Darren Criss answers a question about Kurt and Blaine and sex

On Glee, we hear and see a lot about the teens’ sexual lives—but not your character, Blaine, and his boyfriend, Kurt. We’ve seen them kiss, but that’s it. Will that side of their relationship develop?

I mean, who knows? Something as big as gay teens on television, you gotta take things a step at a time. I’m just interested in their relationship. I really hope that they can continue to learn from each other and grow as people.

But you guys must be aware of the discrepancy. We see the other teens have sex, get pregnant.

Um, honestly, no, I disagree. I don’t see that. I see them as the standout couple that is much more solid than some of the other relationships, and to make any big jumps from that could potentially dismantle the security they have.

via Darren Criss | Interview – Music – Time Out Chicago.

I’m in the middle of doing stuff right now and I’m going to wait and comment when I have a minute, but … what do you guys think?

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17 thoughts on “Darren Criss answers a question about Kurt and Blaine and sex

  1. Glad to see it. Kurt and Blaine haven’t been together that long, and the demands the audience seems to have about their physical relationship annoy me. Sex is only shown on Glee when it’s causing lots of drama. That’s not where the drama is coming from for these two at this point, so exploring that would be inconsistent, because it wouldn’t have narrative purpose right now. It will at some point in S3 surely, but probably not until the second half of the season is my guess.

    So I want them to be the de-sexualized couple because their gay or want them to be abstinence poster children? So no. But their journey about this sort of stuff is so unlike and not connected to all the crap that goes on with the other kids, that this question gets asked and considered in such a sloppy way, way too often.

  2. I agree with Darren’s assessment. I mean, it’s hard to argue intent versus impact here, b/c I at least don’t know the rationale from the writers/producers as to why Kurt and Blaine aren’t seen as/implied to be having sex.

    But there was that story line where Blaine is trying to “teach” Kurt how to be sexy, and Kurt gets sooo uncomfortable, and Blaine talks to Kurt’s dad about it, and then Burt gives Kurt THE. BEST. SEX. TALK. EVER. (which as a total aside should be shown in health classes everywhere!)

    It seemed clear to me from those segments that Kurt maybe just isn’t quite there yet as far as actually having sex. And that’s ok. That’s real. Not ALL high school aged kids are ready to be going at it like bunnies, straight/gay/bi whatever.

    And they do have a really strong relationship – they’re honest with each other, they talk about stuff, there’s very little drama that generates from the two of them – when there is drama, it’s external, unlike the Quinn/Finn/Rachel foolishness.

    I can see reading into it that they’re avoiding dealing with Kurt & Blaine’s sexuality on purpose b/c they’re the gay boys and that would stir up too much controversy, and that may be the case. Which would suck. But the way they’ve handled it thus far doesn’t feel off to me (although couldn’t we have gotten another kiss during the prom episode?).

  3. Because I like to harp on this and because I think it’s important:

    When would it have been safe for them to kiss during the prom episode? These are two boys who have both been assaulted because of their sexuality in an environment that’s being openly hostile to Kurt. I’d love for them to feel they could make that choice there, but how on earth could that be the case?

  4. The could have kissed on the episode but not AT Prom… Beforehand, during a pick-up scene like the one Quinn and Finn got, for instance.

  5. At the Prom, Blaine and Kurt barely managed to DANCE together, so I think a make out session was not in the cards.

    I have no real problem with the lack of onscreen sexual exploration with Klaine — I agree with Jender13’s assessment that Kurt was shown just a few “months” back being VERY hesitant about the physical side of love, not feeling sexy, not being very knowledgable; I doubt a few pamphlets and a few weeks of having a boyfriend is going to reverse that.

    Also, heteronormative viewers get pretty hung up on the “sex” part of homosexuality, and I think it’s an important message that there are layers to ALL relationships that have nothing to do with intercourse. This has come up before with me, but I’m currently more interested in what Glee has to teach those outside the GLBTQ community (and their friends) — and I think that showing a relationship, a sweet and slowly developing love affair, is more helpful that showing some hot kissing between beautiful boys.

    Of course, for myself, I kind of want to barf when I think about Kurt getting his dirty on with Blaine . But I know I’m in the minority on this site, so I shut up now!

  6. That’s a good point, racheline. I wasn’t thinking AT the prom proper. I was impressed they even danced together. It would have had to have been a scene that didn’t exist as the episode was written, as Shanna mentions above.

  7. I get what you’re saying. A lot of people wanted them to make out on the dancefloor, which would have been nuts. In my head, I think they had a little kiss back in Kurt’s house after the argument about the kilt.

  8. Ok, time for thoughts.

    First, Darren Criss is the best person in the world to be playing this role. He’s so smart about it. Seriously, every interview I see of his, I’m more and more impressed. He’s (in his own words) the guy that “had to come out as the straight kid”. Queer is so normal for him, he can see past the bullshit that necessarily goes hand-in-hand with playing such a scrutinised role.

    Aaaanyway.

    He’s right. And it’s so rare he says something like, “I disagree,” but here, he goes for it.

    Now, there is always the worry in shows that they will desexualise the gay couple to keep people from getting upset, but that is not the way of Ryan Murphy. Regardless, it’s way too soon to make that call. If we haven’t seen another kiss or anything physical this time next year, I’ll entertain the question…

    As Racheline said, their sex dramas are going to be so completely different from the sex dramas of the teenagers around them. And, as Darren said, the relationship between Kurt and Blaine is different — in a totally good way — from the relationships around them. They’re honest. They talk.

    It’s going to be handled differently because the relationship is different. And in a good way.

    I could be eating my words in October, but that’s what being an optimist is all about. 😉

  9. Darren Criss always answers these questions effortlessly and in ways that make me really like him.

  10. I am even more impressed by Darren Criss now, and that is saying something. He always presents himself as very thoughtful but playful at the same time, a rare combination. I agree with all the comments above. In particular I have to wonder if Ryan Murphy isn’t being extra-strategic with the gradualness of Kurt-Blaine relationship because he knows how the Far Right over-sexualizes the gay community as a rationale for condeming it. By Kurt and Blaine going slowly and staying true, as Racheline states, to their actual characters, their relationship won’t be used as further ammunition for homophobes.

  11. Well, they could have set the prom proposal scene in Kurt’s house rather than a restauraunt, for one.

    I don’t have any particular problem with the way Kurt and Blaine’s relationship has progressed so far–they’re a new couple, and there hasn’t actually been a plot-relevant reason to show them making out. However, I can’t actually take it on faith that the choice to limit their physical contact in public spaces is based on a genuine desire to be realistic to the way queer couples interact in public as opposed, say, network concerns, if for no other reason than because the characters on the show haven’t actually stated that as their motivation. (And, as my initial statement pointed out, it’s not as though the writers don’t themselves make a choice as to which scenes will take place in private spaces and which will take place in public.)

    Not to mention the overall history of their representation of queer vs. straight sexuality on the show. They chose to let us know that Quinn and Finn were having a secret relationship by showing them rolling around together on a bed; they chose to let us know Brittany and Santana were having a secret relationship by showing Santana brushing Brittany’s hair. When they became an actual potential couple instead of a background joke, their relationship went from “having sex” to “getting their cuddle on” and “talking with their mouths really close.” Kurt and Blaine not kissing again so far doesn’t jar me; Blaine hovering his hands over Kurt’s during Baby It’s Cold Outside instead of touching his hands did.

    I know that at least since January, when Ryan Murphy talked to the Hollywood Reporter, there’s been a decision to cut back on sexual content overall (thus everybody joining the celibacy club), and given that the two queer couples have emerged after that decision took place, the lack of intimacy could just be attributed to that. It still creates a discrepency, though, given that the straight couples have had episodes like “Never Been Kissed” where there’s an entire B-plot dedicated to them trying to find ways to avoid coming on each other while making out, and episodes like Grilled Cheesus where making out with Rachel and negotiating boob-touching is just a normal part of Finn’s week.

    There’s also the issue of Murphy creating an expectation of common, normalized queer intimacy on Glee with his statements criticizing Modern Family: “If I did it on my show, I would just have them do it in every scene and not have a big deal about it. … I’m directing the episode where[Brittany and Santana are] going to kiss a couple of times. The key is to do it a couple times so it doesn’t seem forced.” That statement, in comparison to the sum total of one queer kiss that has actually appeared on the show (and not even between Brittany and Santana), makes me think that network concerns over conservative response play a greater part in Kurt and Blaine’s sexuality than organic character concerns do.

    Sorry for the wordy response, but a) I’m wordy, and b) as important as it is to keep queer realities in mind when analyzing representations of queer relationships, I think it’s also important to realize that representative queers aren’t actually real–their decisions (like whether to hang out in public or in private space, and when and where they can be intimate with each other) are made for them by teams of writers who also have a host of other concerns in mind, including not”alienating a mainstream audience by overloading them with queer intimacy on a show that’s already considered “too gay”.

  12. Honestly, I’m not sure Ryan Murphy gives a toss what those people think. In fact, I think he might believe it’s just free publicity. I mean, if he really cared, he wouldn’t have two cheerleaders talking about scissoring, or Finn ejaculating in a hot tub, or two boys sharing what appeared to be a fairly hungry kiss.

    But — even at 17 — first relationships can move very slowly. It’s the subsequent ones, I think, that move very quickly to the point where the last one left off, but I can remember the awkward negotiations and small steps. And I was a straight kid. Or, thought I was. 😉

    So yeah, I expect the physical affection will be kept to a bare minimum, but I expect RIB & co to use it to blow our minds, instead of make us used to it. Because it’s more fun for them that way lol

  13. To be honest, the more subtle the process of Kurt and Blaine’s intimate relationship is, the more erotic it will be.

  14. I already quoted this above in my (incredibly wordy) response to Racheline, but here’s what Ryan Murphy actually had to say about the way he would like to portray queer intimacy (when he was calling Modern Family out on their lack of it) : “If I did it on my show, I would just have them do it in every scene and not have a big deal about it. … I’m directing the episode where [Brittany and Santana are] going to kiss a couple of times. The key is to do it a couple times so it doesn’t seem forced.”

  15. I totally agree there. Kurt’s still struggling with the very idea of a physical relationship, as we saw in Sexy, so honestly, the idea that they would have sex so soon, to me, seems wrong. It’s sometimes difficult to remember, but they’re oth very new to being in reationships. Both characters have had one on-screen crush each before each other (two, if you want to count Sam), and for Kurt OR Blaine to be in that physical a relationship with their first love seems unrealistic.
    Also, I’m glad with the overall reduce of sex plot lines. Never Been Kissed makes me cringe, and new lack of references of Santana’s and Brittannys sex life has made me more comfortable with the idea of them as a couple. (Before, it just seemed like it was Ryan Murphy’s attempt at catering to what he thought all males wanted to see and hear about.) In my school, it’s actually the minority who become sexually active when they hit sixteen, and that’s always been my problem with Glee. For Kurt and Blaine, my two favourite characters, to go down that route, could damage the show’s already hurt credibility, and actually has the potential to put me off the show.

  16. Pingback: NEW Glee 3.05 “The First Time” Final Spoilers Roundup « Deconstructing Glee

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