THERE have been a great many horrible things happen to women’s sexuality over the centuries. But few things, in recent times, I feel, have been worse than the pile of shit that is Fifty Shades of Grey. There are so many things wrong with this cobbled-together piece of garbage I don’t know where to begin.
So let’s start with the main characters, shall we. Nothing like a naïve, meek, boring and submissive female lead for women of the 21st century to rally behind. Forget the Jane Austens, Amelia Earharts and Audrey Hepburns of the world. I like that she’s willing to turn her whole life upside down to be the sex slave for some dude whose character profile I’m pretty sure was cut and paste from American Psycho, minus the overt-homicidal tendencies. Take note ladies. Nothing says romantic like a controlling, sadistic, sociopath.
It baffles me that the book can be touted as an erotic trailblazer when the first half-dozen times they have sex it’s missionary. Ohhh, how exotic and kinky. I’m by no means saying that good sex is all about fitting in as many gymnastically-challenging positions as possible, it’s not. In fact, good sex can be ruined that way. I’m just saying don’t hold something up as the pinnacle of sexual exploration, when it’s not. Also the line “I don’t make love, I fuck, hard.” Think about the logistics of that for a minute. To me, getting jack-hammered every single time doesn’t exactly sound that appealing. Sure, there’s a time and place for hard and fast, but I prefer a little diversity. (And no, I don’t mean and old, old wooden ship.)
And let’s just talk about her orgasms for a minute. Because apparently that’s all it takes. A minute of someone sucking on your boob for the first time and you’re over the hill. Excuse me while I sneeze ‘bullshit’ into my popcorn. Don't get me wrong, I certainly enjoy a pair of skilled hands or mouth on my humble, but perky, B-cup breasts (God I hope my family isn’t reading this) but there is still no way, no matter how good, the twins have ever gotten me close to the Big O. Thank you Fifty Shades for setting up completely unrealistic expectations about how easy it is to please a woman. And for any women out there who are blessed enough to come this easily… fuck you, is all I have to say.
While we’re on the topic of unrealistic orgasms, there’s also that scene where he runs the leather whip down her body and she comes. Right. Because it’s that easy. Hate to tell ya buddy, but she’s faking.
For the men who are reading this post (and according to Google Analytics that’s more than half of you) I bet a lot of you are thinking ‘I could totally make a girl come just from touching her boobs because I’m the king of sex and shit’. Let me assure you buddy, you’re not. Even if we tell you you are, you’re not. We’re lying (we just don’t want to hurt your feelings, see). All men secretly think they're some kind of Asgardian sex god, but, to be honest, most of you are pretty rubbish. At least the first couple of times. You’re like dogs, you need to be trained. (But to your credit, you seem to be quick and eager learners.)
So what is good sex literature? I guess it depends on what you define as good sex. For me it’s bubbling attraction. It’s the intimacy and affection that comes from knowing someone and developing a certain level of trust. It’s laughter. It’s being unburdened by nerves and self-consciousness. It’s the ease of knowing how to please someone, which can only come from practice with that person. It’s being considerate with a sprinkle of romance. It’s pleasure in subtlety. It’s karma sutra, literally meaning ‘five senses’. Making sure you pay attention to each and every one.
And it’s like trying to find a unicorn (while refusing to actively look for one.)