Back in 2010, the MPAA ignited a huge (and silly) furor while initially penalizing Blue Valentine for the scene where Ryan Gosling’s character delivers oral sex to the woman portrayed by Michelle Williams. It wasn’t a great look to effectively censor a female orgasm (and the scene didn’t even show nudity), and there have, of course, been non-penalized portrayals of the female orgasm. Everyone always thinks of Meg Ryan’s When Harry Met Sally performance, but The Daily Show‘s Desi Lydic dug deep on the topic and emerged with a few winners. And the most praised-filled salute goes to Netflix’s Bridgerton, which scored far more points than Katherine Heigl’s and Jennifer Aniston’s unfortunately-written scenes in The Ugly Truth and Bruce Almighty, respectively.
Phoebe Waller-Bridge gave herself a much better end of the deal in Fleabag, but yes, let’s talk about Bridgerton (with the relevant scenes starring Regé-Jean Page and Phoebe Dynevor), which made a point of focusing on female pleasure and scored big time with Netflix audiences as a result. Lydic described the show as “nineteenth century British society taking care of their little women” while adding of Dnyevor’s Daphne character, “She’s a Beth in the streets, but a Jo in the sheets.” She then concluded, “Thanks to Bridgerton, there haven’t been this many female orgasms since, well, everyone started watching Bridgerton.”
Lydic’s not wrong (as SNL recently observed). Nor was Last Week Tonight host John Oliver when he bluntly described the series as “lots of jizzing in blankets on that show.” It’s quite a show. My regards to the Duke.