Here's what makes Fleabag's Godmother and Martin the show's most cruel characters

Here's what makes Fleabag's Godmother and Martin the show's most cruel characters

Fleabag', a BBC Three show in co-production with Amazon Studios, is a complex show. It follows the protagonist Fleabag, who is played by the brilliant Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who is an angry, confused, sex-addicted young woman living in London.

The show is particularly known for breaking the fourth wall as Fleabag makes one bad decision after the other while talking into the camera directly to the audiences. Each character on 'Fleabag' is a deeply flawed character.

Waller-Bridge plays the eponymous anti-heroine, a woman in her 30s living in London, trying to go about life while simultaneously dealing with the tragedy of her best friend's death. Sian Clifford plays Claire, Fleabag's sister, who is, as Fleabag says, rich and anorexic. Bill Paterson plays Fleabag's dad, who seems to be consumed by his new love interest, his daughters' godmother (played by Oscar-winner Olivia Colman).

Brett Gelman as Martin on 'Fleabag' (Image: Amazon Prime Video)

Even though all the characters in the show are deeply flawed people, they each have something redeeming about them somewhere, except for Godmother and Martin, Clarie's husband. Both of these characters go out of their way to be casually cruel to people around them.

Brett Gelman plays the role of a manipulative husband and a wicked, spineless man who, as you will find throughout the series, is very easy to despise. "Brett Gelman plays Martin, Claire's grating and spineless husband, amazingly," said Reddit user Bewan. "You despise almost everything that comes out of his mouth from tone to content and he never stops being annoying."

In the first season of the series, Gelman's Martin is introduced by Fleabag as someone who is inappropriate at all times regardless of the occasion. Martin is the kind of man who will make an offensive joke, and then blame you for getting offended because you're being too touchy, "loosen up!"

Brett Gelman as Martin and Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Fleabag in a still from 'Fleabag' (Image: Amazon Prime Video)

As Claire's husband, Martin is absolutely dreadful. He refuses to show any kind of affection towards his wife, he manipulates her into staying back for Jake (who is his kid, not Claire's) and not taking her promotion in Finland, he wouldn't have sex with her citing he "still has that thing on his penis".

In fact, Claire is so evidently craving an orgasm, Fleabag gives her the most thoughtful birthday present ever - a vibrator. "He's a reprehensible, pretty much all round despicable character and does not deserve Claire one bit," Reddit user Blacknarcissa said.


One could say, Martin, for all his flaws and faults, actually loves his wife Claire. Blacknarcissa said, "I feel like you can love someone and still treat them like shit. Just means you're a d**khead. He's not showing his love through his actions and he's clearly selfish. I feel like people are complex enough to feel one thing and have their actions display the opposite."

And we haven't even told you about his worst decision on 'Fleabag' because we don't want to give out spoilers (really, get on with the show)!

A still from 'Fleabag' (Image: Amazon Prime Video)

On the other hand, as Godmother, Olivia Colman delivers a wonderful performance. There is no doubt you hate her - she is a passive-aggressive artist who subtly, and often, undermines Fleabag. Her mean teases are only made bearable by the virtue of the character being played by Colman.

Olivia Colman as Godmother in 'Fleabag' (Image: Amazon Prime Video)

To give you an estimate about the monstrosity of Colman's Godmother, think of her as the type of friend, who at a memorial dinner says, "It's such a sad day, sad day... I'll get the champagne!"

She is now in a relationship with Fleabag's father, but she didn't wait this one out for long. She's even shown to be moving in on Fleabag's father while her mother's body is barely cold. Reddit user itsmekathy thinks "the Godmother struggles to live in the shadow of the girls' mother." But that is letting her off the hook pretty easily.


The second and the final installment of 'Fleabag' will be available to stream on Amazon Prime Video from May 17 onwards. 


Share this article:  Fleabag Phoebe Waller Bridge Olivia Colman Brett Gelman cruel godmother brother in law Martin