Firstly, I’m not hating on 50 Shades. I have seen many a worse film (At least no one abuses dairy products in this film, as in Last Tango in Paris), and for something based on Twilight, it’s a hell of a lot better than that (2 hours of staring in the rain, vague hints that your boyfriend wants to kill you and you just wish he’d hurry up and get it over with because oh the rain and the misery and this town doesn’t even have an Imax). I do wish the book had been able to separate the issue of being dominant in bed from being controlling in a relationship. I see these as two very different issues, whereas both film and book conflate liking a spot of BDSM on a quiet Tuesday night with stalkerishly turning up in someone’s bedroom and flying across the country to interrupt their weekend with their family. It’s a shame because it will either turn people away from sexual experimentation as they’ll equate it with being stalked and manipulated, or it will make women think it’s totes hawt when their boyfriend spies on them and punches their male friends.
Aneeeeewaaaaay this was meant to be light-hearted! There I go with my joke-free feminism again! What am I like.
Here’s some ways in which real-life first-time sex with someone (especially in London) is nothing like in the film.
- He definitely won’t be able to get your bra off. Cue seven minutes of awkward fumbling before you give up and take it off yourself. If you are kind you’ll tell him it’s ‘the Bra 6, got a different operating system see’.
- If you wake up in the night and he’s gone, it won’t be because he’s moodily playing a grand piano. It’ll be because the cheeseburger he had on the nightbus is repeating on him. with appropriate sound effects
- There’ll be an awkward condom discussion and a hunt around drawers wallets flatmates rooms’ etc which will totally kill the mood
- Your hair won’t look good in the morning. If you have a fringe it will sticking up like a Mohican and might have something suspicious stuck in it
- If you wake up early and go to make him breakfast you’ll fall over his flatmate who has to sleep in the living room as their landlord turned it into a spare room
- And you’ll definitely have bits of condom wrapper stuck to your legs
- There also won’t be any food except one cold slice of Domino’s Meat Feast pizza and a Pot Noodle pot full of fag ends (THIS HAPPENED TO ME)
- If his mother unexpectedly calls around (WHY DOES SHE HAVE A KEY) he will get you to hide in the cupboard or pretend to be his cleaner who doesn’t speak any English
- He won’t drive or helicopter you home. If you’re lucky he might walk you to the bus stop. If you’re not he’ll wake you up before it’s even light and say you have to leave right now because…um….reasons.
- If you indicate you’re not up for something he suggests in bed, he won’t say ‘Exceeeellllent, I hoped you’d say that’, he will sulk and accuse you of ‘breaking character’ (your character presumably being Compliant Dream Pornstar Woman)
- You won’t get a wink of sleep. You’ll be kept awake by the roadworks outside his flat, his eardrum-shattering snoring/weird breathing, his flatmates’ bathroom clattering/Xbox games, and your own bitter regret that you didn’t get the last bus home.
- If you go home with someone after you’ve been sick, they really shouldn’t kiss you before it has been verified that you cleaned your teeth.
- As no one can afford spare rooms in London, instead of a Red Room of Pain, he might have a Pinkish Drawer of Mild Discomfort. Contents – a British Airways sleepmask, a table tennis bat, and some clothes pegs he got in the pound shop.
- He won’t give you a sexy bath in a premium tub like those displays at B&Q. Instead you’ll be hunting around his mould-infested shower hoping that one of his flatmates is a girl and might actually own soap. Also, the bathroom might have a model Dalek in it.
- His psychotic cat might break into the room and bite you on the foot while you’re in bed
- Instead of a sex-mirror on the ceiling, he’ll have a poster of Flashdance and a collection of videos about the Third Reich
- Instead of the ethereal choral music of Thomas Tallis, he’ll probably have a sex mixtape full of Elton John songs, and when ‘Rocket Man’ comes on it will seem like a really cruel ironic joke
- If you’ve been drinking, one or both of you might fall asleep in the middle. There’s a good chance the other one won’t notice.
Happy day after Valentine’s! Don’t date someone who stalks you!