Valentine's Day 2018: Making Enthusiastic Consent Great Again
Happy Valentine's Day!
Do you think enthusiastic consent is a liberal talking point that eliminates the sexiness from film/art/life in general?
Welcome to February 2018 and - Let's address that.
I'm not sure when we all collectively decided that the hottest, most erotic, sexiest moments involved, "You need kissing badly, that's what's wrong with you," but I have to admit - they've never been what makes me weak in the knees (though if we're doing a research project on toxic masculinity, I'm here for all the damns and the frankly, my dears you’ve got and Gerard Butler screaming "THIS IS SPARTA!" on a loop).
Sure, we've all got our kinks - those are still allowed, by the way, and are represented on this list - but extremities don't have to mean abuses. Forbidden things don't have to be taken by brute force. Somehow, I think, mutual attraction is still the name of the hella-hot game.
Asking "Can I Kiss You," isn't hot.
That's a thing I read last month. I also read that women don't know how to call a cab when things go wrong on a date. That men can't read minds. And my personal favorite, that men can't be tasked with reading body language, so women should be more verbal. Men said these things. Women said them, too. It was a weird month for feminists that like sex, wasn't it?
But it's Valentine's Day, so let's not debate what happened in January when our hearts were frigid balls of ice. Instead, on this day of international love and hallmark cards and cheap chocolate candies, let's celebrate something.
Enthusiastic consent on film is hot.
Don't believe me? Just go with it. Here are scenes from eight films I dare you to say don't make you feel love, joy, and a tickle or two somewhere else. And if you don't get it, remember - someone you're into probably does.
Speaking of just going for the potentially awkward ask: "Is it okay? Is it okay that I did that?" Yes. Yes it is.
Mansfield Park (1999)
That fourth wall break, though. Wait for it.
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
Wherein she rings the front desk and he comes running back.
Obvious Child (2014)
Obviously fun. Obviously hot.
I can't give you this scene by I can give you this blissful gif. He thinks a while before he goes in for that kiss. And then he stares at her for a good long time before she decides, yep, that was correct. Gorgeous. Sexy. Goals.
Seriously, is asking with confidence not a turn on for you? (And no, this isn't the *iconic* Bound love scene, but we'd never get to full body 360 shots without a little chit-chat, would we?
Casino Royale (2006)
Friends, even James Bond knows how to do it.
American Mary (2012)
And then there's Mary. All things considered (barring that little thing she does to her Professor), Mary's mantra is one of severely enthusiastic consent. Whatever you want, she's happy to make it so. But this is horror, and I'm a cheeky critic, and I do mean, severely. But what a way to live, right:
This is about you and how you can best express yourself to the world. There are numerous procedures outlined here, but please, don't feel limited to them. The most important thing is that you're happy and comfortable with yourself. I know you may have come up against some harsh criticisms and judgments in the past, but you can feel confident that you're free of all such notions here. I can assure you that you'll receive your procedure in a safe and supportive environment. And at a reasonable cost. It is difficult to put a price on feeling complete though, isn't it?"
What are you watching this Valentine's Day?
If you need a little more to choose from (or a little more of my particular attitude problem), this categorized list from last Valentine's should help you out. But whatever it is you watch - or do - make sure you feel damn good about it.