In this live show episode from our 2018 tour, we're surveying how pop culture has treated polyamory and other non-monogamous relationships in the past year. We look at clips from She's Gotta Have It, Professor Marston & the Wonder Women, Steven Universe, and many more. For the full experience, be sure to check out this episode on Youtube.
If you want to support our show, the best way is to become one of our patrons at www.patreon.com/multiamory. In addition to helping us continue to create new content and new projects, you also get extra rewards and exclusive content and discussions.
You can order Dedeker's book, The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory: Everything You Need to Know about Open Relationships, Non-Monogamy, and Alternative Love by clicking here.
Multiamory was created by Dedeker Winston, Jase Lindgren, and Emily Matlack.
Our theme music is Forms I Know I Did by Josh and Anand.
Please send us your feedback and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, find us on Instagram @Multiamory_Podcast, tweet at us @Multiamory, check out our Facebook Page, visit our website Multiamory.com, or you can leave us a voicemail at 678-MULTI-05. We love to hear from our listeners and we reply individually to every message.
This document may contain small transcription errors. If you find one please let us know at email@example.com and we will fix it ASAP.
Jase: Hey everybody, this is Jase. I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you so much to all of you who came out to see us on our tour that just wrapped up recently. It was an amazing experience to get to go to so many new cities where we hadn't been before, and to get to meet all of you. For those of you who are not able to make it to the tour, we are releasing the show that we did on tour right now. This is from our show in LA. This show that we did during the tour is about representations of non monogamy and polyamory in TV and film.
Obviously for that, there is a visual component to it. In this audio episode, you'll hear the audio from the clips, which in a lot of cases is enough, but if you want to get the full experience and actually see all of the clips as we're talking about them, then you can go to multiamory.com/podcast. Find the episode for this one there. Then you can actually watch the video of this live show from Los Angeles.
Then you can actually see all of the video clips and get a sense for what the live show was like and all of that. Anyway, either way, just wanted to let you know that those are your options. Thank you so much for making this tour possible. It really was amazing. Hope you enjoyed the episode.
Announcer: Previously on Multiamory.
Character 1: Monogamy is not natural for me right now.
Character 2: You want to what? Brain explode.
Character 3: This is your husband?
Character 4: No, he's the boyfriend.
Character 5: Well, how can you have two boyfriends?
Character 6: I don't, I have five. Fry, meet Chu, Bolt, Andulu and Schlomo
Character 7: Who gets to have sex with me tonight? You guys want to arm wrestle for it?
Character 8 and 9: Sure.
Character 7: Okay.
Character 10: Do we all go on dates together? Who's going to be the third wheel? No other dudes. No other dudes. Part of me wants to brag but the dildo part is like, "Whoa, it's freaky dicky."
Character 12: I think maybe you should calm down a little bit.
Character 13: I'm sure that's very easy for you to say. You're not the one being treated like the one night stand who've linger too long.
Character 14: The heart's not like a box that gets filled up. It expands in size the more you go.
Jase: Hello, everybody.
Emily: Wow, that was like the world's longest walk. Hello everyone. Wow, thank you all so much for being here tonight. We have been to what? Nine cities--
Dedeker: We've been to every city in the world at this point.
Emily: Nine cities, two conferences. We spoke at Google. This is our final show of our second North American tour, which is so freaking awesome. We're so glad to be here with all of you, especially since we know so many of you in this audience tonight. Thank you so much for being here. For those of you who don't know why the hell you're here and who we are, I am Emily.
Jase: I'm Jase.
Dedeker: I'm Dedeker. If you don't know why you're here-- Is there anyone here who's never listened to the Multiamory Podcast? Show up hands.
Dedeker: No, you're lying.
Emily: No, Andy, you're a liar.
Dedeker: For those of you that are not lying, thank you so much for letting someone drag you along tonight. We really appreciate that. For those of you that don't know, we started the Multiamory Podcasts in 2014. Mostly because at that time, we were just- I don't know, we were frustrated with having to explain polyamory over and over and over again. I guess we thought that maybe if we pre-record something that then it will be a little bit easier, we can just kind of hand it over to people instead of having to have the same conversation.
Here we are four years later, still having the same conversation over and over and over again, but loving it. Here at our very, very last show of our second tour. Again, thank you so much for showing up tonight. As you saw from our intro, we had our very, very first live show ever in January of 2017.
Emily: In Santa Monica.
Dedeker: I was here in Los Angeles. As you know, it was the first time that we ever recorded the podcast in front of live human beings instead of in front of just some cats, which is normally how the podcast gets made. The topic for that show was we covered representations of polyamory and non-monogamy in pop culture, in TV and movies. For that show that we did about a year and a half ago, the way that we did research for that show and the way we prepared for it is we basically just stayed in our pajamas all day, drinking mimosas and watching a bunch of stuff.
Emily: We got super drunk. It was awesome.
Dedeker: It was great. We found a wide variety of representations and portrayals of non-traditional relationships in all kinds of stuff for web series and movies and popular TV shows, like some that you saw, like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, like Futurama, like Orange is the New Black, things like that.
Emily: When we were watching all of these shows, we started to see popular themes coming up over and over again that related to non-monogamy.
Jase: The first one of those that we noticed is that everything tried to look as close to monogamy as possible. Basically, what that meant was it tended to focus on a couple who was seeking a third to try to spice up their love life together. It wasn't so much about that third relationship being its own autonomous one. It was only there to serve the primary couple. Oftentimes, with this arc ending in the couple not needing the third anymore and being like, "Cool, we're good now." That's supposed to be a happy ending. For any of us who've been the third, we know that's not the happy ending to that story. Then also that it was almost always two women and a man in all of the triads that we saw.
Emily: There was just this assumption that all of the women were bisexual and none of the men were. There was a lot of male bi erasure happening on these shows, with the exception of what was it a House of Cards. We did see Kevin Spacey's character, he was with a man on that one. Then also, most of the things that we were seeing were all white people. It was a bunch of white privileged people that were just taking their third out on this extravagant date and then sending them on their way at the end.
Dedeker: We decided for this show that we wanted to revisit this theme again. The thing that we did differently this time is we decided that we wanted to focus on just media that came out in this past year because we're mostly interested in checking in and seeing how is representation of non-traditional relationships changing or evolving. Is it changing or evolving? Again, we just focused on stuff just in this past year.
Jase: When we had that idea, we weren't sure if we could pull it off. We asked for a lot of contributions from you out there as well as looking into stuff on our own and we found that not only was there enough content to do a whole new episode, only doing stuff about non-monogamy that's come out in the past year but in fact, there was so much, we're not even going to be able to show it all. Which is pretty amazing because before we had to pull from like 10 years in the past to get enough stuff to cover an episode.
Emily: A bunch of web series.
Jase: Totally. That's been amazing. On that note, I did want to apologize if your favorite show that covered non-monogamy this year does not get shown. I apologize. There just wasn't time to cover everything which is actually an amazing thing. Be happy about that.
Dedeker: You could angry tweet at us later.
Jase: Or just afterward when we hang out?
Emily: Exactly. There will be a question and answer section at the end. We have our lovely question microphone sitting there. If you have questions during the show, save them for the end because we will have time for them.
Dedeker: We're going to be showing you a lot of different clips from different movies and TV shows and one web series. It's going to be movie day in class where you get to chill out, except the only difference is that you get to drink. Which is great.
Emily: That's way better.
Dedeker: On that note, if you need to get another drink, feel free to get up and get it. If you need to go to the bathroom, that's okay. We're not going to give you a hall pass or anything like that. We're all cool here. I do need to give a couple of disclaimers here. One of them is that at the very end, we do have one clip that has some simulated sex acts in it. If you are anti-simulated sex, now is the time to go. We're good.
Then the other thing is because we're covering stuff that came out in the last year or so, that means that there is going to be spoilers. I know, I know. It's okay. You're going to get a warning ahead of time what show we're talking about, what the clips going to be from. If you want to cover your ears or like close your eyes and la-la-la-la-la like to keep yourself--
Jase: Or if you want to go to the bathroom.
Emily: Or get a drink during that time.
Dedeker: If you want to keep yourself spoiler free, proud to be, it's totally okay to do that. We've had someone at every single show actually do that.
Emily: Exit the premises for a while.
Dedeker: Don't be embarrassed, it's totally okay if you need to protect yourself. It's okay to have boundaries here.
Jase: My favorite was on one of the shows. We had like two or three people in New York leave during that show, and then came back afterwards. They were just like, "I can't have that spoiled for me."
Emily: I'm glad that they did that. Shall we do this?
Jase: Let's do it.
Dedeker: Yes, let do it.
Emily: One of the amazing things that we saw this year was that there were much more nuanced conversations happening around non-monogamy and non-traditional relationships. Also, there are so many more people of color on these television shows which is fucking awesome. In comparison last year which is an amazing, amazing web series, that was one of the only things that was 100% with African-American people and the entire crew was as well. That was something obviously that was a lower budget thing. Now, we're seeing things on Netflix, we're seeing movies and a bunch of different things with people of color which is fantastic.
Dedeker: I guess the main thing that I noticed when we were starting to do research for this episode is that I feel I see mainstream media slowly but surely getting better at telling this kind of stories, at writing stories that have some kind of connecting point to non-monogamy, at telling a variety of viewpoints. However, the interesting thing that I see is that writers still have to write for a mainstream audience and that means an audience that still has predominantly traditional and predominantly monogamous values.
That is the interesting thing that I think comes through in a lot of the work is a little bit of this- I don't know if you could call it creative tension or whatever, but this tension between how far writers are willing to go or how realistic writers are willing to go or what kinds of off-the-wall relationships writers are willing to write in versus what a more traditional audience is still going to relate to and believe and want to hear about in a story essentially.
Emily: Monogamy is not a bad thing obviously, but it just perpetuates this idea that polyamory is just about sex or just about hookups.
Jase: This first clip we're going to show you is an example of both of these things. It's a more nuanced conversation, but it does keep the non-monogamy to just hookups sort of thing. This is from the show Insecure. Any fans of Insecure out there?
Did anyone work on Insecure?
Emily: I know. Oh my God, you can ask that question here.
Dedeker: This is the only studio where we can ask that question.
Jase: I know right. I might actually be working on season two of it which is pretty exciting. Anyway, wait, that's probably an NDA thing. Don't tell anyone. Anyway, in Insecure, one of the main characters is Molly. She meets a guy named Dro who is married and is in an open relationship with his wife Candice. This is the conversation that they have after the first time that they have sex.
Molly: How would this even work? This whole open thing sounds super messy. If you see me, are you seeing other people?
Dro: No, I don't have to.
Molly: You want to?
Dro: No, not right now. I’m worn out. I'm not looking for anyone else, Molly.
Molly: Okay, but what if I am? How about I see other people?
Dro: Then you got to do what you want.
Molly: Are there other Mollies out there that you've been with like that?
Dro: I've only been with one Molly I've been with like that, but if you're asking if I have slept with other women, then come on.
Molly: Okay, calm down a little. Wait, does Candice know about all this?
Dro: Of course, she does. It was actually her idea we see other people.
Molly: Damn. It was kind of boss.
Dedeker: That is kind of boss, at least a little bit boss.
Emily: I love the fact that she's actually saying those words about a non-monogamous relationships. She's not like, "That's fucking weird. I don't know who you are." Instead, it's like a thing, "That's okay." and she's pleased to be doing it in that moment.
Dedeker: So proud to make positive reactions.
Jase: I think it's a pretty realistic conversation. It's definitely like we were saying very much about an open relationship, just a hookup sort of thing. He's not really looking for another relationship. Unfortunately, that is the arc of this takes in this season is that she ends up being more and more unhappy with the fact that this relationship isn't going to be what she wants it to be which is a real relationship. On that note, that's the right thing to do if you're in a relationship.
That's very clearly not the thing that you want from a relationship, but it's just a little bit of a bummer because that's all our audience knows. I thought it would have been cool to show them something different than that.
Dedeker: Well, that is the interesting thing. Like I was saying is that it's the writer wants to go there, but you still have to protect the emotional monogamy as it were. That's why we get the line about like, "Don't worry. I'm not looking for another serious partner. It's just sex." Even though casual sex and hookups are fine, but we saw a lot of that recurring conversation of like, "No, don't worry. This isn't about love or anything."
Jase: Heaven forbid. The next thing that we noticed is that something from last year, like I was saying, is that they were all focused on the couple who wanted to spice up their relationship and so they start this relationship with a third. What we're seeing this year is that that's starting to shift a little bit in terms of our point of view as the audience. Who it is we're following? Whose story it is that's important.
Emily: The gaze, G-A-Z-E, the gaze that is shifting--
Dedeker: Do you have to clarify?
Emily: Because every time we say it, I'm like, "Wait, what are we saying right now?" The gaze. That is actually shifting away from just the couple over to the point of view of the third. With that, it shows that there are some potentially troubling power dynamics that can happen if it's not done well.
Dedeker: Right, again with the gaze.
Emily: Yes, sorry.
Dedeker: There's been this idea that's been around for a long time in feminist film critique which is the idea of the male gaze. The idea that most of the movies that we watch or the TV that we consume or the commercials that we see or ads or whatever that we see, the majority of it is shot from the male gaze, especially if it's up a female subject, for instance, as in what's the lighting, what's the makeup, what's the pose, what are the body parts being shown that are going to be the most appealing and attractive to a heterosexual male viewpoint.
If you haven't noticed this already, you're going to start noticing it now. I think that what we're starting to see is, again, this gaze shifting where what we saw was initially the couple's gaze, for instance. What's good for the couple? Should they open up, should they not, should they try to have this threesome, should they not, should they try to find the unicorn, is it going to be good for them or not? We are starting to see more media that's maybe portraying things from the unicorn's gaze or from the third's gaze or from the secondary partner's gaze who maybe is not as thrilled with this.
We're actually seeing that there is impact to couple's privilege. We're seeing couple's privilege is a thing first and foremost and that there can be consequences too if you treat your third really shit. The first couple of clips that we're going to show you to exemplify this is actually our only web series that we're going to talk about tonight, called Unicornland. Has anyone watched the Unicornland? Probably this corner of the audience has. I don't know you all were.
Emily: It's really good. Watch it.
Dedeker: It's really fantastic. It's won a bunch of awards. It has really high production value. Basically, the series follows this woman who- she just got through a messy divorce after a bad marriage. Part of her healing process is that she is a unicorn. She goes in hooksup . I tried to say hookup and fuck at the same time. She hooks it up with couples as part of her process of rediscovery after this marriage. It's not clear from the series if she's looking for a long-term ongoing triad relationship or if she is just looking for one-off threesomes, but everything is from her perspective.
It's also one of the only shows where it actually portrayed a lesbian couple instead of a heterosexual couple that are actually looking for a third or for a unicorn. The show is really great and also really awful just in how awkward it is. Really realistically awkward. I'm just going to let it speak for itself.
Martha: You're a unicorn.
George: A beautiful, fascinating woman-
Martha: Or man.
George: - who deigns to bestow her presence on mortals.
Martha: Rare magical creatures.
Ethan: Look at you two beauties.
Julianne: Would you stop objectifying her.
Ethan: I'm excited, baby.
Julianne: Don't call me baby.
Annie: Maybe I should go.
Ethan: No, stay.
Julianne: Don't be a creep. If she wants to leave, let her leave.
Ethan: She wants to leave because you're being unstable.
Julianne: Listen, I want to fuck her too, okay, but you're smothering me.
Ethan: If we can't fuck someone together, how are we supposed to raise a child?
Ethan: Sit down.
Annie: I feel like going home.
Julianne: No, please stay.
Annie: I didn't get out of a bad marriage to join yours.
Jase: Mic drop.
Emily: It's so good.
Dedeker: Yes, that one deserves some applause.
She's so good. You can see all throughout the series, it's so intentionally shot the way that we have that scene where the couples even blocking her from the camera being able to see her. They're just completely obliterating her. There's all these shots in the series of her walking 10 steps behind a couple. It's just really, really fantastic. I guess this portion of the audience that hasn't seen it, you can go watch it online for free. Go do that.
Emily: It's 40 minutes total.
Dedeker: Total. Each episode is only five minutes long. They don't always end awkward. Some of them are happy endings too.
Emily: We'll move away from the land of unicorns and go over to Professor Marston and the Wonder Women. Has anyone seen that in the audience?
It's a movie that's about polyamorous relationships.
Dedeker: A big budget movie.
Emily: Exactly, which is fantastic. There were some controversial things about it definitely, some coercion and not a lot of people asking for things and said just things happen. It was awkward. However, I'll let you know about what we're about to see here. Professor Marston who is the creator of the Polygraph test and also created the Wonder Women Comics, he and his wife befriend and eventually get into a relationship with one of his students which also has some ethical problems but they have an amazing relationship together. They have kids together. He has kids with both of the women and everything seems to be going really well until something very bad happens and then we get to this scene.
Elizabeth: Can't keep doing this.
Olive: Are you blaming me for what happened? They had no right to.
Elizabeth: No, they did. They have every right, they're right to shun us, and perhaps they are right to beat us.
Olive: Please, don't do this.
Elizabeth: You have to go.
Olive: I have to go.
Bryne: I don't want to go.
Prof. Marston: It's going to be all right. It's okay.
Donn: I won't get in any more fights, I swear.
Elizabeth: Sweetheart, I told you it wasn't about that, okay?
Prof. Marston: You be a big boy, okay? That's all right, Bryne. You look at your brother, all right? Please, don't do this.
Elizabeth: I didn't do this.
Emily: It's really pretty tragic.
Dedeker: Absolutely, but the amazing thing about this scene is that it lingers on her. You're rooting for her in this moment. You're feeling the emotions that she's going through instead of villainizing her, saying like, "This is a good thing that she's being kicked out." It's really tragic that she is. Also, the children--
Emily: No one thought of the children.
Dedeker: No. No one think of the children in this moment, and it's very devastating.
Emily: Well, it's just that I think in years previous like, Jase was saying, it was very much the opposite that you villainize the third, the third is complicating things, or getting in the way of our relationship, and so us not needing her anymore or us kicking her out, that's a perfectly reasonable thing to do versus here where we're seeing like, "That actually has some consequences that has some impact that we couldn't have see."
Dedeker: For a lot of people, not just that core relationship.
Jase: The next show that we want to show you as an example is a show called You Me Her. Anyone watched this one? Okay, right. One person.
Dedeker: One person. Exactly.
Jase: The first thing that may surprise you is that you haven't seen this show, but this is the only show on television about polyamory. Why haven't you heard about it, why haven't you seen it? Well, it's because it's produced on the Audience Network, which is an online-only network that you can only log into and watch with your cable subscription, but you can't watch it on cable and you can't-
Emily: Only online.
Jase: - subscribe, just do it online. You have to have cable to watch it online.
Dedeker: In other words, the Audience Network has no audience.
Jase: This show, You Me Her actually just aired its third season. We're talking about its second season.
Jase: I know. We're talking about the second season, which just came out last year. This show centers around a couple from Portland, Oregon who meet an escort who's a college student and they start a relationship with her. The first season- just quick little summary here. First season is all about them being like, "Wait, what?" Like, "What is this? How could we both have feelings for her? Should we try this?" "I don't know." Like, "Does she stay with us? Do we both sleep with her at the same time? What?" It's that sort of thing. They need to keep this secret from all of their neighbors for some reason even though they live in Portland.
They tell a lie to their neighbors that she's there niece and that's why she's staying with them.
Emily: Exactly. It's like--
Dedeker: You don't know how ruthless Portland is, you all.
Emily: Oh my God, they would not be about this.
Jase: At the end of the first season, she gets fed up with being kept a secret and is going to leave, and they go and get her back, and say, "No. Come live with us." Now, this is the very first episode, the very beginning of season 2 where they're going to be open, they're going to talk to their neighbors about it. This is the conversation they have that's relevant to what we were just talking about.
Isabelle: The adventure begins.
Jack: Openly polyamorous adventure.
Emma: Yes. Are you okay?
Izzy: Yes. I’m really okay.
Emma: Wait, did you--
Izzy: No. What's happening here, it's called couples privilege. We both assumed the unicorn would ride in the back, that's me, the unicorn, the third.
Jack: Should we rotate or-- Where do you want to sit?
Izzy: Behind the wheel.
Dedeker: Okay. They Googled the term couples privilege.
Emily: Good job.
Dedeker: Good for them.
Emily: Really, phenomenal acting, right?
Dedeker: Great acting.
Emily: Awesome. So good.
Dedeker: Okay. I think that's the frustrating thing. For a show that actively markets itself as the only show on television about polyamory, that when you watch it, it becomes very clear relatively quickly that like, "I don't think anyone on the writing team identifies as us polyamorous or non-monogamous. I don't think anyone on the writing team knows anybody who's polyamorous or non-monogamous, and I think that no one on the writing team knows anyone who lives in Portland either."
Dedeker: There's just so many moments where it falls flat and it's off, I don't-- Let's just go on to the next clip and just--
Jase: The thing is they start the season with this and I was like, "Maybe after the first season they got some feedback from polyamorous people who watch the show and were like, 'We should actually learn what this is like.'"
Dedeker: The terminology.
Emily: They learn the term. Exactly.
Jase: They mentioned couple privilege. I'm like, "Cool. This will be an interesting season." Then it's like we see them do shitty couple privilege things and we see her be upset about it, but then there's no real consequences for it. Then they just all forgive each other and go back to their thing. It's just weird. Okay, we're going to rant about this show, You Me Her for a little bit.
Dedeker: Strap in.
Jase: Get ready for it. Here's another illustration of how little the writers know about the world of-
Dedeker: The culture.
Jase: - polyamory at all. This scene takes place after they've gone through something difficult and are trying to figure out their relationship.
Jack: How other throuples do it, with one them always feeling like they're the odd human out? Is there support group for polyamories somewhere?
Emma: Please, there's a support group for dandruff sufferers.
Dedeker: Is there a support group for polyamory somewhere?
Emily: I don't know. I've never heard of one.
Dedeker: Do you think there's a place where people in non-traditional relationships could meet up and discuss things? Do you think people do that?
Emily: Do you think there's a podcast about this kind of a thing?
Dedeker: Maybe there's a couple of books or something.
Emily: Do you think that there's another cocktail party going on right now for polyamorous people?
Dedeker: In Portland, Oregon?
Emily: Well, and in LA.
Poly cocktail is just sampling literally right now. Thank you for being here tonight.
Dedeker: It's like even in the fiction of the show, these people think that they invented it. It's not set in the '70s, '80s, '90s before there was the internet when people really could be like, "How do we do this?" "I don't know. We just got to figure it out on our own." It's like nobody Googled-- They all have smartphones in their pocket and nobody Googled like, "Hey, I'm in a triad now, what the hell do I do?" The other problem with that clip is they used the “tho-” words. I don't know if any of you all caught that.
Jase: Well, we got another clip. That's going to show it for you even better.
Emily: Do it. Do it. Do it.
Dedeker: Even more.
Jase: This happens-- Again, like I said, they're going to come out. This is when they come out to all of their neighbors at their neighbors barbecue.
Emily: Not theirs, their neighbor's barbecue.
Jase: Not their own barbecue.
Emily: They highjacked their neighbor's barbecue.
Izzy: Okay. I'm Izzy.
Emma: This is Izzy.
Jack: She just said that.
Female Neighbor: I'm sorry, I don't understand what's going on here. Why are you presenting your niece like it's her coming-out party?
Jack: It's funny you use the phrase coming out because--
Izzy: I'm not their niece.
Emma: We're together. We're a throuple.
Jack: We're living together romantically. Cheers everyone.
Dedeker: They got that part. They got the Portland slogan in there.
Clearly if it really was in Portland, half the people at that party would be like, "Me too. That's great."
Emily: Like, "We knew, don't worry about it. It's not a big deal."
Dedeker: "Good job." The throuple word, it's all throughout the show and it just turns my stomach every single time.
Jase: We actually found out-- During this tour, we met two people who actually use the word throuple to describe their own relationship.
Emily: Does anyone here use the word throuple? Anyone? Not that they would say it now.
Jase: I see one hand over here.
Dedeker: One person?
Emily: One person.
Jase: Generally speaking and--
Dedeker: We would advise you to don't.
Jase: I don't mean to shame anyone for their language choice.
Dedeker: I got in trouble for this. Your language choices are your own. You can use whatever it is.
Jase: However, we don't call it a twople or a fourple. Throuple's one these word that the media is really latched on to. You'll see it a ton in the news. Like you'll see this story about this throuple who's raising a kid together or you'll see this story about this throuple who got married in New Zealand or whatever it is. Within the world of polyamory, no one uses it. Everyone says triad. For us, it's one of these litmus test things when we get messages from news outlets or people making documentaries or making films who want us to talk about them or they wrote a book that has some non-monogamy in it. If they use the word throuple, to us that's this signal of like, "You don't know."
Dedeker: Like you haven't actually talked to anybody yet.
Emily: Like you don't know what you're talking about.
Jase: No one has taught you the secret handshake yet. Right?
Emily: Right. For sure. We hate this word throuple, but we created a palate-cleanser for you all and for ourselves in the form of the show, Schitt's Creek.
David: What kind of barnyard were you raised in where you just eat someone else's food?
Alexis: You can share a boyfriend, but you can't share a piece of cake?
David: I'm not sharing a boyfriend. Stevie and I are both dating Jake at the same time, like sexually evolved human beings.
Alexis: Okay, because in my experience with throuples--
David: We're not a throuple.
Dedeker: I want to have that queued up and at the ready. Anytime someone sends us an email it's just like, "We're not a throuple. Really, we're not."
Jase: Schitt's Creek however is a fantastic show that does actually have surprisingly nuanced conversations about non-monogamy and about male bisexuality. All for a show that is largely improvised because it's a Christopher Guest show. Then also our Canadian audience was very excited to point out this is also a Canadian show.
Dedeker: Thank you, Canadian person.
Emily: Thank you, Canada. Well done.
Dedeker: We're going to stop ranting about throuples.
Emily: And You Me Her.
Dedeker: We're going to stop ranting about You Me Her. We're moving into the academic portion of the show. Get your glasses on. Get your neighbor's glasses on or something because Jase has invented a new word.
Dedeker: Yet, again.
Jase: I have. I'm really excited about this one. I love inventing new words, but this one is a very necessary one. When we were watching this--
Emily: That's debatable. Okay, I'm sorry. I'm so mean. It's so nice to say.
Jase: Mauricio can you just edit that part out of this show?
Emily: #SorryMauricio. Okay.
Jase: Sorry. I totally lost it. Okay, right.
Dedeker: It's okay.
Jase: Probably most people in this audience are familiar with the term heteronormativity. For those of you who aren't, heteronormativity is a term for basically creating content or policy or basically just speaking in a way that assumes everyone is heterosexual. We see this in the way a lot of our laws are written or the way a lot of policies are written or a lot of rules are written. They just assume that anyone who is in a couple is going to be male and female. That's heteronormativity and we see it a lot in our TV shows and stuff. It's like no one has to explain that they're straight because we just assume everybody is.
Then within the poly community, there has been this term used for a a while called mononormativity, which is the same thing, but about monogamy. It assumes that everyone wants a monogamous relationship. That's why you get those questions of- or you get that statement of like, "Well, someday I hope you find someone who really loves you." It's that assumption that everyone must want monogamy and if you don't have it, it's because you haven't found it yet or you can't find it or you're not ready for it yet. Something like that.
What we started seeing in these shows is they were having a lot more non-monogamy, but they tend to be these triads, like in You Me Her, that are a closed triad. In there, there's this assumption that in order for a relationship to be real, it has to be closed. The term I created for that is fidelitynormativity.
Dedeker: It just rolls off the tongue.
Emily: It's the easiest thing I've ever heard to say.
Jase: You will have to practice it a few times, but I guarantee you at your next poly meetup--
Emily: You whip that one out.
Jase: Whip that one out, people are going to go, "Yes, totally. It's a real problem."
Dedeker: People will act like, "Yes."
Jase: You'll be the smartest one in the room. Fidelitynormativity.
Dedeker: Practice in the mirror. Fidelitynormativity.
Jase: If you say it three times in the mirror, it will appear. Fidelitynormativity is this assumption that everyone wants fidelity and that for a relationship to be real, it needs to be fidelitous. In You Me Her, we see this-- We're in the second season. Again, this is a show about polyamory according to their own marketing material. There's this arc of him being interested in someone else who is an old college girlfriend of his and they talk about it as emotional cheating and their relationship coming together before they have that conversation about like, "I don't know how other polyamorous throuples do it." I didn't aspirate enough. "I don't know how the polyamorous couples do it."
Dedeker: That's a great Poehler impression. That's Amy Poehler's brother by the way.
Emily: In case you were wondering.
Dedeker: Old Greg.
Jase: Shoe fact. Anyway, in that, they're coming together is because he stands her up on a date basically, this other woman, and doesn't go on that. It's like, "No, I came home to be with you because you're the only people I really love." Another show--
Dedeker: It's like this baked-in notion that again for love to be real, it has to be closed and also for love to be real, it has to involve rejecting someone else. Like casting off any other options or lovers. We really held that up as this ideal of true romance. Even with shows that are about polyamory, it's like, "Well, whatever. We just add one more person in the configuration, but it's still romantic if it's closed and it's fidelitous."
Jase: Another example of this comes from the show Transparent. Has anyone watched Transparent?
In the fourth season of Transparent, there was an arc where one of the sisters and her husband met a female friend of theirs and started a relationship with her and we'll just call her Maybe because I've forgotten her name and it's played by the actress who plays Maybe. They start a relationship with her and she identifies herself as a polyhearted bisexual female.
Emily: Human female. That's what she said.
Jase: Human female. Sorry. I don't know why she had to add the last part there, but she identifies as polyhearted. They start this relationship and in coming out to their family they drop terms like NRE, they talk about New Relationship Energy and it's like, "Wow, these writers actually know what they're talking about. They actually did more research than You Me Her did."
Then while the couple is away on a vacation, they have a serious conversation and say, "We should work on our stuff that we have going on together." Like, "No third?" "Yes, no third." Like we talked about before. Then it gets even weirder because then they come back to break up with her, but before they do, she has this to say to them.
Lila: Okay. It's a little delicate just because I care about you guys a lot, but I met a new partner while you guys were gone and I think I'm really falling for her.
Sarah: Wow, that was so fast.
Len: That was a little fast.
Len: Do not apologize.
Sarah: We actually have the same--
Len: We were going to say--
Sarah: It's weird.
Len: Can I?
Len: To be clear then about this, then from now on--
Lila: Well, we could still work on kids on top.
Lila: Spend time together. It's just that Becca is now my primary partner.
Sarah: Wait. He's my primary too. We know what that is.
Lila: You guys are the best.
Sarah: Well, goodbye.
Lila: Thank you for understanding.
Sarah: We'll miss you.
Lila: We'll get together. We'll start writing soon.
Lila: Hope so.
Sarah: We had fun. Right?
Lila: That was so much fun.
Len: This is the least awkward breakup.
Lila: Totally. We were great at breakups, right?
Emily: Wait what? What just happened?
Dedeker: It's like it didn't quite add up there.
Emily: No, totally there is like a lot of lines of dialogue missing there.
Emily: It's very weird.
Jase: I understand that the writers needed this to happen. Since we're in LA, I can actually say this. To all of you who work with the writers of Transparent, please pass this message along. Here is the deal. You could have had this end up exactly the same way and you could have done it better. All you had to do was she has that conversation right, says, "I have this new partner, she is my primary now," and then when they say like, "This is the least awkward breakup ever," she goes "Wait, what?"
I was just letting you guys know that I have a new primary partner that might change our dynamic a little bit but why would you assume and they go, "Oh well actually we want to work on ourselves and so you're going to break up with you," and she can go, "Oh fuck you guys."
Emily and Dedeker: End scene.
Emily: We're good. Unfortunately, that's not what happened there.
Dedeker: That's the thing though is that I think that it kind of echoes what we see in much more traditional dating like when you're casually seeing a couple of different people or like maybe there is someone you're casually sleeping with and then if that person comes to you and says, "Hey I met someone, I think I'm falling for them. I think it's serious, I think they're my partner now." That like you know, that means like we can't sleep together anymore. Clearly, like this is a breakup or this is the end of whatever it is we had. It's kind of like taking again something that's slightly more mono normative and kind of applying it to a situation where-
Jase: Fidelity normative?
Dedeker: Sorry. It is mono-normative too a little bit.
Emily: Also fidelity normative.
Dedeker: It's fidelity normative. Okay, fine. Taking something much more fidelity normative and applying it to a situation that doesn't need to be so fidelity normative and practicing.
Jase: Nailed it.
Emily: We're going to go back to Professor Morrison because this movie is kind of chock full of this especially towards the beginning when the person who is the third, the student she, actually has a fiance but the couple come to her and say, "Okay it's either the fiance or it's us. Like you can't have both." Again you have to reject someone in order for this to be a real thing. The fiance also was unhappy with like how close she is getting to Professor Morrison and his wife, but they have this conversation here and they start agreeing to say something about this.
Dedeker: In this clip, we can never tell what the fiance’s name actually is like we can't hear like is it Brend is it Brant, is it Brad, is it Bread, we don't know, keep your ears out and let us know.
Speaker 5: I'm saying that I open to having sex with you. If you would like that, as is my husband.
Speaker 6: I'm engaged.
Professor Morrison: Do you love Brend?
Speaker 5: Oh crap very well. If you love this Brend fellow then we're happy for you. That's it. Let's forget the sex part, we can be friends right, let's just all be friends.
Professor Morrison: What do you want?
Speaker 6: I don't know.
Professor Morrison: That is a lie. Are you in love with Brend?
Speaker 6: Yes.
Professor Morrison: That is a lie. Are you in love with me?
Speaker 6: No.
Dedeker: I want to see by show of hands, who here is in love with Bread?
Emily: There is a lot of gluten intolerant people in here. Oh my God. I guess we are in LA.
Dedeker: Seriously though, he says Bread, she says Brend like they didn't catch that in the editing? They couldn't ADR that?
Emily: No ADR, I know, what the hell. That's all right.
Jase: In this scene, he actually goes on the next question he asks is do you love her. Do you love my wife and she says the same thing, "No," and it's, "That is a lie."
Speaker: Because that is a lie.
Emily: Got to get the delivery on that.
Jase: It's okay for her to be in love with both of them because it would still be fidelitous but she couldn't also love the fiance and still love them. See, this is the fidelity normative.
Emily: She has no agency in what she wants like in this relationship, it's unfortunate. Fidelity normativity.
Emily: Okay I know thank you. I can see it sometimes.
Jase: Everyone is like you went from laughing at it, to everyone is like yes.
Emily: We're going to get more into those nuanced conversations that we were talking about, we're going from like the really remedial like 101 very basic non-monogamy talk into like 201 non-monogamy talk at the very least. Most of these conversations that we've been seeing have been happening with therapist on this TV shows.
Dedeker: With these kind of more complex, more in-depth conversations, we didn't intentionally plan it out this way but next three clips that you're going to see are all therapist scenes in TV shows. The first clip that we're going to show you is from a Netflix show called She's Gotta Have It. Has anyone watched that one?
Dedeker: It's worth a round of applause. It's fantastic. She's Gotta Have It is a show based on a Spike Lee film of the same name that came out in '86 or '87. The story follows this young woman named Nola, she is an artist living in Brooklyn. Nola has four partners. She has three partners who are men, one who is a woman and it's really interesting because I think that there is some controversy around the show.
I think that Nola is possibly one of our only portrayals of solo Polyamory that we have on TV as in, polyamory that is not part of a hierarchical couple or the person doesn't want to become part of a hierarchical couple. She is very clear throughout the show with all her partners that she doesn't want to become somebody's girlfriend, she really wants to prioritize her own time and autonomy. She wants to prioritize her art and her career.
Where the show gets it's a controversy is because throughout the show, she is not really honest and transparent with any of her partners. Like she is open about the fact that she is not going to be monogamous but she kind of keeps everyone on arm's length, she kind of keeps her relationships compartmentalized. Some of the drama in the show comes when more than one partner shows up to the same event accidentally and she is running around trying to make sure they don't run into each other, that kind of stuff. Throughout the show, she has this really a lot of actually really interesting conversations with the therapist including this one.
Therapist: Can you focus with three boyfriends?
Nola: They're not my boyfriends.
Therapist: I'm sorry, lovers, in addition to Opal, that's four.
Nola: I admit, I may have slipped up and called one by the other's name but I never confuse their energies.
Therapist: Is their energy feeding your voice as an artist?
Nola: They all bring something different out of me.
Therapist: Tell me about that.
Nola: Morris makes me laugh until my sides hurt. We just have fun together, he makes me feel like a kid again.
Nola: Greer is spontaneous, surprisingly cultured, nothing is ever the same with him, definitely not the sex.
Nola: Is a little more intricate.
Therapist: Of course, of course. The estranged wife.
Nola: It was convenient at first. Him taking my broke ass to the river cafe. Buy my art when no one else would but then, something shifted. I care about him and he cares about me in a way that no one ever has.
Therapist: It sounds like all together, your lovers make the perfect mate?
Nola: You don't think that's smart?
Therapist: I didn't say that.
Nola: I got it all under wraps, Doc Jamison. For one, Opal is not even a problem. I never see anyone more than twice a week, no two lovers in one day, no sex without a condom, and no sex if it ain't in my loving bed.
Therapist: You've got a lot of rules there.
Nola: Got to maintain some kind of control.
Therapist: Of what? I don't want you to feel pressured to choose. The reality is that each lover will most likely want more of your time and heart and soul, but what would you have left for yourself? For your art? Can I make a suggestion? Opal was always very transparent with you. Maybe it's time you take a page out of her book, maybe full disclosure will help lift this burden that you've been carrying.
Dedeker: That is how I feel about it too. I love this conversation. I love the fact that again, it feels like this very real conversation about the very real pros and cons of having multiple partners that it kind of hits all these different talking points about the fact that it acknowledges that she could get very different positive things from different partners. It acknowledges the fact that isn't just like one partner who is kind of better suited to her than the rest.
Also, it would have been really easy to go on in a direction where the therapist is just giving the push back and trying to tell her like, no you got to stop this, no this is unhealthy this is distracting you or you got pick one of them and figure it out and stop playing these games.
Emily: Be monogamous.
Dedeker: The fact that even though the therapist brings up all these counterpoints and these cons where she lands is, hey, why don't you just try being honest? Maybe that will help solve the drama and the distraction happening in your life is if you're just honest and transparent. The really cool thing is that by the end of the show, in the very last episode, she is. She invites all of her partners to a prince-themed Thanksgiving party, which sounds like the best party on the planet, I don't know about you.
Emily: And they do a dance.
Dedeker: It ends on a choreographed dance which is also, a personal fantasy of mine and now you know.
Emily: A little bit. Has anyone out there seen the show Easy on Netflix? Yes.
Dedeker: Again, this corner's odd.
Jase: This side is really coming out.
Dedeker: Yes, they've seen everything over there, the binge-watchers over there.
Emily: Again, a really good show, it's shorter episodes, 21-minute episodes with maybe two or three people that are the focus of each episode. Now, it's in its second season. There were two people that were in the first season and the second season. These two people that we're about to see, in the first season, their marriage was on the rocks. They didn't know if they were going to make it. They have a sexless marriage now. Then in the second season, they actually end up becoming non-monogamous. They do have this amazing conversation with their therapist which we're about to see here.
Andi: I feel ready. I feel like this has been such an important part of the process. It was a very, very adult sort of thing to do of talking it out and making it superconscious but at a certain point, I just feel like it's getting into a heady zone and it's just feels so abstract at this point and we should just do it.
Kyle: Just so we're all on the same page, what do you mean by do it?
Andi: Open marriage, having sex with other people.
Dedeker: They're pretty cute, pretty cute.
Emily: From this, you think that it's all going to explode. It's just going to be a really bad time for these two people. You're waiting for that throughout this episode, especially since they say the words like, "We don't need rules," instead of saying, "Okay, everyone has to be home at ten o'clock. We have to be in bed together every night. No anal sex on Wednesdays." Instead, they just throw it out there and they're like, "Let's just try it. We've done the work We've done all these things with our therapist so let's go for it and see where we land."
Dedeker: Yes, that is refreshing to see because like you said, normally, we do get that scene where it's like, "Okay, we got to figure out the rules. We got to figure out how this works so that we can explain to the audience how this is going to work." The fact that they're just like, "No, we've been in therapy. We've been talking about it. We'll just dive into it."
Emily: Yes, it's very different than normally, how it would go.
Jase: Well, and part of that is that we're used to characters on TV not communicating at all. That's the central plot point of every romantic comedy is just either getting caught in something early and lying about it that lasts through the whole movie and then you have to come clean at the end, or just not communicating about what it is you want. We expect that from our characters on TV. It's what every sitcom is based on. Every episode of Friends is some version of that. This show's so surprising because at the end of the episode, we got this conversation.
Kyle: Did you have fun?
Andi: It's a little weird.
Kyle: I had a weird night too.
Kyle: I had a talk with that girl from work.
Andi: I had sex with a stranger.
Kyle: Wow. Do you want to talk about it?
Andi: No, not now.
Andi: Maybe in the morning.
Kyle: Cool. I love you.
Andi: I love you.
Dedeker: They're pretty sweet, pretty sweet.
Jase: They respect each other's boundaries. They ask permission about things.
Dedeker: This corner wants to have some tentative applause.
Emily: It's very tender. It's very lovely.
Dedeker: They clap over there.
Jase: This tender clapping too that's just--
Dedeker: Exactly, I know. It's like we don't want to wake them up. We don't want to disturb them.
Emily: It's lovely. Nobody is expecting anything from the other person. They're not like, "You have to tell me what happened right now," or, "Please, God. Don't tell me what occurred." They're respecting each other's boundaries in that moment and it's really, really beautiful to see and again, very different than the narrative that we've been fed for years through this type of media.
Dedeker: I like that in that conversation, they seem to capture the mix of awkwardness and vulnerability and also a little bit of excitement that comes from having a conversation like that with a partner for the first time, the first time that you do decide to talk about having sex with someone else or what you got up to with someone else that again, it's not all horrible tears and negativity. It's also not all positive happy rainbows. It ends a little bit happy rainbows but just that, it's more interesting.
Emily: They reconnect again.
Dedeker: Yes, that's true. That's true.
Jase: Our next show to talk about, our last therapist scene, this comes from the show Grace and Frankie which is another Netflix show.
Jase: In the most recent season of Grace and Frankie, the characters Sol and Robert are in therapy. One of the things they're talking about is the fact that Sol went on a cruise and met this guy named Roy. He really hit it off with Roy and the two of them have stayed in touch. They've been texting with each other. This has caused some stress in Sol and Robert's relationship, the two of them are married, causing some stress in their relationship. That's what they're talking about here with their therapist.
Sol: I'm someone who needs people in his life.
Therapist: Sol does seem to be looking for something with Roy, with Frankie, even with his activism, that he feels he is not getting at home.
Robert: I can't be everything to him.
Therapist: And you shouldn't have to be. Have you two ever considered a less conventional approach to your relationship?
Robert: What do you mean?
Therapist: I've had patients, gay men in particular, who've had some success venturing outside the social norms to find an arrangement that works best for them.
Sol: What kind of arrangement?
Therapist: If Roy pops up again, perhaps you could explore that without any guilt.
Sol: You mean explore?
Robert: I'm Catholic for Christ's sake.
Sol: And we're married.
Therapist: You're also men. You have complex biological impulses and monogamy may run contrary to those impulses, and open marriage is just one idea. There are many others.
Robert: But what does that mean?
Therapist: Well, it means that in order to fix this relationship, you may need to break it wide open.
Dedeker: Martin Sheen, dope. That's the first time, at least in this show, we've seen that's focusing around a gay couple first of all, primarily.
Emily: Who's over 40.
Dedeker: Exactly, who's over the age of 40 which is also great to see at the same time.
Jase: What's unfortunate about this scene is the fact that the therapist makes it about the fact that they're men. I found this especially disappointing because it's just like, really, have we not moved past that yet? Have there not been enough studies yet showing that that's not actually the case? Haven't we moved on as a society? I was actually really disappointed by a show that in other respects, seems quite progressive for a sitcom format of a show. Anyway, that was my one gripe and I just had to bring it up because that was frustrating.
Dedeker: You've been disappointed a lot tonight.
Emily: It's okay.
Jase: It's like I think of TV writers in Hollywood as my children.
Jase: It's like, I'm not mad. I'm just disappointed.
Dedeker: I see, okay. The worst thing that a parent can say to you, that's all. That's all.
Emily: Oh, my God.
Dedeker: That was a lot of Netflix shows back-to-back that we did there.
Jase: We joked a while ago about seeing if we could find some executive of programming at Netflix--
Jase: Have them on the show and be like, "Hey, do you know what you're doing? Are you aware?", because there's more than just this. There's also Bojack Horseman where Hollyhock has six gay dads. We have Sense8 which is another great example. There's a ton of stuff right now on Netflix with non-monogamy in it. We brought this up as a joke of, "Do they know what they're doing?" Then someone pointed out this actual real-life ad for Netflix.
Character 1: What do you want to watch?
Character 2: How about Orange Is The New Black?
Character 1: Yes, okay.
Character 2: Wait, you're probably waiting to watch that with Jimmy, right?
Character 1: No. It's totally fine.
Character 2: Isn't that like cheating?
Character 1: We're in a Netflix open relationship.
Character 2: What is that?
Character 1: It means that we can watch whatever we want, whenever we want, with whoever we want.
Character 3: Don't you get jealous?
Character 4: No, no we are not each others possessions. I don't know, I kind of like that she enjoys watching with other people.
Character 1: I mean how is one person supposed to satisfy all of your TV watching needs?
Character 4: Watching TV with only one person just isn't natural.
Character 1: It's just like any relationship. It is all about communication.
Character 4: And setting boundaries. She's the primary person I watch shows with.
Character 1: And if I'm streaming with somebody else, I'm just sure to let him know.
Character 2: Do you guys even binge together?
Character 1: Yes. We love binge-watching together.
Dedeker: Yes we can get some applause for that one.
Emily: That's like half of the ad.
Dedeker: Yes it's only half of the ad.
Emily: It goes on.
Dedeker: Yes it hits like every single talking point in that conversation.
Emily: It's really, really good.
Jase: So apparently someone at Netflix does know what they're doing.
Jase: And not only that but they somehow manage to make an ad that's probably the best conversation on TV in the past year about non-monogamy.
Dedeker: The thing is though, after I saw this add I realized I have been in some form of non-monogamous relationship for almost ten years now and the idea of a Netflix open relationship is actually really terrifying to me.
Emily: That's a boundary right there.
Dedeker: It might be an edge for me, possibly.
Jase: Alright so for our last section, we want to talk about sort of the overall evolution of what we're seeing as portrayals of non monogamy on television and the show that I'm really excited to talk about that I think is a great example of this next evolution is the show Steven Universe.
Jase: I love this. Every time I say "Steven Universe" at one of these live shows, like a third or a quarter of the audience looses their fucking minds and everyone else is like huh.
Emily: I don't know what that is.
Jase: Steven Universe, for those of you who don't know, is a children's show and it's fucking amazing for everybody. Really truly, it's wonderful. It's had five seasons so far and it's the best representation on TV of various gender identities, various sexualities, different races. Boys crying and not being shamed for it. Affection between boys and their fathers. The main character is a boy who learns that his super power is a shield that helps him protect other people and not a weapon like he thought it was going to be when he found out that he had super powers.
Like fucking incredible show. Really, really good and it's a children's show but has bisexual characters and trans-characters and characters of different races. It's wonderful. Anyway, in this most recent season, a character named Fluorite was introduced and Fluorite is part of this group called the Off Colors who are kind of these out casts gems. What gems are these alien magical creatures that Steven is a half gem.
One back story of gems that you need to know is that when two gems become like totally in sync with each other emotionally, mentally, they can actually fuse together to become one being together. I think that's enough context for you to understand this clip.
Character 1: A fusion like me is unforgivable. When Morganite found out, let's just say we were replaced but my story is nothing. I mean, Flourite, how many gems are you now?
Fluorite: Six, maybe more if we meet the right gem.
Emily: So cute.
Jase: What's especially fantastic about this is that the director and creator of the show was actually asked about this last year in ComicCon saying is Fluorite a representation of Polyamory and she said, "Yes, Fluorite is." The reason why they made the choice to include Fluorite in the show is because they did a panel with youths from an LGBT center and the kids there, the youths said that this is something they would like to see represented in the show.
Dedeker: Good job to the youths.
Emily: The youths will save us.
Dedeker: They will save us all. Yes, great show and if your kids don't already watch it, find a kid and show it to them.
Emily: Just place a kid in front of it.
Dedeker: Watch it by yourself, I don't know.
Jase: Just watch it. Watch it with your friends. It's great. It's on Cartoon Network.
Emily: Our last three clips are all going to be coming from the show the Magicians. Anyone?
Emily: Yes Jase and I love this show. Dedeker, not so much. We think it's great and it's fun because it kind of shows like the whole arc of what we're talking about here. Non monogamy in media has progressed from sort of being a punch line to finally becoming something that is actually talked about in a really nuanced and amazing way. The first clip that we are about to see here is from Season One which was about three years ago. It shows like sort of where we were at that time. You're about to see Quinton and Alice coming together to Alice's parents house. They walk into this insane orgy that's about to happen.
Dedeker: Here's the simulated sex act, so if you need to, you know, if you’re not into it--
Emily: --then bounce now.
Jase: Here we go.
Character 1: Come, come, come. I'm so glad you guys can make it for the Veneralia, the Roman festival of Venus.
Character 1: Did Alice tell you I studied Historical Magic. We celebrated all the Roman holidays around here?
Character 3: Dad I need to talk to mom right now. It's important.
Character 1: Well, after a frolic, she’ll usually head for the tepidarium.
Character 3: Can you please just call it the bath?
Character 1: Nonsense this is my domas, I shall call it what I please.
Dedeker: It's kind of jokey.
Emily: It's a punch line kind of-
Dedeker: It's like oh yes the parents are non monogamous so of course they'll be having a Roman orgy, that's what non monogamous people do.
Dedeker: It's kind of in lie with what we are seeing about three or four years ago or so.
Dedeker: That's in contrast to the second season of the Magicians which is about two or three years ago where we get a little bit of an upgrade on the conversation. The context for this clip is that Eliot who is the king of Phillery which is a magical land.
Jase: You've studied so well.
Dedeker: Yes I know. Eliot meets another king in Phillery and he thinks that they are going to duel it to the death except that then Eliot learns that the rules in Phillery are a little bit different than what he thought.
Character 1: What happened to the whole one must die deal?
Character 2: Kings. What's the point of having great power if not to right wrongs?
Character 3: We are in agreement.
Character 2: We're getting married.
Character 4: What?
Character 1: Hello pregnant wifey, your dick not workey?
Character 2: Before I flay whoever neglected to inform me sooner. Apparently all monarchs on this glorious magical planet are entitled to one of each, a wife and a husband.
Character 1: So what? You're all just going to shack up together?
Character 2: We're all just one big royal polyamorous family. Isn't it great? No one has to die. Everyone gets what they want.
Emily: They used the word.
Dedeker: They did use the word. I will say the polyamory one no one has to die is the best kind of polyamory.
Emily: I mean Eliot's wife has no say in this marriage.
Dedeker: It's a little coercive, a little bit non consensual.
Emily: It's not really polyamory.
Dedeker: The thing is that though they do drop the P word, which we see that in parallel with what we've seen for instance with shows being hesitant to use the word bisexual for instance. For a while, we had characters who definitely in their actions and in their behavior are bisexual but very few writers are actually willing to put that term in. As a matter of fact, the first usage in relative main stream television was Crazy Ex Girl Friend a few years ago.
Jase: The first usage was Gray's Anatomy and then Crazy Ex Girl Friend was the first one to do it for a male character.
Emily: And to do a song and dance about it.
Jase: They did a whole song about it, yes.
Dedeker: We kind of see those things kind of running in parallel but again like starting to see more characters like in their actions, in their behavior are non-monogamous or polyamorous but we're not seeing the word get dropped very frequently.
Jase: That brings us to the most recent season of the Magician. In season three here, Eliot the king of Phillery- I see someone covering their eyes- I took out the big spoiler from this so this actually won't be too bad of a spoiler for you.
Dedeker: It's also a long clip so just bear in mind you're going to be holding the position for while.
Jase: Yes but thank you for taking care of yourselves. In this most recent season of the Magicians, Eliot and his good friend Clinton travel back in time like a 1000 years to solve this very, very difficult puzzle that will give them the power to manipulate time. You're going to watch this clip of them trying to solve this puzzle and then there's kind of a jump where I cut to later in the episode after a time loop has been reset so when that happens just know.
Dedeker: Just roll the tape.
Jase: Let's just watch this and then we'll talk about it.
Character 1: To our first and last year at this thing.
Character 2: Hey.
Character 1: Hey.
Character 1: We could be done tomorrow for all you know.
Character 2: We can't just throw away all this time we've invested.
Character 1: You want to live your life, you live it here. Hi.
Character 3: Hi.
Character 1: No luck today?
Character 3: Not when I'm holding someone else's pitches.
Character 1: All right, it looks like you're too good for him anyway.
Character 1: Come visit soon.
Character 2: Of course, if we're not here--
Character 1: I know dad, I love you too.
Character 1: There's your room.
Character 2: Age is important. I got so old. I'm dying.
Character 1: You had a wife.
Character 2: We had a family. How long have you been with her?
Character 1: I don't know.
Dedeker: Talk about such a jump between seasons that we've gone from the first season where it's like non-monogamy means Roman orgy, to this which is us literally seeing an entire lifetime of this relationship. That from the looks of it seems to be like this V-relationship, raising a child together with two bisexual men involved as well. That it comes out of nowhere, and it's just like so different from everything else that we've seen up to this point.
Jase: To be fair, the Magicians has had three seasons to practice covering non-monogamy.
Emily: It did. Yes, in every single season.
Jase: That's fair. Yes, You Me Her has also had three seasons to get it right. I would say for this year our award for best portrayal of non-monogamy.
Dedeker: Multi-Emmy Award of Excellence?
Jase: Yes, goes to the Magicians.
Dedeker: I didn't know there's an award show but yay, for the magicians.
Emily: I know, good job Magicians, well done. If anyone dares.
Jase: If anyone here worked on the magicians, you can come up and receive your prize.
Dedeker: Yes, because I can buy something really quickly.
Emily: Get a free beer.
Dedeker: With that, before we wrap up here, we do have some thank-yous that we want to give.
Jase: Yes, we would like to thank Angel City Brewery as well as Keith, Michael and Danny who helped us put on this.
Emily: Tip your bar tenders please, tip your bar tenders.
Jase: Our bar tenders of course.
Emily: Yes, also we have amazing volunteers tonight. Paul, Phoebe, Lindsay, Rusty and Rachel thank you so much. You are a part of our Patreon community as well, so thank you for that.
Jase: We want to give an extra special thank you to our editor and camera helper person today, Mauricio who is here.
Emily: Thank you Mauricio. Sorry Mauricio.
Dedeker: Sorry Mauricio.
Jase: Sorry Mauricio.
Dedeker: Then quick show of hands, who here is a part of our Patreon community? There's a lot of you tonight. Wow, yes, so our patrons are the reason that we are here. Basically without the support that we get from Patreon.
Jase: There is no way we could afford this.
Dedeker: No, we really wouldn't be here. The thing is, it's not just financial support from Patreon, it's also the fact that as a platform, it's enabled us to connect to our listeners in a way we never had been able to before. To be able to hear from people, what kind of content they want, what they're struggling with in their own lives. What kind of advice they need. Reaching out to help correct us, to help make us into a better podcast.
Just to be able to meet a bunch of people face to face that gets some kind of value out of the podcast. Of course, if you want to become part of that community, we would love it if you go to patreon.com/multiamory. Those of you that are here tonight, thank you so much for everything that you do.
Emily: Thank you so much.
Jase: A round of applause for you, for Patreons.
Emily: We also have some merch towards the front. Some of our lovely volunteers are manning that table, and we really appreciate you. If you want to buy some pins or unapologetic stickers, or also see our amazing merchandise that we have at multiamory.com/store, we have a couple of samples up there. You can get the feel of the shirts and stuff. Yes, we have a thing to say about, go for it if you want.
Dedeker: Yes, okay yes, with the merch you'll notice, so both in our online store and some of the merch that you can get tonight. Some of the merch just has our logo on it. It doesn't say Multiamory on it, which is not a good marketing move for us. Our thinking behind it is the idea that we realize that not everyone is out enough, or wants to have a shirt that says Multiamory across the front. That's why you can get something that just has the logo. Our dream with this, our vision is that that's like your secret bat signal. You put on the pin or you wear the shirt, you go to the gym and then someone comes along and is like--
Emily: "Wear your pin to the gym."
Dedeker: Exactly, I don't know what people say.
Jase: You wear your cool tank top.
Dedeker: You wear your cool tank top.
Jase: I'm wearing mine right now.
Dedeker: Yes, see. You wear it to the gym and someone's like, "Is that?" You're like, "Yes it is." They're like, "Yes," and then you have a new best friend, and all your problems are solved, anyway. You can pick up some of that at our merch table.
Emily: Yes, then in addition to that, the lovely person sitting next to me he wrote an amazing book called, The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory. If you want to pick one of those up tonight, we have many copies for sale and Dedeker will sign it for you. That's super awesome.
Dedeker: Yes, so we are going to be hanging out in this space, still having beers until about 10:30. After 10:30 we need to move over there to the bar.
Emily: Move over there.
Emily: Feel free to hang out. We're here to talk and answer questions, and anything you want. With that, thank you