Medieval sex is simply getting ridiculous. And I didn't really understand what it was all about until yesterday. I had a “moment of clarity” (so to speak) after getting really mad at HBO. And please understand that I am no prude. I am a recovering porn addict so I have seen it all. But I never understood why that world is invading the other ones, until today. Here is my journey.
I really wanted to watch the miniseries called “The Tudors” when it first came out. But I didn't. It is currently being reshown on BBC America, so I set the DVR to record some episodes. I had heard great things about it from friends whose opinions I trust. I have always thought that was an interesting time in history. As a Catholic boy, I took Sir Thomas Moore as my patron saint at my confirmation. And have many times scratched my head in amazement at Henry VIII's quest for a male heir. Cromwell, Boleyn, Mary, Elizabeth: all fascinating people. So When Showtime came out with the series, I couldn't wait. Well, this series is excellent; all except for one thing: the gratuitous sex scenes. I am sick and tired of having to fast forward past a scene because of some naked wench in Henry’s room. Yes, we know that he was a total horn-dog. But the 1966 movie “A Man For All Seasons” portrayed all his iniquities without having to show any of it. Do we really need to have bare butts to get the point? I understand that sex sells. But geez! What is it selling for Showtime? So I moved on.
I also couldn't wait for the Showtime series called “The Borgias” to air. Again, an amazing time in history. And one to really chagrin the Catholics. So I taped it. And this is one great series. It is sit on the edge of your seat intriguing. And very well written. But here we go again: gratuitous “T and A”. This story could easily have been told without having to show all the forbidden sweaty humping of the monarchy. Good Grief! Yes the pope was a letch. But to constantly have naked nuns fluttering out of rooms in a convent ticks me off. Where do the Skinemax after dark B-movies end and prime time soft core porn begin? Yes, this is in prime time. I got angry because I had to have a trigger finger on the remote control. Ridiculous! I remember when what was sexy was what was NOT SEEN. The imagination is far more stimulating that the eye. Yes I'll probably watch the season finale this weekend. But with the papacy at a falling point, why spoil the moment with boobs?
I was already miffed because “Spartacus: Gods of the Arena” on Starz was nothing short of porn. The little I saw left me angry. I had anticipated seeing another version of “300” or “Gladiator”. Instead I got male penises and full on lesbian action. Why should I have to watch guys kiss in order to get my fill of testosterone-laden gladiatorial arena battling? Yes, Rome was decadent. But the 1960 Stanley Kubrick, Kirk Douglas, Lawrence Olivier version of “Spartacus” didn't have to push the envelope in order to tell this great tale.
Today was the final straw. I started watching HBO's new series “Game of Thrones”. I was excited to take certain aspects of medieval castles and jousting; and merge them with a science fiction fantasy genre. And I wasn't disappointed. Strong characters and well written plots merge with kingly honor and deceptive power struggles. But dang it: why do I have to watch the queen do doggie style sex on her wedding day. Seriously! Everybody holds their meetings in a brothel in this series. What? That's right. Any time the characters want to meet, there are naked whores flittering about. And it is just pathetic. Because their nudity adds absolutely nothing to the story except for puerile titillation. How did Peter Jackson do it with "The Lord of the Rings"? Those were fantasy movies that won every major accolade and made gazillions of dollars; all without one single act of oral sex. What are you thinking HBO?
Where is the clean "guy stuff"? Where is the gruff series where a man can be a man without having to battle waves of lust? James Bond had plenty of sex. But we never had to actually look at his wiener or some trollop’s buns.
So here is where my moment of clarity came in. I wondered what kind of market these shows were serving. What is their niche? I mean, come on: anyone can get plenty of hard core porn on a computer, I pad, or smart phone for free. And if a man wants to see people having sex, HBO probably isn't his first outlet of oculary delight.
Why interject all the sex into a television series where it serves no purpose other than to get a man's motor running? And then I got it. It is all a part of a master plan where the lines between right and wrong are getting blurred. A man can truly tell another accountability partner that he hasn't looked at porn. But in reality, he is simply watching a male oriented television series and getting all the mental fantasy fuel he wants. It's safe, easy to click away from, and deliciously deceptive. Or so the lie will whisper. How far we have come from the boobs in “Braveheart” and the one sex scene in “Band of Brothers”. It's just plain sad. I noticed it in Fox's O'Reilly Factor when they showed the same bikini clad clip of Carrie Prejean over and over. I quit watching Bill. And it is everywhere, on every channel, and at every media outlet. Who knows what the future holds. Maybe we will finally beat Rome during the time of Caligula as the most sex-laden country in history. But then, HBO will probably make a miniseries about us.