CWM

“Masters of Sex” Isn’t Just About Sex…

In Television on October 6, 2013 at 8:40 pm

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..it’s about relationships, about masculinity and femininity, it’s about friendship and trust, it is also about research.

“Masters of Sex” stars Michael Sheen as Dr, William Masters, the premiere fertility doctor in the country and Lizzy Caplan as Virginia Johnson, Masters partner in what would become a world renown study on what occurs within the human body during sex. Did I mention that this story takes place in the 50s and is based on actual people? Well it does and it is incredibly original in its story-telling and unflinching int he way it depicts sex.

I have watched two episodes of this show and am absolutely hooked. The story begins with Dr. Masters depicting his interest in studying sex by watching a hooker through a peep hole and recording how long it takes for her to orgasm and for her “john” to orgasm as well. Dr. Masters’s interest in the study of sex is difficult to unravel because at times he genuinely does seem like the interested researcher while at other times there does appear to be more there.

Ms. Johnson has two children and is twice divorced, which is incredibly frowned upon during that era. She is also quite free, sexually. Ms. Johnson eventually finds her way into the hospital in which Masters practices and sleeps with his assistant, Dr. Ethan Haas, played by Nicholas D’Agosto, who is absolutely captivated by her, in order to meet Dr. Masters. This is where the story begins and if I explain anymore, if fear I shall ruin it for you.

The sex is this show is worth noting because it is depicted as….well sex. Sex isn’t always beautiful and romantic, it can often be useful while also serving a purpose for one individual engaged in it. Sex in this show is depicted in a variety of ways by showing how engaging and beautiful it can be while also depicting how sad and depressing it can be as well.

The depiction of women, and subsequently, femininity, is also worth noting, in that it shows how difficult it was to be a woman, in that era, who wanted to do something other then raise/have children. Ms. Johnson is a divorcee who wants something more in life then just having kids while Dr. Masters’s wife, Libby, played by Caitlin Fitzgerald, wants nothing more then to have children. When Ms. Johnson does engage in a fling with Dr. Haas, it confuses him. It does so because he associates sex with love and marriage while Ms. Johnson does not. When this occurs, Dr. Haas lashes out, ¬†because his mind cannot comprehend a woman who isn’t married, who isn’t a prostitute, and enjoys sex as freely as Ms. Johnson.

In conclusion, check this show out. Lizzy Caplan and Michael Sheen give excellent performances that will leave you speechless at times and profoundly upset at others.

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