|“||You can't choose who you're attracted to. You can't engineer a relationship. You have to do what's right.||”|
|— Otis giving advice to Ruthie|
As the days pass, Maeve and Otis keep sending each other pictures of erotic art found in different places. Observing this, Eric wonders if Otis is in love with Maeve, but Otis says they are just friends. They see a job posting in the school's notice board that consists of walking dogs and Eric takes the phone number.
Maeve and Jackson have sex, after which Jackson tells her he has not seen her for a while and assumed she did not want to hook up with him anymore. He asks her to hang out with him, but she refuses.
Jackson approaches Eric and Otis to ask for Otis' help with Maeve, knowing that he is her friend and also has given sex advice to other students. He mentions his wishes to date her rather than just having sex and gives Otis money in order to pay for his help, walking away before a reluctant Otis has a chance to give it back. "You are like a pimp," says Eric, not amused by the situation.
Mr. Groff speaks with Adam in his office, complaining about his poor marks and an obscene drawing he made in one of his papers. Angry at his son's failures, Mr. Groff says that if he does not improve, he will be shipped off to military school.
Otis sets out to give advice to his new clients, Ruthie and Tanya, who mention their lack of connection when it comes to sex. Tanya seems to be very concerned about what is happening, while Ruthie is more disinterested. Otis wants to know more about their relationship in order to be able to give better advice and claims he will do some research to see what he can come up with.
Miss Sands talks to her class about an essay competition on the topic "every great dream begins with a dreamer," mentioning to Maeve that she is particularly interested in her take on it. As Maeve and Otis exchange looks, she circles the word "dream" on her paper.
Eric walks with Otis and says he should intentionally pursue causing trouble by keeping Jackson's money and giving bad advice to prevent him from getting together with Maeve. Otis considers this to be unethical and goes after Jackson to give him his money back, saying he feels wrong about talking about Maeve behind her back. Jackson continues talking about Maeve without grabbing the money and angers Otis. "You keep describing her as inanimate objects, but she is a person," he says, mentioning details about Maeve for him to better understand her, such as her favorite books and music. He inadvertently helps Jackson, who takes notes.
Maeve later notices Jackson with a Virginia Woolf book, doubting that he is actually reading it at first. Eric and Otis observe their exchange, with Eric noting that thanks to Otis, Jackson has become more attractive. Eric tells Otis that he should have been the one to capitalize on being "woke," especially considering his virginity; Lily overhears this and writes "Otis Milburn: Virgin" on her notebook.
Jackson continues to show Maeve that he shares interests with her, which she discusses with Aimee. He invites her to go to a punk festival, but she says she has an essay to write and tells him to have fun, smirking. Following this, Eric thinks Maeve is no longer interested in Otis and not texting him anymore, but then she does it. "Maeve and I still run a sex clinic together," says Otis.
Jean cannot help but notice Jakob as he works around the house. He takes an interest in her writing and she says that she no longer does it since publishing her last book with her ex-husband, explaining that they split after the publication and this has caused her to be fearful. Jakob advises her not to be concerned with fear and remember that life could end at any moment. Otis arrives, rushes past both of them and goes to his bedroom, where he searches “synchronised swimming” on his laptop.
Downstairs, Jakob's daughter, Ola, arrives to pick up her father and asks Jean to use the bathroom. Ola accidentally walks into Otis' bedroom and catches him watching lesbian porn. Embarrassed, he tries to explain that what he is doing is research and she tells him he should get a lock on his door.
Eric walks six dogs in the countryside and runs into Adam, who is walking his mother’s dog, Madam. Adam shows how great Madam is at following instructions and both of them share a brief laugh. "Madam sounds a bit like Adam," says Eric, making Adam angry. Madam runs away, afraid of the barks of the other dogs, and Adam runs after her.
At the caravan park, Maeve swaps her gas cylinder with the one by Cynthia and Jeffrey's caravan. She texts Jackson to ask how the festival was and he replies saying he did not want to go without her. They continue texting.
At the Groffs' house, Mr. Groff berates Adam for losing Madam, saying he broke his mother's heart. Adam tries to say that it was not his fault, getting frustrated.
The following day, at school, Lily approaches Otis and reveals that she knows he is a virgin, asking if he wants to have sex with her. Otis politely declines, but Lily says she is still available if he changes his mind. Jackson then runs into Otis and thanks him for his help, letting him know that he and Maeve were texting each other all night and saying he is even interested in some of what he has been reading. Otis tries to hand him his money back again, but Maeve calls Jackson and he runs off. Otis texts Maeve afterwards, asking her to meet him in the swimming pool for a "clinic thing."
Jakob returns to the Milburns' house and gives Jean some soup, which she tastes and enjoys. She attempts to begin writing again and finds her inspiration.
Maeve and Aimee discuss whether Maeve should date Jackson or not. They list many positive aspects about him and Maeve notes that they have interests in common. However, Maeve does not want a boyfriend.
In the school's swimming pool, Ruthie and Tanya try scissoring while floating in the water, following Otis' advice. When this brings no results, Otis says he has a hunch that their issues relate more to their relationship than their physical intimacy. Annoyed, Ruthie says they can work on their problems on their own and walks away with Tanya.
Otis and Maeve sit next to each other by the pool and he asks how things are going between her and Jackson. She says she is not interested in having boyfriends and explains that she wants to avoid the disappointment. She then pushes Otis onto the pool and jumps on it herself; they both play together on the water and she touches his eyebrows for a moment. Otis insists on asking why she does not interested in dating Jackson. "I'm me, and he's him," she says before leaving the pool. Otis says he will stay behind to exercise, hiding the fact that he now has an erection.
Eric gets to the swimming pool and sees Otis still on the water. Asking his friend not to laugh, Otis admits to having a mild to moderate crush on Maeve: "She touched my eyebrows, and now I have an erection." Eric laughs hard at Otis and says there is only one solution. They both go to a bathroom and Otis attempts to masturbate while Eric waits out of the stall. Getting nauseated and in a state of panic, Otis manages to distract himself instead of finishing.
Later, Jackson approaches Otis again to say he wants to ask Maeve out properly, looking for more advice on how to do it; however, he realises Otis has given enough advice and he should be able to do it on his own. Otis decides to follow Eric's earlier advice of sabotaging Jackson and tells him to make a grand romantic gesture for Maeve. When Otis tells Eric about this, Eric calls him “stone cold evil,” wondering why he did it. "Because I'm in love with Maeve," says Otis.
At the Milburns', Jean thanks Jakob for his work and the soup. He drops his tools on the floor and Jean helps him gather them, smelling his hair. Jakob says she is a strange woman.
Otis gets home and sees that Ola is waiting for her father outside. She asks him about his research, which he again tries to explain was, in fact, research. Ola lets him know that she got something for him to help with his research. When Otis gets to his bedroom, he sees that he now has a lock for his door.
The following morning, Eric wakes up to the sound of his father's shouts. He goes outside and sees that their car is covered in dog excrement. Mr. Effiong asks Eric for his help cleaning it up before his mother sees it.
At school, Otis hides from Jackson and catches a glimpse of Ruthie and Tanya. Maeve startles him, asking who he is "perving on," and he says he is just checking what is happening with the couple. "Shame the scissoring thing didn't work," she says, adding that she has no money. Otis hands her the cash given to him by Jackson, saying he treated someone else and that is her cut.
Eric runs into Adam in the hallway and asks if he found Madam; Adam asks him if he can smell dog excrement. Adam then tells Maeve he needs her to write an essay for him and is willing to pay double the usual price, but Maeve asks for triple.
Paired with Ruthie in their French class, Otis suggests that she no longer likes Tanya and is interested in someone else. Ruthie says Tanya was very supportive of her when she came out and thought they would have the perfect relationship, but sex feels wrong and is not working. Otis says she has to tell Tanya the truth, even if it will hurt her.
Jackson is heard making an announcement from the school's PA system, asking all the students to head to the canteen. As everyone gathers, Otis looks for Maeve, but cannot find her in time: Jackson is standing on a table with a microphone, saying that there is someone in the crowd who is a very special person to him. He reveals he is speaking about Maeve Wiley and starts singing "Love Really Hurts Without You" accompanied by a chorus and the swing band.
After singing, Jackson gets down and approaches Maeve, asking if she wants to be his girlfriend; she accepts and they kiss. Otis watches them as Eric consoles him.
- Asa Butterfield as Otis Milburn
- Gillian Anderson as Dr. Jean F. Milburn
- Ncuti Gatwa as Eric Effiong
- Emma Mackey as Maeve Wiley
- Connor Swindells as Adam Groff
- Kedar Williams-Stirling as Jackson Marchetti
- Alistair Petrie as Mr. Groff
- Aimee Lou Wood as Aimee Gibbs
- Tanya Reynolds as Lily Iglehart
- Mikael Persbrandt as Jakob Nyman
- Patricia Allison as Ola Nyman
|“||Is that Jackson’s new girlfriend? Oh! Ha! You are like a pimp. And not the cool Snoop Dogg kind.||”|
|— Eric to Otis after Jackson has paid him to help him make Maeve his girlfriend|
|“||Maeve is such a head-fuck, man. Like a Rubik’s Cube. She says one thing and then does something else. And I can’t keep up...We’ll have crazy amazing sex, yeah? I’m talking, like, transcendental- level shagging. And then she ignores me for days. But then, she wants to do it again and round and round we go. She’s like some sexy merry-go-round, and I can’t get off.||”|
|— Jackson to Otis after he returns the money|
|“||So now he’s a feminist! You’ve made the hottest guy in school even hotter. He’s basically Ryan Gosling. Well done!||”|
|— Eric to Otis after seeing Jackson try out the advice Otis inadvertently gave to him on Maeve|
|“||You don’t understand. He’s like a Jedi. Okay? He just talked, and no matter what I did, he got what he wanted.||”|
|— Otis to Eric on Jackson’s act to try and woo Maeve|
|“||You know in rom-coms, when the guys finally realizes he’s in love with the girl, and he turns up with a boombox outside her house, blasting her favorite song, and everyone in the audience swoons? Yeah, that makes me sick.||”|
|— Maeve to Otis on why she doesn’t do boyfriends|
|“||You know it’s weird. You’re my age, but wise. You’re like my mum… in a little man’s body. Like a little mum man.||”|
|— Jackson to Otis after trying to get his advise on Maeve again|
|"Road to Nowhere"||Talking Heads||Opening Scene|
|"The Yodel Song"||DR. HOOK & THE MEDICINE SHOW||The teacher shows a blackboard with an image of a vagina.|
|"A Kiss To Build a Dream On (Single Version)"||Louis Armstrong||Couple kissing in school; Maeve sits down and finds Jackson pretending to read Virginia Woolf.|
|"Nancy Drew"||SLØTFACE||Maeve catches Jackson listening to this.|
|"Breakfast In Bed"||UB40, CHRISSIE HYNDE||Otis' mum looking at Jakob working|
|"If Only the Wind Would Blow Me Away"||EZRA FURMAN||Maeve sitting at the table.|
|"Love Really Hurts Without You"||Billy Ocean||(Performed By Cast) Final scene, starts with Jackson and band singing to Maeve.|
|"When You're Young and In Love"||THE FLYING PICKETS||Maeve stealing gas from her neighbors.|
|"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"||DEVO||End Credits.|
|"Heard the Angels Moan"||THE BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA||Eric is stopped by the man in the car looking for directions.|
|"Wish the Wind Would Blow Me"||BOB SCHNEIDER||Otis returns home from school on his bike as the Swedish builder is being picked up outside Otis’s house by his daughter.|
- Otis accidentally tells Jackson that Maeve likes female writers like Virginia Woolf, Roxane Gay and Sylvia Plath.
- She also has great taste in music since she happens to like: Joy Division, Nirvana, Bikini Kill, and isn’t a snob because she listens to pop.
- Otis also tells Jackson that Maeve also has a really dark sense of humor.
- Later, Jackson figures out that Maeve has been the only person to take out Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own out of the library since 1972.