Utopia and It’s a Date star Luke McGregor: ‘I’m 33 and I’ve only had sex twice’
WITH his prominent teeth, orange hair and freckles, comedian Luke McGregor certainly doesn’t look like the world’s suavest man. But few would have guessed the extent of his troubles in the bedroom.
“I was at the point in my life where I was like ‘I’ve had sex twice, I’m 33 and if I don’t get this area of my life sorted, what am I going to do?’” the Tasmanian-born comedian explains of his courageous decision to publicly expose his sexual hang-ups in new six part ABC series Luke Warm Sex.
“It was almost like rock bottom — it can’t get any worse. It’s not like this series is going badly and then I’m going to not have sex in the future — I’m already not having sex. I’ll just to try and make it funny and see what happens.”
In stark contrast to his personal life, McGregor’s career has been going great guns since he got into the finals of Raw Comedy in 2008. He’s subsequently played to sold out rooms at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, won Best Newcomer at the Sydney Comedy Festival and appeared in Utopia, The Time of Our Lives, Please Like Me, It’s a Date and Now Add Honey.
But as the audiences at his stand up shows became all too aware, he never managed to overcome that very awkward adolescent phase of sexuality. He’d ask each audience for tips on how to get better at sex and would hand out a sex survey at the end. That gave series creator Karina Holden the idea to approach him with the idea to use his problematic relationship with intimacy to explore modern sexual manners in the age of the internet. Erectile dysfunction, BDSM, cuddle parties and nudist colonies were all on the agenda.
He had more than one massive anxiety attack while filming. “I was really worried we’d start filming and get to an activity and I’d have to pull out,” he laughs, then adds: “I’ve got to watch my words!”
One of McGregor’s biggest fears was being naked — and in the first episode he heads to a nudist colony which required getting naked in front of Australia (there’s a digital fig leaf of modesty).
“I didn’t like getting naked in front of people I was actually having sex with,” McGregor says, adding when he removed his clothes he freaked out. “I started thinking what if I have to go to the toilet? I was just panicking thinking I’ve made a terrible mistake. Later on in the edit suite we were going through the footage … and someone came in to clean the bins, just while my penis is floating around (onscreen). That took me a little while to be OK with.”
Shot over three months in mid-2015, McGregor says he’s now increased his batting average. “It was only two in the 33 years before that so it’s not a huge increase. It’s just because I find it fun now, whereas I used to pretend to go to sleep.” There’s even love on the horizon.
“I’ve just started seeing someone, but it’s pretty early days. Maybe that’ll turn into something. But it’s just nice to be having sex at all.”
Luke Warm Sex, next Wednesday, ABC, 9pm