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Fifty shades of Grey. Seriously, why the hype?

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posted on Feb, 17 2015 @ 06:24 PM
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Its sort of Story of O light.....and to be honest that can only be best described as crap.
edit on 17/2/15 by Freeborn because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 12:02 AM
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originally posted by: RedCairo
Actually in rereading this I think I've been kind of being a jerk, a little, but I'm not sure why. I apologize for that.


Well, I don't feel you were. I decided to tackle a controversial side in this topic, which challenges us both and stirs strong opinions. That's okay, and is sometimes constructive.

It is evident to me that you are rational and have positive motivations!
edit on 18-2-2015 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 12:22 AM
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originally posted by: thepitpony
a reply to: Bluesma

In my opinion the film would have been improved considerable if they had focused on the points you made about his need for structure and control as a troubled teenager and the impact that 'Mrs Robinson' had on this troubled youth. This may be rectified in the other books but not really imparted in the movie, and not knowing the reasons why he became a sub for this woman or any information on his emotional teen angst just left me with the impression that he had issues with women due to his deceased prostitute mother and his abusive childhood, delivering pain to women was a mental and physical revenge against the mother who let him down so badly. As I have said before I haven't read the books so I do not know when Anna finds this information out, but maybe they should have tried to expand (if only slightly) on his past and how he came to be in this position of a dom, this may have given Mr Grey a side you could sympathise with and not just portraying him a control freak who likes hurting women.


I have not yet seen the film.... but this was exactly what I was wondering about. I wondered if the more subtle and meaningful aspects of the story were eliminated to make it into the portrayal of women and men as pure sex machines, that want to hurt others, or be hurt by others.

The book was much more clear on the other aspects- Anna had trouble understanding how Christians' first dom "saved" him or had any positive effect at all, in helping him gain self control and self confidence.... until she started to have the same effect happen to her.

"The Secretary" painted this dynamic much more clearly. A self destructive young woman (a cutter) who finds herself unhappy and somewhat drifting in life, stuck living with her mother, feels attracted to her boss, who we slowly become aware has tendencies towards domination in relationships.

One thing I saw in that film, in that which I am guessing made some women uncomfortable is the way she repeatedly tried to provoke him. From what I observe and experience, women often try to provoke men to assert their power overtly and aggressively, but some are very dishonest with themselves about that. They refuse to admit they played a part in that, and fall back on the innocent victim card. -This is what I object to in the current popular treatment of these books! Some of the most outspoken deniers are the groups which encourage women to believe themselves to be innocent victims of evil men.

I guess the reason is that no one wants to go to the other extreme and say "women want to be abused" so we just avoid admitting anything at all. Fear of slippery slope syndrome.

But in The Secretary, we watch the mans obsession with self control and discipline. In one scene, she covertly watches him working out hard on his exercise machine late at night.... you can see her being wistful- "I wish I had that same determination and self discipline!" Her eyes seem to say.

In Fifty Shades, we are supposed to just assume, based on Grey's financial success and reputation as a power man, that he must have great focus, determination and self discipline.... but it isn't clearly illustrated, which leave things open to superficial interpretations like "women just want money and will do anything for it"- for those who choose to believe such things.
edit on 18-2-2015 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 11:21 AM
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One of my pet peeves is internet debate when someone hasn't RTFM or the actual materials in question. I realized I'd actually been doing that -- I had only read "selected excerpts" (from people who hated it) of the first book. The back of my head that waxes on about integrity had an issue with my insulting it publicly and repeatedly given that. So with much inner griping, since I had other things to do (but I read at enormous speed when I want), I got the three books on kindle which were cheap and read them. Took longer than I expected.

Thoughts: it actually wasn't written nearly as badly as the selected excerpts and rants made it sound like. I found myself thinking all that criticism was rather overdone -- this is a genre and it is written as well as most anything else in that genre and better than many. Maybe that doesn't say much for the genre... I'd agree. But it doesn't make the author worth singling out for that.

And there was a lot more 'sympathetic to the male' (defense or context for his behavior) text than the excerpts portraying him as simply a psycho represented, for sure. That's an important point since it's the main insult (after writing) leveled at the book.

It's not that the excerpts or comments were wrong so much as that pulled out of the larger context they do seem a little over the top to me now.

The first book in particular was certainly inspirational to my body, while my brain was off having intellectual opinions, so I'm guessing it's this tendency in some readers that made it such a phenom, ha! There are books in this genre with better sex (and worse) -- and god knows she actually needs to get kinkier just to have a little more variety by the end of the book, I mean how many times... you get the idea.

The first book was better for that part I thought; the second book was better due to having other plot elements. The third book suffered my least favorite bad-plot elements -- things based on the woman being chronically neurotic (enough angst for a troubled 14 year old); based on people not communicating including about major things; based on the heroine being so immature it's dangerously stupid and offputting, at which point you start feeling like if the hero is an ******* well, apparently they deserve each other. But by that time you've waded through enough pages that a genuine interest in the male is a lot more present than when you start the series, which helps compensate some. The third book doesn't have enough 'variance' in its speed/events, it's kinda 'heavy' and a lot of pages, compared to the first two. The second is probably the best written IMO.

Overall, my impression of the storyline is a little different than what so many reviews suggested. Basically, to me, it's what happens when a dom-sadist falls for someone who is totally innocent but is sparked by what amounts to minor bondage or slightly rough sex -- a different 'level' of that world, vastly milder, plus he doesn't normally have any of the emotional attachment or relationship part so that's totally new for him, and she desperately needs it; and her trying to be what he needs through book one, and then eventually, him trying to be what she needs instead.

Edited to add: and for whatever reason she really needs that, so she is hugely drawn to him and to provoking him, so she'll get it, though the character is unaware of her own motives aside from being so attracted to him. And he is ready to start maturing which requires a real relationship he has no idea how to have, but needs desperately, so he is hugely drawn to her as well.

In the end, I have to admit the author got me by something totally unrelated! -- all the musical suggestions in book 2 -- I always check songs out on youtube that are mentioned in books -- many of them were really great, and it introduced me to the fabulous, now tragically late, Eva Cassidy, doing the nicest rendition of many good songs ever, like here:
Eva Cassidy on Youtube

I had just previously read another book in this sub-genre, "Club Shadowlands," recommended by a 50S reviewer, for comparison. I can't really say that it is significantly better/worse than 50S frankly. Formula plot elements in both cases, like most modern romance novels... only the details vary.

I agree that there was insufficient effort made to example Christian's personality drive -- or details for context, for that matter -- in the books and especially in the first book, which makes him a little two dimensional, but to be fair, the entire romance genre is filled with two-dimensional over-authoritative rich hunks who are inexplicably drawn to some wildly-improbably-innocent and virtuous young woman who frustrates him and makes him somewhat obsessed with her. So again, it's not that the criticisms are really wrong so much as that these are standard for the entire genre, and singling it out in this book like it's so stupendously bad isn't really fair as a result.

Alright, well I RTFM now and that is my review of sorts.

RC
edit on 18-2-2015 by RedCairo because: (no reason given)

edit on 18-2-2015 by RedCairo because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 02:01 PM
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a reply to: RedCairo

I am one of those who have stated an opinion with out reading the books, and have followed your lead, bitten my bottom lip, and obtained well thumbed copies of the books from one of my girlfriends pals and am half way through book one. To be honest I thought (from what I read so far) that the criticism levelled against the authors lack of writing skills, especially the supposedly 'erotic'scenes I have come across, we're justified. I cannot understand how this has become a best seller, but the again I am probably not the target demographic for its consumption, I will endeavour to read through all the books just to see what happens, maybe their is a T-shirt for men who completed the trilogy saying 'I survived a night with Mr Grey'....er, is it me or does that sound a bit wrong?



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 02:48 PM
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In my defense, having sparked the debate through taking a slightly "pro" stance, I never said the books were well written!
I never expected good literature in that type of genre.
I just was more interested in it as a cultural phenomenon.



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 03:01 PM
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Right, but we'd be hard pressed to come up with many romance books of that sort that ARE well written. I have probably 450 amazon 99 cent kindle books, as well as all the novels and nonfiction I've bought 'on purpose' and not just for fun (although most of those are not romance, but scifi/fan/epic). And the romance ranges from surprisingly good to so bad I had to stop by chapter 3 to save brain cells as well as time. But as sad as it is to admit, 50S is probably somewhere around a 7 on a scale of 1-10 quality for that genre it seems, and the vast majority of the field lit is more like a 4-6, so 'comparatively' it isn't so bad, even though taken independently... of course it is LOL.

I agree it's a phenomenon, as was Twilight it spawned from. I think of these things like 'archetypes' that our culture is just ready for when it happens like that.



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 03:10 PM
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originally posted by: Bluesma
In my defense, having sparked the debate through taking a slightly "pro" stance, I never said the books were well written!
I never expected good literature in that type of genre.
I just was more interested in it as a cultural phenomenon.


I find cultural phenomenons exceedingly uninteresting & typically not worth the effort. Two female friends went & saw this last night & tried to get me to go with them.
Might have been a little awkward.



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 10:20 PM
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originally posted by: Eunuchorn

originally posted by: Bluesma
In my defense, having sparked the debate through taking a slightly "pro" stance, I never said the books were well written!
I never expected good literature in that type of genre.
I just was more interested in it as a cultural phenomenon.


I find cultural phenomenons exceedingly uninteresting & typically not worth the effort. Two female friends went & saw this last night & tried to get me to go with them.
Might have been a little awkward.


In themselves, they don't always have anything of value to offer, but in regarding cultural movements, they can sometimes be extremely telling of where we are as a culture and society- and where we're going.
It's like People magazine - wht is truly interesting about gossip is the question, "Why do so many people eat this up???"

It's a strange contrast... I see so many attitudes coming from America about sexism, women who feel truly discriminated against on a daily basis, and then you have, simultaneously, a large part of the population go nuts for this kind of story, I couldn't help be fascinated by that.
Women feeling powerless, but wanting to become powerful, drawn to methods of developing that which seem, on first glance, completely contrary to their goals....



posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 11:19 PM
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a reply to: Bluesma

Supposedly these have been issues since the dawn of America if not sooner. I mean, BDSM has always been around im sure. I will ask my friend if she found she theme sexist or chauvinistic, did you? I hadnt wanted to see it thinking it was about infidelity. BDSM is only slightly less perturbing to me.



posted on Feb, 19 2015 @ 01:50 AM
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Flipping the sex roles around in my head...Would I let an attractive billionaire female put some sex-hurt on me in exchange for all the fringe benefits.
My answer would be yes.
Less than ideal, but I could roll with it.



posted on Feb, 19 2015 @ 09:08 AM
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originally posted by: Eunuchorn
a reply to: Bluesma

Supposedly these have been issues since the dawn of America if not sooner. I mean, BDSM has always been around im sure. I will ask my friend if she found she theme sexist or chauvinistic, did you? I hadnt wanted to see it thinking it was about infidelity. BDSM is only slightly less perturbing to me.


I didn't find it sexist or chauvinistic. But my opinion is obviously not common. I found it uncomfortably revealing, about myself and about female mindsets in general. (I think I like that which challenges me).

On a purely physical, superficial level, I found that the idea of a blindfold and handcuffs with the man I love and trust is a turn on- that a soft whip on the butt is rather exciting. The intensity of sensation in such conditions is higher- not by being hurt, but being slightly afraid of pain, and instead, gaining a strong sense of boundry.

On a deeper level, recognizing that I am attracted to a man who is just a tad egotistical and controlling, because in his presence I learn how to be egotistical and controlling (my problem being that I am often overtaken by empathy and compassion for others- I can easily slip into being selfless for others.)

My husband and I joke openly now about him having "control issues".... My kids remember the exact spot where he first let me drive the car while we were together (and jet lagged). Though I got my first car at 16, he didn't start driving until 18, and I have never yet had an accident, not even a fender bender.

But with time, we have learned from each other- he learned how to be vulnerable, I learned how to be powerful. I sometimes drive us, and he feels insecure and needy for me. Me, much less now.

I felt the three books illustrated this dynamic of exchange that happens over time, that helps each with balance, and that reveals deeper motivations for apparent unequal relationships at the beginning. No, not all women are super heroes when they are young, and men either- but relationships are one aid in becoming so.

All is process. This story is not just about a man dominating a women- it evolves.



posted on Feb, 19 2015 @ 06:34 PM
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Maybe the real complaint shouldn't be about this book, which suffers all the rightfully-griped-about things that other books in this genre do; but that there just isn't a broader, richer assortment of fiction available that explores this underlying energy dynamic that is a legitimate part of our species experience.

It's something obviously present forever but that our culture, even as open as it is today in many ways, is still awkward and suppressive about.

I've asked many people who've complained about 50S for a recommendation to some other book that does this better. Few responses; none of the few I got even seemed worth looking at given their reviews except one, and as it turns out, it wasn't any better IMO.

I think there are a lot of things overlapping with sex that are still really repressed in our culture. I remember the first time I saw a picture of someone who was female on top and male on the bottom I just sat in speechless astonishment. I'd never even heard of such a thing. I was in L.A. then and it was a small newspaper-type thing (obviously sex oriented) filled with this. I don't think anything ever shocked me more, I was about 22 then.

And the weekend I discovered (thanks to the internet) that there's not only more than 2 genders, there's a LOT more options between both/other/neither, and I spent the entire next week first in a sort of numb-agog-consideration of how amazing that was, followed by days of thinking about what an incredible challenge that must be for those people, given the world we live in. (Frankly, things like homosexuality seem even more ridiculously trivial comparatively, and yet even that still has incredible resistance.)

The above (much like BDSM actually) are topics that I find fascinating and would like to talk to people about out of sheer curiosity -- but it seems a discussion minefield to go anywhere near. I think the experience is rather traumatic for most people apparently, and part of their reacting to that and learning to get ok with who they are, is often an extreme response to people who are genuinely ignorant about it -- like not knowing the proper, current, preferred topic-specific terminology (totally obscure to anyone not buried in that subculture) to use for example (and by doing it wrong, revealing wrong-assumptions due to the ignorance). So it's tough to talk about even with the best intentions, to learn more (and cure the existing ignorance). So back to topic, I think BDSM is a little bit the same way -- there is probably not a lot of easy option for 'safe serious discussion' about it. People often have interest once they hear of it. But the only way people can even "browse" the topic -- so to speak -- is in fiction.

Which is limited in quantity it seems -- or hard to find -- and mostly poorly representative and not well written.



posted on Feb, 19 2016 @ 05:19 AM
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originally posted by: LadySkadi

The hype is manufactured... isn't that what Hollywood tries to do? Attempt to tell you what you want and you are supposed to want it. Works on some.



Spot on. This is whole new level of social engineering and marketing. The selling numbers are riddiculous, it must be at least partly a hoax OR large part of humanity have become retarded. I suspect first version, knowing how many decades social and marketing scemes and experiments have been researced.
I personally don´t know any women who likes it, most are actually mad (including myself) that this story tries to portray psychoparth and classical violent relationship as something romantic. It can damage younger people´s perception of healthy relationships



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