What is that? A character that’s allowed to be asexual and say it and be happy they figured a part of their identity out? A character that’s asexual and it’s not used as a punchline to a joke or as an excuse to shit on asexuality (looking at you, House MD)?
Honestly, I was a bit scared of this season 4. I haven’t even identified as asexual for long, but I already know media have had trouble putting us in shows without disrespecting our identities, without making fun of us and spreading harmful ideas about it (thanks again, House MD) or without telling us that all we needed was to find a person willing to harass us sexually enough until we’d give in to their sexual demands (thank you, The Big Bang Theory, for turning Amy into a sex-crazed nymphomaniac out of nowhere and forcing Sheldon into a relationship he’s never wanted to begin with). I was scared that Netflix would pull some similar shit too.
So when in episode 1 of this new season Emily said “asexual” I sort of doubled back because… the word was uttered? In its specificity? It’s a thing that was said without dodging the concept? Oh my god. The interesting thing about that conversation in the season premiere is that Todd’s reaction is not one that differs too much from my own, back when I first heard of asexuality. I definitely did reject the label (back then I only identified as bi and thought I was settled, that I’d figured it out, but especially that I might be a weirdo but I wasn’t “that much of a weirdo” so I understand wanting to distance yourself from the label of asexuality. It’s one that threatens everything you grow up with, it threatens what you might already believe of yourself, and maybe it comes at a time when you’re not ready for it. But then finally Todd embraced it, and… “it actually feels nice to say it out loud”. I feel you, buddy. I feel you so much. And then going to a group for aces? Accepting himself? And that expression he makes when he meets them, it’s how I felt when I accepted myself. And that is just… so much. I’m so proud and happy right now. I was always used to linking asexuality with shame at least outside of the internet, and it’s the first time I see it treated as something normal and not something to be ashamed of or something to change and “fix”. Take note, other tv shows, this is how you do it.
Also, another note: it’s such a nice coincidence that Tim Gunn was in this episode!
No matter where we go
Or even if we don’t
And even if they try
They’ll never take my body from your side
I decided to try out a totally new style here. I think it looks pretty neat. It was also perspective practice. I’m not totally satisfied with it but hey, that’s what practice is for.
Song: “Love Don’t Die” by The Fray. It’s SO PERFECT for these two, like… seriously, please listen to it.