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Fifty Shades of Crap: Why Fifty Shades is a Total Travesty

Members of the BDSM and kink community have their differences. Disagreements and varying definitions (not to mention that, sometimes being kinky is all we have common) frequently cause the type of drama that makes nighttime soap operas seem like Barney and Friends. However, there is one thing most people in the community agree on almost universally. That is--and I want to put this as eloquently as possible--Fifty Shades of Grey sucks big fat donkey balls.

If you're unfamiliar with the books or the community, you may ask, why? There are a variety of reasons. So let's go over them and make them clear. Ready?

First, the writing is just bad, and that's coming from me as a first time writer. Unrealistic characters behaving in ridiculous ways, asinine dialogue and a meaningless plot all converge to form a story more absurd and incomprehensible than a Victoria Jackson stand-up routine. The whole disaster started as, of all things, Twilight fan fiction. After it mysteriously became popular with a reader base who proved that they could, indeed, be even dumber than everyone thought, author (I use the term loosely) E. L. James changed the character names and situations. In the new, independent draft, the stalker-y vampire was now a stalker-y billionaire and the innocent and naive student was now a moronic and bratty student. Truly inspired. The two start a whirlwind romance laced with, not only BDSM, but also distrust, dysfunction and reactionary childishness. Add to all that, the dialogue and descriptions are dumber than a soda pop commercial. I swear, if Anastasia referred to her, "inner goddess," one more time, I was going to find Erika James and slap her dead in the face...and not in a sexy way.

 If all that wasn't bad enough, there's the infantile take on the BDSM lifestyle. Reading the pablum that passes for a novel, it's blatantly obvious that the sum total of James knowledge of the BDSM subculture was acquired after a hasty Wikipedia search. It all but says so in the book, even. It's sad and insulting. Nevermind Anastasia's bratty resistance and incessant nagging of her new lover to let her in. Christian Grey himself is an embarrassment as a Dom. Not only is he a stalker who is unreasonably possessive, just as childish as his youthful, novice sub, unable to effectively negotiate and wildly obsessive, but he's also utterly incapable of doing the single most important thing in a kink relationship, communicating.

But, of course, the worst part of the story, the part that pisses most of the community off, is the way it portrays kinksters. Apparently, we're like this because we are damaged somehow. Be it through abuse or being exposed to inappropriate situations at an early age or whatever, we supposedly like whips and collars and have fetishes because there is something "wrong" with us. The title of the book even comes from a line in the dialogue where Christian explains to Anastasia that he's, "fifty shades of fucked up."

Understandably, kinksters don't like this, any more than the LGBT community appreciates being compared to child molesters. Or maybe it's more like the concept of contracting Bill O'Reilly to write the screenplay for Straight Outta Compton. Whatever the case, it's inaccurate, disrespectful and wrong.

If you haven't struggled through the Fifty Shades series, I'd say, don't bother. Truthfully, I only read them so I could do things like writing this blog post. You can't critique what you don't know. However, if no one expects you to have an opinion on the frustrating, offensive, sloppy mess Erika James slathered all over the pages of her trilogy, you can borrow mine.

Fifty Shades of Grey is weapons grade garbage.


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