with Gamble, he acknowledged how difficult it might be to “take this aspect out of the DNA of the concept.” So his initial question for her was, “’How much less can you make it?’” 

But to his surprise, Gamble “didn’t even bat an eye.” 

“She was really glad that I was that honest, and she was sort of almost empowered,” he said. “She had a really positive response…and they came back with a phenomenal reduction.”

Alongside his fellow podcast hosts Nava Kavelin and Sophie Ansari, Badgley confessed that, before he took on the role of Joe, he wondered if he could even sustain a career as an actor without always being sexualized. “Think about every male lead that you’ve loved,” he said. “Are they kissing someone? Are they doing a lot more than that?” In a culture still so dictated by outdated conceptions of male desire, where winning a woman for sex is often the ultimate pursuit, his co-hosts offered support for his decision, adding that it takes “courage” to explore other modes of entertainment or connection.

As for what’s to come in the second half of You season four, which will drop March 9, viewers may have to satisfy their stalker kinks elsewhere, as Badgley hinted that the theme will be more “eat the rich” than eat-out the rich. But if class conflict gets you hot, stick around for part two. 

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