On the episode of “Glee” that aired March 8, viewers could not escape the topic of sex and sex education. The episode, entitled “Sexy” featured the debate on sex education in high schools, same sex relationships, romance vs. sex, and celibacy.
Although the show starts out with a meeting of the celibacy club, Gwyneth Paltrow, playing Holly Holiday, soon steps in with frank discussions on the unrealistic view of teenage abstinence and the importance of sex education for teens. Holly Holiday goes on to tout sex in high school as the norm, but all while facilitating open communication about safe sex and relationships. The episode also shows the “sex talk” between a father and son in which not only the act is discussed, but also the feelings that often accompany it.
This “Glee” episode, whose target audience is said to be high-school aged teens and young adults, sends a lot of different messages. Amidst all of them, what struck me the most was Holly Holiday’s argument- “information is power”. Behavioral theory tells us over and over again that knowledge is often not enough for people to change their actions. Is talking about sex education in high school classrooms enough to prevent unwanted pregnancies and STD’s among the teen population?
And do you think this episode of “Glee” will encourage teens to seek more information on sexual health…or will it prompt them to think celibacy is unattractive? Will it encourage dialogue about sex between parents and their children? “Glee”, episode “Sexy”- health communication genius or deterrent? Tell us what you think!