Fleabag's Complicated Charm: Can We Forgive Her Flaws as She Evolves?

Fleabag's Complicated Charm: Can We Forgive Her Flaws as She Evolves?
Image credit: BBC

It's been four years since the last season of Fleabag, a British comedy-drama series created by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who adapted her original play for the screen.

The series follows the titular character, whose real name is never revealed. Fleabag is a chaotic, struggling woman dealing with her mother's death, her father's new marriage, a strained relationship with her sister, and a life that seems to have spiralled out of control.

With its unique filming style, plot development, and the main character's quirky interactions with viewers, Fleabag compellingly tells the story of a complex person.

As we join Fleabag on her journey, she initially appears to be an unpleasant person to be around, save for her charming sense of humour. Despite her apparent confidence, she lacks self-respect and struggles with self-loathing. Yet, over the course of twelve episodes, everything changes. So, what keeps us so enthralled by her story?

“I have never seen a more perfect season of television. I can’t find the proper words to express how great the writing and acting was across the board. Such well-written and relatable characters,” Reddit user ophelia0103 says.

Perhaps it's Fleabag's relatability that draws us in. She grapples with her life, feeling lost and haunted by her past while wallowing in self-pity and becoming addicted to the drama of her own making. However, Fleabag finds the strength to confront her insecurities and slowly begins to heal, transforming into a more well-adjusted person.

“I have a hard time saying Fleabag is a bad person, but she definitely does bad things and has hurt people and continues to do so throughout season 1. Seeing her growth and prosperity in season 2 and her relationship with Claire improve was so cathartic for me,” Redditor forgivenmadness confesses.

The beauty of the series likely lies in Fleabag's ordinariness. She's flawed like everyone else, but that doesn't diminish her value. Fleabag teaches us that it's okay to feel broken at times, that nobody is perfect or needs to be, and that we all deserve love and respect from ourselves. It is only when we learn to love and respect ourselves that we can truly love and respect others and become whole.