[Review] Lovehoney Bliss Orgasm Balm

I admit that I am sceptical when it comes to products that aren’t sex toys but claim to boost the chances of orgasm. However, I am also a curious creature and willing to try most things once. So when this little tin of Bliss Orgasm Balm from Lovehoney appeared in my shipment of Masturbation May products, I thought it was high time I gave it a go.

Lovehoney Bliss Orgasm Balm

What is Bliss Orgasm Balm?

Bliss is a topical balm designed to increase sensitivity in the clitoris. It comes in a small heart-shaped tin and is white in colour and has a creamy consistency that melts onto your fingers – similar to a lip balm.

Bliss Orgasm Balm is infused with peppermint, menthol and essential oils. These ingredients stimulate the nerve-endings in the clitoris and encourage blood flow to the area, increasing sensitivity.

Lovehoney Bliss Orgasm Balm

Is it body-safe?

To answer this question, I took a closer look at the ingredients.

  • Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil. A natural oil commonly used in cosmetics, make-up and skincare products. It has been shown to have beneficial properties for the skin and is considered safe.
  • Hydrogenated Olive Oil (and) Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil. We all know olive oil has health benefits when used in food, but it is also a common ingredient in skincare and cosmetics. These forms of olive oil were investigated by the Cosmetics Ingredients Review and declared safe.
  • Hydrogenated Jojoba wax. Jojoba oil and jojoba wax were investigated by the International Journal of Toxicology and proven safe for cosmetic use. (Warning: link contains mentions of animal testing.)
  • Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter). An incredibly common ingredient in skincare and cosmetic products. The Cosmetic Ingredients Review investigated shea butter and found it to be safe.
  • Menthol. Menthol is widely used for its distinctive minty fragrane and the cooling sensation it creates on the skin. The FDA has found it to be safe for these purposes and also in food.
  • Tocopherol. Tocopherol is a form of Vitamin E, typically derived from vegetable oils. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review and International Journal of Toxicology concluded that it is safe for topical use.
  • Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil. An essential oil derived from the peppermint plant, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review determined that peppermint oil is safe as long as the concentration of the compound pulegone does not exceed 1%.

In conclusion? Every ingredient in this little balm has been declared safe for topical (external) use by experts. Full marks, Lovehoney! Unless you’re allergic or sensitive to any of the ingredients, you can use Bliss Orgasm Balm with confidence.

How do you use it?

You may look at this tiny little tin and think, “is that all you get?” But believe me when I say you only need a little bit to make this stuff effective!

Dab a small amount onto your fingers and massage into your clitoral area. It can be quite intense, so start off cautiously – if you want a more intense sensation or aren’t getting the desired effect, you can always add more.

From there, continue to masturbate or have sex as you normally would.

Remember: Bliss Orgasm Balm is for external use only. Don’t put it inside your vagina or butt.

What does it feel like?

Have you ever used “cooling” or “tingling” lube? It’s a bit like that, only more intense! If you’ve ever put toothpaste on your genital area (which is something I don’t recommend, but a lot of people do) this is a similar sensation – and safer!

The best way I can describe it is as a cool tingly sensation when the balm first goes on. Then, as your body gets used to it, the initial sensation fades but you’re left with a higher than usual level of clitoral sensitivity.

Does it work?

Yes – with caveats.

If you struggle to orgasm, don’t expect Bliss Orgasm Balm to be a cure-all. It isn’t. But it definitely does heighten sensitivity, which can absolutely help when it comes to inducing orgasm. I also suspect it might act as something of a placebo for some people – you expect the balm to help, so you feel more relaxed and less stressed, so having an orgasm is easier.

I absolutely recommend trying a product like this if you find orgasm difficult. But manage your expectations going in, yeah?

If you don’t generally struggle to orgasm but are just looking for some extra sensitivity or a fun way to play with sensations, you might well enjoy using Bliss Orgasm Balm.

Some extra fun ways to play…

As ever, there’s no right way to use sexuality products and you should do whatever works for you. But I found a few fun ways to use Bliss Orgasm Balm that might appeal to some of you.

  • Put some on before you get dressed in the morning to give you a little tingle of arousal as you go about your day.
  • Use it during oral sex and have your partner gently blow on your vulva. This will send cool minty tingles through you!
  • Put some on and then start watching porn or reading erotica and see how long you can wait before you simply have to touch yourself. (Or order your submissive to put some on and then not touch!)
  • Use it to increase clitoral pleasure during penetrative sex. This greatly enhances the chance of orgasm for most vulva owning people!

So do I recommend it?

I rate this product a lot more highly than I expected to! I really liked the tingly sensations, the extra level of sensitivity, and the fun variety it added to my solo playtime. I’m also seeing some great potential in it for kink and power exchange play and I’m looking forward to experimenting more with my partner.

At just £9.99 for a 20g tin (which will last you ages – remember you only need a little bit) it’s a steal. Throw some in your next Lovehoney order!

Thank you to Lovehoney for sharing this product with me in exchange for an honest review. Affiliate links appear in this post. All views are, as always, my own. Pictures property of Lovehoney and reproduced with permission. I’m partnering with Lovehoney throughout May to bring you #MasturbationMay reviews and content!

[Lube Review] The Butters Original Lubricant

A pot of The Butters lubricant So, I finally got my hands on The Butters – the lube that the sex blogosphere has been talking about for as long as I’ve been on the scene. It came free with a toy from my friends at Peepshow, and to be honest it’s been sitting in my “to be reviewed” box making me feel guilty for a couple of months.

I finally gave it a go during an extended play session. Let’s have a look, shall we?

So just what is The Butters?

A close up on the Butters lube labelI was first introduced to the existence of this product by my dear friend Kayla Lords. (If you don’t listen to her podcast, it’s wonderful in many ways but it’s worth it just for the way she says “lube”).

It’s created by Jerome Nichols, the brains behind LTASex, who describes himself as a “kinky, polyamorous, black, gay, socially woke stoner millennial“. (You want to be best friends with him now, right? I definitely do). He started making The Butters products in his kitchen in Ypsilanti, MI in 2016 and it’s grown into the amazing business it is today.

The Butters is an oil-based lubricant made from a small mix of simple ingredients. It comes in little tubs which remind me of the tubs of bath and shower products that you get from Lush.

The Butters retails for $5 for 2oz (great for travel, if you’re just testing it out to see if you like it) or $12 for 8oz.

Good Points

The Butters lube pot open on a wooden floor.Let’s be clear: this lube has plenty to recommend it. It has only 9 ingredients, and they’re all completely natural, plant-based and healthy for your body. The main ingredients are aloe vera, shea

butter, coconut oil, and extra virgin olive oil. There’s also grapeseed oil, palm kernal oil, soy lipid emulsion (which comes from soybeans), apple cider vinegar, and arrowroot gel. Nothing harmful, toxic or questionable in there!

According to their website, each ingredient is chosen for its specific properties. Shea butter, for example, is moisturising as well as being an anti-inflammatory and having a lovely smell. Coconut oil is amazing for the skin and used to aid treatment of a wide variety of skin conditions, and has long been considered suitable as an intimate lubricant.

The Butters is also vegan, in the sense that it contains no animal-derived ingredients and is not tested on animals. As a vegetarian, it’s really important to me that my intimate products are cruelty-free. A perfect choice if you want a guaranteed cruelty-free oil-based lube.

The Butters Original Lubricant has a lovely, creamy, pale-yellow colour to it, and a nice smell – I guess that’s the shea butter at work. It’s actually marketed as lubricant and moisturizer, so you can also use it to make your skin super soft!

Be aware:

A glob of The Butters lube on my hand.
Hand model: me

Oil-based lubricants do not play nicely with many barriers, and will break down things like latex condoms and dams. Therefore, The Butters is generally not a good choice for you if you’re using barriers. Stick to water-based or silicone-based lubes in that instance. The one exception is that The Butters is safe with polyurethane barriers.

Oil-based lubes are safe with all body-safe toy materials including silicone, hard plastic, borosilicate glass, treated wood, treated ceramic and stainless steel. It also doesn’t damage leather, should you attempt to slap your own cunt with a piece of leather and get lube on it. Or something. (I can neither confirm nor deny personal experience of this particular issue).

Also: since this lube is in a tub rather than a pump or bottle, you have to dip your fingers into it to get some out. Wash your hands thoroughly first, or better yet use a sterile non-latex glove, otherwise you’ll contaminate your lube with germs and possibly risk giving yourself an infection. Even better still: decant a little bit from the main container into a smaller one with a clean spoon before play.

So did it work for me?

Sadly… not really. I really, really wanted to love The Butters. I cannot tell you how much I was prepared to love this product and rave about it. Unfortunately, it just didn’t really do it for me.

I don’t like the feeling of oils on my hands. When I cook, if I get some oil on my hands I have to wash it off as soon as possible as I find the sensation of it on my skin really unpleasant. Same with massage oils and so on – I can cope for a short amount of time, but the feeling of them in my hands cannot be described as enjoyable. So, I suppose, an oil lube was never going to work super well for me.

I smeared a generous helping of The Butters over my dildo and rubbed it in, as well as putting some directly on my vulva. Sadly, then I had to stop and wipe my hands on a nearby towel. I didn’t enjoy the feeling of touching myself using this lube. The feeling of the oil was just really… distracting? I don’t want to come away from touching my vulva going “urgh now I need to wash my hands immediately”.

Also getting it off after was a nightmare. As you’ll know if you paid attention in science lessons, oil repels water, so washing it off is a hassle. My cunt still felt unpleasantly oily even after a good wash.

I hate to have to say this lube didn’t work for me, but there you go. Bodies are different and mine goes “nope!” to oily textures.

So do I recommend it?

To be absolutely clear, I don’t think this is a bad product. On the contrary, I think it’s basically a great product. I am 1000% here for natural, body-safe, vegan lubricants. However, this experience has taught me something, and that is that oil-based lubes aren’t for me. That’s not a slight on The Butters by any means – it’s just my preference.

If you don’t like oil-based lubes for the same reason I don’t, this product won’t work for you. But if you do like oils, this might just be the highest quality and safest one you can get.

You can buy The Butters from Peepshow Toys, and send a small commission my way to help support the blog. I really encourage you to try this one for yourselves and see if you like it – so many people love it, and it’s body-safe and cruelty-free, and we should all be supporting the work of queer POC entrepreneurs like Jerome. I’m really disappointed that the lube didn’t work for me, but I’ll be going back and buying some skincare products from The Butters, for sure.

Thanks to Peepshow Toys for sending me The Butters lubricant for review. This post contains affiliate links. All opinions, as ever, my own.

I Had My First Smear Test and…. It Was a Complete Non-Event

I am in my late twenties. In my country, people with cervixes are offered cervical smear tests (often called “Pap Tests” in the USA) every three years from the time they turn 25. These tests detect abnormal cells on the cervix and act as an early screening for cervical cancer or warning signs thereof. Until this week, I’d never had one, despite being several years overdue.

Two medical swabs face down on a surface. For a post on cervical smear tests.

The reasons for this are varied, but there are two main ones. The first is practical: I moved house a lot prior to moving in with Mr CK (11 times in 9 years by my count) and as such had to register with a lot of different doctors in different cities. I’m not sure one of the letters inviting me to book in for a smear even found its way to me until I was at least 27. The second reason is that I was scared. I had a horrible experience when I got my IUD put in about 3 years ago – pain that rendered me entirely unable to function for three days and very much struggling for over two weeks. Therefore, understandably, the idea of anything going near my cervix elicited a strong and visceral NOPE reaction from me. So I just kept putting it off.

What eventually pushed me into going for one was a person in my extended poly/swing network having something flag up on their screening. I realised that by not knowing my status, I am not only putting myself at risk (and there is some history of cancer striking young in my family) but also putting my lovers at risk. And I couldn’t do that. I made the appointment.

On the morning of, I asked Twitter how much pain I should expect. Answers ranged from “none” to “maybe a bit but it’s over quickly” to “you probably wanna book the day off work”. (It was a little late for that, of course). I popped a couple of ibuprofen, just to be sure. Had I not been driving, I might have gone straight for the codeine, which my doctor gave me for the severe pain when my IUD acts up.

So what happened?

I went in and the lovely nurse introduced herself and asked if I was happy to have a student nurse present for the test. I said I’d rather not as it was my first time, and they were both fine about that. She asked about my STI testing history. I said we test every three months and had in fact been the week before. She asked if I knew about HPV, and I said yes.

I went behind the curtain, took my knickers and jeans off, and got comfortable on the bed thing. (I’ve never understood the point of a privacy curtain when they’re literally about to look at your insides, but there you go). The nurse explained that she would open my vagina with a speculum and do a quick swab of my cervix. She said I might feel some pressure, but it shouldn’t hurt.

Having one’s vagina opened with a plastic speculum is never comfortable. (Unless you’re into that sort of thing. Which I actually am when it’s with a sexual partner in a roleplay scenario. But dear god, fun medical play is a MILLION MILES from an actual medical exam). I winced a bit but remembered to breathe. I braced myself for severe pain.

“There you go, we’re done”. And the nurse was removing the speculum from my vagina and taking off her gloves.

“What, that’s it?” I could hardly believe it.

“Yep!”

Wow, I thought. That really was nothing.

The whole thing took less than five minutes. I felt no pain and only the mildest discomfort. A tiny price to pay indeed for knowing my status, protecting myself and my sexual partners, and possibly avoiding cervical cancer in the future.

So why am I telling you this non-story?

Honestly, I was fully expecting to have to tell you a horror story involving immense pain, shitty judgemental clinic staff, an unplanned day off work or all three. But none of this happened.

So instead I thought I’d share this story in the hopes that, if you’re afraid of getting your cervical smear, this will put you at ease. The staff should be kind and understanding. You shouldn’t feel any pain – even if your cervix is extremely sensitive and grumpy, as mine is.

Please – if you have a cervix, get your test. It takes five minutes, it doesn’t hurt, and it’s a tiny thing that could potentially save your life. Just go. I’m now kicking myself that I didn’t go three years ago!

If this post was helpful to you, please consider buying me a coffee to say thanks!

Image from Pixabay.

“Creepy Fuckery” (or: “Niece Jackie”) – Amy Watches You Me Her, S1E5

You may recall that episode 4 ended with Izzy’s roommate (edit: her name is Nina!) catching Izzy and Jack making out, moments after crashing into and breaking Nina’s grandmother’s antique lamp. Well, episode 5 begins with Izzy and Jack sitting at the table looking sheepish while Nina tells them off.

There’s a knock on the door, and in comes pdeudo-boyfriend Andy. “Ooh, this is gonna be interesting,” says Nina. No kidding. Jack awkwardly introduces himself, calls Andy “dude,” then apologises which just makes the whole thing that bit more excruciating. Jack says he’s Izzy’s uncle but they’re “more like cousins because we’re so close in age.”

  1. Who are you kidding, Jack-Not-Fred?
  2. If Andy is buying this for even a tenth of a millisecond, he’s the biggest idiot in this entire show populated by total idiots.

Izzy asks to move their planned lunch to cocktails later. Andy leaves after throwing a snarky “dude” remark in Jack’s direction.

“Yes, I’m a client,” Jack says, answering both Nina’s question and mine. “There’s your tip,” he adds to Izzy, leaving money on the side and walking out. Nina pockets the money, which is kinda fair given that Izzy and Jack just broke her expensive heirloom lamp.

Later, Izzy and Nina walk across campus and Nina asks Izzy why she kissed Andy in front of Jack. Izzy says it was to keep Andy “on simmer” (um?) but Nina knows it was to make Jack jealous and calls her out on it. Here’s a thing: if purposefully making your partners (who don’t even officially know about each other!) jealous is your game, you’re not ready for non-monogamy.

Nina asks Izzy if she’s okay breaking up a marriage. Izzy confesses her feelings about Jack and Emma. “Oh yeah, it would be so tragic if all three of you didn’t live happily ever after,” says Nina, ever the sympathetic friend. I mean, I can kind of see her point because we all know this is heading towards a trainwreck of epic proportions, but at the same time, triads CAN work and can be happy and functional. Just not when they start with both members of a couple cheating on each other with the same sex worker, the SW inexplicably catching feels, and no-one having a clue how to do even the most basic communication.

The phone rings and it’s Emma. Only apparently she’s “Em” to Izzy now. Emma is with Carmen, who is obnoxiously trying to get her attention – I think to tell Emma to break up with Izzy. Izzy pretends Andy is on the other line and about to take her on holiday, and hangs up. Emma is upset and shouts “FUCK,” despite the fact that she’s in the middle of a public park and there are children around. This leads to this amazing exchange:

Emma: “Sorry, sorry! Hey kids, don’t do drugs, stay in school!”
Random Mum: “They’re toddlers, dumbshit!”
Emma: “Dumbshit!? Oh yeah, well I bet those snotty little brats aren’t even vaccinated!”
Random Mum: “I’ll vaccinate your ass!”

And then Carmen pulls Emma away, Emma professes how much she “HATES ANDY,” and Carmen demands that Emma not bring any of the Izzy drama into “HER neighbourhood” or around “HER children.” Hey Carmen, Emma might be acting world-class foolish, but she lives in the neighbourhood too and can invite whoever she damn well pleases back to her own damn house. Step off.

Later, Emma and Jack are having drinks. Emma confesses to phoning Izzy, and Jack confesses to visiting Izzy during his lunch hour. In a moment of surprisingly rational and adult conversation, Emma admits to being “scared and nervous and excited.” Next thing we know, they’re actually communicating! Jack asks what happens next, and Emma points out that there’s a third person involved who should probably get a say. I suddenly find new respect for her until…

…the bitching about Andy begins. “I hope he has low self-esteem!” says Jack. “Does he hate puppies and poor people?” Emma counters. Wow, guys. Really?

We cut to Izzy and Andy, who are eating pizza – because of course when a skinny, normatively attractive woman loves pizza, it’s OMGSOCUTE #Keepingitreal. I bet if Izzy was fat, this scene would get a very different response from viewers. Andy wants Izzy to “decide.” Decide what?

Back at Jack and Emma’s house, they’re fighting about the “niece” thing (remember when Jack told his boss’s daughter, whom he inexplicably felt he owed an explanation to, that Izzy was his niece “Jackie?” Yeah.)

Izzy is in a cab after Jack texts her telling her to come over but take a “slightly different route.” The cabbie is hitting on her and asks if the drop-off spot – in seemingly the middle of nowhere – is where she really wants to be. She essentially tells him to fuck off, gets out of the cab and wanders into some nearby woods, muttering, “damn fucking aunt and uncle bullshit. Fucking JACKIE!” Meanwhile, Jack and Emma are freaking out waiting for Izzy to arrive (apparently they just said “come over” but didn’t specify a time or anything, because obviously people do that,) and right on cue she arrives. Her first words are “if you don’t have something that makes sense in a shot glass, I’m killing everyone but the pug.” On balance, I’m voting in favour of this idea.

Lori, across the street, is spying on Jack and Emma’s house. Because of course she fucking is. Because she’s not only the nosiest busybody in existence, she’s also Jack’s boss and has no sense whatsoever of professional boundaries. If I found out my boss was watching my house, neighbour or not, I would literally take out a restraining order. Lori’s kid (“Ava,” apparently) comes outside and says, “we both know there’s something weird going on with them and that niece.” They then quickly realise “Jackie” is “in there.”

Jack, Emma and Izzy are all drunk, but Jack stops them getting stoned before they talk about Serious Adult Things. Meanwhile, back in the bar, Andy is talking to the bartender, who is also the cabbie from earlier who dropped Izzy off. Sure, why not? Also, he’s played by Patrick Gilmore, who was adorable David Mailer in Travelers, if you’ve seen that. (If you haven’t, you should. Gilmore is wasted in this nonsense.) Ooh, Bar & Cabbie Guy (“Shaun” is apparently his name) has recognised Andy as Izzy’s boyfriend and is about to reveal where he dropped her off.

Our intrepid “throuple” (fuck me I hate that word) are talking. Apparently Andy was a ploy all along to make Jack and Emma jealous and see if they “feel the same.” Also, Izzy is all “I MET YOU FOUR DAYS AGO BUT I CAN’T STAND THE IDEA OF YOU HAVING SEX WITHOUT ME.” For fuck’s sake, Izzy. Firstly, they’re married. Secondly, as you correctly identified, you’ve known them ten minutes. Third, and very important, even in non-monogamous arrangements the individual dyads do tend to have sex 1-on-1 at times. We’ve established that all three of them are super jealous for various reasons. This is not a problem in and of itself, of course, but I just know they’re not going to handle it in a constructive fashion.

In the bar, Andy is putting two and two together. In the house, Jack asks “where do we go from here?” “Well the logical question,” Emma replies, “is, has anyone in this room ever… had a threesome?” They establish they haven’t. In the bar, Andy gives Shaun $80 to tell him exactly where Izzy is. Creepy. And credits.

Are we FINALLY going to get to see some hot threesome action in episode 6 of this “SUPER HOT THREESOME SHOW?” I will be very angry if not, but based on what I’ve seen thus far, if this lukewarm nonsense can pull “hot” out of the bag I will be stunned.

If you’re watching, feel free to tweet along with me! If I’ve saved you from this nonsense, you owe me a coffee something that makes sense in a shot glass.

“No Common Sense Whatever” (or “No Penetration”) – Amy Watches You Me Her, S1E3

Well then, I’ve been putting off writing this up but I suppose it is really time I did.

Episode 3 picks right up where Episode 2 left off, with Izzy the escort-not-a-hooker (ugh the sex worker shaming in this show is gross) on Emma and Jack-Not-Fred’s doorstep. It is quickly revealed that they didn’t actually invite her – she “cyber stalked [their] address” and “sprinted away” from Andy, the incredibly creepy specimen of toxic masculinity she’s inexplicably dating.

The dialogue in this show is stellar as ever:

Jack: “We don’t have any sedatives, but we do have wine.”
Emma: “It’s… made of grapes.”

(Also, apparently they have bottles of wine that are just for show and not to be drunk. Doesn’t not drinking it defeat the object of wine?)

A short while later, and they’re all smoking Izzy’s weed while talking about Creepy Andy (the “most amazing guy in the world,” apparently – Izzy, your standards need some work, girl) and “why are we doing this?” GOOD FUCKING QUESTION EMMA. Emma confesses her office-wank from Episode 2, but describes it by saying “I pleasured myself.” Ugh, is it just me or is that such a yucky, twee expression? What’s wrong with “masturbated” or even “wanked?”

Izzy is “way too insecure to feel anything but flattered” by their creepy obsession with her. Izzy, again girl, you should be feeling “creeped the fuck out.” She cannot stop thinking about them, which literally makes no sense – these two idiots are not only her clients but the most boring and nondescript clients I imagine she’s ever had the misfortune to be hired by.

A short while later, as if by magic, they’ve set up their arrangement – Jack and Emma each get two nights a week with Izzy (“we each get two dates a week with her… I mean you”) and no penetration is allowed.

Emma: “We objectified her.”
Jack: “Honey, she’s an escort!”

FUCK YOU, Jack-Not-Fred.

In the next scene, they’re in a cafe deciding who “gets” Izzy first (Emma,) and Emma very obviously foot-jobs Jack under the table. Meanwhile, Izzy spaces out in class and her roommate bullies a random boy next to her into giving her his notes. This scene serves no purpose. We then learn that Jack – who works in a goddamn SCHOOL – somehow doesn’t realise his employer can track his browser history on his work computer. This fucking guy.

Emma goes outfit shopping with Carmen, neighbour-lady-and-yoga-friend, and tells her all about how she “couldn’t poop this morning.” Um, yay? Next shot, Izzy’s roommate is working out and enquiring what Izzy gets out of her new arrangement. Umm, a SHIT TONNE OF MONEY, I imagine?

The outfit Emma eventually chooses for her date is pretty and classy. It’s kind of a shame that’s the best thing I can find to say about this nonsense. She tells Jack she wants him to “ravish” her later. These people are no unprepared for non-monogamy, it’s unreal.

Emma and Izzy start their date sweetly nervous. Izzy has an “idea” and runs off to a shop. Jack is at a party and VERY STRESSED (I think because Emma is on a date?) I actually think a lot of non-monogamous people can relate to this my-partner-is-on-a-first-date-with-someone-else stress. This is the first glimmer of Actually Getting It that this show has displayed.

Emma has taken Izzy to a roof overlooking the city. Izzy talks about being sad because Jack and Emma were sleeping in bed without her the night before, which makes no sense because 1) They’re MARRIED for fuck’s sake, 2) This is a business arrangement, supposedly, 3) She’s known them ten minutes.

Izzy talks about vegetables and “disturbing videos,” for some reason, and Emma goes off somewhere and comes back with a blanket and pillow. Emma says Izzy makes her nervous, Izzy says Emma’s beautiful, they make out. Emma peels off her shirt as the making out intensifies. I hate to say it but this is quite hot until…

Emma: “I love your eyes. They’re like doe eyes but you’ve probably heard that a million times.”

Ewwwwww.

Also Emma: “It feels so weird that you don’t have a beard.” (This would almost make sense if it was her first time with a woman except… we established she’d had plenty of same-sex experience last episode?)

Also also Emma: “I think we broke the no penetration rule.”

I’m just wondering why women in films and TV always have sex with their bra on, and next thing we know Emma is creeping in and Jack is fake-snoring. Really badly. Once she’s in bed, he pounces on her for sex but she is “orgasmed out” and tired. He says, “are you serious?” He’s clearly not happy. “I thought we had a no orgasm rule!” he says. Um, they never agreed that. They agreed on no penetration.

Jack is pissed. “I thought we were supposed to bring it home,” he says. And then, “it doesn’t look like I’m getting anything out of [this arrangement.]” Except… the two dates a week with Izzy where he gets to do the sexy times too, I guess?

“Maybe a little jealousy is good for both of us?” Emms suggests. I mean, I disagree entirely, but working through their stuff like adults might be good for them. Fat chance of that, though. Instead, Jack is threatening to do the same things on his date with Izzy. Emma seems nonplussed by this threat, since it is… entirely in keeping with what they agreed? They make out.

Izzy, in her room, stares at the ceiling with a dreamy expression then pulls up the selfie she took with Emma on her phone. She zooms in on Emma’s face, puts her hand down her pants, and… her roommate walks in! (Without knocking, which no-one who has lived with a roommate for more than five seconds would do.)

“What are you doing?” Roomie asks. “Sleeping,” Izzy replies. She was wanking, Roomie. WANKING. Roomie grabs Izzy’s phone from her hands in a spectacularly rude and invasive fashion. “Well, fuck!” she says.

And end scene.

I really don’t know how much longer I can keep doing this but if you’re enjoying these, maybe buy me the large gin I will inevitably need to delve back into this nonsense?

“Can You Be Any More Ridiculous?” (Or: “Can You Be Cool?”) – Amy Watches You Me Her, S1E2.

I live tweeted You Me Her episode 2 two weeks ago but somehow, writing about anal sex was more appealing than writing it up until now. Alas, I’ve set myself this ridiculous challenge to spare you all from this terrible TV show (and, to be entirely honest, I’m still harbouring a tiny hope it’ll redeem itself,) so here we go.

Episode 2 opens with Jack and Emma pretending that all the ridiculousness they got up to in episode 1 was all a dream. Small mercy that’d be if it was true, but alas, no. They kiss for half a second and then both screw up their faces in horror. These people have been together how long and they can’t cope with morning breath?

We cut to Izzy, she of the “college girl escort DEFINITELY NOT A HOOKER” trope, who is talking to herself in the mirror, then vomiting, then getting text messages from her creepy boyfriend, Andy, who is angry that he can’t reach her. A little later, she’s cleaning like mad. Her roommate comes home and accuses Izzy of being in a “death and resurrection cycle,” as if the symbolism needed bashing over our heads any harder.

Jack is at work. He works at a high school, and we are treated to close ups of the word INTEGRITY in the motto on the school’s sign. Okay, we get it – you’re telling us the attribute that the people in this show lack with more subtle-as-a-brick-to-the-face camera work. There’s a knock at Jack’s office door and Izzy’s voice says, “Fred? Are you in there?” Hahaha, it’s a throwback to “Jack not Fred” in Episode 1. In she comes, and we cut to Emma, who is looking at Izzy on the escort site on her work computer (just to further hammer home the point that these people are 1) unhealthily obsessed with this much younger woman who they hired as a PROFESSIONAL, and 2) completely lacking in any kind of basic common sense.)

Back in Jack’s office, Izzy is climbing on his desk and telling him all about what a bad girl she is, just as Emma slips her vibrating mobile phone between her legs on her desk chair (true confession: I used to wank that way when I was thirteen, before I discovered the joys of the electric toothbrush. Buy a goddamn vibrator, Emma. And please don’t use it at work, ever.)

Izzy’s making out with Jack, then – wait, what? – she’s making out with Emma, too, and…. oh no, it was all just a fantasy and Emma has been walked in on, very obviously masturbating in her office, by a young male co-worker.

Izzy moans, “Jack.” A male voice says, “Jack?” And our hero comes back down to earth, dream-Izzy gone, and realises he’s been caught having a lurid sexual fantasy at work by his boss. Emma makes an inappropriate sexual comment to her terrified young co-worker and then promises to write him an excellent recommendation (in exchange, one assumes, for keeping quiet about catching her mid phone-wank.) How do you spell “Hostile Work Environment?”

Izzy pseudo-meditates, for some reason while hanging half upside-down off her bed, then Creepy Andy calls and they make a date. Jack is now hanging out with his brother again, (he of the “definitely cheat with a sex worker to improve your sex life with your wife” advice) and talking about having great sex with Emma but fantasising about Izzy. This leads the brother to compare women to cars. Fuck off, Jack’s brother, you misogynistic prick.

Meanwhile, Emma does some weirdly orgasmic yoga and comes out with, “I’m having some kind of mind-body renaissance.” What the fuck is this I can’t even. She then tells her yoga friend (remember Neighbour Lady? Her name is Carmen) about how great she is at hooking up with girls. Carmen refers to Izzy as “that hideously deformed grad student” and all I can think is God, this show really hates women. To top it off, Carmen goes straight to, “if you’re into girls why not me?” and calls her a “big lesbo.” It hates bisexuals too, apparently. Cool cool.

Next up, Izzy’s date with Creepy Andy, who is clearly mad at her. “I’m trying really hard to be patiently submissive here,” she says while he glowers. Heads up Izzy, if you feel the need to be “patiently submissive” in your relationship and it’s not consensual D/s, you might be being abused.

“I think you might be my penance,” he says, and there’s a veiled reference to “evil deeds” in his past. Well, now this reminds me of the time my ex told me I was a curse. Thanks, stupid show. Apparently they’re going on a date because Andy wants romance.

Back in the therapist’s office, Emma tells her bisexual origin story (a totally sweet and normal college romance with a girlfriend, with only a tiny little bit of “being dared to kiss by a guy” thrown in) and Jack is pulling out all the biphobic judgement. “I’m embarrassed for you even telling this story,” he says. Fuck you, Jack-Not-Fred. Also, apparently her having dated women in the past (BEFORE THEY MET) is worse than him having sought out a sex worker with the express intention of cheating (LIKE LAST WEEK.) So there’s that.

Prettied up now, Izzy is back out with Andy. This guy has some serious toxic masculinity issues going on. Apparently he’s “hot enough to be a dick,” which is definitely not a thing. But, again, he wants romance and will even make her breakfast. I hate every single person in this show.

At home, Jack and Emma are lying on the floor for some reason and declaring their love for each other. “It wasn’t a thing!” says Emma of her bisexuality. Emma, having dated four women is definitely a “thing.” Stop erasing your own sexuality, other people do enough of that for us.

Communicating entirely in eyebrow waggling, they decide they want to have a threesome with Izzy. Next shot, Izzy is walking up the drive to their house while a neighbour across the street spies out of her window. Then Izzy’s at the door and supremely awkward “hi”s are exchanged. She smiles, and…. end scene.

I’m not sure if I’m more depressed that people are calling this nonsense a great portrayal of polyamory, or that there are still 10 more episodes for me to get through.

Buy me a gin to get me through this stupid task I have for some reason undertaken?

“Bad Writing and Clunky Dialogue and Crap” (or: “Cigarettes and Funions and Crap”) – Amy Watches You Me Her, S1E1.

Contains Spoilers.

I have set myself this ridiculous challenge of watching and reviewing new Netflix drama You Me Her so that you don’t have to. I was really, really hoping to have more nice things to say but as it is, I think I’m going to have to get through this by making fun of it mercilessly. You can follow what I think as I’m watching at #CKWatchesYouMeHer.

The premise is simple: a married couple invite a young college student, who also happens to be an escort, into their relationship. Things go about as well as can be expected.

Episode 1 – Cigarettes and Funions and Crap – opens with suburban white married couple, Jack and Emma, at what we assume is a couple’s counselling session, bemoaning the fact that they don’t have kids yet and lying about how often they have sex. Cliche the first. We meet their equally boring and suburban neighbours in two minutes of screen time that serve absoluely no purpose whatsoever except to illustrate that Emma is friends with the wife of the couple next door. Okie-dokie then.

Coming home late from a night out, Emma walks in on Jack masturbating and things get weirdly sex-shamey. Yes, he’s a grown man who likes to masturbate. Deal with it. (On a completely unrelated aside, can the notion that people in relationships don’t/shouldn’t masturbate just die in a fire already?) They have some weird, aggressive and totally unsexy sex wherein she tries to get him to spank her and he doesn’t seem keen.

Eight minutes in, I tweet “this is about as romantic as a root canal.” Also, weren’t jokes about married couples not liking sex any more fresh and edgy in about… 1842?

Jack is advised to cheat on his wife with an escort, in order to save their marriage/sex life, by his brother. For some inexplicable reason, he goes for it straight away and we are subjected to his excruciating date with young escort ‘Izzy’ (inexplicably her real name. Nothing about this show makes any sense.) For our next cliche here, we have “college students who are also escorts to pay the rent.” (“But we’re ESCORTS, not h**kers, which is totally different because sex work stigma or something, no-one seems to have a convincing argument for this…?”)

The dialogue throughout this show is so badly written it’s painful. Jack comes out with such gems as “you are also unhideous,” to which Izzy replies “that’s cool. D’you wanna make out?” SEXY. The writers do, however, get in a “unicorn” quip, for which I have nothing but respect.

He rips her shirt. They make out for like two minutes and then he realises he “CAN’T DO THIS” and right on cue Emma calls and Izzy just… leaves. That’s like three cliches in one, yes? Actually, this probably some nice foreshadowing for what’s to come when a horribly dysfunctional triad inevitably materialises out of this mess. At home, Jack confesses to Emma and she’s understandably pissed. Sadly, this mainly comes out as anti-sex work rhetoric and her wanting to see pictures of Izzy. Because “does she have nicer skin than me?” (something Emma worries about in the next scene) is totally a bigger issue than her husband having massively and deliberately violated her trust.

We cut to, presumably, a day or two later. Emma is out with her friend Neighbour Lady (I need to look up the character’s name even though she serves no actual purpose thus far) and telling her about Jack’s tryst with Izzy. Neighbour Lady asks Emma what she’s going to do… and then poof! Izzy appears in a puff of unicorn glitter (okay, not quite) and asks for “Lola.” Because the totally sane thing to do when your husband cheats on you with an escort is hire the same escort yourself.

We’re seventeen minutes in and I’m tweeting, “this show is 1000% ludicrous.”

Izzy is drunk because she’s never been on a date with a woman before, and she awkwardly toe-fucks Emma under the table. Only the tablecloth isn’t even very long, so everyone in the restaurant can see their drunken, extremely unsexy toe sex. These two have less than zero chemistry and their subsequent kiss in the bathroom a few minutes later (after Emma confesses who she is and grabs Izzy in a way that totally bypasses even the most cursory consideration for consent) reminds me of all the worst bits of The L Word mashed together into one. And it’s about as realistic.

Emma confesses to Jack what she’s done and he seems surprisingly fine with it. She also drops in here that she’s been with women before. How can you be married to someone for many years and not tell them a huge detail like that you’re bisexual!? The fact that she’s cheated is glossed over, because it’s not really cheating when it’s between two women, is it? (Spoiler alert: it is.)

We’re twenty-one minutes in and I’m getting a bit angry.

In the next scene, Jack hangs around outside Izzy’s building and presses the buzzer repeatedly until she comes along and talks to him. Can anyone say STALKER ALERT? Seriously, this behaviour is creepy as hell and not okay. He then goes home to Emma and goes down on her on the kitchen floor (without removing or even moving her dress at all, because that’s how TV Sex works) while Izzy goes home and cries because she’s sick of getting caught up in other people’s bullshit and wants to quit escorting.

This show has all the hallmarks of “cute young bi women exist to save failing cishet marriages” and, by the time the credits roll on episode 1, I’m thoroughly unimpressed and possibly even a bit depressed.

A ridiculous premise. Characters I am totally incapable of caring about. Plot holes out the wazoo. Sex-negativity, sex worker stigma and gross stereotypes. Literally the only thing this show has going for it is the fact that it’s brought something that might, kinda, vaguely resemble polyamory (if you squint hard) to mainstream TV screens.

If you want me to keep reviewing this crap, buy me a coffee gin to keep me going.