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Sunday, August 16, 2015
Masters of Sex #305 08/09/15 “Matters of Gravity”
Where is the Love?
by Catherine Giordano
Episode 305 of Showtime’s Masters of Sex asks us to look at love--sexual love, marital love,
motherly love, fatherly love, sexual love, and more.
Bill Masters has been
given a chance to erase the disgrace heaped upon him when he was fired years
ago because of his sex work when he is invited to receive an award and speak at
a dinner at Washington University. He’s invited because he is famous now. Also,
because the man who fired him is the hospital chancellor who fired him now
needs his services as a fertility specialist. His daughter-in-law needs to get
pregnant in a hurry so his son can receive a draft deferment and avoid Vietnam.
the speech, Bill takes a question. “Why is there no mention of love in the
book?" He gives a magnificent poetic answer. "Love
cannot be rendered into columns and graphs as if it were the same as blood
pressure, or heart rate.” Alluding to gravity, he says. “Love is not a force
exerted by one body onto another; it is the very fabric of those bodies. Love
is that which carves the lines and grooves, the curvature of our desire."
Margaret is learning about love. She
has learned that love is not about letting someone else’s desires rule over
your own. She stands up to her lover Graham who has brought a third person, a young
woman into their relationship, for a polyamorous relationship. She walks out on
him, but still wonders if being alone is better than being demeaned.
Although Margaret divorced her
husband, Barton, when she discovered that he was a homosexual, there is still
love between them. It’s hard to und the habits of a 20-year marriage. She worries
about him—is he taking care of himself, getting enough to eat, and the like. She
also misses him. They had a sexless marriage, not a loveless one. Barton still
cares for Margaret. At the end of the episode, we see him making a call to
their daughter. He is going to tell her that her parent’s marriage ended not because
her mother was unfaithful, but because he was unfaithful to Margaret…with men. Margaret
sits alongside him like a loving wife, holding his hand, to give him the
courage to make this confession to their daughter.
Virginia’s parents have come for an
unexpected visit. There is a lot of tension between Virginia and her mother.
Old resentments from Virginia’s childhood surface. Virginia berates her mother
for forcing her to enter a child beauty pageant and pushing her to succeed
while criticizing her for not being good enough. Her mother remembers it differently.
Virginia was the one who entered the beauty pageant on her own. Her mother was
only trying to help her succeed so that Virginia would not be disappointed. It
seems Virginia’s mother’s version of events is the correct one
Bill has to deal with some issues
from his childhood also. A larger older boy has been bullying Bill’s son. Bill
finds the boy and gives him a talking to. Bill was bullied as a child,
especially from his own father. He knows he must destroy this bully. Bill treats
this boy as his father treated him, short of smacking him around, of course. He
berates and frightens the boy so badly, it is a wonder the boy does not pee his
pants. The boy tells his parents and now there will be consequences for Bill.
Virginia continues to have problems
with her daughter Tessa. The girl has figured out that her Virginia is having
an affair with Bill and she deliberately leaves clues so that Virginia’s mother
can figure it out also. Virginia’s mother is shocked, but sees opportunity
here. She gets a moment alone with Virginia and tells her to get Bill to leave
his wife and marry her. She urges Virginia to “strike while the iron is hot.
Act now because Bill may tire of her. Virginia’s professional success means
nothing; she must secure her position in the world with marriage to a
is the love? It is in the very fabric of our lives. Love is that which
carves the lines and grooves into all of our relationships.