Virginity suddenly a hot topic on TV
LOS ANGELES – When it comes to the small screen, the flavor of the month is -- virginity! Who's a virgin, why they’re a virgin, when they intend to no longer be a virgin -- you name it.
Here are a few examples.
- On last week’s episode of “Game of Thrones,” the wilding Ygritte finally persuades Man of the Night’s Watch Jon Snow to do way with his chastity vows.
- Over on “Mad Men,” copywriter Michael Ginsberg confessed to his date that he had “never had sex – not even once.”
- A recent episode of “New Girl” titled “Virgins” featured flashbacks of its characters “first times.”
- And now Yahoo! is preparing to debut an online show on the hot-button topic called, wait for it, “Losing Your Virginity With John Stamos.” The series will apparently revolve around the former “Full House” star interviewing fellow celebrities about their first sexual experiences.
So what’s with the sudden Hollywood obsession?
Television critic Dan Heching says Hollywood uses a revolving door of sexually-charged themes. “First it was prostitutes, then MILFs, now it’s back to virgins,” he told FOX411's Pop Tarts column. “It’s pretty evident that any fodder for sexual fantasy can double as fodder for mass entertainment.”
Educational leadership expert Dr. Janet Rose Wojtalik thinks it goes even deeper than that.
“Possibly our state of affairs, which includes an overabundance of themes of submissiveness, promiscuity and misplaced values has created an insecurity in our society,” she said. “When this happens we begin to feel out of control. These themes are a way for us to regain power, or at least a feeling of power.”
But what kind of impact does all the television talk of sex – or lack thereof – have on young, impressionable viewers?
“The mixed messages found on TV in regards to sex from teen pregnancy to celibacy are more likely to confuse today’s slate of young viewers than educate them. If we taught the impressionable audience that things are gray, rather than black and white, they would be more apt to make informed decisions on their own,” explained life coach Kimberly Friedmutter. “Parents shouldn’t be fooled by this wolf in sheep’s clothing. If a program is tackling the subject of virginity, then sex and sensuality are also going to be front and center.”
Wojtalik argues that these recurrent themes can also open the door for necessary discussions.
“(This could) be ‘catchy’ and send our adolescents the message that a return to holding on to innocence, integrity and purity, and postponing early sexualization will make them stronger,” she added. “I don’t think it’s such a bad thing. It’s a great conversation starter for parents and will give them the opportunity to have a good discussion with their children about their sexual values, one that may be well-received.”