For British actress Charly Clive’s first starring role, she plays a character who has intrusive X-rated thoughts.
Currently out on HBO Max (and originally on the U.K’s Channel 4), “Pure” follows Marnie (Clive), a Scottish young woman who’s confused and ashamed by her how her vivid visualizations interrupt her daily life. She jumps on a bus to London to build a new life, find new friends and try to discover what her condition is.
“I’d never heard of intrusive thoughts being a part of OCD. That wasn’t something I was aware of, really [before the show],” Clive, 27, tells The Post.
“I learned about the intrusive thoughts and how varied they can be — some people see images of violence; some people see images of a sexual nature, like in Marnie’s case. I think the common one that’s often referenced is if you’re on a train platform and just sort of imagining what it would be like to jump. Not really having that inclination; just the idea of it.”
Before “Pure,” Clive had a hit comedy sketch show called “Britney,” which toured the UK after selling out in Edinburgh. She wrote it about her experience with a brain tumor, which she was diagnosed with in 2015 at age 23.
“The majority of mental health stories I was exposed to as a kid through the mediums of TV and film tended to be quite soap opera-ish,” she says. “More and more TV shows now are more authentic in how they depict mental health. And with regard to my own health, my brain problems were physical, but definitely relatable to the idea of having something in your head that you can’t see that’s quite difficult to talk about, that you’re frightened of. That’s something that I can really relate to.”
She’s since gotten a clean bill of health on her tumor, but “Britney” helped her land the role on “Pure,” and enter the TV world.
One of the new friends that Marnie meets in London includes Charlie, played by Joe Cole, who’s known for “Peaky Blinders” and “Black Mirror.”
“I quickly realized with productions like this, no one is there by accident — and that confidence helped me get over that initial terrifying ‘first day of school’ feeling,” says Clive.
“It was a huge learning curve, especially because a lot of my cast mates are people I’ve admired. So to be acting alongside them was really mad,” she says. “My very first day on set was a scene with Joe Cole, so I was like, ‘Oh god, I know this guy from ‘Peaky Blinders’ and now I’m going to meet him and pretend everything is normal and fine.’ I was more nervous about meeting Joe and not embarrassing myself in front of someone I considered a famous actor than getting my lines right!”
But before long, she got acclimated to the set.
“It’s the first day on the job, so everyone was a bit nervous. And Joe was very nice and instantly sort of teasing and making me feel part of the set-family, which made me feel like, ‘I’m allowed to be here.’”