Tag Archives: romance

Is it Good Representation or is it Conventional?: Sex Education Season 3 Review

Welcome back to Moordale Secondary! Back by popular demand, Sex Education Season three has received mixed reviews from both fans and critics alike. Here at UT, fans are split. One group of fans believe that the show has continued to push the boundaries of representation and have succeeded in accurately representing the experiences of the LGBTQ+ community, while the others find themselves disappointed in the show writers and their inability to break away from the mold that dictates LGBTQ+ character arcs and interactions in media. So, the question is: does this season of Sex Education accurately represent the LGBTQ+ community or just follow the conventional arcs for the sake of representation?

This season picks up after the summer of the last season and it’s safe to say a lot of things have changed—Maeve and Otis are no longer friends, Jean is pregnant, Headmaster Griff is no longer Headmaster and Ruby and Otis are now dating? This season introduces a whole host of new characters as well. Hope, playing the cool-teacher-gone-wrong, acts as the villain of the series, but the biggest win in terms of diversity is the introduction of Cal, a new non-binary student. The season takes a dramatic shift from the prior ones as it focuses more on the character arcs of its LGBTQ+ characters, the fan-favorite being Adam Groff.

Image courtesy Netflix; Sex Education Season 3 Episode 8

Adam begins the season in a relationship with the love of his life and ends it single and enrolled in a dog competition. If that didn’t catch you by surprise, nothing will. Adam and Eric are by far the most beloved couple on the show. Their banter is iconic and they complement each other so well. In fact, their chemistry is so strong that it made Eric leave his boyfriend, Rahim, in season two. But this season, despite having overcome a grocery list of obstacles, they break up. I may not be completely unbiased, but I’m not alone when I say this break-up hit deep. Not only did it seem uncharacteristic, but Eric was the one who initiated it after he cheated on Adam. He believed Adam wasn’t in touch with his sexuality enough to fully be in their relationship and to this I say: Are you kidding me? Adam Groff has had the most character growth in the show. He went from the high school bully to a kind and sensitive person who genuinely wanted to improve himself academically, find what he’s passionate about and be there for Eric as a partner. Eric, on the other hand, was undoubtedly the second worst character this season, which is disappointing given how great he was in the previous seasons.

Image courtesy Netflix; Sex Education Season 3 Episode 6

Not only has Eric now cheated on all the boyfriends he’s had, but he’s also done so under the belief that he’s right. This character flaw, unfortunately, perpetuates more than one harmful belief about gay relationships. Eric’s impulsivity when it comes to his relationships is so out-of-character that it paints a picture of gay relationships being inherently temporary and fragile. The writers proceed to almost erase Eric and Otis’ comradery which was what made Eric so lovable in the first place. Their friendship was an excellent representation of male platonic relationships that didn’t shy away from physicality and it was deeply missed this season.

The other prominent LGBTQ+ relationship on the show is the one between Ola and Lily.

Image courtesy Netflix; Sex Education Season 3 Episode 4

Luckily, the writers were able to avoid the stereotypes surrounding LGBTQ+ couples in this relationship. Ola and Lily are both dealing with their own crises this season, with Lily coming to terms with her inability to fit in and Ola severely missing her mother. Their relationship works because they see each other for who they are and overcome issues through communication. Lily and Ola beautifully demonstrate how even though relationships take work, they are more than worth it.

 Image courtesy Netflix; Sex Education Season 3 promo posters

Finally, Cal Bowman marks progress as the first non-binary character on the show. They make an impact by fighting against Hope’s insane rules and standing up for themselves despite being constantly berated for no reason other than their gender. Cal’s struggles not only are representative of some aspects of a non-binary person’s experience but they also evoke empathy in those unfamiliar with non-binary people. Many fans remarked that Cal’s struggles and arc helped them educate themselves and understand gender is a spectrum. Cal’s relationship with Jackson was crucial as it demonstrated how despite one’s best intentions and feelings, sexual orientation and gender are complex identities and not unidimensional. 

Overall, Sex Education is a show that is able to capture the complexities of characters’ personalities along with their identities. While it does have some flaws the show still manages to include diverse perspectives without making them look forced which in turn exposes audiences to new perspectives. Season 3 furthers the show’s narrative, introduces us to a whole host of new characters, covers complex topics of gender and sexual identity, all while keeping its audience entertained and that is a success indeed.

Featured Image Courtesy of Netflix Sex Education Promo Posters

What your venus sign says about the way you love

Saint Valentine’s day has arrived! As we head into this season of love, it’s important to know a little more about ourselves. Specifically, in terms of how we love. While Sun sign astrology is important and can say a lot about your overall character and ego, in the matters of the heart, it’s important to look at your Venus placement for insight as to how you are perceived in love, even if it isn’t always positive.

Disclaimer: the following descriptions are my personal interpretations of each sign in Venus from both personal experience and observation, and may vary in comparison to others. Venus is the planet of love and attraction, and plays a significant role in determining what you want in terms of success and pleasure, as well as romantic and platonic relationships. This list, however, will focus on how each sign in Venus navigates romance.

Venus in Aries

In one word: Fiery

When a Venus Aries is interested in someone, they fall fast and hard. They are known to be quite impulsive and passionate in love, driven by emotion, but may suffer from restlessness and selfishness. However, while they are unafraid of showing their love for someone, they are also unafraid to be confrontational, which may lead to some disagreements. But a person with this Venus placement is worth it as they are extremely fun, entertaining people in love.

Venus in Taurus

In one word: Physical

This placement is traditionally romantic, but not overly dreamy or idealistic like Venus in Pisces. They value security in a relationships, which aren’t taken lightly. However, this doesn’t mean those with Venus in Taurus aren’t open to flings. Being considered one – if not the – most sensual Venus placement, Venus in Taurus are especially dependent on physicality in a relationship. Many highly value the presence of their beautiful partner, and may struggle with viewing them as a prize. They like to feel stable and in control, and might feel uncomfortable with change if they aren’t the ones behind it.

Venus in Gemini

In one word: Energetic

Venus in Gemini have a bad reputation for their flirtatiousness, but it’s not their fault – this sign is charming and stimulated by intellectual conversation, so their need to socialize may cross boundaries in the eyes of other more possessive signs. This does not bode well with a Venus in Gemini. Like Sagittarius, this Venus placement needs space to see what’s out there in the world, and they do not like clinginess. They are extremely excitable in love, but follow their brain rather than their heart. They’re not entirely in touch with their emotions, which may confuse those who want the reasoning behind their actions.

Venus in Cancer

In one word: Supportive

Cancer is known as the “homemaker” of the signs, and this is true even in love. Venus in Cancer are extremely caring and thoughtful of their partners, doing their best to remember the things you love and dislike in order to make you more comfortable. Despite their sensitivity to their partner, they may hide how they feel if they have been hurt – which can be problematic, because Venus in Cancer are extremely sensitive. They need someone who can be equally giving and emotionally intuitive.

Venus in Leo

In one word: Loyal

Leo in Venus is bold and extremely passionate. They are willing to give every ounce of their romantic love, but they expect the same in return, and are disappointed when their partner does not live up to these standards. They crave the validation their partner can give them, despite being interpreted as one of the most confident or egotistical signs. Their vision of love is very set, and they will be unhappy if they are not achieving this in a relationship.

Venus in Virgo

In one word: Helpful

A simple and pure lover, Venus in Virgo is likely to be good at pleasing their partners. They worry about the little things in life and in their relationship, rather than the grand scheme of things. This may drive away those who are not prone to perfectionism, because they do not understand why their partner is so critical. They are not extremely romantic, and come off as cautious in love, but their devotion to their partner is certainly there.

Venus in Libra

In one word: Fair

Venus in Libra are known as peace seekers due to the balanced nature of the Libra sign. However, in love, they tend to be too giving. While this can be beneficial for their partner, they can become clingy and dependent on their relationship in an effort to fuel their personal growth, all the while remaining stagnant. However, a Venus in Libra is undoubtedly charming, and great at meeting the needs of the person they are with.

Venus in Scorpio

In one word: Intense

Intense is the only word that can truly convey how a Venus in Scorpio feels. They can love with intensity, as well as fear with intensity. They lack complete control over their own emotions, and may seek to implement their need for control onto their relationships through possessiveness or jealousy. Venus in Scorpio keep their strongest emotions hidden, but they’re only doing it to protect their sensitive inner-self. Because of their fear of betrayal, Venus in Scorpio are extremely selective with who they choose to let into their lives, so feel grateful if one does.

Venus in Sagittarius

In one word: Free-spirited

Okay, two words. But they’re necessary in order to describe a Venus in Sagittarius. Another placement as restless as Aries, but more prone to commitment issues. Those with their Venus in Sagittarius are true romantics; yet they struggle to accept the love they are given, and will run away from it once they have found it if it overwhelms them. They want to grow with someone, and see the world while they’re at it, so don’t try to make them feel trapped or stunted.

Venus in Capricorn

In one word: Reserved

Capricorn is generally a reserved sign, ruled by slow and steady Saturn, and even in Venus, this does not change. Those with Venus in Capricorn may come across as hard to get, because they are. They are cautious in their approach to love, but once they can trust their partner, they can be one of the most reliable and loving Venus placements.

Venus in Aquarius

In one word: Independent

Those with their Venus in Aquarius are calm and aloof in love. They may grow tired and restless at times if the love they are receiving is not transforming them in a positive way. Venus in Aquarius yearn for growth and unconventionality, and may not do well with those whose values are rooted in more traditional aspects of a relationship, like Taurus. Highly curious and drawn to intellectual stimulation, they need someone who can satisfy these needs. They need space to be themselves and aren’t exactly the most sensitive, so bear with them if they come off as detached.

Venus in Pisces

In one word: Idealistic

Ah, Pisces. Dreamy, loving, and a hopeless romantic. Also hopelessly sensitive. Which, can be admirable if someone is in need of a tender love. However, Venus in Pisces is not agreeable with harshness or directness. Like Venus in Gemini, they may confuse easily as to what their needs truly are, and express similarly confusing qualities in their inability to say “no” to people. Adaptable in love, and extremely willing to suit their partner.