‘The Idol’ at centre of another row over gag about Jeffrey Epstein’s sex trafficked teens ‘s******* blood’

‘The Idol’ is at the centre of another controversy storm after it included a joke about convicted sex predator Jeffrey Epstein’s underage sex trafficking victims “s******* blood”.
HBO’s shock series starring Lily-Rose Depp, 24, and The Weeknd, 33, saw its latest episode aired on Sunday (18.06.23) joke about the torment of Epstein’s harem of groomed teens, who were as young as 14.
Episode three of ‘Euphoria’ creator Sam Levinson’s series, titled ‘Double Fantasy’, featured Eli Roth’s character Andrew Finkelstein saying Lily’s fictional pop star Jocelyn was giving him irritable bowel syndrome before he added: “I’m f****** s******* more blood than a kid at Epstein’s island.”
The joke was a reference to Epstein’s 75-acre paradise island home of Little Saint James in the Virgin Islands which was dubbed “paedophile island” due to his alleged trafficking to and abuse of girls at the complex, before he was found dead from an apparent suicide aged 66 in 2019 in his New York jail cell.
Viewers have flooded social media to plead with the show makers now to make fun of sex trafficking and joke about paedophilia, branding the joke everything from “sickening” to “disgusting”.
The uproar follows criticism of Lily-Rose baring too much flesh on show and after accusations the show is “torture porn”.
Over the weekend, the show was also accused of “making fun of” intimacy coordinators.
Marci Liroff, 65, says she was left feeling “betrayed” by HBO after watching a raunchy scene in the sex and nudity-filled series, which stars The Weeknd – born Abel Tesfaye – as shady nightclub promoter Tedros who puts singer Jocelyn under his cult leader-style spell before involving her in BDSM romps.
The intimacy coordinator – who did not work on ‘The Idol’ – hit out after the first episode of the show, which aired on 4 June, showed a fictional intimacy coordinator being locked in the bathroom as Jocelyn proudly bares her nipples at an album cover shoot.
She told Variety: “To be honest, I had a very visceral reaction. I was appalled.”
Lily-Rose, daughter of ‘Donnie Brasco’ star Johnny Depp, 60, has defended the sex scenes in ‘The Idol’ by insisting they are “so important” to the story.
Asked if she was hesitant about the scenes, she told Britain’s HELLO! magazine: “Honestly, no, because those scenes are so important to the character and the story.
“I was really blessed to be surrounded by good people all the time.
“I really did feel as though they were listening to me and that they valued my opinions.”
By its second episode, the show had lost more than 100,000 viewers and a source has told Page Six the fate of ‘The Idol’ is up in the air.
The Weeknd has since defended his character and insisted there is “nothing sexy” about the sex scenes in the show.
He told GQ about one of Tedros’ bondage sex scenes with Lily-Rose: “However you’re feeling watching that scene, whether it’s discomfort, or you feel gross, or you feel embarrassed for the characters, it’s all those emotions adding up to: this guy is in way over his head, this situation is one where he is not supposed to be here.”