Brooklyn Nine-Nine S4 Ep16: The SSL Review

Brooklyn Nine-Nine Season 4 Episode 16
This is the very first and maybe the last Brooklyn Nine-Nine SSL Reviewable moment I've encountered in the series, and it's barely SSL Reviewable, but I thought it'd be fun to write about. It's a over-air prime time TV show, so they're generally pretty tame and don't get into stuff like clits, lady-bation, or lady-gams. But on occasion it happens. This SSL Reviewable moment is quite innocent and fun. You'll see below. I really do like this show, so I'm glad I get to include it in the big TV Master List . When it's on its game, it's really funny, and Andre Braugher as Capt. Ray Holt brings the damn thing every time.

SSL Review
Before we get to it, though, a quick reminder about an SSL Review. It is a critique specifically of the depiction or discussion of female orgasm, female masturbation, or the clit. I'm particularly looking for the level of physical realism and for how the depiction/discussion fits into the larger cultural conversation about female sexuality and orgasm. Sometimes I comment on other aspects of the movie/TV show. Sometimes I don't. This SSL Review ain't that deep, though.

Please feel free to check out all the SSL Reviewed movies HERE and the SSL reviews TV shows HERE.

A Fresh, Heaping Glass of Orgasm Juice
So, this was actually kind of 'a very special episode' relating to police interaction with people of color, but I don't think it was as cheap and heavy handed as these types of episodes often are. I think it was done pretty well - with a mix of humor, seriousness, and a touch of nuance. There was some thoughtful interaction that seemed quite genuine to me between 2 of the main characters, both black male cops but of different generations, about how to deal with a particular cop transgression related to race. Anyway, like most of Nine-Nine, I think it was written a bit above the average for a network sitcom.

So, ends up, two cops (Amy and Jake) are babysitting the twin daughters of their Sargent, Terry Jeffords (Terry Crews) while he goes to deal with the racially motivated transgression against him while he was off duty. The two babysitter cops are trying to avoid answering the girls' questions about what happened to their dad (the girls are named Cagney and Lacey BTW), but eventually they do address it head on, feel good about themselves, and then Amy tells the twins, "Well, if you guys have any other questions, we're here for you." To which the girls' respond. "What's an orgasm?" Clearly we see Amy and Jake were not prepared for that question, and it cuts.

Later, at work Amy and Jake are talking to Terry. He was thanking them for babysitting and talking with the girls. And Amy says, "I'm sorry I told them orgasms was another word for oranges. I panicked." Terry returns, "Yeah, it did make it awkward when they asked for orgasm juice this morning, but I was more talking about the other stuff." 

Then it all starts to wrap up after this.

The SSL Review
There's nothing too super deep here, and it doesn't specifically relate to female orgasms as opposed to male orgasms, so like I said above, this is barely SSL Reviewable. However, there is one thing I thought was interesting. The classic move here would be to have kids ask where babies came from, but they said orgasm instead. If I were to guess about what went on in this writer's room, I'd say they saw the clear move to the kids asking about babies, and quite correctly thought that would be the cheap, easy move so the stepped it up a notch to orgasm for the sake of better comedy. I respect that on pure comic writing grounds, but I think it has the extra bonus effect of creating a mainstream discussion of sexuality that takes the focus from the reproduction element of sex to the pleasure element.

That switch doesn't happen often, especially in network TV because the pleasure part of sex seems so much dirtier and less palatable for the audience, so this little crumb that Brooklyn Nine-Nine gave us is much appreciated. The more we as a culture can unlink sexual interaction with reproduction (and thus the male orgasm giving but rarely female orgasm giving act of penile vaginal penetration) the more we can create a cultural norm of sexual interaction that it inclusive of non cis, of non hetero, and of female sexual pleasure and orgasm.

I give this probably non-intentional boost to sex-as-more-than-a-penis-in-a-vagina-to-make-a-baby a 4 out of 5 vulva rating. It's overall good for Orgasm Equality, but not super progressive or even intentionally meant to be anything for Orgasm Equality.


No comments:

Post a Comment