Smooches

I got pretty sick last month (not COVID, thankfully) and I ended up watching a lot of TV. This included, among other things, the second season of The White Lotus. As a show with lots of sex scenes in it, there’s also a lot of kissing.

Kissing that is subtitled as “smooches”.

Okay, look, I get it: you’re trying to get across to the hearing-impaired (or subtitle-using) public that a kiss is occurring. But “smooch” is not a sexy word, and if you’re subtitling a sex scene, do you really want to use unsexy words? How hard is it to say “kisses” instead?

Making the viewer feel what you want them to feel is a complex thing — you have to use a combination of visuals, action, and sounds, and if you’re doing subtitles, you need to include the right words as well. I don’t think I’ve ever used the word “smooch” in any of my erotica (although if you find it, you’re welcome to correct me). It just doesn’t convey the right feeling to me.

And, speaking of kissing, am I the only one who isn’t constantly kissing their partner during sexytimes? One of the final sex scenes in this season of The White Lotus included a couple having sex in the missionary position, and they were kissing pretty much the entire time. I like kissing, sure, but it’s just another thing to keep track of while I’m trying to ensure my partner is having the best time possible. I do kiss my partners during missionary sex, but I don’t, like, kiss them to excess. And we certainly don’t make out. I suppose part of it is height differential, although even when I had a partner that was about my height we still didn’t make out during intercourse.

And we certainly didn’t “smooch” each other.

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