Having run out of thousand-dollar ponchos to discover and champagne flute coozies to order in bulk, Oprah Winfrey has a new Favorite Thing this year: paperback fanfiction smut novels. She reportedly told UK tabloid The Sun,
I know Rita Ora and I know Fifty Shades of Grey— and I just can’t wait for the movie. I’ve read the book and I just hope the movie is filthier than the book. Less talking, more action!
Nice. I already knew that Oprah was a sexual being (remember how she acted whenever Sting performed on her show? The sexual tension was palpable and also confusing), but there’s something so hilarious about imagining this dignified, intelligent, powerful person spending her free time reading bathtub blowjob scenes. You do you, Oprah.
And while her quote is pretty strange, I can’t say I disagree. Fifty Shades of Grey should absolutely contain less talking and more action. For one thing, there’s very little action of any kind to begin with– half the book is just Anastasia steeping tea bags and crying, and most of the sex scenes are just E.L. James‘ little experiments to see how many ways she can avoid using the word “vagina.” For another thing, all the dialogue is simultaneously a) written for a fifth grade reading level, and b) a really great example of an abusive relationship. One of my favorite quotes comes from page 279, in which Ana’s internal monologue might as well be the slogan for emotional abuse: “Is he worthy of me? That’s an interesting concept. I always wonder whether I am worthy of him.” Yikes.
Yes, Oprah and I have something in common– besides our undying love for ponchos and Sting. I also hope that the Fifty Shades of Grey movie will just be straight porn. Maybe if they replace all the dialogue with mindless sex, fewer young fans will aspire to relationships with dangerously uneven power dynamics. Consensual S&M is fine. Emotional abuse is not. Less talking, more action.
Via E! / Photo: Getty