Why Lily and Ola were written out of Sex Education

The creators of the show have spoken

Lily and Ola Sex Education
(Image credit: Credit: Netflix)

Sex Education season 4 landed on Netflix last week, and much to the disappointment of fans it is the last ever series of the show. Sob. 

Since 2019, we've watched Otis, Maeve, Eric and Aimee navigating their way through love, loss, sex, sadness and everything in between while at Moordale High - and, more recently, Cavendish College - and it has been a ride

Despite being one of the most popular shows on Netflix since its launch, show creator Laurie Nunn revealed earlier this year that this season would be the last and Sex Education season 5 would not be happening. 

In a letter shared on Instagram, she said: "This was not an easy decision to make, but as the themes and stories of the new season crystallised, it became clear that this was the right time to graduate."

Viewers have been hooked on the Sex Education finale this week, and we've still not come to terms with the fact that Asa Butterfield, Gillian Anderson, Ncuti Gatwa, Emma Mackey and Aimee Lou Wood will no longer be brightening up our screens in the fictional British town.

However, while many of the fan favourite characters reprised their roles one last time for season four, there were some very notable absences. 

Lily and Ola - played by Tanya Reynolds and Patricia Allison - didn't return for the final instalment. Over the course of the show, fans have watched the pair fall in love, fall out, and ultimately make their way back to each other in one of the sweetest romantic storylines of the series. 

But creator Laurie Nunn has now spoken about why the characters weren't brought back, telling LADBible: "Those storylines felt like they had just come to a really lovely ending in series three, and I felt like the characters of Lily and Ola just really felt like they ended in a really happy place. 

"Particularly because they're a lesbian couple, I wanted them to not have any more pain or trauma, and just be left happy together. So that felt like a very organic... place to leave them."

Speaking previously about her departure, Tanya - who played Lily - said: "It’s just the natural progression of these shows – when you have such big ensemble casts and so many characters, I think you have to let a few older characters go to make way for newer ones, which is absolutely the right thing, the way it should happen.

"I loved every minute of it and I loved Lily with my whole entire heart. Three seasons was just a really perfect amount for me."

Can we petition for the creators to change their minds and come back with a Sex Education season 5? Please? 

Jadie Troy-Pryde
News Editor

Jadie Troy-Pryde is News Editor, covering celebrity and entertainment, royal, lifestyle and viral news. Before joining the team in 2018 as the Lifestyle and Social Media Editor, she worked at a number of women’s fashion and lifestyle titles including Grazia, Women’s Health and Stylist, and now heads the Marie Claire UK news desk.