Monday, November 14, 2011

Let's Talk About Sex: An analysis of Glee's “The First Time”.

There has been a lot said about this episode already, in fact there was a lot said about this episode before it aired – nothing causes controversy like teen sex. Still, I doubt it would have caused quite so much trouble if it wasn't two boys that were having sex. Anyway I have had, and have seen, an awful lot of arguments about this episode, so rather than answering everyone individually I thought I would post it here... far away from any kind of physical retributions.

Should be a given but in case you don't, you know think about things, there will be spoilers if you haven't seen the episode.

I loved the music, but that's because West Side Story is one of my favourite musicals - I was always going to love it. I really liked most of the musical numbers and I thought they integrated them well into the narrative. And Beist got a date, it was actually kind of sweet, so that was nice... everything else. Not so good.

Artie has found his calling – good for him. I would care a lot more if he wasn't such a dick. I realise I am going to upset a few people with that comment but think about it, none of the problems in this episode would have happened if Artie hadn't been such an inappropriate ass. He insinuates that by not having sex they do not know how to have fun. And he basically tells Rachel and Blaine that they will never be able play the roles of Maria and Tony with any kind of emotional depth if they haven't had sex.

Ok there is so much wrong with that statement... for starters I thought acting was the ability to portray things that you have NOT actually experienced with emotional reality. It also says that if you have not actually had sex then you have no sensuality. I mean if this is the case, and you can't even image the kind of passion you feel when you want to sleep with someone, then you probably shouldn't be having sex. This is the first thing that is wrong with the depiction of sex in this episode, and it kind of follows throughout the episode - because by the time both couples (supposedly) have sex at the end, the episode has not really suggested that this isn't the reason. That sentence kind of got away from me – but what I mean is that because of this statement any sex that happens after this moment seems to be for this reason.

After this incredibly inappropriate conversation with Artie, Rachel then decides to go and flirt with Finn so that he will vote for her, and not Kurt, in the student council election. Finn's all excited about this naturally, so excited he probably had to think about the mailman. This is all terrible because I'm pretty sure that Finn is still going to vote for Kurt.

Ok, so far we have three reasons to have sex -
  1. To give a better performance.
  2. To be more fun.
  3. And to get election votes...

So far, so good Glee. Well done. (Sarcasm).

Then we get to Kurt and Blaine. I know everyone has different views on this couple, and while I agree that there have been some problems with their storyline I like them as a couple. And think about it, the issues they have are no worse than the ones the straight couples have, so by expecting more your creating a distinction. It constantly amazes me that people expect more from Glee, like it used to be this amazing program with perfect story lines – that's not true, you have selective amnesia... Sorry rant over. Back to the sex.

Kurt is worried that Blaine thinks he's boring, which actually plays into the rest of the story in a really negative way. The problem is that if this scene, the one in Blaine's bedroom, wasn't in the context of the rest of the show it would actually be kind of cute. By the end of it, Kurt feels sexy and Blaine isn't pressuring him (it doesn't seem like Blaine is going to fall for Artie's inappropriateness). I can't help but think that if they weren't a gay couple moments like this wouldn't be relegated to a special episode.

Unfortunately any sweetness get ruined... because instead of just being an episode about a teenage couple deciding to have sex it also has to be the episode that this couple gets a rival.

Blaine takes a field trip back to Dalton (don't these kids ever have to go to class). I like the way they mirror Kurt's first entrance to the halls of Dalton – these kind of references are when Glee is at it's best. The Warblers do a number and we realise why Blaine got all the solos... I'm sorry but they just kind of suck without him, something they seem to realise with their desperate pleas for him to return. The only person who seems perfectly capable of existing without Blaine is the beautiful Sebastian, who got his flirt on with Blaine during Uptown Girl*.

*Also there was a teacher at Dalton – who is just a gang-rape waiting to happen. (Glee you are amazing.)

Let's talk about Sebastian shall we because he is just so lovely to talk about. The fact that he is so popular is amazing considering how much of an ass he is – but let's face it, that's why we love him don't we. He's just there to cause tension and unfortunately I don't think he constitutes a viable option of either of our boys, which is disappointing because I love a good fixing the bad boy storyline.

But I like this storyline, I like that Kurt and Blaine are not perfect. And as much as I might want Kurt to have another option, it had to be Blaine in this case. Whether or not we agree with this in the real world, in the Glee world Blaine has been set up as the hot one. Kurt might be cute but it's been indicated on various occasions that Blaine is supposed to be the sexy guy in the relationship – I am not saying that I agree with this, I am just saying that this is how things are depicted. So it is understandable that Sebastian would go for Blaine (please don't kill me fangirls). Besides, Kurt is too much of a romantic (at the moment) to be tempted by someone else – he hasn't reached that point yet. Therefore it really had to be Blaine.

I don't really have much to say about Finn except – DON'T GO TO PUCK FOR SEX ADVICE! Especially if it concerns contraception. But hey, at least they mentioned contraception, for the straight couple anyway. Because it's not like the gay couple need to use condoms... (Sarcasm).

Again the locker scene between Kurt and Blaine was really sweet, and if it had been out of the context of this episode I would have been rooting for them to root. I mean the way Blaine looked at Kurt, that was the first time I'd seen lust in his eyes. But in the context it seems like Blaine has simply finally decided he is going to go for sex in order to make his Tony performance better... and that is just not cool.

I loved the way that they intercut Blaine's illicit meeting with “A Boy Like That”. It showed that what Blaine was doing was not the right thing, and that he new it. Plus I really like when they use the musical numbers in this way, makes them more natural. Sebastian is super hot and he's a bad boy so I can understand why Blaine was tempted... and I can't hate his moment because it gave us sassy jealous Kurt, which just happens to be my new favourite Kurt. Sure it's bad that he was trying to change who he was, by agreeing to go the the club, but the way he grabs Blaine's arm and starred Sebastian down was HOT!

Finn went to Puck for advice, proving his awesome decision making skills – Rachel gets to have her advice moment as well, with the girls of glee club... I would just like to take this moment to note that neither Kurt or Blaine get to go to anyone for advice, they are on their own.

Anyway back to Rachel's advice session – who gave her a gavel anyway? Whatever she's gathered the girls together to work out if she wants to have sex (because she doesn't know). Quinn wants her to wait (naturally, last time she had sex, she got pregnant), Tina notes that she probably should have used protection – understatement.

Also Santana gave me the greatest mental image ever “It was like being smothered by a sweaty out breath sack of potatoes that someone soaked in body spray” - I am never going to get that image out my head, poor Rachel.

When I take off my Faberry glasses, and ignore the comment Brittany made about the alien invasion in her tent (I am going to assume that she was either saying it on purpose or she doesn't realise what loosing your virginity means – but I am probably expecting too much of Glee), then I quite like this scene. It shows positive and negative consequences of having sex, and it even insinuates that it's probably not going to be any good – thanks Santana.

Here, here to Tina, for actually having a positive experience with sex. I just kind of wish that Rachel had heard this and realised she wasn't ready and decided not to do it, but that would just be way too logical.

Cut to the SKEEZIETS gay night club ever – where I sit in front of the television screaming, “KURT GET OUT, and whatever you do don't touch anything.” I was sure he wasn't going to get out of that club a virgin, and not in a good way. Oh well, I thought maybe this might make Blaine see that Sebastian is a skank, but alas no, he starts drinking and dancing with a boy that is not his boyfriend.

The night is not all bad – for starters we get more sassy, jealous Kurt, always a win and we get the return of a familiar face... that's right Dave Karofsky is back. I was never a fan of Dave, I mean I wanted him to be redeemed as much as the next guy, but I didn't want him to get Kurt, he didn't deserve him (and Darren Criss is just too cute)... but I might have changed my mind. I mean the fact that he went up and sat next to Kurt, he could have just walked away but instead he chose to talk to him. And I like that he hasn't come out to the world, that just wouldn't be believable, he's just out and proud at skeezy gay club. It was a really cute moment between him and Kurt and I might have just started to ship it a little bit, especially in light of what happens after Kurt and Blaine leave the club.

What I am starting to learn is that Blaine is not a good drunk, that time he kissed Rachel is a good example and this night is no exception. I, unlike the program, am not going to excuse Blaine's actions because he was drunk. That is NO excuse. He tried to force himself on Kurt and then got annoyed went Kurt wasn't all that keen – totally not cool. I was so excited when Kurt was all BAMF and yelling at him, I was like yeah Kurt, you tell that asshole to keep his hands to himself. Say whatever you want there is no way in the world this is OK and it would have been a really empowering moment if Kurt hadn't have backed down and started chasing after Blaine. He is so not worth your trouble. Again I can't help but think that if it had been a girl in that situation he never would have been forgiven, at least not in an episode.

Glee you are just failing all over the place today. 

Anyway, just in case you forgot that the reason for this evenings sexcapdes Rachel and Blaine remind us as they announce that they have failed as actors by not loosing their virginity in order to gain authenticity they lack in their performance. Maria and Tony have failed each other, indicating that this whole acting thing was the real reason they were both pressuring their partners to do the deed.

Then we have Artie getting all emo and as Will puts it “the best musical Mckinley has ever done” - I would also like to add that as far as we have seen its the only musical Mckinley has ever done.

I also want to shout out to that red dress Santana is wearing, she looked so amazing that I forgot Rachel was supposed to be the star. And her America – FAB! They should just take all the solos and give them to Santana!

Back to the sex, I guess. Man I can't believe that Glee has done this to me – I love sex, it's like my favourite thing, but Glee has managed to ruin it. Despite all the problems, the sex happens. I know right, you would think that this was an episode to warn against sex and make teenagers choose celibacy, but alas not.

Kurt and Blaine meet on the stage after the performance, again a scene that if taken out of the context of this episode that would have been quite sweet. Issues are Kurt seems to be turned on my Blaine's star quality, and also he seems to be apologising for what happened at the club (another great message for the kids). Anyway stuff happens and they decide to skip the after party and head back to Blaine's place – it's convenient that they went to Blaine's and not Kurt's because the Hummel home is occupado.

That's right, Finn and Rachel are actually gonna get it on, although not just so Rachel can be a better actress anymore, no this time it's because she feels sorry for Finn. Finn has all of his dreams dashed because his football career is over (like he ever really had a chance) and Rachel can't think of anything to cheer him up with because basically she knows he's gonna be a Lima loser, so natural she gives him her virginity. Super decision making process.

If you think that's bad enough, the last moments of the episode are a montage beginning with a “marriage” scene from West Side Story, basically saying that Glee agrees with these unions and thinks they are all romantic and the decisions are made for the right reasons. Then all we get to see is the two couples lying next to each other, at least Rachel and Finn get to be under the covers suggesting some kind of nudity. Kurt and Blaine don't even get that, Kurt still has his socks on for frick sake.

Like I said, I don't a agree with the reasons these guys had sex... but if you're gonna show it, at least have some kind of accuracy. It looks like I've been doing it wrong, because all you really need to do is lie next to each other, hold hands and stare into each others eyes.

And the final list of reasons to have sex are:
  1. To give a better performance.
  2. To be more fun.
  3. To get election votes.
  4. Because you think you boyfriend doesn't find you sexy.
  5. To stop your boyfriend from leaving you.
  6. Or because you feel sorry for him.

Nothing about actually wanting to have sex because that would just be silly.

All in all, this was not good. I never thought I would be one to advocate abstinence... but this episode of Glee did it.

There are so many things wrong with this episode, but this is already the longest post every – If you have made it this far well done, you get it a virtual cookie... and an apology. I'm sorry. But this episode just irked me up.