Saturday, December 10, 2016

Filthy Shades Part IV - The Biggest Insult to the BDSM Community Ever

Never been a fan of Fifty Shades, but rewriting history with part four of the shady trilogy, gets me cross.  There is no cure and nobody oughta look for one. No excuses. We all are who we are. Period.

fifty shades of grey parental advisory
At least they got the parental advisory right.

Today's world chops up each and every "life experience" into easily digestable slices intended for riskfree and smooth consumption. To live is no longer to experience, but being able to brag about homogeneous, bland and zero-risk – whatever – thingies. All that matters is to cross it off your bucket list. Whatever it is.  One tweet is all you are allowed to enjoyed. Followed by an endless parade of your 1,000 closest friends who trumph you by saying: "Been there, done that. What took you so long?" The burden of modern day society: aka conformity. Not playing by the rules is even worse. Haven't swam in boiling hot lava before the age of ten? Your life is over before it begins. Jump into an active volcano and just get it over with.

For the most part BDSM has escaped that faith. Life in the shadows kept us safe, kind of surviving in the eye of the storm. Even those most devoted to it, find it hard to capture kink's essence. Let’s keep it that way. Of course there are always some lost souls who come up with "me so horny". If wisdom doesn't come with age, nothing a free cassette player for their car won't cure. Just press play and then repeat.

Fifty Shades attempted to penetrate the femdom & BDSM fortress. With every new novel the press climaxed even further. Desperate housewives read it, wondering "where is my Fifty Million Dollar Baby?" Let's be honest, Filthy Shades has nothing to do with the beauty of honest kink - you know the kind where it is about two people - rather than two ships in the night, abusing another to get their fix. Fifty Shades is one long, raunchy tale that glorifies male-led abuse. Such behaviour is perfectly acceptable, but only if you are male and loaded. The almighty green-back has sanctioned abusive behaviour for several hundreds of years. The dollar bills allows institutionalized misogyny to entrench itself even deeper. The only thing that surprises me, is why it takes four books to make a single point. Sorry, my bad. Money not only makes the world go round, it also solves any circular reference, I guess.

To sugar-coat the whole pipe dream of love always equals pain and suffering for the partner without power (read money), let me present you the dream of all dreams: naive young girl "blossoms" and suffers in her journey of discovery. If "blossom" is the word you prefer for forcing harsh and painful lessons about life onto someone you pretend to love, good luck. Not exactly suffering for arts' sake - nobody ever claimed Filthy Shades is about that -  but pain apparently is essential to someone's transformation. I still don't know if it is his or hers. In the end, after a lot of misery, you really cannot tell whether it is about desire, free will or a pure heart. Despite all that the female protagonist transforms the king of weirdo's into an obedient and meek, yet happily  domesticated Prince Charming ‘n’ Loaded. Obviously she deserves the loaded part as compensation for her suffering, which still has nothing to do with the concept of consensual.

Now tell me, who is the dominant one in this story? If you don't get it here is a clue: "There is something behind the throne greater than the King himself." So who is really in control?  What if a little suffering is the price you have to pay for being in control?
It would have been much more interesting if her maturity and financial means matched his. Given the outcome, there would have been fireworks from page one of the first instalment of Filth Shades. A run for his money would have been an understatement. Such an outcome obviously is highly undesirable to some...

Rather than spice it up and rewrite history to allow people a second and preferably more healthy and balanced look into the lives of the world's most famous sadomasochistic shape-shifting couple, the author decides to do it over all again. Not being content on having nurtured a wicked wealthy sadist, she takes a stab at everyone who has ever experimented with anything other than the missionary position. Married couples only of course.

Over the course of three books, the author forgot to mention one thing. Mr Gray can't help himself. Life has treated him unfair. Out of all those 7 billion people, mother nature singled him out. As if being handsome, wealthy and getting all that he wants - yes such desires include non-consensual abuse - life burdens him with a sexual preference few people will ever understand or share. Rather than be a [dominant] man about it, be honest and make the best of what is, he seduces a girl and lures her into what can only be described as a life of misery. BDSM is not her thing. Freaky stuff is what she yearns for, or something like that. She is even weirder than he is. The poor gall prefers love over lust.

Unfortunately, Mr. Bad Guy chooses the wrong girl. After three volumes, she ends up on top in every single way imaginable. To underline his innocence and good nature - I woke up one morning and all of a sudden there was a red room of pain in my house, so I felt obliged to make the non-consensual best of it - the author chooses to portray C. as a victim. It is hard to believe we are all victims and no-one is actually guilty or responsible for the choices he or she makes.

If you want to poke fun of men, emasculating them by removing their free will - it wasn't me, evil from above - there is no better way than this. Unfortunately it also takes away the victory from the woman who manages to wrestle herself from under him, despite the abuse and manipulation, to come up on top triumphantly. It is no longer her personal strength that heals and transforms him and the very nature of their relationship. He is not really the man he is, rather CG is just one more lost soul, looking for salvation. His ex slave girl is downgraded to a mere vehicle for redemption. A convenient instrument of choice that allows him to redeem himself. In the process, she is reduced from a strong woman - discovering life and the baddies that are part of it - to a vessel by which he heals himself. Sounds familiar?

To summarize what has happened so far: at first there was an evil, abusive strong protagonist, whose money allowed him to get his way in a world where priceless doesn't exist. After all everything in life has a price-tag attached. The young woman started out a little green and naive, but we've all been there when we were young. She learns, adapts  and grows. In the end she comes out on top, give or take a few million dollars. That's strength of character and a happy end. But apparently that was too much for the powers that be. To start out as immoral, rich, handsome, sexually deviant and having your way - which is kind of OK - when book one begins, only to end up folding nappies at the end of the trilogy is too much of an existential threat to the freemasogynists' view of the world. The once mighty protagonist is mentally cuckolded, with his natural born sadism lost in the process. With a divorce looming over his head, half his trillion dollar fortune is at risk. Age probably hasn't been treated him kindly either. Time to declare an emergency.

How to steer this highly influential novel towards a less destructive direction? Quite a few freemasogynists double as career politicians, who always come up with the same solution:
"Point the finger at the usual suspects"
"Blame someone else."

If you do not recognize this trick, it's because at a press conference, it sounds like:
"It wasn't me."

So they decided to strip Christian Gray of whatever was left of his dignity and a fourth book was ordered. The usual presumptuous title, akin to something like "My trials and tribulations" did not feel quite right for this massive intervention. Besides, retired politicians usually write their memories. Such books are autobiographic attempts to rewrite the past by erasing failures. Fairytales like that emphasize that  events that happened while in office were out of control. Such words a spindoctor speak for washing one's hands in innocence. Officials didn't fail, reality didn't abide by the rules. As a result of that n how they messed up everything. What is left, is a fictional account of their years in office in which they  often attempt to mask their failures while in power by rectifying reality and morph it into a fictional account of what should have their legacy if only they had done their jobs properly. is their legacy is to be, did not feel humble like it should. Ask yourself: who wants to read  by Christian Gray after everything that happened?

Pity the fool who heralded Fifty Shades as the saviour of kinky people everywhere. A daring topic. Once they've read it, people will understand. Accept those who embrace an alternative sexuality and we can be who we are. Free from judgement and ridicule.

Who were they kidding? The three books together painted a picture of BDSM, which is little fun, emphasizes desire over people and is very much non-consensual. No her choices are not the outcome of free will. Love turns us all into slave. It makes fools of us all. We suffer for it and then some more without knowing if it serves any purposes or if there is any future to it. Only two slaves in love can lift each others bonds. Only then one can decide how one wants to love and whether there is any room for mistress and slave in it.

But I have to hand it to them. Foretelling the iceberg in front of the Titanic, they raised the alarm and changed directions. Bourgeoisie has been saved for now. The dom that was reduced to slave is painful enough for the BDSM community. It feels like saying you kinksters are not real people. Your feeling don't matter. They are fake. Your reality is only there for us to exploit and make money of it. Somewhere in the process we messed up. A strong man changing who he is for the woman he loves, now that is terribly inconvenient. Yes we kinda emasculated him, oops. To make things right we have to take away her achievements and reduce her story of how she reached adulthood into something sad n sobby. Of course, he couldn't help himself. He never wanted it, so we're going with the feeble excuse of “it wasn't me” in book for. Too bad if we have to sacrifice the heroine and take away his last shred of dignity, but we have no other choice.

And that is why BDSM will forever live in the shadows. Yes the circus comes to town every now and then. Somebody makes money of it. Let’s be honest: freaks are funny. And if you are not a ‘riel’ freak, you can be cured. Whatever truth is most convenient - and translates into cash. Other than that: same old, same old.

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