Along comes Fox Entertainment to enlighten us. Get ready. It's sick.
Fox's "Glee" devoted an entire episode on Nov. 8 to setting up and celebrating the shedding of virginity by two teenage couples on the show. One was heterosexual, and one - yippee! - was homosexual. TV critics were raving in advance. Entertainment Weekly's Tim Stack all but demanded everyone watch: "It's without a doubt one of Glee's best installments ever and features two popular couples on the show having sex for the first time."
This is a show with an enraptured following of teenagers, especially teenage girls. Children love the musical numbers and stay for the propaganda. Stack was especially thrilled that the gay teens Kurt and Blaine would "finally decide to take the next step in their relationship." When you're 17, it's time for "finally" getting over the dreaded V-word. Stack oozed, "It's all handled very delicately and is incredibly moving. I can't think of another network series that's taken a teenage gay relationship so far or been so progressive."
Entertainment Weekly put the "Glee" gay-teen couple on the cover of their magazine back in January to pay tribute to "How a bold new class of young gay characters on shows like 'Glee' is changing hearts, minds and Hollywood." Boundaries must be pushed and traditional values smashed. Network executives only insist this be scheduled to air during November sweeps.
Kristin Dos Santos, a blogger for the E entertainment channel was too desperate for the show to start. One blog post began, "Enough with the foreplay already!" In another, she crowed: "Tonight is the night, Glee fans! Candles lit? Sheets silky? Music playing? Check, check, check."
This very special episode of Glee romanticized the "first time" from beginning to end. The musical teens at McKinley High performed "West Side Story," but for some odd reason, the director was a teenager.
As the episode begins, the director finds that his two romantic leads are still virgins, which will allegedly ruin everything. They will be exposed as drama frauds since the musical is about "sexual awakening."
"As a friend, I support your strange aversion to fun. As your director, I'm concerned." Virginity is thus shameful, slightly psychotic and a "strange aversion." The lecture continues: "How do you expect to convey the human experience to an audience when you haven't ever opened up yourself to one of humanity's most basic and primal ones?"
Two teachers in the room who are supervising the musical quickly vacate the room once virginity came up between the teens - because, as perfectly written for Fox, they're both adults still burdened with the shame of virginity. They're sympathetic characters, but they're romantically disabled. In short, they're lovable losers.
Since he's been intimidated that it's time to "lose it," Blaine insists to Kurt that it's time for adventure. "Don't you think now is the time to be adventurous, while we're still young?" In their hunt for "adventure," the high school senior and junior go to a gay bar called Scandals, where their fake ID cards are approved and they can experience Drag Queen Night. This is how "progressive" Fox can be at 8 pm Eastern, 7 pm Central time. Sixth-graders can now talk about "gay bars" and "drag queens." Who said TV can't be educational?
As for Finn the quarterback and Rachel the aspiring Broadway star, their first attempt at "love" when parents are missing is ruined when Rachel confesses she's mostly eager to improve her acting. Then she turns to her fellow females in the glee club for advice. On the side of retaining virginity is only fear and disgust: fear of pregnancy (from one who gave a baby up) and disgust that the quarterback is terrible in bed. There was no debate.
There is only advertising. The "progressive" side has only beauty and romance. One girl goes into a reverie about her first time the previous summer, complete with snippets of a love song from "West Side Story." It was "just right, not rushed. It was amazing." As the song ends in a crescendo, she declares, "He's my first love, and I'll always look back at that moment as absolutely perfect."
Fox used the same tactic for the final scene, where the fireside consummation of the two "first times" among teenagers is celebrated as Blaine and Rachel sing the love song "One Hand, One Heart." It's implied that both performers have now mastered the authenticity of their love scene...by overcoming their terrible, odious virginity.