Sex on television is different. I don’t mean from sex on the table or the floor, I mean from other things you watch. I may be peculiar but I always find it a bit voyeuristic and embarrassing. This means it leaps out of the ‘text,’ as it were, as a particular – and maybe peculiar ? – interlude.
I imagine it’s supposed to tell us something about the relationship in question. Does it? Or does it tell us that kissing is very awkward and involves too many sucking and slobbery noises to be risked in public? Is television public? Do you like watching people sucking, slobbering and squirming with your friends, partner or children alongside?
Why do we never see that amazing kiss (usually the first!?) where your lips just barely touch and your whole body turns to fire? All delicacy and near fainting rather than a prelude to a major grapple?
Does it tell us much about the relationship? Are we connoisseurs of visually ‘reading the sex act’ as viewers? If we are, then we’re likely to be experts in reading professional sex rather than the more private kind. Are there perhaps more telling ways of communicating just how a couple are relating to one another?
A whole erotic film is different. I can settle down to the particular mind frame and pleasure that involves. It’s the discontinuity that disconcerts.
I know it’s all been part of breaking down the barriers on television – about what can be shown and placed in the public arena. For this reason it’s great that we see women kissing women, or men kissing men, for example,– it normalises.
But I’m not at all sure I want sex – or that other thing which has begun to be shown – toileting, normalised as a public act.
See this too = “Why sex doesn’t sell”