A Lesbian Reacts to “Lesbians React to Sex Scenes in Blue Is the Warmest Color

Expanding the LGBTQ Conversation
Nov. 12 2013 1:18 PM

A Lesbian Reacts to “Lesbians React to Sex Scenes in Blue Is the Warmest Color

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Still from "Lesbians React to Sex Scenes in Blue Is the Warmest Color"

When I first started to watch “Lesbians React to Sex Scenes in Blue Is the Warmest Color,” Yeni Sleidi’s six-minute video for Posture, it seemed like a perfect match of form and format: an overlong series of close-ups showing women watching an overlong series of close-ups.

Those early Crying While Eating-style shots of four lesbians (and a cat) judging the choreography of a 10-minute scene in which two straight actresses simulate sex—and finding it wanting—are lovely. As deep breathing turns orgasmic, the young dykes crane their necks to get a better view of the action, adjust their glasses, and distractedly apply lip gloss. Occasionally they unsuccessfully stifle a giggle.

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I wish Sleidi had maintained that silent conceit for the whole video, though I concede that the final five minutes—in which an unseen questioner asks the confident young women what they thought of the scene—have their moments, especially Heather’s observation that in real lesbian sex, “there’s a whole lot more crying.”

But there is one topic on which I must disagree with Hella, Taylor, Heather, and Zia: As occasionally confusing as the girl-on-girl action of Blue Is the Warmest Color can be, it is light years more convincing than the bedroom action on The L Word, up to and including “Bette and pregnant Tina sex.”

June Thomas is a Slate culture critic and editor of Outward, Slate’s LGBTQ section.