A new show to be screened on Channel 4 next month will feature real-life couples having sex in a soundproof booth, followed by a live interview with a panel of experts.
Yes, you are reading this correctly.
Sex Box is a sex talk show with a difference. It's a panel discussion about the real sex lives of British people -- with a big old twist. Inspired by the work of sex researchers, three couples will have sex and then talk openly and honestly about it afterwards, while the feelings and sensations are still vivid.
The hour-long show, hosted by Mariella Frostrup, forms part of the channel’s Campaign For Real Sex season, 'aiming to reclaim sex from porn by exploring how the ever-increasing consumption of pornography is distorting people's expectations of sex and ultimately damaging the sex lives of Britons.'
Fortunately (or unfortunately?) no nudity, noise or ‘physical activity’ will be seen on screen. The aim of the show is to encourage honest debate and discussions about sexual experiences, rather than serve as a fly-on-the-wall opportunity to see real people go about the horizontal mumbo. After each couple has ‘finished’ their bedroom business, they’ll immediately be faced with a panel of experts, including psychotherapist relationship expert Tracey Cox, Phillip Hodson and sex columnist Dan Savage, ready to question them in their dizzy, post-coital state.
We’re completely for ground-breaking TV and an open debate on how pornography is having a negative effect on our expectations of sex and sexual ideals -- but is a show where we have to sit and listen to random couples dish about their bedroom shenanigans really going to change anything?
It feels more like a big marketing ploy to get us to tune in, in the vain hope that we might get to see some rude telly or hear naughty words. But judging by the current state of pop culture, we're guessing it's enough to rake in the viewers. After all, sex sells. Just ask Miley Cyrus
will air 7 October on Channel 4.
Lisa Cowan is a London-based freelance writer. Follow her on Twitter.