The 2nd installment of the 50 Shades of Grey series has hit theaters. It reminds me how much I really loathe this whole series. Aside from the fact that it’s a Twilight fanfiction, a horribly written one at that, it’s full of fake BDSM and real abuse.
I want to touch on a few things, but first let me explain that I haven’t seen the movies. I’ve read through most of the first book and I honestly just couldn’t finish it. So, my comments will be solely based on what I’ve actually read. If you want to read some amazing commentary on all three I highly suggest checking out Jenny Trout’s blog. She did an amazing job dissecting them. Jenny Reads 50 Shades
Ok, so on to the criticism. When I first started reading I was most unimpressed with the horrible writing. But, I kept at it. I mean, smut isn’t generally known for it’s good writing. Don’t get me wrong, there are some amazing smut writers out there. I happen to be good friends with one. But, not all smut writers have her amazing writing skills, so I just kept reading hoping the story was at least semi-decent. Although that editor should be fired.
Although not my main focus, I do want to touch on Kate for a moment. I liked Kate. She seemed like the sane one. However, Kate apologizes a lot to Ana. Like, way more that she should. Ana is actually quit the bitch to Kate. It irked me. I almost stopped reading here, but I kept going, because smut.
In chapter 3 Kate gets to finally meet Christian. This is where my ears started to perk up a bit and I wondered what kind of crap I was actually reading. I mean, aside from poorly written crap. Kate was all gung ho that Ana had a crush on Christian in the beginning, but now she’s all like OMG stop! She got that creeper vibe from him and tries to warn her.
“Ana, there’s something about him.” Her tone is full of warning. “He’s gorgeous, I agree, but I think he’s dangerous. Especially to someone like you.”
Something about him! Girls, if I had listened to all the warnings my friends gave me about that vibe a guy gives them I would have been single for a long ass time. Maybe to someone who hasn’t suffered abuse this line seems like no big deal. But, for me, it’s a big red flag. Dangerous, especially to someone like you. That equates to you’re naive and he will exploit that. That equates to, Ana run, you’re easy to manipulate and he WILL manipulate you!
I almost stopped reading, but I at this point my curiosity got the better of me. I wanted to see if I was right about this line. Maybe the author didn’t mean it that way. Could be an innocent mistake. So I kept going. Very few times have I been this sad to be right.
In the same chapter Ana and Christian have coffee/tea. Ana tells him what kind of tea she likes and the literal next thing that happens is Christian says is
“I see. Is he your boyfriend?”
WTF that escalated quickly. Maybe you should have asked her if she had a boyfriend BEFORE you asked her for coffee. The jealousy in that line hit me right in the face. So did the terribleness of Christian, er I mean Mr. Grey. He actually tells Ana not to call him Christian. Says she hasn’t earned the right to do so. Um, you asked her out socially and you’re telling her she has to call you Mr. Grey? Run Ana, run far far away. LISTEN TO KATE.
The next few chapters keep up the trend. It was really bothersome, but I got through it. Chapter 4 we learned that Christian (screw my earning that right) is a stalker. He legit tracks Ana down in a bar. She tells him not to, and he comes anyway. He tracked her cell phone. One more time for the people in the back HE TRACKED HER CELL PHONE. Look:
“I tracked your cell phone Anastasia.”
Oh, of course he did. How is that possible? Is it legal? Stalker, my subconscious whispers at me through the cloud of tequila that’s still floating in my brain, but somehow, because it’s him, I don’t mind.
He tracked her, but it’s ok cause he’s cute y’all. Listen to your brain Ana, he’s a stalker. At this point I was upset that I was right. Christian Grey is not an ideal mate. The next few chapters are more of the same only with bits of sex in there. It is supposed to be smut after all. What finally broke me and made me wish I had bought the book so I could throw it against my wall (I was reading via computer, a lot costlier to throw against a wall) was when Christian comes to Ana’s house. He didn’t think she was joking about saying no to his offer so he showed up at her house. Creepy. Then, he rapes her. Yes, he pins her down, she says no, and he has sex with her anyway.
This is not ok. This is not BDSM. Yes, there are rape fetishes. Yes, there is consensual non consent. The thing is, both of those scenarios there is prior consent from both partners. That’s not what happened here. I stopped reading after that. I couldn’t finish it. Maybe it ends better, who knows. But for me, that was the breaking point.
Something that really bothered me was the way BDSM was portrayed. There was no trust. Ana goes from virgin to OMG l’ll let him do whatever he wants cause he’s hot. He pushes her to limits and he ignores safe words. That’s not ok. She has no idea what she’s even doing. BDSM is 100% trust. It’s not built on abuse and it’s supposed to be safe when done properly.
I’ve always had kinks. But you start small. You explore a kink and see where it leads. The thing is, while I was in abusive relationships I didn’t explore those kinks. I refused to. Yes, there were times my A1 and A2 forced me to do more than I was comfortable with. But, the issue wasn’t that I didn’t want to do them. The issue was that I didn’t want to do them WITH THEM. The trust wasn’t there at all. Luckily, I’m finally with someone I trust with everything. I know how deeply he respects me and that he actually cares about my well being.
Keep this things in mind, my friends. You like what you like, and that is great. In the words of a great friend “don’t yuck someone else’s yum.” But also, be careful. Don’t confuse BDSM with an abusive relationship. If you are uncomfortable with someone your partner should respect that, ALWAYS.