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Masters of Sex


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#1

TWoP Pembleton

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Posted Sep 16, 2013 @ 11:22 PM

MASTERS OF SEX stars Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan, who will portray the real-life pioneers of the science of human sexuality, William Masters and Virginia Johnson. The series chronicles the unusual lives, romance and pop-culture trajectory of Masters and Johnson. Their research touched off the sexual revolution and took them from a mid-western teaching hospital in St. Louis to the cover of Time magazine. The series is an adaptation of Thomas Maier's book Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, The Couple Who Taught America How To Love.

 



#2

Scrb

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Posted Sep 17, 2013 @ 12:53 AM

Is this going to be serious or just a way for Showtime to slip in some more titillation?


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#3

biakbiak

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Posted Sep 17, 2013 @ 1:04 AM

I haven't had a chance to watch it but Showtime posted the pilot on YouTube, so you can see for yourself.
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#4

hlisy

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Posted Sep 17, 2013 @ 5:43 AM

Judging from their adverts it looks like titillation but I'm think they took all the "sexy" bit and made a trailer. At least I hope since the real story is just as fascinating.


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#5

CTMSW

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Posted Sep 18, 2013 @ 6:12 PM

I watched the pilot on YouTube.  Was it edited?  It didn't seem as sexual as I thought (hoped) it would be.  Sheen and Caplan have a nice chemistry.  I'll definitely watch the second episode.


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#6

TheLabRat

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Posted Sep 19, 2013 @ 5:46 PM

A thing from the pilot I really dug.  Virginia had that line about women thinking sexual attraction was love; meanwhile we saw her male coworker basically thinking the same thing about her. 


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#7

ganesh

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Posted Sep 20, 2013 @ 12:33 AM

I'm all in. Sheen and Lizzy Caplan were fantastic together. The pace was brisk for a pilot. Since we know Masters and Johnson were an actual thing, this is a spoiler about how they become partners on the show:

Spoiler

 

 

 

Virginia had that line about women thinking sexual attraction was love; meanwhile we saw her male coworker basically thinking the same thing about her.

Spoiler

 

Surprised by:

Spoiler

 

Final remark:

Spoiler


Edited by ganesh, Sep 20, 2013 @ 12:34 AM.

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#8

CTMSW

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Posted Sep 20, 2013 @ 11:09 AM

Reading up on M&J, it doesn't seem like they had a loving sexual relationship at all.  He only married her to stop her from marrying someone else because he did not want her marriage to impede any progress they were making with research.


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#9

lucindabelle

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Posted Sep 20, 2013 @ 8:58 PM

Masters is coming off as a little creepy, first telling Ginny to dump the resident for fear of a scandal and then propositioning her. She probably won't but I hoe she turns him down.
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#10

ribboninthesky1

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Posted Sep 20, 2013 @ 10:15 PM

I'm not sure what to make of this show, perhaps because I don't have Showtime and haven't watched the most known shows.  For one, Ginny confused me.  

 

Spoiler

 

And then there is Masters.

 

Spoiler

 

This is why period dramas annoy me - the writers seem unable to avoid anachronism because they're thinking with modern sensibilities while writing what they believe was the past. 

 

 

 

 


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#11

ganesh

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Posted Sep 21, 2013 @ 12:17 AM

Re: Ginny

Spoiler


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#12

ElectricBoogalo

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Posted Sep 21, 2013 @ 9:13 AM

I watched the first two episodes and I liked it but I didn't love it. I agree that the anachronisms and the attempts to make characters PC by modern standards can be jarring/annoying.

 

Right now my favorite character isn't Masters or Johnson but the prostitute (her name escapes me now). I find her far more interesting as a character and much shrewder than M&J.


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#13

ribboninthesky1

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Posted Sep 21, 2013 @ 10:30 AM

ganesh, regarding Ginny:

Spoiler

 

As for Masters:

Spoiler
 


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#14

ganesh

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Posted Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:13 PM

Spoiler

 

Being more general: First episodes usually have the characterizations pretty cranked up and this seemed to be the case here. I liked the pacing of the episode and that it wasn't a huge info dump. I like to give a show 4,5 episodes to settle in, if there's enough to interest me in the first episode. So far so good.

 

The prostitute is an absolute scream.


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#15

Palomar

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Posted Sep 22, 2013 @ 1:36 AM

One thing that bugged

Spoiler


Edited by Palomar, Sep 22, 2013 @ 1:41 AM.

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#16

CTMSW

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Posted Sep 22, 2013 @ 10:13 AM

The prostitute is an absolute scream.

Is she a series regular?  I hope so.

 

I'm actually surprised that there isn't more *buzz* around this series, but I guess it is hard to debut when everyone is awaiting the Breaking Bad finale.  I can definitely see Michael Sheen as an Emmy nominee.


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#17

ganesh

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Posted Sep 22, 2013 @ 12:46 PM

Isn't it airing after BB is over? I only read one article in the Fall Preview issue for EW. And in their review section, they gave the first episode a B, which is fair I think. One thing:

Spoiler

 

Just speculation, but I hope the show does well and can kind of be allegorical social commentary on sex views in 2013. Plus I love Lizzy Caplan and I think her short hair is gorgeous. I've only seen the other lead actor in Frost/Nixon and he was really great in that.


Edited by ganesh, Sep 22, 2013 @ 12:47 PM.

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#18

Lolita Swann

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Posted Sep 23, 2013 @ 3:03 PM

The buzzy shows lately are action-y. The T5 cable dramas right now involve: sexy vampires/werewolves, walking zombies, murderous drug dealers, motorcycle gangs, and dragons/ice zombies. The 2 most-buzzed new network dramas are spy thriller Blacklist and Marvel's Shield. 

 

And I would recommend watching Sheen in 30 Rock; he's hilarious as "the one and only" Wesley Snipes. So far he's only okay here.


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#19

kieyra

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Posted Sep 27, 2013 @ 9:54 AM

Saw the pilot. Will be back for more. Lizzy Caplan seems well-cast. I've only seen her as the hate-able Amy Burley in True Blood. Love Michael Sheen because of, I am sorry to say, Underworld. 

 

Spoiler


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#20

ganesh

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Posted Sep 27, 2013 @ 10:37 AM

Lizzy Caplan is probably better known for her comedic roles. Check her out in Party Down.


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#21

ElectricBoogalo

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Posted Sep 27, 2013 @ 5:56 PM

And Mean Girls! And Freaks and Geeks for something more dramatic/less comedic.
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#22

romantic idiot

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Posted Sep 27, 2013 @ 8:09 PM

They also show us that she likes Masters' wife.  She knows that he's the one with the fertility problem, and therefore kind of an ass because his wife is enduring the frustration and humiliation.  Yet, when Masters suggests they have sex, her response is, "Let me think about it?"  Huh? Why would it not be an immediate No? Even if she changed her mind later? [

I thought she was looking for a way to turn him down. Marsters is creeping me out majorly, especially how now he's forcing Ginny to whore herself out to him. And his poor wife. 


Edited by romantic idiot, Sep 27, 2013 @ 8:10 PM.

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#23

Ailiana

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Posted Sep 27, 2013 @ 11:02 PM

Ginny is also caught in the classic sexual harrasment position.  He's her boss.  At a job she really likes.  That she thinks is important.  And if she says no, she may lose it all.  And not even get the staff position she had to start with.


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#24

Amelie06

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Posted Sep 29, 2013 @ 10:33 PM

 

I disagree with Ethan having a women as property mentality.  He felt entitled to have more with Ginny once they were so sexually intimate so quickly, but in his desperation,  he also asked her what he could do better/how he could fix it.  He was in what was traditionally the woman's position, so it felt like the writers had him hit Ginny to make him less sympathetic.

This Ethan storyline was the only thing that I really disliked about the episode. It just seemed so paint by numbers. Ethan is young and dumb, obviously reading more into the relationship than he should. Masters is an creeper who was using his position to wrest Virginia away from Ethan. So, he had my sympathy until he started acting crazy. Clearly the writers don't want any male competition for Masters in his half-assed courtship of Virginia and that was the most expedient way to get everyone to hate Ethan. I also didn't like that for all of Virginia's modern woman schtick, she took that smack and said nothing....like she deserved it.

 

The show was ok. I really didn't like Masters. He just seems like a weirdo. I can't believe so many people would be willing to commit sex acts in front of him. What Masters is doing to his wife is criminal. I really wonder what is going on with Virginia that he at all seems like a viable option. We hear a lot about her kids, but don't see them. That's odd.


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#25

ganesh

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 12:09 AM

I also didn't like that for all of Virginia's modern woman schtick, she took that smack and said nothing....like she deserved it.

I think she wasn't expecting it. Which we've spoilered before the episode aired, but there was commentary on her not being aware that Ethan might not get the whole friends with benefits concept. Not that she deserved to get smacked, but that she was unaware that he was interpreting things differently. But what else could she do? She can't beat him up. Clearly, she's not sexing him anymore so he loses in the end. I think this plot was a little much, but more in the vein of "pilot" so we're dialing everything up to 11. Probably this might have been better played out over 2, 3 episodes. For a first episode though, I think the show moved pretty well.

 

I think Masters is supposed to be weird. I think the point of the show is that for someone who did so much groundbreaking research into sex, it was motivated by his weirdness. He's clearly not in sync with the times, which is the point. It's not that he's progressive and ahead of his time though. He didn't even conceive that a woman would fake an orgasm. For such a leading researcher, not even to think that possible.

 

Certainly enough to keep me watching. Lizzy Caplan's good acting and fit, natural body and cute hair too.


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#26

MzTeaze

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 12:50 AM

Not sure if this was compelling enough to follow religiously, however, I think they might have Masters down correctly.  He was a strict scientist who was also very very strange in a social manner.  


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#27

Helena Dax

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 6:02 AM

I liked it a lot. Masters is weird but that's the point; that's one of the reasons he needs Johnson. I thought everybody knew back then that women fake orgasms sometimes, but well, it seems I was wrong.

 

The prostitute was great, she's a very interesting character. 

 

I'm in.


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#28

ExMathMajor

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 8:10 AM

I too am in. In fact I'm sitting on my hands to keep myself from going to Wikipedia and "reading ahead," so to speak. I know who Masters and Johnson were from the larger historical perspective but I prefer to remain unspoiled regarding the parts of their lives that this series is dramatizing.

 

What I'm seeing I like so far. I agree with the majority: Masters is creepy and utterly fascinating, and Betty is intriguing.

 

I was never able to get into Mad Men, which took place a few years ahead (early 60s?) but I think I'm going to enjoy seeing this particular take on the late 1950s. Johnson makes a speech in one of the episodes about how revolutionary this study will be for women; knowing what we know now about that period and what came after, I'm interested in seeing how this story will roll out.


Edited by ExMathMajor, Sep 30, 2013 @ 8:11 AM.

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#29

roughing it

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 11:31 AM

I'm interested in seeing how sex was really (generally) viewed in the 1950s. My only viewpoint is from my mother who painted sex in a really bad light, that it was only for conception, and anything else was full of guilt and shame.  I'm still dealing with the enjoyable/shameful dichotomy.


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#30

Dandesun

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Posted Sep 30, 2013 @ 12:50 PM


 

 

My only viewpoint is from my mother who painted sex in a really bad light, that it was only for conception, and anything else was full of guilt and shame.

 

Well, the older secretary seemed to be of that particular mind-set. Even talking about how no self-respecting woman could hold her head up in church after dealing with sex all week. For as far as we've come regarding women's sexuality (and we have) we still have far to go. Virginia may be far more liberal in regards to her sexual wants than some but she still got called a whore for liking and doing things that Ethan hadn't even considered and it affected her too. Masters suggesting that they have sex was after Ethan called her a whore was horrible timing. She may have still reacted uncertainly to it but after the whole 'wear the white coat, play at being a doctor, but you're nothing but a whore' it just exacerbated a deeply unpleasant situation. Not to mention the commentary about how she was flirting with blonde doctor before they started the couples observation. 

 

I'm in this. I love Michael Sheen anyway (I love it when he goes on Craig Ferguson's show -- hope he does for this series) and he's got that Total Scientist Vibe down pat. The only time we saw him legitimately be passionate was when he was talking about how everyone participates in sex but no one understands it... also when he was talking about the women that he saw in his practice, ravaged and wounded and how he doesn't know how to talk to them or help them but to say 'get a divorce, or cheat.' Meanwhile, there's the stuff going on with his wife and their inability to conceive. There are some fascinating dichotomies there.

 

The only thing I didn't like was Masters' wife calling him 'Daddy' all the time. Guh. Hate. I know that's a long-standing thing, especially back then (Hell, there are songs, sung by women, about 'Daddy' and ewwwwww!) but, to me, that is one of the most unsexy things to say to a lover or a husband. Yick. All that being said, I do wonder about Libby and how the inevitable failure of that marriage will be portrayed.


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