Bish review of sex education in TV and film

TV Review – Sex Education Show Series 5 Episode 5

Review by Tom Beasley, member of Team Bish (read his own blog here)


Last time I reviewed The Sex Education Show, I noted that it seemed more focus on providing Carry On style bawdy laughs rather than furnishing us with actual information. I am pleased to have the opportunity to say that this week’s episode rectified that problem and gave us a fascinating and insightful hour of television.

The loose theme of tonight’s show was attraction. Topics being studied included what happens to the body when attracted to someone and what the factors were that caused people to be attracted to particular other people. The reason behind our attractions to certain people is an intriguing facet of our sexual lives and one which The Sex Education Show hasn’t really probed much. Thus, it was encouraging indeed to show that the ground does have new things to cover, even after five series.

However, in true fashion for The Sex Education Show, the episode was punctuated by the usual parade of naked people. It often seems that the link the models have with what is being discussed is rather tenuous. For instance, this week, they spent a portion of the show talking about arousal, which is fine. However, they used the models to show… errrmm… actually they barely used the models at all. I have one thing to ask the producers of The Sex Education Show and that is: have we not seen enough genitals by now?!

Seriously, looking at a row of penises and vaginas does very little to enhance the show now that they’ve got past all of the basic anatomy stuff that the first few series revolved around. If they’re going to cover interesting topics such as they did this week with the “laws of attraction” theme, then it may be a good idea to ditch some of the tired old aspects of the programme and replace them with something new and interesting as well.

Whilst I’m being negative, one of the worst segments of this week’s show was the piece on sexting where they brought in a group of parents and basically scared them shitless for ten minutes. It’s unusual for The Sex Education Show to err on the side of sensationalist scaremongering, but in this instance, they seemed determined to convince the parents and all of their viewers that sexting was a dangerous act. This was achieved by placing the focus solely on worst-case scenarios.

Now, as we readers of Bish know, sexting can be an arousing and invigorating aspect of a consensual relationship, provided that care is taken and all parties are aware of the law, much like anything sexual teenagers get up to [though remember kids it’s illegal if you’re under 18]. For a show that is supposed to champion sexual education rather than the kind of shouty, we’re-all-doomed attitude of tabloid newspapers, it was disappointing to see so little reference to how fun sexting can be when done with care.

Nonetheless, this week’s episode of The Sex Education Show was definitely the best I have seen in a long time. The visit to the contraception clinic was eye-opening in many ways and some of the results of the survey were genuinely interesting. This week also had the added benefit of Welsh people saying the words “lesbian” and “contraception” in the coolest action known to man.

It also involved the phrase “Gallery of Gonads”. What more can you want?

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