Random Hite Report #29

Hello, welcome again to one of my favorite segments on the SSL blog, Random Hite Report! It's simple really. I flip through the pages of the The Hite Report: A Nationwide Study of Female Sexuality  (or sometimes The Hite Report on Male Sexuality) by a one Ms. Shere Hite and copy the contents of the page where I land - no more no less. Anyone who reads my blog will know that this 1976 book is a fave of mine; not only because of its realistic and progressive insight about the female orgasm that is still shockingly relevant 40 years later,  but also because of its very touching insight into the lives of the women who took part in this huge, comprehensive survey. This is an under-appreciated and under-read book if you ask me - I suggest you buy it online (seriously, you can get them for like 1 cent) and read it.

 So, sit back, getcha a beverage, and enjoy a little...Random Hite Report.

The Hite Report: A Nationwide Study of Female Sexuality Dell. 1976.
Pg. 147 From the section Orgasm in the chapter "What do the stages of orgasm feel like."

...with arousal. It is pleasurable for itself, but after a certain point I am left tense and angry and disappointed, and...depressed. Ultimately I have to come and know I will enjoy it."
There were no mixed feelings about how it felt to be on the edge of orgasm, and then have the stimulation that brought you there changed or withdrawn: it felt terrible.    Questionnaire III asked, "If you are just about to have an orgasm and then don't becaue of withdrawal of stimultion or some similar reason, do you feel frustrated?":
    "If my husband comes before I have a chance, I am left shaken and sick to my stomach and resentful and angry."
    "Men often have orgasm and roll over and go to sleep, leaving me in a state of high excitement but no orgasm. This is mentally infuriating and has a terrible psychological effect on me. They can be trained to satisfy me, but most men seem to assume that women don't need orgasm like men."
    "At first I think, oh, it doesn't matter, it was pretty good while it lasted, and then I think, no! why should I settle for that?"
    Frustrated and angry, and potentially violent. It usually happens when my husband decides that his method of stimulating me is not working fast enough and so changes it - without asking first."
    "I feel extremely frustrated. I'm almost doubled over in pain and I'm furious, and would like to kill my partner."
    "I feel frustrated and disappointed and a little hurt and resentful and his work (the next day) should take precedence over me."
    "Frustrated, cheated, angry. Usually he comes to quickly. I sometimes think my husband only cares about his release, like he doesn't think I need one."
    "Yes, very frustrated and sad, and sometimes I cry."
    "Damn, yes. I feel sad, let down, that something is wrong with me."


Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 2 - The SSL Review

Crazy Ex-GirlFriend
I do quite enjoy this show. It's a wild ride. I respect that. I also love the creator and star, Rachel Bloom. She is an Orgasm Equality advocate, ya'll. She dropped some truth bombs on Twitter, and I loved it. I wrote a post about it and made her an official Orgasm Equality Ally She also drops in subtle accurate, realistic depictions and discussions of lady-gasm stuff in her show, which honestly, is my dream of dreams. If all shows did this, we wouldn't have much of a problem anymore.

Anyway, it's a network show so there's not a ton of orgasm, masturbation, and clit stuff being thrown around for obvious reasons, but there are these things from time to time that can be SSL Reviewd. For a refresher, an SSL Review is a critique specifically of discussions or depictions of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I focus on that and really only that (unless I want to talk about something else). I'm looking mainly at realism and about how the depiction/discussion plays in the larger cultural conversation about female orgasm and women's sexuality. I have 3 simple ones from Season 2 to talk about here.

Please, my friends, do enjoy more SSL Reviews for MOVIES and TV SHOWS.

S2 Ep2 - The Worst
You don't really need context for this, although if you watch the show, you'll probably know what it's referring to. Either way, Rebecca, the main character played by Rachel Bloom, says the following.
"Maybe this dream won't be like my vibrator, breaking when I need it the most."
What's important here, my friends, is that a woman on television mentioned her vibrator, letting us all know that she does in fact own one. And, given that she wants it to work when she needs it, we can also assume that she masturbates. It's as simple as this. The more women we hear of that admit to masturbating without shame, the more young ladies and women will feel it's okay to do so. It helps with slow normalization of lady-bation, and that helps with women knowing what the fuck we physically need in order to orgasm (which, of course, is an essential ingredient in orgasm equality).

S2 Ep 4 - Not on my Chest!
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a musical TV show. So...there's musical numbers, and one of them was sung (and tapped out) by 2 dudes that have had sexual relations with the main character. It's kind of a hallucination, and these 2 dudes are kind of playfully taunting her. They're basically describing all the places they tapped that ass (you can check out the video below). Then between the 2 guys they sing,
"Hey, does this ring a bell?"
 (in a feminine voice) "A little to the left. Okay now, a little to the right. Oh, oh, back to the left. Right there, right there. Wait no, you're doing it wrong. I'll do it myself!"
Clearly, the insinuation here is related to her giving instructions to her partner about where to stimulate in order to get her off. We have no idea what exactly and where they are referring to. I'd have to assume it's a hand or mouth on the clit/vulva area, but we don't really know, so I can't speak to whether their discussion here reflects physical realism for how a woman might need to be stimulated to orgasm. What I can say is that when they, even with her instructions, weren't getting her off, she clearly took matters into her own hands, and I give that a big orgasm equality high five. I mean, if they're doing it wrong, then hell yeah do it yourself. That's what a gal's got to do. I like the simple fact that we can clearly see that she desired her orgasm so much she took the time and energy to ensure it happened.

Because she should. Because we all should. Because men mostly do that, and women too often feel they can't or shouldn't and so we often don't.

It's a simple thing, but I like the statement it makes and the example it sets.

On the other side of the coin, it is true they are kind of making fun of her with that line, and her persistence towards her orgasm could seem to the audience more negative than positive. I see that this is possible, and certainly sticking negative connotations on a woman's interest in pursuing her own orgasm is not uncommon (see my review of 40 Year Old Virgin, mkay) and definitely a backward step for orgasm equality, but I don't think that's what's happening. I think they're making gentle fun of her the entire time - this line and every other line. It's, like, just slightly annoying to her that they're singing about any of it. So, I think 'doing it herself' is not exactly put in a positive light, but it's also not really put in a negative light either. It's just there, and that's fine with me. If it's just there, then people can soak it in and get just a little more used to the idea of a woman (themselves or their partner) being assertive about her orgasm, because, hey - if a character in a TV show is, other people can be too.

S2 Ep...

S2 Ep 6 - Eat it
Again, I don't really think you need much context here. In this episode a dude that Rebecca doesn't really care about named Trent asks her if she wants to have sex again. She's like, 'okay,' and then he rolls toward her. As he does this, she pushes his head down and says, "Nope, nope, nope, you gotta pay the toll first." Then from 'down there' we hear him say, "This is my favorite!"

It's lovely in all the ways. Some guy that's kinda desperate for her but that she's not into wants to have sex, and what does she do? Does she get her vag hole out for him to rub off inside of while she does not orgasm (I mean intercourse ain't great for lady-gams)? No, she gets some head and absolutely (well presumably) orgasms. That's what we gals need to do more of - get ours and not worry too much about his. He'll be okay.

The Vulva Rating
Three specific times this season, Rebecca makes it clear that her orgasm is important to her and she pursues it without shame. That's the kind of thing we need to see because we simply don't see that enough. Granted, Rebecca is a bit of a flawed personality which risks giving her sexual assertiveness a negative overall connotation, but then again she's the main character. Even if main characters are problematic, they are our friends in a way, and so the things they do become things that seem possible for people to do, and that's all I'm looking for. I give season 2 a full 5 out of 5 vulvas.



Inside Amy Schumer S2 Ep3: The SSL Review

Inside Amy Schumer Season 2 Episode 3
This show makes me laugh, and here's the best part - Amy Schumer tends to bring it when it comes to realism and female sexuality. She brought it in her movie Trainwreck, in The Joe Rogan Podcast, and largely in the other episodes of this show I've SSL Reviewed so far. She has shown a strong willingness to give the clit the glory it deserves, speak some truths about lady sex experiences, rep for actual lady-gasms - all things largely absent in media and also incredibly important to Orgasm Equality. (She could use some schooling and humbling when it comes to speaking about race though - but that's pretty true of a lot of us).

The SSL Reviewable
There is plenty to SSL Review in this show. And for those that don't yet know, an SSL Review is a critique specifically of discussions or depictions of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I focus on that and really only that (unless I want to talk about something else). I'm looking mainly at realism and about how the depiction/discussion plays in the larger cultural conversation about female orgasm and women's sexuality.

Please, my friends, do enjoy more SSL Reviews for MOVIES and TV SHOWS.

Prom The Right Way
This one will be a really quick SSL Review, and it's maybe not even technically SSL Review eligible, but i think it's close enough. It talks about getting eaten out,and that is close enough to clits and lady-gasms.

This is a skit where Amy decides to go to prom with a kid as charity. You know, like how Ronda Rousey went to prom with that Marine that asked her out online. all you need to know, though about this skit is the following:

She's all dressed up and she opens her cabinet and grabs a bunch of condoms from a basket marked "condoms" and then says, "Wait, he's still in high school." So, she puts those back and grabs from a basket marked dental dams and says, "Well, I hope this kid's ready to eat a shit ton of pussy."

My Thoughts
What can one say about this. Listen, I know it's wrong for adults to take sexual advantage of underage teens. I get that. It's not a laughing matter, but then again, it's joked about all the time with dudes and young gals. Sure, the dudes in these jokes are made out to be skeezes, but the jokes are still there. Like the first thing that pops into my head is Matthew McConaughey in Dazed and Confused. He has a classic line: "That's what I love about these High School girls, man. I get older. They stay the same age. Yes, they do."

So, it's not so bad to have a joke with a skeezy woman lusting after high school boys. It's evening the playing field....which I actually kind of appreciate.

Of course, I would have liked it even better if her first thought hadn't been condoms (insinuating intercourse, obviously), and instead had been getting her pussy ate from jump. However, that she brought the oral in at all is excellent in my humble opinion. Anytime an unabashed desire for getting one's lady-junk licked is put out there in the world, it gets a little more normalized, which I think, leads to more ladies asking for it and more men giving it away freely.

So thanks Amy, you skeezy fuck.

Vulva Rating
There's nothing revolutionary here, and it is a little illegal-ish, so this will get a solid, but not perfect 4 out of 5 vulvas.



Flower - The SSL Review

I remember seeing trailers for Flower and wondering if I would like it. It felt like it could go either way for me. Was it a touch too much of the recently classic snarky-teen-girl-too-smart-for-her-own-good movie go-to character? Would I like Tim Heidecker of Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! in it? There were a lot of questions, people. I kinda forgot about it for a minute until I saw it on Netflix, though. So, I watched it in order to answer all my questions. The main character, although certainly in the snarky-teen-girl-too-smart-for-her-own-good genre, was a really well done version of that, and although it took a scene or two to get past seeing Tim as the Tim in Tim and Eric, I did get past it, and I actually thought he was a pretty good fit for that role. The movie as a whole, I think, was a really solid one, and it also had a nuanced progressive approach to female sexuality that I thought was truly a breath of fresh air.

And...it had a little tiny line in it that made it eligible for an SSL review, so I get to write about it here in this blog. An SSL Review, for those that need a little refresher is a review specifically of any discussion or depiction of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I critique the realism of the depiction/discussion and also write about what the depiction/discussion says about and/or adds to our cultural understanding of female sexuality and orgasm. I try my best to just stick specifically to those SSL Reviewable moments, so it usually stays pretty focused on those moments in the movie only, but sometimes I like to digress.

So here we go. I have tons of these reviews btw. You can find all the other movie SSL Reviews HERE and the TV SSL Reviews HERE.

The joys of a gay brother
I'm going to just describe the SSL Reviewable moment real quick. So, Erica is a 17 year old, and she's getting a new stepbrother, Luke, who is around her age. She's telling her friends about him, specifically that he didn't want a blow-job from her, and they are kinda discussing that he might be gay. One of them points out a solid positive,
"Dude, if you have a gay brother, you can both jerk off to the same porn."
Indeed you can...granted, of course, that as a straight gal you're into a little gay porn, which I think you really should be, but that's just my opinion.

So, that was a lot. I think I need to go back and explain a bit.

Why try and give your stepbrother a BJ? Great question. For money. Luke was in a rehabilitation center for a while, and he's coming home to live with Erica, her mom, and the very new stepdad. They pick him up and all 4 go out to eat. Erica's mom has asked her to be nice to him, and when he freaks out at the dinner table and runs out of the restaurant, her mom asks her to go talk to him, and eventually bribes her with $20 if she can get him to come back in.

Let's go back a bit further. Erica is accumulating and saving money for a very specific thing, and she's making some pretty sweet bank by basically blowing for money and then blackmailing older men (she's 17 - remember) that totally know how old she is. She blows them, and then her 2 friends tape it and appear once he's come and paid so that they can get even more money out of it, which they all 3 split. She's good at blowjobs and has a pride in her jobs well done.

So, that's why she asks her brother if he wants sucked off. She's good at it. She assumes it would make him feel better, and there's money at stake to get him feeling better. Simple as that.

The SSL Review
As for my take on the SSL Reviewable line up there, I think it's excellent. What's not to love about teen girls openly and apologetically speaking amongst each other about their masturbation habits? The more masturbation among girls is normalized, the more girls will feel like it's okay to do it, and the more women and girls we will have that enter into their first partnered sexual encounters understanding what exactly makes their bodies orgasm. That is a win for orgasm equality, because we have too many a gal that doesn't know how to orgasm when they start having sex and end up real fucking confused and orgasmless when their bodies find intercourse doesn't actually cause orgasm like the world would have us believe.

And I also want to talk about how the movie treats her sexuality
So, that line gets a good SSL Review from me, but I also want to just talk about the tone of this movie in regard to female sexuality because I think it's important. The movie did not give Erica's sex-for-money endeavors a heavy weight the way I have seen in so many movies. The character herself spoke about it casually and really quite fondly. She doesn't mind doing it - like it doesn't disgust her or anything at all. She's good at them, and she feels good about that. She also clearly likes that it is a skill she can turn into money. Her friends are also casual about it and supportive of her. She did get one rando mean girl at school that called her a slut, but it didn't bother her until the girl poked at her about something else. Overall, her BJ-centric activities don't feel like a burden to her - quite the opposite.

The movie doesn't treat it heavily either. Sometimes movies will take something like this where the girl seems unworried and confident, but the movie shows us the truth. We eventually always learn the dark side to her being so young and so casually involved with sex. This movie never takes us there, and why should it? She's mastered a practice that takes finesse, and patience, intuition, and practice. We all like mastering something. She isn't giving her hard earned skills away freely. She gets paid handsomely. She is fucking over dudes that she sees as shit bags. She's going into these sexual encounters with her eyes wide open and with a clear, realistic idea of what she expects from them. She's living the dream really. The only thing that would be better, I imagine, is if she were somehow getting paid to get eaten out.

So, to me this movie is very different than most in that it allows sex things to just be sex things for a young women. It doesn't unnecessarily burden its female character with guilt, shame, or damage from sexual encounters that were completely consensual and thought through. It felt refreshing to see that because although there is certainly a lot of damage done to women and girls through sexual means, there is also plenty of sexual encounters women and girls engage in, sexual encounters that lack some or all of the elements of love and monogamy so often deemed necessary for healthy sexual female engagement, that are fulfilling, fun, and/or useful for a multitude of reasons and really not damaging at all. We don't often get to see that side of sexuality for women, and I think that ability to intentionally engage sexually in alternative but healthy ways is something that we should see modeled more often. A wider breadth of female sexual experiences than just romantic/loving sex and damaging/painful sex deserves to be told. I think this movie expanded the conversation.

The Vulva Rating
So, I give this movie a 5 vulva rating. The SSL Reviewable comment was small but mighty. I'm a sucker for anything that normalizes teen girls masturbating. That in itself would just get this movie a solid 4 rating, but I'm also a sucker for progressive, fresh takes on female sexuality. So, I'm going to give this a full 5 out of 5 vulva rating.



Random Hite Report #28

Hello, welcome again to one of my favorite segments on the SSL blog, Random Hite Report! It's simple really. I flip through the pages of the The Hite Report: A Nationwide Study of Female Sexuality  (or sometimes The Hite Report on Male Sexuality) by a one Ms. Shere Hite and copy the contents of the page where I land - no more no less. Anyone who reads my blog will know that this 1976 book is a fave of mine; not only because of its realistic and progressive insight about the female orgasm that is still shockingly relevant 40 years later,  but also because of its very touching insight into the lives of the women who took part in this huge, comprehensive survey. This is an under-appreciated and under-read book if you ask me - I suggest you buy it online (seriously, you can get them for like 1 cent) and read it.

 So, sit back, getcha a beverage, and enjoy a little...Random Hite Report.

The Hite Report: A Nationwide Study of Female Sexuality Dell. 1976.
Pg. 136 From the chapter "Is Orgasm Important."

...partner reach an orgasm - and find it just as stimulating."
    "Sometimes it's more fulfilling without orgasm because it's possible to experience my partner's orgasm more completely."
    "I think sometimes it's okay not having orgasm during intercourse, but perhaps I am too concerned with making the sexual experience whatever he wants."
    "Giving is more important than taking, therefore if there is a choice between my partner's and my orgasm, I take theirs." 
Some women came to the conclusion that orgasm during sex was not important.    "Orgasms are exceedingly pleasurable and as I haven't given up masturbation, I guess you could say they're 'important' to me. But that's exactly the point of something else - I totally associate orgasm with masturbation. I don't have to come, and often when he comes, it's the peak of sex for me."
    "To me orgasms have nothing to do with regular male/female sex. Orgasm is not necessary because I can give them to myself in masturbation."
    "Since I don't have orgasms during intercourse, therefore I enjoy it without."
    "Personally, I don't mind very much if I don't have one with a man. I don't expect to."
    "Orgasm is something I am able to give myself any time - so it's no big deal to not have one. Cuddling and touching is more important to get from my partner."
    "I think orgasms are overrated. When I masturbate, it is to achieve orgasm, but with my lover, I really don't care if i do or not. I just want to feel warm and close."
    "Orgasm is not always necessary during intercourse. It's still okay because of the warmth and comfort and just to let someone know you accept their physicality."
    "Orgasms are only important in context. If all I wanted was orgasm, I'd masturbate. If someone wants to give me an orgasm, and it is an act of love and affection and consideration, then that is important."


SNL Killing It With Girl's first Masturbation Skit - An SSL Review

This is a post from November of 2015. I thought it a good one to re-post on this fine summer day. Please enjoy.

Um...I just saw the recent Saturday Night Live with Elizabeth Banks. You know how SNL kinda goes up and down? Well, I tell ya, I'm feeling good about his crew. They were killin' it. It was full of good shit...and then, like the light of sweet jesus engulfing my being into paradise, I saw the following skit:

It's called First Got Horny 2 U, and I just about flipped my lid when I saw it...Uh, depictions of teen girls with desire and sexual autonomy? Yes, thank you. Adolescent ladies masturbating in wierd awkward adolescent ways? Well yes, of course I'll have some of that too. Insinuations of insertion along with my masturbation? No, of course not, but you already knew that didn't you ladies of SNL?

That Skit is Revolutionary as Fuck

Seriously, it was so perfect. The masturbation was so awkward, but it was ON POINT. It was all about getting some friction on the outer parts of that little lady junk. It shouldn't be so amazing that the masturbation depictions were done with some actual realism, that there wasn't insinuations about cucumbers and self-finger-banging and stuff like that, but yet it is amazing because it's almost unheard of.  This was a bad-ass, revolutionary little skit. It might not seem that way, because it's just one skit, but a lot of people saw it, and it's something that people just don't see. It will be remembered, and it will change things and inspire a different ways of depicting and talking about girls. It will change how girls see themselves and how boys see girls.

How many little 13 year old girls watched that in their pj's in their friend's basement and awkwardly laughed because it hit too close to home. That is important shit because it normalized the fuck out of all the things that have been traditionally stigmatized so harshly for teen girls - unabashed sexual desire, masturbation, and sexually touching yourself in a way that doesn't look like intercourse.

That last one is wierd, but important because we girls learn from early on that sex involves sticking things up our vag, which is super unhelpful for learning anything about our orgasms. If we did masturbate as adolescents, we probably felt wierd about it because when we really thought about it, our outer genital stimulation that we used during masturbation didn't quite jive with what we knew would happen one day when we actually started having sex. If we didn't masturbate, we never learned what actually made us orgasm, and continued not learning about our orgasm through all the PinV sex we would eventually have. Hell, it could've been years of doin' it before we ever orgasmed. EVER.

I can't even imagine how that skit would have affected my 13 year-old self. Rubbing up against my stuffed animal in my bed looked a lot like Cecily Strong wiggling on top of that pillow at the end, and I sure as hell never saw any depiction or insinuation about female masturbation that seemed anything like that until I was well into adulthood, and barely so even then. I mean I still masturbated...a lot...even without depictions to legitimize my choices, but what if 13-year-old me knew for sure that cool actresses understood my circumstances in the same way boys can be certain by watching any number of comedy bits, teen movies, and tv that cool actors understand their masturbation/horniness circumstances? That would change things...it will change things.

The Formal SSL Review

I'm going to do a formal SSL Review because this video has depictions/discussion of female orgasm and/or masturbation, so let's get into it real quick. I rate on realism and what it contributes to the cultural understanding.

In the skit Infinity + 5 is a 90's style pop group including Cecily Strong, Kate McKinnon, Elizabeth Banks, Vanessa Bayer, and Aidy Bryant. The song is about the people who they first got truly horny to, and all 5 of the women tell their stories.

Not all the stories specifically talked about/insinuated masturbating, but 3 did, one with a mention of orgasm. The rest were just about how horny they felt.

1) Cecily Strong sang, "I got up on the couch and I knocked my first one out." And by god she did. She climbed on top, laid down with her legs straddling it, and grinded against it. Although she said she orgasmed, that part wasn't depicted. (This was right at the beginning, and I for real jumped up off the couch with my hands in the air when it happened). There was also an absolutely fabulous shot of her in front of her couch laying face down on the ground, with a couch pillow under her crotch area and moving side to side. She's watching Carson Daily on TV and her father causally walks into the background, sees her and promptly walks right back out - Gold, I tell ya GOLD!

2) Vanessa Bayer, had a shot where she was sitting with her magazine with Lyle and Eric Menendez (that's who her firsts were) on the edge of the tub, and she looks up to the removable showerhead, and I think we all know what that mean, amIright?

3) Then Aidy Bryant sang, "I would sit on my hands and scoot - to a man in a dinosaur suit." Hers was the cool son from Dinosaurs, and we do see her sitting on her hands and scooting, getting that awkward teen clit friction. It was fabulous.

This skit realistically, though appropriately awkwardly, portrayed masturbation through outer vulva/clit stimulation. Plus, for all the reasons I discussed above, it was daring, progressive, revolutionary, and funny to boot. Infinity + 5 gets a strong 5 vulva rating.


P.S. I'm going to add Infinity + 5 onto the Orgasm Equality Hero List because that skit is the kind of comedy that can really change things. I'm adding them as Infinity + 5 because I want to include all the writers and behind the scenes folks who were part of it.


The Runaways - An SSL Review

The Runaways
So, I like Joan Jett. I'm not like a big fan. I'm not, like, listening to all her albums and reading all kinds of shit about her. I'm not that kind of music person. I'm a casual music lover. A fair weather fan. I ain't out there looking for the coolest new thing - I just really enjoy that cool new thing after it's popular enough for me to find out about it. So, Joan Jett - she's cool. I like the music of hers I know. I always thought she seemed badass, and she had a badass look. Her Joan Jett and the Blackhearts hits were coming out in my 1st decade of life, so it seems like I've always known them and known of her. I hadn't given her much deep thought though, and didn't really know her history.

On a recent lazy Saturday, I watched a shit ton of movies and one was The Runaways about the all girl (and I do mean girl - they were all high school age) rock band founded in 1975 by Joan Jet and drummer Sandy West. They had one hit you might know, Cherry Bomb (I have a performance of this in Japan below).  I really enjoyed this movie - it's a solid biopic, and although I don't believe it's 100% accurate, from what I've read of it, the spirit is there. Honestly, that's all you can hope from a good biopic, because they are all a little pretend. It's the way of things.

The movie on top of being entertaining, badass, and informative, also had a couple SSL Reviewable moments, and that's why I'm here today. An SSL Review, for those that need a little refresher is a review specifically of any discussion or depiction of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I critique the realism of the depiction/discussion and also write about what the depiction/discussion says about and/or adds to our cultural understanding of female sexuality and orgasm. I try my best to just stick specifically to those SSL Reviewable moments, so it usually stays pretty focused on those moments in the movie only. So here we go. I have tons of these reviews btw. You can find all the other movie SSL Reviews HERE and the TV SSL Reviews HERE.

I'm going to describe the 2 SSL Reviewable scenes first and then discuss them both at the end.

Ladies rockin' the fuck out is like ladies demanding orgasms
So in the movie, the Runaways are practicing in this trailer. There's 4 women in the band, but they are auditioning a lead singer, Cherie Currie, that they recruited because of her look...well they and this dude Kim Fowley, who is the music producer who loved the idea of an all-girl rock band when Joan and Sandy brought it to them. So, this cute, blonde 15 year old comes into the trailer and they are having her try to sing some gritty punk music. She's a bit weak at first and she's a bit unsure about saying some of the dirtier things in it. So Kim Fowley gives her this enthusiastic little monologue as a pep talk.
Okay Listen. Rock and roll is a blood sport. It's a sport of men. It is for the people in the dark. The death cats. The masturbators. The outcasts who have no voice, no way of saying, 'Hey I hate the fucking world. My father's a faggot. Fuck you. Fuck authority. I want an orgasm!' Now growl, moan. This isn't about women's lib, kiddies. This is about women's libido. I want to see the scratch marks down their fucking backs. Alright do it again...like....like your sister just fucked your boyfriend in your parent's bed. Like you want a fucking orgasm!"
I mean it kinda works. She gets grittier after that.

Friend don't let friend leave their teens without being able to orgasm
The gals are out on the road in shitty hotels, and it cuts to Joan Jett sitting just outside the hotel bathroom.
Sandy: (from the bathroom off camera) It still isn't working. The dicks aren't even hard.
We see Sandy in the bathroom looking at porn mags. She's on the toilet trying to rub her vulva and the mags are strewn on the floor and in her other hand.
Joan: Are you rubbing?
Sandy: Yeah. I think I'm doing it wrong.
Joan: Try using the shower head. Now think about someone you have a crush on
We see that Sandy is in the shower now. The water's running, and we see one leg lift up and plant itself against the wall so she can have better access to her junk.
Sandy: It's still not working
Joan: How about Farrah Fawcett. You like her?
Sandy: Yeah. Who doesn't? 
She's still in shower with leg up - the shower curtain is covering the rest of her body. We can tell the shower head is likely pointed right at her lady junk. Then we here a kind of dull 'uh...'
Sandy: Wait, I think I feel something.
We hear some more gentle uhhs, then a gentle 'oh shit' as we see her body kind of slide down the shower wall. Joan is listening outside and when Sandy says 'oh shit' - Joan rams the pocket knife she's been playing with into the wall in front of her kind of in celebration.

I mean, right on, right?
First off, what a good goddamn friend to hang in there with you while you figure out how to masturbate yourself to orgasm. That's a true friend. For real though, I love this scene. To begin with, it's physiologically reasonable. I mean, it has all the elements that are realistically needed for a female to orgasm. She's stimulating the vulva/clit area, first by rubbing it with her hand and then by stimulating it with a water stream. Both are viable ways to stimulate the clit to orgasm. The other part is that she is striving for arousal, first by shitty porn mags and then by thinking about Farrah Fawcett. The same things don't work for everyone, but we all need to somehow get our brains aroused so that our genitals get aroused, because you can't really orgasm - which is the release of muscle tension and blood congestion brought on by arousal - without actually being aroused. So the realism part of this scene is on point.

The other element of this scene is just that it's just plain bad ass and dripping with respect and esteem for the lady-gasm. It's saying something about the power of it. A clear theme in this movie overall is women, girls really, boldly jumping into an arena that wasn't really open to them, being wild and burn-this-shit-down uninhibited in a way no one thought they deserved, taking up space because they wanted to. Now, we already heard Kim's speech saying that this band was not about women's lib. It was about women's libido. As audience members we already have the idea that rock and roll is about about the type of taking-what-you-want that getting your orgasm is. And then we actually see these gals supporting each other in literally getting that orgasm, getting that satisfaction, taking up that space, it's poignant, I think. It quite rightly acknowledges the deeper power that authentic sexuality has to a person's sense of what they deserve in life and of what space they can take up in the world. It also very correctly seems to align female sexual power, not with sexiness, but with sexualness - with the power to get the orgasm you deserve.

This movie could, because lots do, depict female sexual power as women 'being as sexy as they want to be.' It's bullshit. There is, of course, some amount of power for anyone in being desired, fantasized about, and giving pleasure, and women clearly have a lot of space to do this in our culture, but the real power is also in unabashedly desiring, in fantasizing, and in getting pleasure (orgasm specifically). Women really don't have a lot of space in this world to do that, and so taking that space is kinda revolutionary - even, sadly, to this day.

Vulva Rating
The Runaways was unexpectedly full of female sexual empowerment. It bucked the idea that ladies can't rock, and it bucked the idea that female sexuality is about being sexy for men. Ladies can in fact rock, and ladies have a sexuality within them, a desire, that is about getting rather than giving orgasms. That, my friends, is important. Women need to know it's okay to be selfish, to desire, fantasize, and demand orgasms, need to see that these are parts of being a sexual person. This movie adds that element to the cultural conversation. It's taking the conversation forward not backwards or standing us still. Also, the depiction of orgasm was realistic, the physical thing happening is sensibly a thing that could cause a lady to get off. Those two things together give this movie a 5 out of 5 vulva rating from me.



5 Daughter Movies #DirectedByWomen

I started doing this categorized List of 5 movies thing where I showcase movies that were directed by women and that I have actually seen. It all started during the Directed By Women Worldwide Viewing Party in September 2015, and it was pretty fun, so I've continued doing it from time to time.

It's a bit off-topic from my normal fare, ya know, being that it's not specifically about lady-gasms or anything like that, but I think it fits the blog because
1. this blog is also about indie movie-making, and
2. this blog is partially about getting the female perspective of sexuality into our media. So, to me, supporting female voices in our media  means we're creating more room for female voices to speak on all types of things, which sometimes will be sex, orgasms, and sexuality.

You can find all my 5-movie lists HERE.

The movies in this list all center around being a daughter in some way. I mean all ladies are daughters to someone, but it's an important element in these movies. You might relate. Probably not...because these are mostly not about anything you ever have or even ever could experience, but you know, maybe.

Please do get a snack and a drink, and choose one of these lovely movies directed by women.

1 The Edge of Seventeen - This was directed by Kelly Fremon Craig. I actually saw this accidentally. I was meaning to see Twentieth Century Women, but thought it was called The Edge of Seventeen for some reason, and I didn't realize I'd gone to a different movie until about 20 minutes in when I just couldn't pretend anymore that it would suddenly turn toward the plot or characters I was expecting. It was a good movie though, so I'm not complaining - a solid coming of age (which of course involved but was certainly not limited to the main character's relationship with her mother).

2 Lady Bird - This was directed by Greta Gerwig. I saw this at the theater on my first trip to Des Moines - staking it out for the potential move. They have a great little arts theater here, and honestly that helped me feel a lot better about moving here. It is a really excellent movie in the coming of age drama. It's clearly all about the mother daughter relationship, and do I love that the mother is Jackie from Roseanne. Yes I do.

3 The Dressmaker - This was directed by Jocelyn Moorehouse. I caught this on Netflix. I was interested in seeing this in the theaters, but it didn't happen. I was quite pleasantly surprised by this. It's a good one, and it starts with a daughter coming home to her mother. Check this one out.

4 Oh Lucy - This was directed by Atsuko Hirayanagi. I saw this at that same Des Moines art theater. I will say the trailer is not a great way to actually get a feel of what this movie is, but I liked it a lot anyway. It's got some superb shit in it. I recommend. And - it involves following a daughter to the US from Japan.

5 Wonder Woman - This was directed by Patty Jenkins. You know about this one. IEveryone does...and frankly the person Wonder Woman is a daughter of makes a pretty big difference in this movie. I'm gonna be honest and say something I suspect will be pretty unpopular. I didn't like it all that much. I mean it was fine, and as super hero movies go, it was a good one, but to me, that's not saying much. Super hero movies are really just pure fluffy, cotton candy, predictably boring trash with lame over-done fight scenes. I mean that's my opinion, but I won't shame you if that's the kind of trash you like. I like my own types of trash movies, but super hero movies are not one of them. Anyway. I'm not gonna recommend this one, but you probably love it already and don't need my recommendation anyway.


Better Sex Scene Ideas

This is just a quick post with a short list of things I would love to see in a movie...things about lady-gasms and clits...things that are realistic.

Are we not, my friends, sick of seeing movies/tv with a lady-dude couple busting through the front door after a date, kissing, desperately grabbing each other until she's pressed up against a wall or picked up and thrown on a bed, her skirt pulled up...and then he intercourses on her with his dick in her vag-hole, moving it in and out and in and out and in and out for a few moments until they both vocally show us they've clearly orgasmed?

I mean, I get it. It looks hot, but it's bull-motha-fuckin-shit. Never in all of scientific literature has there been a physically documented orgasm caused by stimulation inside the vagina. That's true. People will act and even say it's not true, but that's just because we have a fucked up, twisted, shit-for-lady-gasm culture that refuses to acknowledge intercourse isn't how females orgasm any more than anal intercourse is how males orgasm. Find me a piece of scientific literature with physical verification for vaginally stimulated orgasms, and I'll be happy to reverse course. Seriously, find one. Also, even if you don't believe me, you can surely agree that orgasming from intercourse is not common among women. In pretty much every survey ever taken, the majority of women* say they cannot orgasm from intercourse alone. So, even if you can't get fully on board, I hope you can at least see there's something strange in the fact that so much of our media depicts women orgasming from in-out boning even though that is a relatively rare occurrence at best. Why you gotta play us ladies like that, society in general?

Clit stimulation is how women orgasm just like penis stimulation is how men orgasm.  It's not a hard concept. It's just that no one wants to believe it, and our culture doesn't reflect that truth. That's why we are always seeing women getting rammed into ecstatic orgasm in our TV and movies...and porn...and romance novels...all that shit. It's a big gross cycle where we want to believe women can get banged to orgasm (because it's easy and convenient to just come during whatever makes a male come, right?) and all those characters in our media can come easily from a good bone, so it just reinforces that intercourse is how we should orgasm...and that maybe we can???....maybe we are???...maybe if we can't we're broken????

Anyway, if we are ever going to break this cycle of thinking women should be coming in a way that is very not conducive to female orgasm, we need to start depicting it more realistically. Here's a few ideas to help our media makers get on the right track.

  • For god's sake, just show a reach-around. I've seen it multiple times in depictions of male-on-male sex. They get it. They know the penis needs love for orgasm to happen. Show all the banging against a wall you want, but just let us see that arm lengthening out to her pelvis. It's a small thing. It can be done.
  • If you wanna get real wild and freak out ALL the squares, just let a lady rub her own junk. She can do her own reach around. In fact give her a vibrator...but don't make the dude be all weird about as if the vibrator is taking his place or something (I'm talking to you creators of Love the TV show).
  • You know what, get really wild and show us a threesome with one dude fucking the lady and the other eating her out with his mouth right on her clit (and daaaaaangerously close to another dude's dick). A lady could come like that, I tell ya.
  • Or, let's keep it a bit more wholesome, and lighten up on all the dirty fornication altogether. Let's see a pair of teen lovers doing what red-blooded American teen lovers should be doing - mutually masturbating their own clit and/or penis to orgasm. It's pregnancy free and disease free, and downright tasteful compared to a threesome.
  • Here's another idea. No biggie. How about we put Taye Diggs in How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Brad Pitt in Thelma and Louise, D'Angelo in the How Does It Feel video,  Channing Tatum's body dancing to Pony, and peak Zac Efron in a big naked, writhing, hard pile of man, next to a watching lady, getting fanned by hot yet unknown male models and being fed Ben and Jerry's Coffee Coffee Buzz Buzz Buzz ice cream while she leisurely masturbates. That could be a scene. I'm not saying I could be that actress, but I could be that actress. 

Enjoy D'Angelo.

*The Case of the Female Orgasm: Bias in the Study of Evolution by Elisabeth Lloyd is an impeccably researched book that begins with compiling loads of surveys about women's ability to orgasm through intercourse. It's the best overall resource I could suggest on the topic.


Sex And The City S1 E3-7: A Retro SSL Review

My new little segment is back for a another round (Here's the others). It's a modified, lazy version of an SSL Review. It's just me transcribing my notes, page by page, on all of the Sex and the City episodes. I watched them all - not necessarily in order - during 2007 and 2008, and I took notes on the depiction/discussion of female orgasm and female masturbation. It was my early attempt at this type of lady-gasm review stuff. Anyway, I never actually created reviews from these notes, but since they exist, I'd like to get them out there on the interwebs before they get burned in a house fire or something...thus this series.

Ramona and my SATC Notes

Anyway, the fun of this will be that I will transcribe these as word for word as I can while still trying to make it be a sensible read. I'll post a pick of the notes for your reference. I'll do one or more episodes at a time - from the beginning of the notebook to the end. I may add notes for clarification or add my SSL-Review-style comments.

Hopefully the notes I took privately 10 years ago won't make me look like a dumb asshole. I will add them in the TV SSL Review Master List  (of course you are also welcome to check out the Movie SSL Review Master List as well). Here we go.

Sex and the City Season 1 Episodes 3 - 7

Season 1 Ep 3

Season 1 Ep 4 
-Sam talking about all the positions - she got fucked in - they were obviously totally orgasmic for her.
-Sam tells Charlotte back door with the right guy and right lubricant is wonderful
-Carrie gets off top of him and says it was great then V.O. says "then when I thought it couldn't get any better, he spooned me." {in the margin next to this I wrote: intercourse was good but cuddling is better}

Season 1 Ep 5
- Woman tells Carrie her man has tiny penis but knows just how to use it
-Sam says: money is power, sex is power - just an exchange of power
- Miranda says, 'don't listen to the dime store Camille Paglia'
-sex for money - Carrie said would bring down her morals

Season 1 Ep 6

Season 1 Ep 7
-Charlotte doesn't like to give head
-oral sex  - Miranda said oral sex is god's gift to women - but then Sam said cock-sucking is power --- so confused 2 types of oral sex
-Then Miranda and Sam both said they only give oral sex to get it.

My Thoughts
I must have been tired or bored when I was watching these because they are even less clear about what was happening in the episodes than normal. Also, though, there wasn't really anything in these episodes that I consider SSL Reviewable these days. There was technically no discussion or depiction of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. It's more just female sexuality related comments that are not eligible for review that I wrote down.

At the time I was taking notes for these, though, I was still writing the movie and I wasn't quite as focused in my point of view as I am now. Plus, I was just writing down things that were kinda interesting to me - like Miranda calling Samantha a dime store Camille Paglia. I kinda liked that because I had recently learned about and read some Camille Paglia and her sort of patriarchy infused brand of feminism.

I thought it a good burn by Miranda. I thought, and still do, that the archetype that the Samantha character inhabits of an uber sexual woman, but specifically ubersexual in the way that is incredibly pleasing and deeply in line with male orgasm, desire, and fantasy is, well, not that progressive, and also straight up fraudulent in its depiction of what actually is physically orgasmic to women. I mean, how many times in this show does Samantha get her brains fucked out (i.e. getting her vaginal canal stimulated by a ramming penis) and orgasms without ever even having anything close to stimulation on her clitoral glans area? A lot -that's how many, and it's BS. That's simply not a sensible or realistic way to depict women coming.

Even though it is depicted like that all the time, it's still BS, and Samantha is, as Miranda insinuated, a sort of hallow, patriarchy infused, brand of sexual feminism. Her character is aligned less to actual reality of the female body/sexuality/orgasm, and more to pretending that sexiness and the acts of exuberantly engaging in penis-focused sex cause orgasm in females. This archetype that Samantha inhabits is no a progressive, sexually liberated woman. That idea of her is largely false, and the uber sexual Samantha archetype, that talks above about how great and presumably orgasmic all the different intercourse positions she's done are, is just a trick that we ladies are always falling for.

I do, however, like Miranda talking about how lovely oral sex is. I mean, that's a mouth on the clit, and that actually could be(and often is, amiright?) orgasmic for a women, and I'll also give Samantha some props for enjoying it enough to admit she only gives in order to get that sweet, sweet, oral. Samantha get's it right sometimes.



Superstar - The SSL Review

Okay - I'm just going to admit that my posting-every-3-to-4-days schedule that I had kept the last couple years is not something I'm gonna keep up with at the moment. I'll get back there, but I'm just going to be completely honest and say I'm going for a once a week situation for a while until things with my move and new job and all the stuff that goes with that get more settled.

So that's that. Now, I'm here to write a post, and that post is an SSL Review of none other than Superstar starring Molly Shannon as Mary Katherine Gallagher. I was staying at my sister's house last night while we were on a quick visit back to Indy. After much too long of searching through streaming media services (because that shit always takes way too goddamn long), we settled on watching this classic, and I might even say actually quite funny, 90's SNL flick. My teen niblings (this is a real word for nieces and nephews - look it up)  hadn't seen it before or hadn't even ever seen Mary Katherine Gallagher smell the sweat under her own armpits. They liked it too.

Seriously, I remember thinking this movie was pretty hilarious back in the day, and although it had largely horrible reviews, I say fuck those reviews - I was pleasantly surprised at how dumb and funny I still found it. It's a solid watch, and -bonus- there was one tiny little line in it that made it SSL Reviewable, so all the better for me.

An SSL Review, for those that need a little refresher is a review specifically of any discussion or depiction of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I critique the realism of the depiction/discussion and also write about what the depiction/discussion says about our cultural understanding of female sexuality and orgasm as well as what the depiction/discussion adds to our cultural knowledge on those subjects. I try my best to just stick specifically to those SSL Reviewable moments and often don't talk much about the quality of the rest of the movie...unless I want to talk about it. See all the other movie SSL Reviews HERE and the TV SSL Reviews HERE.

The line was small, but I thought a telling one and worth a review. Enjoy.

Buttons, Holes, and Poles: the line in question
It's not easy to explain exactly what was going on in the plot, but here's a quick summary to get you into the feel of the movie. The Catholic high school that Mary Katherine Gallagher attends is hosting a "Let's Fight Venereal Disease Talent Contest" sponsored by a Catholic magazine, and the top prize is a chance to be an extra in a Hollywood movie with positive moral values. Mary Katherine Gallagher wants to be a SUPERSTAR, so she enters the contest and hilarity ensues.

That's the background that you actually don't really need. So anyway, at one point the Priest/principal of the school says to a student in relation to the venereal disease theme of the talent contest:

"Girls have a button, boys have a pole, and wicked touching takes its toll."

Here's the deal. Pole does not rhyme with button. It rhymes with hole. The writers could have used hole to equate with boys' poles, but they didn't. They, quite correctly, used button. Button insinuates clit and hole, well, insinuates vaginal opening.

Let me be clear. Penises are the male pleasure organ in the same way the clitoral glans (the lady-button) is the female pleasure organ. Lady-holes are not the female pleasure organ.

The father was wise and correct in his comparison even though it is way more common, I believe, to hear people equating the penis in boys to the vagina (as in the hole) in females. That's a bullshit comparison because the vagina, contrary to popular belief, is not a thing like the penis that can be stimulated into orgasm. You might think it would be because we so often see women depicted as orgasming from penises ramming into their vaginal holes, but that's just some myth. In fact in all of scientific literature, stimulating the vaginal canal has never been physically shown to cause orgasm in a woman. It just hasn't.

But stimulating the button or the pole sure the fuck has - numerous times.

So, my point here is that I feel like there was a conscious decision by someone in the writer room to say button instead of hole as a way to sort of give props to the button, and I think that's important because the button does not get near enough props. It's sadly and stupidly always being seen as second pleasure fiddle to the hole even though it is so clearly not just the first fiddle but really the only fiddle game in town (if we're talking about orgasms). I know that's a lot of metaphor, but I think you get my drift.

THE BUTTON, NOT THE HOLE, IS EQUIVALENT TO THE POLE, and the more we hear that out loud, the more likely it will sink into our cultural brain that lady-gasms come from clit stimulation and not poundings.

Satan Ain't No Chump
I have an honorary SSL Reviewable scene too. One of the weirdo gals in Mary Katherine Gallagher's class likes to act like she is kind of possessed by Satan, himself. She brings Satan up a lot, but she's cool though. Anyway, at the end of the movie we see random couples getting together and kissing in that end of the movie sort of way. When it cuts to her, though, she starts pushing her dude's head down out of frame like she's telling him to eat her out.
I just like it because I like anything that insinuates women like to do sex stuff other than getting banged...but especially getting eaten out - because a tongue on one's clit is, well, it's a lovely thing and we should be reminding everyone of that more.

The Vulva Rating
So, I might be wrong that the choice of button instead of hole was a conscious love-the-clit choice, but even if it wasn't, it still said button and not hole. That in and of itself is a little victory for the lady-gasm given that the clitoral glans - the literal thing that causes female orgasm - is so often ignored in our sexual discussions yet the hole where penises go in, babies come out, and orgasms don't seem to be stimulated from - is constantly being brought up.

Obviously, I also LOVE seeing a girl depicted as desiring oral sex given that clit licking is a viable way to actually orgasm.

These were small choices. They weren't over-the-top orgasm equality progressive, but they were small wins towards orgasm equality.

I give Superstar a 4 out of 5 vulva rating.



Cheech and Chong's Up In Smoke: A Retro SSL Review

This was originally posted August 27th 2014. I'm reposting it because I'm back in Indianapolis from Des Moines  for the weekend working on a dance video shoot, and we just ate at our favorite Waffle House, here. It's Waffle House #420, which is obviously the best Waffle House number you could possibly be....and we're lucky enough to have it right here in Indy. So, I thought that in itself was enough of a reason to repost my Up In Smoke SSL Review. Enjoy, and do visit Waffle House #420 if you ever come to Indianapolis. It's the best.

So, just since I watched Felix the Cat, Netflix suggested I watch Up in Smoke, and I thought why not? I'd never seen it. Cheech and Chong. It's a classic, right? It was kinda funny. It would probably be a lot funnier if it was 35 years ago, ya know? Things lose their bite with age and imitation.

However, it just so happened that the person I found most amusing in the movie was also the one involved in the SSL Review eligible moment. Of course, a movie must depict or discuss female orgasm or masturbation in order to even get an SSL Review (the most coveted of all reviews!), but this one is a little interesting, because it is a completely fake orgasm, and I don't mean it was a woman faking an orgasm during a sex act. It is a woman named Jade (played by Zane Buzby) telling a story of this other woman having sex. Basically, she's giving a vivid account of this woman's ridiculously over-exuberant orgasm noises that go on through the whole sex act, and it's clear that Jade sees it and the woman doing it as silly and annoying. So, I think it's actually pretty right on, because it kinda calls out the incredibly unrealistic porny perma-gasms that are so common in our sexual media. Although my assessment of this lady-gasm depiction is actually a little more complicated, and I'll get into that later. For now, let me set up the scene.

This is the Up in Smoke orgasm scene...before Cheech wakes with a cramp

Jade is supposed to be this like ditzy, free-spirit that is just constantly talking. She's also a drug aficionado and has a case with all these pills and shit in it that she uses and gives to other people. The movie will just cut to her, and she'll be in the middle of telling someone some story that sounds crazy as hell. That's how we get to the orgasm scene, actually. Chong and another girl are sleeping in a van made of pot next to a line of people waiting for a concert. Jade is just calmly sitting there in the van brushing her hair and telling this story to 2 sleeping people. Even when the story gets all heated, it never stops just being a story to her. It's very matter of fact. She's still just brushing her hair and not really caring who's listening. Here's my by-ear transcript of her story. I had to pause and rewind a lot to get this, so at least read it and make it worth my while.

She was like nuts. You could always tell if she was in the hotel Bono(?not sure if that's the right word?) man ya know. Like everyone'd be dozin off and all the sudden she'd start up. First you'd hear it, it'd start up like ya know, ahhh, ahhh (real gentle and slow) but then she'd like really get goin' and she'd be more like ya know uh uh uh (a little rougher sounding) ya know and she'd start going like a motor boat, ya know fuu-uu-uuu-uuck me Alex. His name was Alex. Ya know, Fuu-uuu-uu-uuuck meeeee. fu-uuu-uuck mee-eee-ee fuck me Alex (loud and staccato reapeated about 4 or 5 more time) 
Then Chong wakes up. He has a cramp, and says so out loud. He starts grunting and stuff and moving around erratically in the van trying to work out his cramp. The van, my friends, is a-rockin' and the woman is still just chillin', brushing her hair and telling this story. She's getting louder and wilder sounding though.
yeah, yeah oh, yeah, oh yeah (repeated many times). But she's like this - she'd do this...oh yeah, oh yeah (repeated many times and then winds it down like she's finished up an amazing orgasm)...and then she'd have like 2 tears runnin' down her face...
At that point, Chong's cramp subsides, and he gets out of the van. All the people in the line cheer like wild.

So the complication I mentioned with my assessment is that during Jade's story, people outside the van begin to hear what's going on and think that some crazy wild, highly orgasmic sex is going on. They cheer Chong when he comes out, so this whole joke is done with the understanding that the fake sounds Jade is making (as a way to make fun of another woman's craziness) are still taken as real and as an indication to the crowd outside of what a bad-ass lover the dude inside the van must be. So, it's complicated. Does the crowd's misunderstanding of the situation point out to the audience how ridiculous it is that these over-exaggerated orgasm shows seen in things like porn are taken so seriously? Or does it just add one more instance of an exaggerated porn-gasm for audiences to un-critically take in as possible way women might orgasm. It's probably the latter, but I don't feel I can hold Up in Smoke to that too harshly. In the end, it was just a joke, and it was at least partially based on making fun of the porn-gasm.

I'll give Up in Smoke a very wishy-washy 3 vulva rating.



Lady Bird: The SSL Review

If you haven't checked this movie out, I recommend it. First, it's directed and written by a woman - so that in itself to me is worth supporting, but it also feels like it was directed and written by a woman. I think we need more of that feel in the movie landscape. Second, it's just a solid coming of age movie. To me, it's an incredibly well done movie in this genre. Thirdly, it's SSL approved...which means I think what it puts out into the world regarding lady-gasms, lady-bation, and female sexuality is positive and helping to work towards orgasm equality, but you'll see more about that in the SSL Review.

For those of you new to SSL Reviews: They are a critique of depictions or discussions of female masturbation, female orgasm, or the clit. I only review scenes that include those things - not the movie as a whole (unless I feel like talking about more), and I focus mostly on the realism of the depiction/discussion and also how it fits into a larger cultural discussion of female orgasm and sexuality.

Check all the SSL Review movies HERE and TV SSL Reviews HERE.

Now let's get into it. I'm going to describe all the scenes first and then give you my thoughts on them all together.

Eating hosts and talking water-bation
The first SSL Review eligible scene was with Lady Bird and her BFF Julie. They are seniors at a Catholic high school, and somehow they are in the area where the hosts are stored. They are laying next to each other on their backs with their legs up against the wall, and they're eating hosts. For those not raised Catholic, that's the, ya know, body of christ, and it's pretty sacrilegious. Anyway, it cuts into the following conversation.

Still from Lady Bird (2017)

Lady Bird:
...in the tub I scoot myself under, just like now, like this, and the the water just...whoop. (she motions the water falling down onto her crotch area)Julie and Lady Bird together: Schwoop! (They are both laughing and moving their hands the same way Lady Bird just did)
Julie: (still laughing) You're soooo gross.
Lady Bird: I think I figured it out when I was like 3 or something.
Julie: I use...(laughing)...I take the showerhead...
Lady Bird: Oh my God...(laughing)Julie: Embarrassing (still laughing) I use that.
Lady Bird: I don't know if mine is the right kind though. Maybe it's different when you actually have a penis in there. Like it's more intense.
Julie: Mine was pretty intense, I think.
They both laugh, and then the scene ends after they get interrupted.

First Time
This scene is not technically SSL Reviewable because it's just about intercourse - not lady-gasm, clits, or masturbation. However, I'm including it because I think the lack of lady-gasms here is part of the big picture in this movie regarding female sexuality. So, here it is.

Lady Bird is making out with this popular dude that's kinda her boyfriend. She's made out with him before. They're in his bedroom, and she says she's ready to have sex. He's super cazj about it. She's on him cowgirl style. He puts on a condom, and she gets on that D. You can see her struggle through it a bit, like she sorta relaxes herself and takes it slow, and then she starts to move her hips so it's going in and out, and it's just a hot second before he kinda takes his hands off her. She kinda stops after a second and asks if he was done, and he says yeah (again super cazj). Then she gets a nose bleed and deals with that. Then she's all lovey talking about how they deflowered each other and he's all like, "nah, I've had sex with like 6 people." She gets pissed because he said he was a virgin. He's all like, don't be mad, and she says, "I just wanted it to be special." and he says, "Why? You're gonna have so much unspecial sex in your life," She comes back at him with, "I was on top. Who the fuck is on top their first time?"

Girl Talk
Later she's talking to Julie about the sex she had, and says the following.

Lady Bird: People make so much noise in the movies when it happens, but it's really not a big thing. You can totally be quiet during it.
Julie: Was it amazing though?
Lady Bird: I wanted it so badly, but then I found that when it happened...I really like dry humping much more.

They both laugh, and begin talking about something else.

Expectations, The Actual, and Dry-Humping-Is-Better: My Thoughts
There are a few things I love about what Lady Bird insinuates about female orgasm and what it puts out in the world about female sexuality. I'll list them for you.

Girls masturbate. I mean girls do masturbate. It happens all the time all over the world, and as a culture, we're getting a touch better at acknowledging, accepting, and normalizing that, but it's still way, way behind how we acknowledge, accept and normalize that for boys. So, every time we get a chance to see girls in pop media that masturbate, and better yet, admit to masturbating with positive/neutral feedback in relation to that admission, we are that much closer to a world where it's almost expected that girls explore their own genitals and their own orgasms the same as it's pretty much expected for boys. And, we want a world like that, because girls who masturbate are girls who have a knowledgeable relationship to their orgasms, and they become women who have a fighting chance of finding ways to incorporate their own desire, fantasy and orgasm into their sexual relationships...and everyone benefits from that on so many levels.

The female reality of sexual expectations breaking apart when we encounter the actual. This is where Lady Bird's sexual story as a whole comes together, and I think it really captures the thing we really just don't want to admit - intercourse is kinda BS for lady-gasms and it's often a let-down. Intercourse is great for guys to get off, but not gals. Males orgasm from things encompassing their penises and moving around. Female have never ever, in all of scientific literature, been shown to have a physically verified orgasm from a something stimulating the inside of the vagina. So, uh, intercourse sucks for female orgasm and is super awesome for male orgasm. Yet, for some godforsaken reason, the whole world insinuates (and sometimes downright tells girls and women) that intercourse is going to be this amazing thing that is special and orgasmic and, I don't know, full of fireworks and rainbows and the universe or something. I mean it can be nice, and can be hot, and can be amazing in a way, and can even be orgasmic if you actually included clitoral glans stimulation during it, but the reality is for females it's not always even a little nice, it can hurt, it is often not hot at all- especially if there's not clit stimulation to keep up the arousal, and most women and men have no idea that orgasms come not from the vaginal canal, but from the clitoral glans...so it's not usually orgasmic either.

Whether we realize it or not, I believe all females who become sexually active with a partner (but especially a male partner) get smacked hard with the realization that their expectations about intercourse do not match reality. I think everyone integrates that new reality into their understanding of themselves and sex and orgasm differently, whether it be to adjust expectations, to assume you are broken or bad at sex, to just force into your brain the idea that whatever is happening during sex must be the amazingness it's supposed to be, or maybe for a few lucky ones to realize you need to get your clit involved to come and to begin demanding it. No matter what, though, I think the clash of reality vs. expectations is inevitable, and I love the Lady Bird does indeed encounter this....and you know what? She decides that dry humping is more enjoyable. Why? Well I imagine because her clit is getting rubbed against during the dry humping and only her vaginal canal was getting love during the intercourse. We need more dry humping (which can be orgasmic for all) in the world and less intercourse (which is mostly only orgasmic for males). Just saying.

The subtle poo-pooing of thinking that there are 2 orgasms and the one with a penis inside you is better somehow. Lady Bird masturbates. Obviously I love that for the reasons above. She orgasms, it's insinuated, but she expresses fear to her friend that it's not the "right kind." It's such utter bullshit that people are brainwashed into thinking there are different types of orgasms for women, and that the one involved with intercourse is the better of them, but the truth is we are brainwashed in that way, and her saying that is all too real of a fear that so many women and girls have. There is no 'vaginal orgasm' or g-spot orgasm or uterine or cervical or inner clitoral leg orgasm. People talk like there is, but there is no actual proof they exist. There is only orgasm, and there is no physical proof that this orgasm can ever occur from stimulating the inside of the vagina. The idea that women can get boned or finger fucked to orgasm is just, well myth, to be quite blunt. Female ejaculation can occur, it seems from a specific stimulation inside the vagina, but that is not an orgasm and it usually involvles liquid coming from the urethra. It is physically something completely different. The truth, that no one wants to believe, is that women orgasm from clitoral glans stimulation the same that men orgasm from penile stimulation.

So, I love that Lady Bird expresses that fear because it's so very real. I love even more, though, that Julie says, "Mine was pretty intense, I think." Because, by god, it probably was. It was an orgasm. It wasn't a lesser, outer orgasm. It was an orgasm, and she trusted her actual experience of it being pretty awesome in the way orgasms are awesome, and didn't worry too much that the whole world is (incredibly inaccurately) telling her she needs something inside her to give her a really intense one. To me that scene was responsible in that it noted the reality of how insecure women feel about their orgasm, but didn't validate it. It countered it a bit with Julie's confident and self-aware response.

The physical description of the masturbation was realistic. Of course not everyone masturbates with running water, but some people do (2% according to the surveys in the 1976 book The Hite Report by Shere Hite), and it's clearly a way that could work. I mean, running water gives pressure and stimulation, and if it's right against the clitoral glans area, of course it could cause enough jostling to stimulate an orgasm. Why not? So, the realism of the physical description/depiction of masturbation to orgasms is realistic enough to get my SSL stamp of approval.

Vulva Rating
This movie had a realistic female perspective of masturbation and orgasm - which at times depicted the sadly inaccurate fears and worries forced upon women and girls. However, it never just let the BS set out there unchecked. Yeah, Lady Bird had ideas and worries about another 'better' orgasm that happened during intercourse, and yeah, she and Julie had deeply held ideas about how amazing intercourse was supposed to be, and those are accurate reflections of how a real woman in her position might be thinking. However, the movie didn't reinforce these by ending with these characters we like still just living contently in those myths, it kind of shattered them or at least poked holes in them before the audience said goodbye. I respect that. It's responsible movie-making if you ask me.

So, because of the reality of female perspective, the normalizing of physically realistic female masturbation and of openly admitting to it, and the lovely depiction of the journey a woman/girl takes from believing myths of sexual intercourse to experiencing the reality of it, gives this movie a progressive and realistic statement about female orgasm, female masturbation, and female sexuality.

I give it 5 out of 5 vulvas.