ENTERTAINMENT

Netflix’s Moxie Gives Us A Healthy On-Screen Romance We Actually Stan

We chat to Amy Poehler and Hadley Robinson about why Vivian x Seth is more than your typical rom-com couple.
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*Spoiler Warning for Netflix’s Moxie*

In Netflix’s Moxie, Vivian (Hadley Robinson) is an introverted teen who, frustrated with the unreported harassment and double standards towards young girls that goes unchecked at school, pens an anonymous zine and shares it around school.

WATCH BELOW: Moxie | Official Trailer

Moments later, she discovers that her zines have inspired a new radical feminist revolution at school. Nobody knows her secret except her skater-boy crush-turned-boyfriend, Seth (Nico Hiraga), aka, the Best Boy of 2021 and the best on-screen romance of the modern teen era.

Seth, Vivian’s classmate since kindergarten and cute skater, is—for a better term—woke, politically engaged and aware of consent. He’s a teen who’s in touch with his emotions, respects boundaries and adorkably awkward. So basically, Sign us uuuup.

He’s dreamy and whilst there *is* a love story here, it’s really not the crux of it.

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We love Seth, but the conflict between his and Vivian’s relationship isn’t the focus of the film. (Credit: Netflix)

At its core, Moxie is a coming-of-age film about banding together to destroy the patriarchy, coming together against injustice, and calling out the double standards and abuse women—both cisgendered and trans—face on a daily basis. 

When Vivian and the rest of the Moxie group prepare to show up at school with a star spangled mark on their arm, signalling their part of the movement, Seth does it, too. It’s a simple moment telling us he’s better than the rest of the boys at Vivian’s school and whilst it’s quite swoon worthy, Vivian’s flush of feels towards him also doesn’t take away from her fight for justice.

The pair then go on their very indie date walking through a funeral home after dark, and Seth seamlessly asks about Vivian’s boundaries in between flirts before getting adorably intimate. Plus, when Vivian begins to obsess over Moxie and lashes out at her best friend Claudia (Lauren Tsai) and her mum (Amy Poehler), it’s Seth that calls her out for being a jerk. 

Yes we love Seth, but unlike many rom-coms of yesteryear, the conflict between their relationship isn’t the focus of the film.

As the girls come together and share their stories of harassment and sexual assault at school, Seth merely pulls up his sleeve and reveals he’s written Vivian’s name on his arm showing that he’s not still upset with her. It’s a playful nod to their romance and shows that he’s not afraid to be vulnerable and not conform to the traditional gender norms of a heterosexual relationship, and we are extremely here for it.

And, according to an exclusive interview with Moxie stars Hadley Robinson and Amy Poehler, we aren’t the only ones.

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Seth (Nico Hiraga) meeting Vivian’s (Hadley Robinson) mum (Amy Poehler) for the first time. (Credit: Netflix)

“Seth is kind of the first person to really call Vivian out when she’s doing things that are hurting people,” Hadley Robinson tells Girlfriend. “When it comes from somebody that you love and really respect, that’s when you really listen, even though it’s usually harder to give and receive.”

“When he’s saying, ‘Hey, don’t treat your mo\um like this, don’t treat your friends like this.’ and most importantly, ‘you might not be the person that I thought you were,’ I mean, you can kind of gauge her journey through how he views her in a way. And, I think that’s pretty important.”

“It’s also just like, I think it’s a very specific, unique love story between them. As [Moxie director and actress] Amy [Poehler] always says, you don’t know what’s going to happen, they may not be the love of their lives. Nothing is for sure, but it’s their connection that is very much their own. And they find different things in each other that fulfills whatever need or desire that they have. And yeah, it’s very, it’s not like any other love story. And it’s very, very cute.”

Side note: Nico Hiraga fancam when?

Truly, it’s as director and Moxie star Amy Poehler says, their relationship works “because Vivian gets to be her-whole-self. And he can handle it, he can hold that container.”

“That’s what women want. They want to be able to be their entire authentic real selves in real time and for their partner to be able to not only hold it and handle it, but love it.”

“Whether or not Seth and Vivian stay together—which I think they do. I think they get married and they live together and have a ton of babies—isn’t really important. But, what we wanted to show an example of is what you should aspire to in a relationship between men and women. You should be like, ‘here’s me, here’s all of me,’ and the other person should be like, into it. That’s what I want.”

While we don’t mean to take away from the true inspiring story behind Moxie and how it reflects our more politically engaged generation, we do hope that we see more on-screen romances like Seth and Vivian in the near future. Hollywood is finally getting the message that we’re tired of heroines who are motivated by their feelings towards a boy, and are recognising that we want multifaceted women with a voice and agency.

Plus, should we really be giving guys so much credit for doing the bare minimum?

You can fall in love with Vivian and Seth’s love story, and get inspired to stand up to the patriarchy, when Moxie drops on Netflix on the 3rd of March.

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