This article is part of the TNGG Sex Week series on Gen Y and sex. Read more from the series here.
As a generation, we’re a hookup culture. Some might call it slutty, and some might call it liberated, but no one can disagree that it makes us more sexually knowledgeable. I think our penchant for sexual freedom gives us insight into what real sex is. We’re harder to fool because we’re not all virgins expecting some magical candlelit night of passion.
On the side of said nights of passion are TV and movies so unrealistic about sex that it’s almost comical. If real people had movie sex, our world would be flipped upside down. Think of this as a checklist. If you’ve met any of these three Hollywood sex requirements, then well done. Add a soundtrack or John Williams score for bonus points!
1. You’ll hate each other first: This is the classic romantic comedy move. Coworkers, strangers on the street who end up being connected in some cosmic way, the best friend’s boyfriend, the roommate—you name it. If these people are supposed to get along and don’t, they’ll undoubtedly fall in love. For a generation where many relationships began as hookups at a party and happened to “make it,” this just isn’t going to happen. Millennials are picky. We don’t hang around with just anybody, and we don’t have much patience for people we don’t like. That’s not to say that we’ll antagonize those we don’t get along with, but we sure as hell aren’t going to fall in love with them, inner heart of gold or not.
2. Sex starts as a result of violent passion: These people don’t have sex because they got home, and it’s late, and it’s the weekend and they know they’ve got brunch ahead of them on Sunday. They’re pissed off, and apparently in Hollywood, angry=horny. I’m talking Mr. and Mrs. Smith sex—we just tried to kill each other, but we couldn’t—let’s have sex instead, destroying the house in nearly the same fashion in which we each tried to murder the other. Californication’s Hank Moody got sucker-punched during sex in the series premiere. You can even get historical with Alexander as Colin Farrell and Rosario Dawson proceed to get pissed off at each other, then tenderly take off each other’s jewelry like they’re preparing for a rumble, but instead decide to have passionate, grunty sex. (This one made it onto Nerve.com’s Worst Sex Scenes list). If I had a nickel for me and every one of my friends who got into a physical fight that turned into sex, I would be both sex- and nickel-less.
3. You’ll definitely, absolutely, positively have a no-holds-barred screaming orgasm: Although every woman’s magazine tells us that only 30% of women can consistently orgasm during sex, and that the previously mentioned violent or dramatic condition would make it a hell of a lot harder with all those other angry/murderous/angsty thoughts going on, I’ve rarely seen a sex scene that doesn’t end happily—and loudly. For people who are probably having sex in some crazy location—the bathroom of a café during your ladies lunch, Diane Lane in Unfaithful?—or in some crazy position usually reserved for another genre of film entirely, I have to point out that realistically, the excitement can only get you so far.
But Hollywood’s not all wrong. One of the funniest “sex” scenes is that of two young boys in Miranda July’s Me and You and Everyone We Know cyber-chatting with someone with some very strange proclivities. The younger brother in these scenes, who clearly has no idea what the real point of his big brother’s doings are, first suggests they “ask her if she likes bologna.” Eventually, he comes up with an idea that makes this scene one of the funniest cyber-sex cautionary tales out there. To a sexually intelligent and very internet-savvy generation, this scene is pure hilarity. It also speaks candidly regarding the lies (and possible dangers) floating around cyberspace.
Millennials know when the wool’s being pulled over their eyes (a perfect example being the fact that this piece happened because I think Hollywood sex scenes are hilariously unrealistic). With rampant “reality” shows trying to be as sexy and horny as Hollywood, we’ve got even more reason to believe in a certain standard of sexual behavior. We know what’s going on. We know it’s a big, Hollywood sham. But we watch it anyway. And while we’re commenting ironically on the stupid details that make movie sex unrealistic, and making fun of the fake, porno-moans emanating from the latest rom-com heroine, we’re going to be turned on anyway. We might even try some ridiculous movie sex ourselves. Because we may actually be the first real person to have a screaming orgasm while hanging out the open bay of an airplane after a pre-skydiving altercation with the instructor that we hated at first, but now we secretly adore.
Author: Lindsay King – I’m a BU senior getting ready to make my way into the world of advertising! I spend a lot of time reading, only slightly less time sketching and writing, and the rest of my time thinking about how we as people operate and communicate with the world around us. Oh, and I pencil in time for singing, culinary adventuring, and as much travel as possible.