Apple TV+ has an exciting new dark comedy, Bad Sisters, that follows the five Garvey sisters and their families. The Garveys are a close-knit family having bonded after the death of their parents and a promise to always protect each other. When the sisters notice that the second eldest, Grace (Anne-Marie Duff) is losing herself, becoming more isolated and shrinking within herself, to her husband, John Paul (Claes Bang) who they have dubbed the prick, the four other sisters work together to fulfill their oath to protect each other no matter the cost.
Bad Sisters manages to balance drama, tragedy, and dark comedy while tackling very real-world issues. In Bad Sisters Grace is a victim of domestic abuse but instead of physical abuse, which is so often portrayed in media, Bad Sisters explores the impact of psychological and emotional abuse. We had the opportunity to speak with two of the stars of Bad Sisters, Anne-Marie Duff who plays Grace and Claes Bang who plays her husband John Paul. During our interview, Anne-Marie talked about why it is important to her to portray a survivor of this type of abuse and why it is still such a relevant story today.
BAD SISTERS STAR ANNE-MARIE DUFF TALKS ABOUT REPRESENTING THOSE WITHOUT A VOICE
“Well that’s exactly it, it’s like a silent threat isn’t it? A silent terror. There are no bruises or broken bones, but there are broken spirits and it’s always going to be important to tell stories, especially to represent people whose voices are gagged. That’s super important to me because I feel there still is, you still here rhetoric around women in psych coercive relationships about them being weak.
Why don’t they stand up to the him or her? Why don’t they leave? And it’s a sort of bewilderment. So, there’s still a sort of horrible flippancy around it. So, yeah I felt and feel that it’s vital that we keep telling that story because it’s a tale as old as time. This is not a 21st Century dilemma and as a woman I’ll always want t represent women who feel that they don’t have a right to speak and have been made to feel that way. That’s always gonna be a primary concern for me.”
Bad Sisters shows how this abuse can have a long term effect changing the person into an unrecognizable version of themselves. The way that Anne-Marie Duff’s character slowly isolates and loses herself as her sisters watch helplessly is devastating and their decision to take drastic measures in order to help her seems completely understandable. Claes Bang revealed what he believes drives John Paul and his horrifying actions in Bad Sisters.
“There are these four sisters and I think the thing about this guy is that he feels that they are, the bond and the connection with these five sisters, is a real threat to his own life. For some reason he does not see all the beauty and all the potential of it he only ever sees that they’re sort of trying to interfere or intervene somehow. So, he’s doing everything he does to sort of try and separate his wife from her sisters in a way.”
Bad Sisters shows how someone can be gas lit by their partner without portraying them as weak. The series represents a dynamic that is too often dismissed with abuse being ignored if the physical effects are not on full display. Hopefully Bad Sisters will open up the conversation and help people understand how detrimental this abuse can be while providing more empathy and understanding to those who need help to get out of these kinds of relationships.
The first two episodes of Bad Sisters premiere on Apple TV+ August 19 with subsequent episodes every Friday. Are you going to watch Bad Sisters? What do you think about the series showing the effects of emotional and psychological abuse? What are your thoughts regarding Claes’ breakdown of his character’s motivation? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or on our social media and check back with The Illuminerdi for more.