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!

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