Don't Trust the B in Apt 23 S1: The SSL Review

Don't Trust The B---- In Apartment 23
I started watching this. I think my brother in law (husband's brother) told me to watch this and then I think my sister did too (my actual sister that used to be super mean to me when she was a teenager but is pretty awesome now and gives me good ideas for TV to watch). Anyway, I got 2 recommendations and plus it was sitting up front on my Netflix home page, so I went for it. Charlie's had several trips in the last couple months, and I cannot watch a lot of my fave shows without him in good faith, so I've been running through a variety of sitcoms that Charlie would probably also like, but since I started them on my own, we're not technically bound to watch them together via the universal laws of steaming TV watching. I actually watched the whole first season in one night...which to be fair is not that impressive because there is only 10 episodes in the first season and that just comes out to like a really, really long movie if you think about it.

Turns out I found 2 SSL Reviewable moment in the first season, but strangely it looks like the Season-Episode configuration on Netflix is different than the original airing of the show. There were only 7 episodes aired in the original 2011-2012 season, but Netflix has 10 episodes in the first season. They're kinda switched around. Why they gotta confuse me like that? Anyway, I'm going with the Netflix episode configuration because I feel like it.  Anyway, one is in the 1st episode and the other is in the 8th, but they are connected...and they are both about tub masturbation.

SSL Reviews
As my oh so loyal readers know, an SSL Review is a critique that focuses solely on depictions or discussions of female orgasm or masturbation. Nothing else really matters as far as my critiquing goes, and so if it doesn't have those types of discussions/depictions, I don't SSL Review. Regular ol' no-ladygasm-included depictions of sex don't count.

In an SSL Review I focus on how realistic the scenes are (don't try and act like a woman's gonna come from a couple strokes of penis in vagina with no extra clit stimulation. I will slice your throat...or write a scathing SSL Review). I also like to discuss what I think those depiction or discussion add to the larger conversation about female orgasm or female sexuality.

Feel free to check more SSL Reviews for TV Shows and also for Movies.

So here we go.

S1 Ep1 (Pilot) Rub-a-dub-dub
To orient you, June is a sweet, optimistic character from Indiana (that's my state, ya'll - the one used often in movies and TV as a producer of naive, overly friendly, Midwestern-esque characters!) who just moved to New York and in with new room mate Chloe.  Chloe is a scheming, abrasive New York party girl that is trying to pull a hard con on her new room mate June.

June is in the tub, bubble-bathing it, and Chloe busts in.
Chloe: Hey how'd the job hunt go?
June: Uh I'd kind of like to be alone.
Chloe: Oh sorry were you masturbating?
June: What? No!
Chloe: Don't worry I get it. I have a long standing sexual history with that tub. I'm like Jessica Tandy and that tub's Hume Cronyn. Don't mind me. Get your Cronyn on.

June seems absolutely horrified. Later Chloe comes back to the apartment with James Van Der Beek (Dawson from Dawson's Creek and her BFF) and introduces June to James.
James Van Der Beek: I heard all about you June. So you like to rub-a-dub-dub in the tub?
June: (again horrified) What. No. Wait. Did she...She said that? Did she tell you that?

The story goes on from there, and we don't revisit that anymore in this episode, but we kinda do in episode 8. And she really wasn't masturbating. Chloe was just being a bitch.

S1 E8 (It's just Sex...) Busting into the Bathroom Again
Let's set the scene. June just spring cleaned the apartment. She's feeling good and Chloe has left on a plane to Europe. She gets in the tub with some music and bubbles. It's relaxing. It cuts to a memory of a really clean cut, fit blonde guy who was clearly waiting in line at the coffee shop where she works at some point. It cuts from her remembering him to her face in the tub. She has her eyes closed. She's relaxed and looking pleased. At one point she smiles and looks kinds dreamy. There are bubbles up to her pits, and we don't actually see her shoulders moving, but we kinda hear some flickering in the water. It's not crazy obvious since this is a network TV show, but it's still pretty obvious that she's masturbating (like we could easily assume she's gently moving her hand around in the general clit/vulva area). Then Chloe busts into the bathroom
Chloe: I missed my plane
She stops, and it cuts back and forth between June looking increasingly horrified and Chloe who slowly realizes what is happening. We see Chloe's expression change from suspicious to interested to knowing to incredibly proud.
June: (still horrified)  No. I wasn't!
Chloe: This must be how moms feel on the first day of kindergarten. Stand up and give me a hug!"
June: (shakes her head no in continued horror) 
It moves to the next scene. They are in the kitchen.
Chloe: (eating a corndog) Corndog, horndog?"
They talk for a minute with June asking Chloe why she's even here. Chloe explains how she missed the plane and then says,
Chloe: My little girl, learning to play the lady harp!
June:(huffs off)Chloe: So who was it? Who were you strumming to?
June: Nope. Nobody. Nobody..........Soy latte guy comes in every day and orders a soy latte, and I can see his abs through his t-shirt!
Then Chloe tries to get June to have casual sex. She actually does end up having causal sex with the soy latte guy, but then gets stuck in a relationship that Chloe gets her out of. In the end, June and soy latte guy part amicably, and say the following as they part
SLG: I'll still come in for my soy lattes.
June: And I'll see you in the tub!

My Thoughts 
So, in the first episode Chloe is actually trying to annoy June so much that she moves out of the apartment, and so the busting into the bathroom and accusing her of masturbating was obviously part of that. June was not masturbating, and so her indignation at the accusation could just be that. It could also be because, particularly for a woman, the idea that you masturbate is still pretty embarrassing. I think that is definitely also part of June's horror and indignation because June's character is supposed to be one of innocence and traditional values to contrast against Chloe's wild lack of morals. Chloe, however, unabashedly admits to masturbating in this scene.

So, to me, I think there are two ways of seeing what this scene adds to the cultural discussion of female masturbation.

One (the positive view): it's a discussion, which in and of itself acknowledges that women masturbate, and that's needed in pop culture. Men get to see the recognition that other men masturbate in TV and movies all the time, but it's much less common to see that for women, so anything to start putting lady-bation in scripts as much as boy-bation is good in my book.

Two (the negative view): June's horror about someone accusing her of masturbating paired with her every-girl, nice-normal-person character makes it seem like it really is horrifying to think of a normal girl masturbating. Chloe admitting to it only reiterates that point because she's not like June. She's supposed to be a bad whorey bitch of a woman who would freely admit to something as horrifying as masturbating. So, in a way, maybe this scene just reinforces the dichotomy of female sexuality...good girls are appropriately sexual within a loving relationship and bad girls are whores that masturbate and have casual sex.

I think there is an element in this scene of both these, but I think overall it's more One than Two. Particularly if we take a longer view of this series and incorporate the sorta follow-up scenes in episode 8 there is more of a positive every-woman-does-it vibe going about masturbation, and I like that.

In the later scene, we find that June does actually masturbate. Chloe, when she learns this, sorta acts as if it's a brand new thing for June, but it likely isn't. June's words at the end admits pretty clearly that she'll be masturbating to the fantasy of Soy Latte Guy in future tub visits.  I think June and masturbation are put into a different context than they were in the first scene. Before, it seemed as though she maybe didn't masturbate and was horrified at the thought of it, which kinda made sense with her personality that she wouldn't masturbate. She just wasn't that type of girl. However, in this second scene, she doesn't really lose the horror at someone thinking she masturbated. Her personality didn't really change. She's still a naive, nice, Midwestern girl that doesn't really like casual sex, but now we know even girls like her masturbate, and I think that helps send the message out into the world that just like men, it's safe and sensible to assume most women masturbate. That is good for normalizing female masturbation - which is good for orgasm equality, my friends.

As far as critiquing how realistic the physical things happening during the masturbation were -  well, it seemed sensible enough. She didn't get to the point of orgasming, so what she was physically doing didn't really need to be something that could sensibly cause orgasm. She was just starting, so she just needed to be doing something that would be arousing. Like I said above, we couldn't really see her arm moving, but it didn't seem like she was doing any pornified masturbation tropes like ramming things up he vag. It just seemed that there was gentle movement somewhere down there, so I'll assume she was rubbing her hand against her vulva/clit area, and that's very realistic for both getting aroused and even getting to orgasm eventually. So all good on the physical realism.

Vulva Rating
There was some ambiguity to me about if the first scene by itself more positively or negatively affected the cultural discussion of female masturbation and female sexuality. However, paired with the 2nd scene, I think it tipped the scales to the positive. I like that with what little indications there was of the physical things happening, it could be interpreted as realistic masturbation. I also like that it insinuated that even good, naive girls that don't want people to know about it, still masturbate. I think overall, it helps normalize the idea of women touching their own genitals and bringing themselves to orgasm. I'm giving this a 4 out of 5 vulva rating


The Americans Season 4: The SSL Review

The Americans Season 4
As I've said before, I LOVE the Americans, and I'm about to watch Season 5 finally, so I thought I should finally SSL Review Season 4. There were 2 SSL Reviewable scenes in this season and both included a woman coming during intercourse in missionary style. One is slightly more realistic in my opinion, but we'll get to that.

As you know, only depiction or discussion of female orgasm and/or female masturbation and/or the clit are eligible for SSL Review. Nothing else counts, including plain 'ol sex if it doesn't include anything listed above. I specifically critique the realism (for instance, were the physical things happening to that women while she orgasmed things that could realistically cause orgasm for a woman?) and also speak on what the depiction/discussion reflects from and adds to the larger cultural discussion around lady-gasms and female sexuality.

You can see all the SSL TV Reviews HERE (and as always you can find all the movie SSL Reviews HERE).

S4 Episode 5: Solid Missionary Depiction 

In this scene the main characters, Philip and Elizabeth, have sex in bed. They are in a missionary-ish position when the lady-gasm occurs. It's shot mostly from bed level looking towards their bodies from the top of their heads (see the last 30 seconds in the clip below), but we can't really see anything but their heads and upper chests because they are tightly pressed together and their bodies block their torsos, hips and legs from view.

So, I can't really say what was happening in the pelvic region at the time she orgasms. Clearly they were meant to be having intercourse, and as you know intercourse alone would not realistically cause a woman to orgasm given that there is no physical evidence in scientific literature showing that stimulation inside the vagina without additional external clitoral stimulation has ever caused orgasm.

However, it is completely possible for a woman to have an orgasm during intercourse if she is able to get enough stimulation on her clitoral/vulva area. Obviously that can be done with hands or vibrator placed down there, but it can also be done if she is able to grind against her partner or the bedding or what-have-you in such a way that the ol' clit gets enough stimulation to take her over the edge. I don't accept this grinding possibility is happening in sex scenes unless I see active bodily movement from the woman and feel there are body parts or bedding continuously (and that doesn't mean intermittently during banging situations) pressed up against the vulva area during the intercourse. Only then will I accept it's possible that the woman is getting consistent enough pressure and stimulation to realistically orgasm.

So, that's what I need to see in order to entertain the possibility that the fictional woman's orgasm is depicted in a realistic way: consistent pressure against clit/vulva area and active bodily movement from the woman. I think it's a fair assessment. I mean, if I saw a depiction of a dude that came from a woman moving her head back and forth in front of his penis, only touching the tip with her lips intermittently each time her head ended up back at the penis, then I would say that was pretty silly. Maybe if he was crazy horny it could happen as a fluke, but just like a dude banging a woman and maybe having his body intermittently pushing up against her vulva/clit during each thrust, it's just not likely, people. Females need consistent clit stim and males need consistent penile stimulation. It's simple really.

Anyway, this scene hit the mark. Like I said, I couldn't see their lower bodies, but judging from their upper bodies, they were pressed together pretty tightly and consistently, so that satisfies one of my conditions. The other condition gets a check mark too because Elizabeth was grabbing his body and moving her core kinda desperately, and to me, even though I couldn't see the lower parts, it was enough to assume she very easily could be grinding like a motha fucker against him. I love that because it's realistic enough, but I also just like seeing women's bodies actively moving during sex. We are often depicted not moving at all while a dude bangs into us, and that sucks because we need depictions that help model actual ways women might orgasm during intercourse, and laying still ain't one of them.

S4 Episode 9: Loud Come
So this is another missionary sex scene where the woman orgasms, but this just isn't as good a depiction as the one above. It's two Russians, Oleg and Tatiana, but I sometimes call them Russian Pete Campbell (because his personality kinda reminds us of Pete Campbell on Mad Men) and Russian Miranda July (because she looks the tiniest bit like Miranda July). She's super loud and vocal about it because it's a thing with them. He's rich and lived in homes with walls thick enough to be loud during sex in his youth, and she was poor and had paper thin walls in her apartments. Now, she's in a place with sensibly thick walls. So, she's specifically loud. It's cool. I get it. it makes sense, and it's not a fake porny depiction.

Other than that, it's just basic intercourse sex. He was close down on her, which is good, so her vulva/clit area may be getting consistently pressed upon, but she doesn't seem to be moving her body much, and so I don't buy that there would really be a sufficient amount of appropriate clit stimulation there if she's not actively making that happen with her own body. Really, it just looks like every other sex scene you'll ever see. He fucks her...she comes...and we are left to assume that intercourse in and of itself is as orgasmic for females as it is for males...and that's just not true. Her coming in that situation is simply not that realistic, but it's also super status quo, so it's not super egregious.

Oleg and Tatiana

The Vulva Rating
I liked the depiction of the Philip-Elizabeth orgasm because their bodies were such that she could have been consistently pressed up against him and grinding the whole time, and that could realistically get a woman her orgasm. The Tatiana-Oleg one was a bit too status quo though. I'll give this season a mixed review of 3 1/2 vulvas.



Sex and the City S3 Ep7-9: A Retro SSL Review

My newish little segment is back for a 6th 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.

Hopefully these 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.

SATC Notes S3 E7-9

Season 3 Ep 7
-Miranda had orgasm (it seemed) being fucked missionary lying motionless

-Sam met guy who took Viagra recreationally, then (there was a) scene of her fucking cowgirl style totally orgasmic. [made the impression that his Viagra made it exceedingly good for her].

-Miranda says sex with Steve is no frills but not exciting  - more like a race to have an orgasm.

-Sam is with a guy  + he takes Viagra - she says she must be in for a wild ride. Then she takes one  - she is riding cowgirl style + has craziest most awesome orgasm ever ever ever.

- Sam goes nuts when that guy suggests going without Viagra. She loves them.

Season 3 Ep 8
-1/2 a joint 3 thrusts + finito - Carrie on her first time.

-Samantha missionary - getting pounded on, looks completely bored. He's a pathetic old loser and she slept with him because she felt sorry for herself.

Season 3 Ep 9
-Samantha gives head and spunk tastes horrible

Tina sitting on it while I'm trying to copy it into this blog with Eds looking on
Modern Day Me Comments
First off, Viagra ruins everything (an aside).
This may not be a popular opinion, but dear sweet baby Jesus, this may have been the worst thing for women having sex with old men and drunks since the invention of garlic. I mean all that pounding! So much pounding has happened since that shit was invented. Don't get me wrong. I see the value of it for certain things. I mean, it does help men who were physically having problems with this get and maintain an erection. That's great for the men and sometimes their partners (when the Viagra taking men understand that women orgasm through outer clitoral stimulation and not from their dicks rubbing the inner vagina...and how many people actually understand that, honestly?...). What it does not do, however, is help with actual arousal. So there has to be some arousal from the man or Viagra doesn't work at all, but it's not gonna help get a man to orgasm/ejaculate or to get him to orgasm/ejaculate any faster

First the drunk. He's young and horny and using Viagra for fun because he's so wasted his body won't keep the erection. He ain't never gonna come though. NEVER. He's just gonna keep pounding until he passes out with his hard dick still inside you. It's a nightmare. Before this damn drug, you all would have tried to fuck, but since he couldn't get hard, he might have resorted to eating you out, but sadly, Viagra ruined that tiny miracle of drunk men trying to screw.

Then the old dudes and their poor old wives. You have an old dude who, because he's old and it's normal, doesn't reach orgasm as quickly or get aroused as quickly anymore. Yet, he took a pill and his junk's hard, and so since his junk's hard, he's just gonna keep on pounding and pounding and pounding. He's all excited because he hasn't had a dick this hard in a while, and so he's really trying to pound hard, but then he starts getting all hot and sweaty, and that don't help anyone reach orgasm, and what's left is some poor old woman getting pounded in her poor vagina that probably doesn't get as wet as it used to because she's old and that's also normal. Also, pounding by itself just straight up won't cause orgasm for women, so it's gonna get pretty boring for her anyway, and now he's dripping sweat from his forehead into her eyes, and the whole thing just sucks. That's the commercial they don't show.

I mean, the one joy of growing old for wives of intercourse obsessed men is that they don't have to endure so much pounding as the years go by. Maybe he gets a little less hard than he used to, so the intercourse gets less poundy and more grindy and maybe her poor oft-ignored clit will get a little stimulation against his pelvis during this new grindier intercourse. Maybe he'll take longer to get hard and thus spend more time on manual or oral stimulation. I mean, the beauty of dudes having a harder time getting or keeping erections (if they don't freak out and obsess over themselves) is that there is room for more creativity and focus on their partner's pleasure. This is the secret and underappreciated jewel of hetero couples getting older that Viagra has stolen. Damn shame.

Samantha and the Viagra
So, I just don't like the whole storyline about Samantha having WAY better sex with Viagra. In a healthy no-having-problems-getting-erections man Viagra just serves to keep a dude hard for a long time. He might stay hard between ejaculations or get hard really quick after one. So, it really just helps him fuck more, and that only makes sex super amazing for a woman if we are believing the incorrect yet really popular myth that women vaginally orgasm. There's no physical evidence for that anywhere in scientific literature. It's largely BS, and so is that storyline. In no way did him taking Viagra help her clit get stimulation, so how's it gonna help her orgasm? Her taking Viagra being hot...well, there is placebo effect, which is a kind of real effect. There also might maybe be some evidence that it helps blood flow for some women, but maybe not. Anyway, if she likes it fine, but I don't like the insinuation that a woman taking Viagra will somehow make her orgasm like crazy, because that is absolutely incorrect.

All the Other Stuff
1. Miranda orgasms during intercourse with no additional clitoral stimulation, and she's just lying there still. She's not even trying to grind her clit against his pelvis for stimulation. Bull. Shit. That's some porn inspired nonsense depictions of women coming from nothing but a dick in their hole. Sadly, it's also a super common and seemingly normal way to depict a woman orgasming.

2. Later, Samantha does not come while doing the exact same thing Miranda was doing. Why? Because she doesn't like the guy or the situation, and there is a bad habit in TV and movies of depicting the orgasmic possibilities of intercourse for women based on whether the guy is right or not. Granted, it's 100% true that your state of mind affects your arousal which affects you ability to come, but intercourse by itself without additional clitoral stimulation doesn't cause orgasm in women at all. So, showing that it does when the guy is right is 1. not physically accurate and 2. only reiterates the stupid and wrong stereotype that female orgasm is soooo much more related to emotion than male orgasm. So, puke on that.

3. Neither the bad spunk thing nor the story about Carrie's first time are actually SSL Reviewable because they aren't about lady-gasm, lady-bation, or clits. I was still dialing in exactly how these SSL Reviews would be handled.

4. Clearly, I'm learning the character's names by this point. I didn't call them by their hair color or main personality characteristic.

Eds taking her turn sitting on it, but being kind enough to not block the parts I'm still copying


Crazy Ex Girfriend S1 Ep2: The SSL Review

Crazy Ex Girlfriend 
My sister and my niece are watching this show, and they were all like, "You should watch this," and I was all like, "fine." And then I realized that this was the show created by/starring Rachel Bloom, a woman that gave a bad-ass Orgasm Equality, Cliterific rant on Twitter earlier this year. She's on the ol' Orgasm Equality Allies list, people. So, when I realized this, I actually for real decided to watch because I hoped there could be some stellar SSL Reviews.

I'm only on episode 4, so I don't have much yet. However, there has been 1 SSL Reviewable moments so far, and it will be getting a positive review. So, for a reminder, SSL Reviews only involve depiction or discussion of female orgasm and/or masturbation and/or the clit. I critique the realism (for instance, were the physical things happening to that women while she orgasmed things that could realistically cause orgasm for a woman? Did she come from getting her neck licked? - 'cause that's dumb and I will call BS) and also speak on what the depiction/discussion reflects from and adds to the larger cultural discussion around lady-gasms and female sexuality.

You can see all the SSL TV Reviews HERE (and as always you can find all the movie SSL Reviews HERE).

Season 1 Ep2: Orgasming Instantly
So, first off, it's important to know that this show is a full-on musical. The characters are always dropping into song, and they're all generally made for laughs as well as made to move the plot along or reveal inner feelings  - you know musical stuff. It's actually a pretty funny show when it gets going, and I do enjoy a musical, so I'm all in with binging this one.

Anyway, what's happening in this scene is that the main character Rebecca is in a yoga class led by a woman, Valencia, that her crush is dating. Valencia is fit and beautiful and great at yoga. Rebecca is not so great at yoga and also fears that Valencia is like perfection and could never be lived up to. So, during the yoga class, a musical number begins where Valencia is singing about how good at yoga she is, and it continues with her talking about all these other things that make her like a superior girlfriend.

One of the things she says is "I orgasm instantly!"

So that's it, that's the SSL Reviewable moment. The reason I kinda like this is not because it's a like progressive discussion of how women actually orgasm or anything, but because it is a realistic expression of what women fear about the orgasm capabilities of other women.

The song is clearly about all the ridiculous feelings of inferiority Rebecca has in comparing herself to Valencia, and although the song is through Valencia's voice, there's no question the song is really just an expression of Rebecca's insecurities.

Valencia says things like: "I'm so much better than you," "My father didn't leave me," "I do shit with my body that no human should be able to do," and my fave "Anal doesn't hurt at all. Most times I prefer it."

My Take (AKA the SSL Review part)
So, Valencia saying in this song that she orgasms instantly goes nicely with her admission of how much she likes anal. Both of them stem from women worrying that other women are sooooo much better in bed than they are (i.e. other women do and enjoy all the things we believe men love), and that worry, in turn, stems from the fact that our culture has an incorrect and confused understanding of female orgasm.

Let's break this down what I mean about culture's confused and incorrect understanding of orgasm, shall we? (*I do kinda break this down in lots more detail in the movie this blog expands on - Science, Sex and the Ladies - if you want more):
  • Intercourse is THE thing to do for hetero couples. It's expected, normal, accepted, and there is a general sense in our culture that it should be just as orgasmic for women as it is for men. 
  • Buuuuut....Intercourse is actually NOT as orgasmic for women as it is for men...and that's not because of bad technique or something like that. It's because women don't orgasm from stimulation inside the vagina. Seriously - there is absolutely no physical evidence of orgasm from stimulation inside the vagina in scientific literature...none. (ejaculation can happen this way for some, but ejaculation is not the same as orgasm - in men or in women). Women need outer clit/vulva stimulation and men need penile stimulation to orgasm. Only 1 of those things happens necessarily with intercourse. 
  • Not being able to orgasm from intercourse was officially deemed a psychological problem up until the 70's and women still often feel like failures and seek medical help if they cannot do this (and the professional medical community still largely goes about this problem like it is actually a problem instead of a normal thing that makes sense...which is insane. It's like seriously looking for a solution to a person who comes to you saying they have trouble blowing their nose through their ears. It's insane - did I already say that? ) 
  • Women in TV, movies, books, porn, jokes - they all orgasm quickly, and often for way too long than is physically possible, from a little in-out (this is rampant fictitious BS that we are force fed from birth)
  • Sex ed doesn't usually talk about the clit since it has nothing to do with reproduction - only pleasure. In fact our whole culture tends to ignore the clit...or only speak of it as merely one of a woman's many pleasure points, as if the vaginal canal, the nipples, or the back of the neck are as important to orgasm as the clit. People don't pull that shit with penises. We as a culture KNOW males need their penises messed with to orgasm. The outer clitoral glans is as important to female orgasm as penises are to male orgasm, but it's almost never treated that way. #Cliteracy
Okay, so given all that above, it really just makes sense that we women are insecure about how we experience/don't experience orgasm with partners because the reality of women's bodily capabilities rarely match up with the kinds of things we learn and see and talk about in our culture regarding lady-gasms. For instance, oh I don't know, have you EVER seen a woman in TV or a movies that reached down and rubbed her clit to orgasm while she was getting fucked by a man...or even one where the man reached down? How about a woman vibing her clit during intercourse without seeming to bother the male character in that scenario? Probably not, and if you have you can probably count it on 1 finger. Now that's some bull shit because females need outer clitoral stimulation to orgasm, yet people don't get to see women orgasming that way very often except for the occasional depiction of cunnilingus or masturbation (and even those aren't depicted realistically all the time). Realistic ways of reaching orgasm during hetero sexual encounters are rarely modeled for women the way we consistently see them modeled for men.

So, obviously, we ladies (and men too) are confused and misinformed about how exactly a female is supposed to reach orgasm. The expectations on how women should perform (and orgasm) during a sexual encounter are often extreme and more related to what would be easy and enjoyable to the male partner (orgasming instantly during intercourse, for instance?) than to a female's actual bodily abilities for orgasm, and all that makes us ladies scared and uncomfortable and certain that we are the wierd ones. It seems like other women must have an easier, sexier time orgasming in normal sexual situations...otherwise why would that be all we see out there in the world?

So, all that up there is what I hear when Valencia, embodying Rebecca's insecurities about how other women are better in bed, says she "orgasms instantly." That type of insecurity rings true to the female experience for all the terribly misinformed reasons we just talked about. I like seeing that female perspective, and I think seeing a woman on TV with that fear helps to expose its ridiculousness because it starts to uncover for the viewer the reality that other women feel that way too. It starts to reveal that most women feel alone and strange and lesser than these 'other' women who are better at orgasm stuff...and if most other women feel that way, then maybe this idea of 'other' women who are sooo good at having orgasms the way women are supposed to have orgasms - is just a big mythical pile of bull shit. That is what women speaking truths to other women can do.

TheVulva Rating
I definitely like that women-speaking-truths-to-other-women part about this SSL Reviewable moment in Crazy Ex Girlfriend, but it's not like way super progressive or anything. It's a little more like a solid moment of female perspective in the writing that I dug deep into. It's good, but it's not like 5 vulva rating good. So, I give the a 4 vulva rating. Good work, Crazy Ex Girlfriend team!


***So, the Crazy Ex Girlfriend Fan Club @bunch _of_fans were awesome and tweeted me the explicit version of the musical number discussed above. Turns out, the "I orgasm instantly" line was actually written (before censor-proofing) as "I come vaginally." Uh, I love it. That is exactly what I thought the intention of that line was, and it makes it even more bold and awesome. I am tempted to up the rating a 1/2 vulva, but nah - I think this show will have plenty of excellent SSL Reviews in the future! Thanks again for the tip @bunch _of_fans!


Playboy 2006 SSL Review - May

Why I have a stack of decade old Playboys that I'm SSL Reviewing
Long story short I took them from my parents house thinking I would review them for this blog and then didn't actually do that for over 10 years but now want them the hell out of my house because I hate clutter and don't know how I've not thrown them away all these years. Also, I thought I had all 12 months, but some are gone. If you want the longer story, check out the 1st 2006 Playboy SSL Review I did.

SSL Review Basics
An SSL review - as many of you know is a critique ONLY of discussions or depictions of female masturbation and/or female orgasm. I critique the realism and also what the depiction/discussion adds to our culture conversations on the topics of female sexuality and orgasm. I usually do these SSL Reviews for either movies or TV, but magazines are fun from time to time. This SSL Review will be a bit more relaxed and simple than most. I'd like to have a little fun here (but I will still give it a vulva rating).

So, please enjoy the full SSL Review of the Playboy Magazine from March 2006. I will review each SSL Reviewable item starting from the front of the magazine to the back.

 1 Playboy Advisor

Thanks for publishing the question from the woman about having sex while high. I had been struggling with reaching orgasm, but when I smoked a little weed 2 nights this week, I had the biggest and best climaxes of my life. I had seen a doctor, switched my birth-control pills, masturbated - everything I could think of. Who knew reefer would be the answer?   -J.P., Chicago, IL
Glad we could help. Your assignment is to continue to search for other ways you could relax yourself to orgasm so you are bale to approach it from different directions (now we're starting to sound like a mystic.
I mean, hey, sometimes a gal's just gotta use a little something to get her mind to focus on the shit that's happening to her body, ya know...to let the pleasurable touches arouse her so she's primed to reach orgasm when the right stimulation come along.

Granted, this lady does not say what exactly was happening to her to get her to reach her top-notch orgasm. Was it some sweet manual or oral stimulation direct to the clit/vulva area, or maybe she grinded that clit the right way up against her partner while having intercourse? Who knows. I'm also not sure if she meant she was struggling to come for the first time ever...or just trying to come during intercourse - because honestly a lot of women talk about orgasm during intercourse as like the orgasm - and not having an orgasm that way often makes women think they're broken and they go to doctors and shit like this woman did (even though orgasm from stimulation inside the vagina is like not really a thing).

Either way, it's lovely she came, and it really does make sense that (as long as there is appropriate stimulation to the clit or penis area, of course) sometimes a person struggling with arousal and/or orgasm might be helped by getting a touch high. You see, getting aroused to the point of orgasm will just happen with appropriate physical stimulation, but (and this is a big but) the mind can halt that process for all kinds of reasons, so getting high might help a person keep their focus on the their body, their pleasure,and the present situation in a way that keeps the mind from halting the arousal process. Then again, for others, getting a touch high might make them paranoid as hell and put their minds on everything BUT the present sexual pleasures they are experiencing. 'Cause - you know -arousal is tricky and personal. You gotta figure out what works for you (and then if you want to actually orgasm make sure the clit is getting the attention it deserves while you are aroused enough to get there).

2 Raw Data

A pig's orgasm lasts 30 minutes
This was a fun fact on this page, but I'm skeptical. Looking internet stuff up on this, it seems this is only in relation to male pigs because there's just not data about if and how female pigs orgasm. It's also in relation to ejaculation not necessarily orgasm - because orgasm and ejaculation absolutely are 2 different things for both men and women, but in men they most often happen at about the same time and in women ejaculation mostly doesn't happen at all. The two words are frequently used interchangeably even though they shouldn't be.

So, not to the whole 30 minute orgasm situation. The physical part of an orgasm is defined loosely as the rhythmic release of muscle tension built up through arousal in the pelvic muscles. So, and this goes for all the BS talk of women orgasming for 30 minutes as well, you simply can't be releasing muscle tension for that long. There's only so much tension to release. You can be aroused for 30 minutes, but physically orgasming for 30 minutes just doesn't make any goddamn sense.

Anyway, it seems pigs do ejaculate (that is expel semen out) for an extraordinarily long amount of time, but there's no evidence they orgasm for that long.

3 Playboy Party Jokes

A man met a blonde in a bar, and after a few drinks they went back to her place and had wild, passionate sex. "I guess that was just about the best sex you ever had, " he said when they were done.   "What makes you say that?" she asked.    "Well," he replied, "while we were doing it, I couldn't help notice how I made your toes curl."    ""Oh,"she said, "that was just because most men take off my panty hose first."
I mean, honestly, as Playboy jokes go, this one was pretty solid because they are often less than humorous. Anyway, this kinda speaks about orgasm so I'm SSL reviewing it. I'm actually not sure what to say about it in a critical way. It's just a joke about how dumb men are about pleasing women, I think. I don't have strong feeling about this one, so I'll leave it at that.

The Vulva Rating
This was a pretty light SSL Review Playboy, and none of it was that problematic. It wasn't progressive or anything either. So, I'm going to give this one a bit better than neutral. The May 2006 Playboy gets a 3 1/2 vulva rating.



Bodybuilding Thread And The Clit: A Retro SSL Adventure

So, I posted this like 4 years ago, but I love it, so I'm reposting. Do enjoy....

It all began 3 minutes after midnight on September 3rd 2013, when HorseCawk created the thread to discuss the "gay chit" that people were posting on FB.

A little background. I googled "Cliteracy 101" a couple days ago and happen to come across a thread on the bodybuilding.com forum about just that...Cliteracy 101. I couldn't help reading the entire thread, and I just really thought you needed to know about it too. These particular body-building folk are what some call miscers. They are people on bodybuilding sites that only post on the miscellaneous non-body-building sections of the site, and they really just post to make the other people laugh or react, so it's usually dumb as shit. It might have enraged me, cause there was a lot of pretty backwards comments, but honestly, who cares. I do think it reflects the underlying current in our culture that keeps us resistant to accepting a realistic understanding of female sexual release, but that's a subject that goes far beyond the shit these dudes were saying. Plus, I was in their space. They didn't take their shitty comments to the source. They kept in their home - their very public home, but home none-the-less.

So, sit back and relax because I'm going to give you a run-down of this awesomely awesome 3 page thread. It was Sophia Wallace's Cliteracy 101 posters that HorseCawk had wanted to discuss. I, obviously, think Cliteracy 101 is on point as "phuck" (HorseCawk prefers phuck to fuck), but HorseCawk felt it was
gay as phuck and says things like "the clitoris is larger than a flaccid penis" women who are into this $hit are just so dense. finding a "cause" and getting behind it!! POwEr in our sexuality! "Penetration Is Not the Only Sex!!" "you shouldn't have to ask a man to rub your clitoris during intercourse!"
He didn't see why anyone would share such things with him.


DK91 quickly gave HorseCawk props for a strong username (I agree) and a strong post.

I'd like to point out that late in the thread, Nessa1 (1 of 3 women in this thread) came back at HorseCawk with: "You do realize that all of that is correct, right Opie?" to which HorseCawk replied, "its not you stuppid chit. u are misinformed" Bravo Nessa1 - 5 vuvla rating to you (!)(!)(!)(!)(!)

Quickly, everyone then got a bit riled up by the idea that a clit could be larger than a flaccid penis, retorting with things like richard noggin's "brb pulling on my cawk with pliers" and H34T's "4 inch flaccid checkin in. never seen a 4 inch clit before. also this is why I never would degrade myself by licking a snatch."

However, PoliciaLoco (inquisitive mofo) pipes in with the absolutely correct statement: "Most of a clit isn't visible as it extends into the body..." And then Musik85 quotes some internet lit supporting the whole big clit thing and includes links to more info.

HorseCawk comes back though and tells PoliciaLoco
this is debatable. the feminist hipsters promoting this "the clitoris so is vast" view are preaching that the labia minora as well as other pussy tissue is "the clitoris"
That big ol' HorseCawk actually has a point here. There are definitely people out there saying that all the "pussy tissue" should be considered "the clit" because it is all important in sexual pleasure. I, as you can imagine, take the side that organs should be called their correct name, because if they are not, it is both confusing and inaccurate, but that's another story. He is off base in this particular discussion though. I mean the clit really does extend inside the body, and it really is at least as big as a flaccid penis, so not actually debatable, HorseCawk.

HorseCawk's comments to Musik85 are a touch less poignant (and probably false on all accounts, although I don't know the status of Musik85's sexuality), saying:
nice scientific source dumbchit
 your statements are firstly false.
 secondly debatable in scientific literature
 and thirdly you are a homosexual.
On a side note Musik85 comes back at him with: "How many clits have you seen exactly? minus your mums on the way out..." To which HorseCawk jovially replies: "lmao" Sadly, Musik85 loses his earlier steely feminist/real-life leanings and finished up the exchange with "Who gives a fuk anyway? gona get mine then get out... don't care if some stupid sloot cums or not." PoliciaLoco loses his way also and concludes his postings on the 2nd page with: "The artist, Sophie Wallace shows her teddies on her tumbler. Just FYI."

There are also randomly distributed comments relating to one of my favorites of the laws - Cliteracy Natural Law # 14 which says "The vaginal orgasm is a myth invented by Freud in 1905" with richard noggin changing the topic as follows:
I would pay lots of money to see a 4 inch clit lmfao 
but.. girls do orgasm from their vaginas dont they? my girl does? am I a brodcaster status now?
richard noggin's avatar. 
and Stannis saying:
Girls can't orgasm from penetration? Not sure if srs..? I don't think she was faking. (hmm)
and ItsNerfOrNothin with:
Vaginal orgasms a myth? GF is in so much fuken trouble SRS
Gonna fight about this tomorrow wish me luck
Then lui9806 with the following comment and anime-rage gif:
So where just gonna let that "vaginal orgasm is a myth" go unchecked?

 And bossavery with:
are u kidding me? women saying vaginal orgasms aren't real? pretty sure ive got girls off multiple times by fingering/massing that G spot and the girls werent frauding. 
fuk this ghey world
BushrodButtram gets a bit more investigativey on the subject and writes:
All this "women can't climax from intercourse" stuff is greatly exaggerated and is supposed to delegitimize normal sex. Some proponents basically think that all straight sex is basically unpleasant for women and that men like it that way:
BushrodButtram then links a kinda stream-of-consciousness post from a self-described radical feminist in which she talks about the dichotomy that exists for women about wanting too much or too little Penis-in-Vagina sex and the sense that P-i-V sex is THE only type of sex. (Her whole post is  HERE. Granted, it is a too obsessive with terror-of-pregnancy and also too blamey for my taste, and it's written a bit aggressively, but if you shake off all the dirt, it honestly has some thoughtful points....could be good for a future post). Anyway, BushrodButtram is kinda pissed about it and finishes his comment with:
Therefore, from their point of view, of course women should insist on "cliteracy" since women's collective sexual self-interest is best served if men don't want to have intercourse, seeing it as an inferior and ineffective form of sex.
I mean, let's be honest, as lady-gasms go, intercourse is an inferior and ineffective form of sex, but that's neither here nor there. Bushrod clearly has his Buttram in a bunch because the whole issue gives him too much feels. He feels the whole Cliteracy 101 thing comes from some crazy motherfuckers thinking intercourse sucks for women and that men want it to suck for women (and I'm sure Mr. Buttram doesn't actually want sex to suck for Mrs. Buttram - seriously. I really think he doesn't and it is offensive to him to think women would think he does). I hear ya Buttram, I do, but sometimes things must be said that are hard to hear, and we all need to listen - no matter whose fault it is.

Synth1230 chimes in with:
i like how all the slogans are presupposed to make it the man's fault. If you get off on clit stimulation then rub your fuking clit you pleb. Not to mention that going down on these chicks is impossible cos of the 10 coks theyve taken earlier in the day.  
The Quality of Women is going down yet their standards become higher and higher. If youre a good women ill gladly eat you till the cows come home and rub your clit during penetration but you better give me a blowjob when i tell you to.  
 vaginal orgasms are infact real or rather orgasms for simple penetration are.
Simplistic as it may be, Synth1230 has a point about rubbing one's fucking clit - I mean just do it, right? But I suspect he may not quite understand how strangely not easy that is to do in real life...I mean sometime our culture can get aggressively anti-clit...ya know? He is likely wrong about how many cocks the average women who asks him to go down on her has had in the 24 hours prior to asking, but I'm not him, so I won't pretend to know his circumstances. If this is true, then yes, I think a shower would be appropriate before any eating out, but it's not technically impossible. Let's be honest here. No one wants the disease of 10 other men's ejaculate on their tongue or the taste of 10 latex condoms. Plus, she's probably dehydrated at this point and would do well to just go home, take some time off and drink some water....although on the other hand, after taking 10 coks in 1 day - and likely not orgasming (cause Cliteracy Law # 14 is actually pretty accurate), doesn't she deserve a good eating out so she can finally get the fuck off? As for orgasms from simple penetration being real, as you know, I stand by the statement that there is no evidence of that being true.

EDcellent let everyone know about his experience too:
*Finger banged a girl and she squirted crew* checking in. Not a single part of her clit was touched that night. 
Or any other night.
Thanks EDcellent, and true story. Fingerbanging is actually a pretty good way to get a girl to squirt. It's called an ejaculation, and if the clit wasn't touched, definitely doesn't include an orgasm...but maybe EDcellent's girl isn't into orgasms anyway. To each her own.

LikeAMachine didn't like the idea of saying the vaginal orgasm was a myth either:
A myth? lol ok, right 
fukking hipsters rustling jimmies
Two ladies got into the discussion too. Staberella just wanted to get practical:
LOL this is silly. Instead of making a big fukking deal over their man sucking in bed to the world, they should let their partners know what they like in bed. No need to make it public.
It seems she is gently acknowledging that dudes who bang with no clit game suck in bed (even the toughest of body-building chicks like that mouth on that lady junk, am I right?) , but fair enough, Staberella - keep that shit to yourself.  4 vulva rating to Staberella for her subtle insinuation (!)(!)(!)(!).

CallMeOniichan was quick to get to the real issue, though, when he replied back to her, "I don't think the artist is into guys." Classic move CallMeOniichan.

and conceptions, well she didn't really care much about all this, but she was a bit better informed than most of the dudes so far about the vaginal orgasm is a myth thing. She says:
I think that claim comes from the belief that the nerves etc of the clitoris extend into the vaginal walls/g-spot, so they're all clitoral orgasms. No. 4 on the list in one of the pics seems right. I don't get what all the fuss is about.
The Cliteracy Law #4 conceptions speaks of is, "The clitoris is not a button. It is an iceberg" So she's got sense about her in that she's acknowledging that there is an inner, larger part of the clitoris. She's also right that there is a going trend that believes orgasms from penetration are due to the inner legs of the clitoris being stimulated to orgasm during penetration - so that even "vaginal" orgasms are clitoral. However, there is no scientific evidence of orgasm ever actually happening from stimulation inside the vagina, so there isn't really a "vaginal" orgasm to speak of at all, and thus speaking about what causes it is not useful since it doesn't really exist (at least in scientific literature). She gets 4 vulvas (!)(!)(!)(!) on her comment though, cause it's kinda thoughtful at least, and she tried to calm the fire. *No one cared though, I guess, because there were absolutely no comments to what she said.

A few other brave comments worth mentioning...theRealGriNC was just honest:
Does anyone else mess around with the clit or is it just me? I didn't think it was such a big deal.
It is a big deal - because it's not done enough. Thank you, theRealGriNC. Also, solidus2k3 kept his comment simple, but effective with: "Pussy eating crew" Different "crews" are always checking in. For instance, InfraRed407  said "can navigate the clit crew checking in" Yes sir, please do check in.

 Hmmmm. I'll give a final word to richard noggin who added this toward the very end of the 3 page thread:
alright boys lets all just admit it the clitoris is a myth, a made up fairy tale that was conjured up by feminists to scare little boys before bed. Has anyone seen this so called "clit"? no. no one has ever seen one because it doesnt exist. that dangly thing down there is just the bull**** that feminists are full of trying to escape.
Wait no. I want to give the last word to snowyowl, who actually made a top notch 5 vulva rating post  (!) (!) (!) (!) (!).  Bravo to him...and he never said anything super ass-holeish....and he had the hottest pic.

snowyowl's avatar 
 I'd rub my clit all over those abs. Here's his post. It was simply the juxtaposition of the 2 memes below.



Twitter Lady-gasm Truths: Rachel Bloom Is An Orgasm Equality Hero

Rachel Bloom Schools Twitter on Lady-gasms
I just started watching Crazy Ex Girlfriend. I'm on episode 3, and I already have an SSL Review to do for it (which will be positive). However, before I started watching this show, I caught some buzz about the creator/star's epic rant earlier this year on Twitter about basically all the shit this here movie and blog are about. So, what I want to say about that is fuck yeah, Rachel Bloom!

So, she basically saw a CNN article about the the Orgasm Gap (i.e. women are orgasming much less than men during sex), and she was pissed that it didn't even mention the clit until halfway down. For real, the article was all like,
'geez-oh-pete guys! What could possibly be causing women to orgasm less than men???? Could it be evolution making women have variable abilities to achieve orgasm?? Could it be women are so darn nervous about their bodies?? Could it be stigma against women initiating sex?? Could it be our clits are too far from their vaginal openings?? Golly gee - why oh why can't women just come from getting fucked up the vag hole like we want them to?? I guess there's no possible answer.' 
She, rightly, pointed out that this article, like most on the topic, was deeply focused on women's ability to orgasm during intercourse...because that's apparently the only way of lady-gasming anyone cares about. She also rightly pointed out THE CLIT. Seriously, women need their clit stimulated to orgasm, so if we live in a world obsessed with penises-in-vaginas and rarely depict, discuss or engage the clit in sexual situation, could it possibly be that - oh, I don't know - the main reason women aren't orgasming more during sex is because WOMEN'S CLITS DON'T GET STIMULATED MUCH DURING SEX. Just a little ol' thought. I mean, men need their penises stimulated for orgasm as much as women need their clits stimulated, and wouldn't you know it, their penises are pretty much the focus of any sexual activity they are a part of. and guess what?!? Men don't seem to have a group orgasm problem.

Why I Do So Love Her Rant
1 I love this because she says as boldly and clearly as anyone I've seen speak on this (and this includes most progressive sexperts and sex educators) that women would be orgasming more if we all just collectively realized that women orgasm from clitoral stimulation and penetration (because for real - no scientific research has ever shown that women orgasm from stimulation inside the vagina).

2 Can I just say again how much I love Bloom's rant. I love how specific and bold she is about the need for clitoral stimulation, because even well meaning, sex-positive, feminist stuff often demurs and really just kinda reminds that the clit is also important...as opposed to outright saying the the clit is THE important part and without understanding THE sole importance of the clit to female orgasm, orgasms ain't gonna happen. It reminds me of an article by Annamarie Jagose (I discuss it HERE) that really digs in on this issue, warning us that we'll be in a never ending cycle of worrying about the orgasm gap but never really fixing it unless we fully accept that intercourse on its own is not, has never been, and never will be as orgasmic for women as it is for men because it doesn't necessarily include external clitoral stimulation in the same way it necessarily provides clear penile stimulation. That is correct, Ms. Jagose, and although it is truly rare to hear people speak the truth on this, it really gives me hope to see these rare, but I venture to say increasing, bold statements from people like Ms. Rachel Bloom.

3 I particularly love that Rachel Bloom is really open and honest about this in her life personally. She admits that even being a feminist, progressive, and sexually aware women was not enough in this culture to give her the correct information about her body and her orgasms. She felt bad for many years that she had to have clitoral stimulation to come. She struggled with the cultural expectations of her orgasmic capabilities versus the reality of her experience. Her saying that is so important because it:

  • informs us that coming from clitoral stimulation alone is actually not wierd. It's as normal as a man who can orgasm only from penile stimulation (sadly though, that piece of knowledge is not something we learn...ever)
  • lets other women know that we all struggle with this bullshit that we really shouldn't have to struggle with, and
  • points out that this problem is larger than just sexually progressive vs. non progressives because the cultural misinformation goes way deeper than that, and none of us are immune - even if you were raised by hippies and got a degree in sexology - these truths of the clit are still buried.

I also love that she is addressing this AND she actually has some power over depictions of sex that she intends to use for good. In this Mic article by Anna Swartz that has a follow-up interview with Bloom about the tweets. Bloom says...
"We need to educate women about how every woman's body is different," she said. "In movies, when you see a couple having a love scene ... you never see the woman reaching down and stimulating her clitoris, or a man reaching down." 
Yes, you lovely women, YEEEEES! She is so correct, and I know that for sure because I specifically critique that exact thing in tons of movies and TV for SSL Reviews. The article goes on:
The second season of Bloom's show, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, recently ended, and it's been renewed for a third. The show airs on the CW, which means that, as Bloom said, she's limited in how much she can show in sex scenes. But she and the other writers try "as much as possible to show what sex is really like ... people coming up from going down on Rebecca, we've shown Rebecca coming up from going down on other guys," Bloom said. "We try the best we can to capture what we know to be true."
Bless you, Rachel Bloom. That gives me so much hope and joy. It's the small things that will change this culture. It will take time, but I feel like I'm seeing things happening. It's a writer for Cosmo Sex Position Lists opting for inclusion of clitoral stimulation instead of incorrect references to how 'hitting the G-spot' will make a position orgasmic. It's Bridget Everett singing a hilarious song in her comedy act pointing out that ladies don't need the dick, They need mouth stimulation on their clit. And by golly, it's Rachel Bloom and the other writers trying their darndest on an extremely accessible over-the air network TV show that sexual activity, including intercourse, can and should include external clitoral stimulation (seriously, this never happens, so if I see it in Crazy Ex Girlfriend, I will flip my lid).

Go get 'em Ms. Bloom. You have officially made it onto my Orgasm Equality Heroes list. Good on ya, my lady.