Tom Brady‘s cameo in Netflix’s new dramedy series Living With Yourself has a lot of people talking — and not just because it’s so rare to see the star quarterback step into frame for scripted projects like this. Instead, it’s how much art seems to be imitating a real life story here that’s gotten more than a few eyebrows raised, and Brady himself is already throwing a penalty flag on all those uncomfortable comparisons.
In the show’s first episode, Brady briefly appears as himself, stepping out of the “Top Happy Spa” with a big grin. The NFL champ only has two lines in the show — he asks Paul Rudd‘s Miles Elliott, “First time?” and when asked if it’s also his initial visit, he shakes his head and says, “Sixth.” But the power of his ear-to-ear endorsement of the place is enough to get the wavering Miles through the door and onto all of his wild cloning adventures.
The scene seems harmless enough — funny even, if you correlate the number of times he’s been to this self-betterment salon with the number of Super Bowl rings he has. A series of genetically perfected Tom Brady replicas would explain his oft-superhuman abilities on the field, aha! However, some viewers immediately noticed a parallel between the sight of Brady emerging from a strip mall spa and recent allegations of solicitation against New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft. Some even wondered if the appearance was meant to be some sort of tongue-in-cheek statement on his boss’ legal issues.
When asked about the potential connection between his cameo and the headlines surrounding Kraft, though, Brady accused the media of fumbling the story. In a locker room interview on Saturday, Brady said, “That’s not what that was about. I think that was taken out of context … it has a negative connotation to it, which I don’t appreciate. It’s meant to be something different than that.” Brady went on to explain that the scene was filmed on a green screen and was written four years ago.
Here’s Tom Brady talking about his Netflix cameo pic.twitter.com/OCd8vzMRK3
— Mark Daniels (@MarkDanielsPJ) October 19, 2019
“It’s unfortunate that people would choose to think I would ever do something like that about Mr. Kraft,” he continued. “I think that’s just a very bad assessment of my relationship with him. I would never do that.”
Interestingly, the series’ creator and writer Timothy Greenberg anticipated that the connection between Brady’s brief role and the news about Kraft might be an issue. Greenberg told Refinery29 that he even thought the news would doom the potential cameo. According to the creator, “Brady was interested” in the appearance some time before the allegations against Kraft came to light, but as they waited for Brady to become available to shoot — after the football season, which resulted in another Super Bowl win for the Pats — the charges were revealed. “So, we’re like, ‘Alright, this is clearly not going to happen now,'” he remembered. However, Brady still came through for the cameo anyway, and here we are.
Living With Yourself is now available on Netflix.