Sexy Beasts review roundup: Critics weigh in on Netflix’s ‘weird’ new dating series

·2-min read

Netflix’s latest reality series arrives on the streaming service tomorrow (21 July)... and it looks truly bizarre.

Sexy Beasts is a dating show in which contestants wear elaborate face-obscuring animal costumes while meeting their prospective partners.

The show has been compared to reality series The Masked Singer and First Dates, and is hosted by Catastrophe star Rob Delaney. It is also based on a short-lived British series from 2014.

Here’s what some critics had to say about Sexy Beasts...

Variety critic Daniel D’Addario wrote: “There’s no time in overstuffed episodes to really consider the oddity of dating at all, let alone to examine how folks might feel about dating under these circumstances, beyond the barest of pleasantries.

“The entire show feels dressed up in a prosthesis designed to obscure the real, down to an endless voice-over monologue by Rob Delaney (a talent who deserves better), choking the life and tension out of every moment.”

Saloni Gajjar reviewed the series for The AV Club, writing: “Netflix’s dating programs — including The Circle, Too Hot To Handle, and Love Is Blindare increasingly contrived, but Sexy Beasts pushes irony to the extreme.”

Despite praising the show’s makeup and prosthetics, she added: “That attention to detail doesn’t extend past the makeup, as the show is neither subversive nor insightful. The predictability of the final choices even takes the mindless fun out of it.”

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Metro compared the “bizarre” series to the works of arthouse filmmaker David Lynch, again praising the visual element. “The dates we see the singletons on are tedious,” stipulated Harry Fletcher in his three-star review, “or at least the overbearing editing makes them out to be – and the larger-than-life masks soon lose their novelty value.

“But the biggest problem is, the show doesn’t know where to stand on its own premise. It seems unsure whether to ridicule its own construct and be irreverent, or go for the moral message and preach about the value of personality over beauty.”

Digital Spy’s Laura Jane Turner compared it to a “weird fever dream”, and wrote: “Sexy Beasts lacks the high stakes and wedding bells of Love Is Blind.”

Sexy Beasts arrives on Netflix on 21 July 2021.

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