When critics asked if the sex scenes [in HBO's new show, Tell Me You Love Me] were faked or real, actress Michelle Borth became suddenly defensive. “We are not porn stars. We're actors,” she harrumphed.
From "The Latest Shock and Awe " by L. Brent Bozell III, posted 7/23/07 at CultureandMediaInstitute.org
...HBO, long honored as the leading grenade launcher in TV’s culture wars, is now lowering itself into pornography in a show called Tell Me You Love Me. The series deals with the personal relationships and sex lives of four committed couples – in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and even in their 60s. Jane Alexander, the actress whose prominent recent role was serving as head of the National Endowment for the Arts under Bill Clinton, plays the therapist for the younger couples, and doubles as half of the 60-something couple in the graphic sex scenes.
How jarring is the sex going to be? Washington Post TV critic Lisa DeMoraes praised the first episode for its “tour de force masturbation performance in the opening scene.” In the Los Angeles Times, Scott Collins described the ending of that episode: “the climax, if you will, of the first episode finds a woman in her 30s masturbating her husband to orgasm, with the entire act and all relevant body parts plainly visible.”
When critics asked if the sex scenes were faked or real, actress Michelle Borth became suddenly defensive. “We are not porn stars. We're actors,” she harrumphed. It’s the tired line of the avant-garde elites: it’s not pornography, it’s “art.” But even if the sex is simulated, the HBO actors’ drawn-out graphic scenes of bed-pounding action serve only one purpose: to arouse the viewer. These actors are porn stars.
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