Lizzy Caplan stars in Fatal Attraction, the number-one series on Paramount+.
Many moviegoers remember falling hard for Lizzy Caplan when she starred with Lindsay Lohan in the iconic film Mean Girls. Since then, she’s managed to step out of Lohan’s shadow and is now absolutely killing it on the Paramount television series remake of the late ‘80s film Fatal Attraction. And audiences are falling in love with Caplan all over again: FlixPatrol reports that the movie is currently in the top 10 on Paramount+.
What is the plot of this series, exactly? Like the film it is based on, the show features a married man (played by Joshua Jackson, of Dawson’s Creek fame) who is having an affair with a woman (played by a fiercely-intense Lizzy Caplan). Eventually, though, he wants to put an end to the affair, and she refuses to let him do so. As time goes on, she goes to greater and greater depths to keep him in her life, and we see just how deadly the consequences of a simple affair can be.
When this Lizzy Caplan remake of the classic film first dropped on Paramount+, audiences loved it about as much as they loved the reviled second season of Star Trek: Picard. The show has a deadly 37 percent on Rotten Tomatoes from critics. However, it currently has a 66 percent audience rating, showing that viewers generally dig this show more than critics.
Why is that the case, though? Like the movie the show is based on, the series is largely based on the sexual chemistry between the two leads rather than any complex plot or tight writing. In the original film, it was Michael Douglas and Glenn Close that had that kind of chemistry, and now that both of them are busy acting in Marvel movies, Joshua Jackson and Lizzy Caplan are keeping the torch labeled “erotic thriller” burning bright.
In fact, it’s worth remembering that for a very long time, Michael Douglas was known for headlining a number of high-profile erotic thrillers. In addition to starring in Fatal Attractions, he starred in Disclosure and, most famously (and most infamously) Basic Instinct. He stopped starring in these movies in the mid-’90s, around the time that erotic thrillers were no longer in vogue, but it looks like Lizzy Caplan is here to usher in an erotic thriller renaissance.
And she’s not alone in doing so. While Lizzy Caplan deserves credit for making the modern Fatal Attraction so captivating, we have directors like Olivia Wilde making high-profile erotic thrillers such as Don’t Worry Darling, which featured hot stars like Florence Pugh, Harry Styles, and Chris Pine. While that movie was a messy flop, another recent erotic thriller, Deep Water, reminded audiences and critics alike how great these movies can be (particularly when they feature sexy stars like Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas).
Interestingly, doing an erotic thriller series seems like a logical step for Lizzy Caplan because she is already clearly comfortable with the “erotic” part. We say that because before Fatal Attraction, her biggest breakout role since Mean Girls was in the Showtime drama Masters of Sex. In that show, she played the real sexual researcher Virginia Johnson who worked with William Masters (played by Michael Sheen), a man who is generally considered the father of modern sexual research.
In many ways, we might not have Lizzy Caplan starring in Fatal Attraction if not for her experience acting in Masters of Sex. In previous interviews, she stated what a culture shock it was for her to go from light comedies to an intense drama that sometimes required her to get nude. She became increasingly comfortable with both dramatic acting and onscreen passion, which helped her deliver an amazing and unforgettable performance in Fatal Attraction.
If all of this makes you want to see what all the fuss is about, this is arguably the best time to start streaming this steamy new show. As of this writing, only six of the first season’s eight episodes have aired, so you have time to not only binge not only what has come before but to get ready for the season’s big finish. Of course, now that the writer’s strike is in full force, we might have to wait a while to see Joshua Jackson and Lizzy Caplan sizzle onscreen again.