“The Sex Lives of College Girls” Cast Members Talk About Sexuality and Self-Discovery

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There are only a handful of shows describing specific experiences of students, especially women in college.

Written and produced by Mindy Kaling, “The Sex Lives of College Girls” takes place at the fictional Essex College and tells stories of girls in college that aren’t told so often.

It’s important that a show like this exists because it’s about regained freedom and self-discovery within the college experience, said Pauline Chalamet, who plays Kimberly.

“College is a very interesting time in life to explore how to become who you are,” Chalamet said in an interview with the Indiana Daily Student. “It’s the start of being alone and then becoming who you are.”

While college is the emblem of independence and exploration, the mindset of freshmen often includes thinking that everyone has their life together. Channeling their characters required each member of the cast to go back to their freshman year of college, with that way of thinking.

“In college, people start to talk more openly about sex,” Chalamet said. “You think everyone gets it, but they don’t. ”

Opening the show to discussing sex and exploring relationships is young IU Radhika Krishnamurthy’s favorite part of the ten-episode series.

“In college there is so much exploration with relationships,” Krishnamurthy said. “It’s my favorite part of the show because you can’t really talk about these topics in a high school environment without crossing too many boundaries.”

In addition to exploring relationships, Alyah Chanelle Scott, who plays Whitney, said college really is the first time you can explore your own identity.

“When you’re at home, you are often attached to the ideas that exist about you because of your family, friends and peers,” Scott said. “When it’s the first time you’re alone, you exist as yourself, decide who you are and how you want to move around the world. ”

For a character like Bela, played by Amrit Kaur, college allows her to explore sexually in a way she never could have grown up in a conservative South Asian household. Krishnamurthy said that she knew many people like Bela who had been “sexually starved” before going to college.

Kaur said Bela provides a more realistic portrayal of South Asians compared to what is often reflected in the entertainment industry. She said Bela’s sexual exploration and experiences broke down barriers and stereotypes about how South Asians are portrayed in the media.

“Bela has broadened and diminished the narrative that South Asians don’t have sex,” Kaur said. “Everyone has sex, and we also have sex. “

While the series openly discusses sexuality in different ways and explores different levels of relationships, the way that Reneé Rapp’s character Leighton grapples with her sexuality is something that many people, including the actress, do. themselves, can identify themselves.

“Sometimes gay or queer characters face a parental, religious, or values-based barrier that they struggle with,” Rapp said. “Something that’s going on with Leighton, that is more like what happened to me as a kid, is that it’s so internal and so homophobic inside his own body as opposed to the figures. outsiders constantly telling her who she can and can’t be. ”

As the second season draws near, the cast mentioned a number of issues they would like to address. These issues include identities and race relationships, obstacles in female friendships, and the deeper insight into the dynamics between the four women.

HBO Max announced on December 7 that it would renew “The Sex Lives of College Girls” for a second season. The final two episodes of the first season premiered on Thursday, December 9.


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