The trailer for Magic Mike XXL — that’s right, the sequel to a movie about male strippers (because we really needed one) — released last week. And the timing is just right because the film needed to get a jump on 50 Shades of Grey, which releases Friday.
The Today Show is spending the week building the hype for the film adaptation of the erotic novel (again, because we really needed that).
And for those who just want their porn without the abuse portrayed in 50 Shades, we have the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue hitting news stands this week. This way we can get a slice of porn while we’re buying our groceries.
In all, it’s a busy week for porn.
Among the many observations that one can make about this confluence of porn-related events, Peggy Drexler states the obvious when she says that nudity doesn’t shock us anymore.
Drexler says we should “grow up and become more European in our sensibilities, and react less like middle school boys at the sight of a breast. Maybe we’ll learn that hitting bottom culturally reveals a whole new bottom underneath.”
Should we be like middle school boys? No. Would being more European actually mean “growing up?” Not necessarily. Is the “whole new bottom underneath” the bottom of culture really something we should excitedly explore. Not at all.
However, the fact that nudity doesn’t shock us is what makes it so surprising that there is a debate going on about whether the cover photo for the SI swimsuit issue went too far because in it the model is pulling down her bikini bottoms in a very revealing manner.
In a world of increasing nudity and the celebration of porn, the cover photo debate seems a moot point.
It was almost humorous to watch the interview Matt Lauer did with SI cover model Hannah Davis. For starters, the producers of the show put a red ribbon over the section of the picture that is the subject of debate.
Davis insists: “It’s not that naughty.” Then she goes on to say that SI does something different every year for its swimsuit issue and they decided that this year is “the year of the torso.”
That certainly clears it up, doesn’t it?
The red ribbon is curious though, isn’t it, for a show that is heavily promoting a film version of an erotic novel proudly called “mommy porn.” 50 Shades, let’s remember, is being widely panned by feminist groups such as Stop Porn Culture who insist that it is abusive.
50 Shades director Sam Taylor-Johnson, also interviewed on Today, assures us that Anastasia — the female character forced to submit to all of Christian Grey’s controlling and abusive sexual demands — is actually the one with power in the relationship. She’s in control, Taylor-Johnson insists.
That’s funny, because all the women i know would tell their girlfriends to run for the hills to get away from a guy who treated them the way Christian treats Anastasia.
But when it comes to porn, we’re confused. If we call it “mommy porn” and tell everybody that it’s really a love story, then it’s cool. If it’s a picture of a woman showing too much skin, let’s put a red ribbon over it — but then only sometimes.
You’ll notice that on NBC’s web site the red ribbon has been removed. And now that the network as feigned shock, it can get back to promoting porn.
Porn is an insult. To all people. The insults include the twisting of words in an attempt to pretend that something isn’t what we all know it is.
The swimsuit issue is soft porn. 50 Shades is BDSM porn.
What’s a little nudity? In this case, it’s an insult.
It’s not an abstraction either. Porn harms everyone. Really.
It’s not harmless entertainment when the effect of the film, or the magazine, is that it creates a culture in which sex is further commodified and men and women are bought and sold.
Real people are effected. Real marriages are destroyed. Real people are trapped — both women trafficked into porn and men who get addicted to it.
The more we pornify our world, the more destructive sexual activity we will see.
i counsel and lead men all the time who are reaping the destruction of this.
What’s a little nudity? Way more than you think.