Everybody Has Lots of Sex
"I understand that blowjobs are now a casual greeting among young people."
Characters in contemporary fiction tend to have lots of sex
, and with lots of other characters. So much so that even your typical Hollywood Dateless
is liable to have as many sexual partners over the course of a series as most real people have in their lifetimes.note
This is not particularly remarked on by anyone, as the amount of sex is considered neither unusual nor immoral. Outside of teenagers' parents, the taboo on premarital sex is all but forgotten, and if people who enter a relationship decide to wait
before having sex it's a major plot point. It's also why being a Celibate Hero
is a big deal.
Sometimes, of course, this turns out to hurt them emotionally or otherwise but that doesn't usually stop them from doing the exact same thing two weeks later
Characters who do not conform to this trope can be expected to be downright prudes and/or Holier Than Thou
While being near-universal today in Western works that deal with romance and sex, this trope is a fairly recent arrival and can sometimes create a lot of Values Dissonance
for those who live in the numerous areas where sexual freedom still isn't recognized, as well as the older generations in the places where it is.
This idea is most obvious in settings where the characters are ostensibly supposed to be "normal". If they're explicitly sex freaks, or it's a story that doesn't really involve romance, or the characters are consistently monogamous, as opposed to serially monogamous, the trope is far less relevant.
Hotter and Sexier
probably has a bit to do with this, as well as the fact that more ambitious writers may be of the opinion that Sex Is Interesting
. And let's not forget, of course, that Sex Sells
For men, often ties into I'm a Man, I Can't Help It
and All Men Are Perverts
; whereas for women, it often ties into All Women Are Lustful
and My Girl Is a Slut
. Related to Eternal Sexual Freedom
. The reason why everyone makes sure to say Of Course I'm Not A Virgin
Contrast Nerds Are Virgins
, Lets Wait Awhile
. Often results in Friends with Benefits
and/or a lot of Three-Way Sex
. The logical extension of this trope also tends to result in Sex Is Good
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Anime and Manga
- ElfQuest. No elf would ever consider sex a bad thing (except possibly if it was with a troll which is how Winnowill ended up giving birth to Two-Edge). Jealousy is considered odd, and the only elf who ever seriously got jealous of another left on his own to preserve the village's harmony. (Word of God has constantly reminded readers that the reason many of the characters' beliefs would be taboo to most humans is simply because they are not human, something that is easy to overlook.)
- Swedish underground comic Rocky has this. Well, at least in the early years.
- In Gilbert Hernandez's "Palomar" stories in Love And Rockets, the only characters who don't have lots of sex (shown on-panel quite frequently for a non-porn comic) are prepubescent children, the infirm elderly, and the mentally disabled. This is particularly remarkable in the Volume 1 stories which take place mainly in a tiny, isolated and somewhat conservative Central American village.
- Red Ears literally runs on this trope!
- Subverted in The 40-Year-Old Virgin, where clearly everybody except the title character does have sex all the time - and not one of them are better off for it. The movie which starts off firmly on the note of "man, Steve Carell is weird", slowly turns to the realization that he's the Only Sane Man in a world where people are so obsessed with sex that it usually clouds their better judgment.
- Both this trope and All Men Are Perverts are subverted in 1970's What Do You Say to a Naked Lady?, Alan Funt's R-Rated Candid Camera movie. He had a hippie chick ask hippie guys after a few minutes of conversation if they wanted to have sex. Just about every one they showed said no.
- The 90's film Kids approaches this trope as an expository / cautionary tale. The film implies 12- and 13-year-old urban Americans are commonly sexually active. While a statistically significant number are, and always have been, the large majority still certainly aren't.
- Appears in Four Weddings and a Funeral, most obviously with Carrie who has had over thirty sexual partners and treats this fact as completely normal. More subtly, though, is the fact that Charles, in spite of being the Hugh Grant character archetype of a socially awkward middle-aged man, has had nine sexual partners. This easily puts him above the average number of sexual partners in a single lifetime, even assuming he never has sex with a different woman for the rest of his life.
- Everybody except Gary who is the eponymous character of The Last American Virgin
- Despite common perceptions of the 1940's, the plot of Notorious is based on Alicia's history and experience with many men, something which is regarded as neither extraordinary or even noteworthy, and she and Alexander Sebastian sleep together before marriage (before even a proposal) after only a few weeks together.
- Almost every Spanish movie. Considering the degree to which sex in film was censored under General Franco, this is often done as a celebration of free-expression (from late seventies on).
- No Strings Attached: Played straight from beginning to end, due to its Friends with Benefits plot.
- In the 1987 movie version of Dragnet, "the virgin Connie Swail" becomes just "Connie Swail" within a week of meeting Joe Friday.
- Any movie with a Fourth Date Marriage.
- Extremely common in any action movie or romantic comedy. If the hero and herione meet for the first time in the film, they'll either have done the deed in act II, or the film with end with them doing it.
- Woody Allen's Love And Death ends with Allen's character Breaking the Fourth Wall and sharing some of his musings about life with the audience. At one point he says, "It's not the quantity of your sexual relations that count, it's the quality. On the other hand, if the quantity drops below once every eight months, I would definitely look into it."
- In The Fugitive the writers wanted to give Kimble a romance while he was not only on the run from the cops but avenging his recently murdered wife. Test audiences HATED it, and the idea was dropped.
- Dante of Clerks is only in his early twenties and at least a bit of a loser being a pushover who works a dead end job. In a discussion with his girlfriend he revealed he has had 12 different sexual partners which is more than the average man in a lifetime.
- In Brave New World, the World State actually enforces this through conditioning.
- The myriad works of sci-fi writer Robert A. Heinlein, extrapolating the future from the '60s sexual revolution.
- Shows up in Forever Amber, with a fair amount of Truth in Television since the story is set during the reign of Charles II in England, who was notorious for having a veritable harem of mistresses and illegitimate children. Ironically, his legitimate wife did not have any children, it's implied because she suffered mental duress and never fully recovered from the fact that the English court did not value monogamy. Further driven into the ground by the fact that Frances Stewart is the only woman who does not consent to become his mistress, and is punished with small pox disfigurement shortly after marrying someone else.
- Of course, it's up to debate whether any of the main characters are actually supposed to be likable.
- The A'dem in the Kingkiller Chronicles; when Kvothe is trying to convince Penthe of the connection between sex and pregnancy by asking if she's ever known anyone to get pregnant who hasn't had sex in the preceding three or four months, she makes an incredulous remark to the effect of "wait...people can go three months without sex where you come from?"
- The Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward is a deliciously well-written example. The aforementioned brothers are often described as "being made for sex" or otherwise extremely attractive. And they make liberal use of said good looks and charm in order to score. Thankfully, though, at least most of their shagging is given good, even heart-warming reasons.
- Earth's Children by Jean M. Auel, with a healthy dose of Good People Have Good Sex mixed in.
- Mikael and Lisbeth in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and its sequels, but Mikael especially.
- The novel actually notes that Lisbeth has had over fifty sexual partners as of the start of the book, but more of Mikael's partners are depicted onscreen. So really, it's both of them.
- The novel Youth in Sexual Ecstasy gives a deconstruction of this.
Live Action Television
- This trope is common in modern sitcoms. Each week or two one of the main characters must have another guest star sweetheart.
- Skins is perhaps the best example of this trope for depicting college students as an endless bacchanalia of sex and drugs.
- Appears rather bizarrely in Big Love, where this attitude is held by multiple teenage Mormons. Word to the wise- just because everyone at BYU dates all the time does not mean they're having sex all the time.
- There was a Friends episode where Phoebe was concerned that her boyfriend wouldn't sleep with her after a couple of weeks. Phoebe wonders what his deal is, and Joey suggests he's gay. It turns out that the guy was holding out so that Phoebe would essentially beg him for sex and tell him he didn't have to call her afterwards.
Joey: And he's got you thinking this is a good idea? This man is my God!
- In another episode one character mentions that another character's relationship "isn't serious" because they haven't even had sex yet. If you listen carefully, it's clear the studio audience isn't sure if the line is supposed to be a joke or not.
- And in yet another, Ross is going stir-crazy because he hasn't had sex in a few months.
- Averted in Pushing Daisies - the two leads are in a very romantic relationship where they Can't Have Sex, Ever due to an inability to touch each other, but it's mentioned that they have developed certain ways to work around this limitation. However, it's possible that neither of them ever had sex beforehand; Ned says that he had "intimate relations" with a previous girlfriend, but a) may not have meant actual sex and b) may have been lying, while we're never given any evidence that Chuck had any previous romantic or sexual entanglements of any kind.
- He had intimate relations on a bearskin rug.
Chuck: It didn't.
Ned: It did enough to be distressing.
- The television show (made for a gay and lesbian audience) Dante's Cove absolutely owns this trope. This whole town is built on attractive gay men, and attractive lesbians, having hot sex all the time. How the hell the residents of the town find the energy to do anything else, is anybody's guess. In season one, of the first fifteen minutes of episode one, ten of those minutes are guy-on-guy action. Then there's the lesbian scenes. Then there's the villain who's after one of the heroes. It's ridiculous!
- On Seinfeld, of the four main characters, the protagonist usually has a Girl of the Week; his friend, despite being depicted as a "loser," has one almost as often (and was engaged, and on the pseudo-reunion show depicted on Curb Your Enthusiasm, he has apparently been married in the interim); and the remaining two main characters Really Get Around, one being the Trope Namer for Kavorka Man. Apparently, this was something groundbreaking at the time: typical sitcoms were either workplace-centered or family-centered; no one had ever really done a show about the lives of adults without long-term family plans or commitments before.
- When the series finally ended, a group of fans sat down and re-watched the entire run beginning to end over several days. Over the course of the series, Jerry alone had something like 72 sexual partners.
- On How I Met Your Mother Ted views himself as in a sexual dryspell after going five months without sex, until he finds out his current girlfriend, Stella, hasn't had sex for five years. He actually has a mini-freakout over this, since when he and Stella do have sex, he's worried it will be her "virginity: the sequel."
Lily: God, if I went even one year, I would be out on the street selling it for a nickel.
- Of course, with Barney around, it's easy to feel pretty darn chaste in comparison.
- And Lily has been in a committed relationship with Marshall since she was 18 and they are currently married, so it's not like she's a Good Bad Girl.
- Zigzagged by Marshall, who replies to Barney bragging about the list of women he (Barney) has slept with by proudly saying that he also has a list of all the women he's slept with: "It's called my marriage license." However, he and Lily did the math once, and determined that the two of them get it on more often than Barney does, even if all his bragging about who he's done it with is true.
- In an episode of Just Shoot Me!, Finch, a disturbed, annoying pervert who repels women, is upset that he hasn't had sex in six whole months. Kevin, standing next to him, then remarks "My life is bad".
- The title character of Frasier: A common plot is for Frasier to meet a woman, go on a date with her and end up in bed, all in a single week. It's a very common plot.
- Both incarnations of Melrose Place are built on this trope; its a large part of the series' Guilty Pleasure appeal.
- There's a rather odd incident in Casualty where nurses Bruno and Kelsey organise a get to know you exercise involving asking their colleagues how many sexual partners they've had. While they boast about their huge number of conquests, Abs, one of the few staffmembers in a steady relationship, replies without a hint of embarrassment that there have been three, prompting them both to crack up laughing at what they consider a pathetically small number.
- Arrested Development has its lead character, Michael Bluth, treated as being seriously abnormal for only having had four sexual partners. This is lower than the average, technically, but a glance at the Kinsey Institute statistics shows that he's far from the freak that Gob keeps implying, particularly as his numbers become above average only a few episodes after Gob starts pestering him about it.
- Yes, but Gob is something of a Kavorka Man, and is either too stupid or selfish to realize his skewed perspective.
- Deputy Enos Strate on The Dukes of Hazzard was identified as the the only virgin in Hazzard County.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer averts the trope. In the seven-year series, Buffy herself has a total of four sexual partners (Angel, Parker, Riley and Spike) and Satsu in Season 8, Willow has three (Oz, Tara and Kennedy) and Xander has two (Faith and Anya, not counting demonic seductions with intentions on his life). Of those, only Parker and Faith were one night stands, as both of them abandoned the regular character they slept with after they were finished; all other relationships evolved out of long-term friendship and/or dating (Or loathing, in the case of Spike) and each involved approaching the subject, following through, dealing with the aftermath, and all the appropriate emotions that come with. Despite all this, however, the characters treat each other and themselves as though they were playing the trope straight, complete humorous "Has anybody here not slept with anybody else?" situations when they explain their past relationships to somebody new.
- However, it's implied strongly that within some formed relationships, sex was plentiful. Namely: Willow and Tara; Buffy and Riley note ; Spike and Buffy; Xander and Anya. Appropriate, considering they were mostly young adults during their college years.
- Sex and the City. It's the whole point of some of the main characters!
- Scrubs provides pretty constant examples of this trope with doctors and staff constantly hooking up.
- The same goes for Grey's Anatomy. There was even an episode about a syphilis outbreak among the staff, and two of the main characters caught it.
- Gossip Girl. If there's an episode where no one has sex - well, actually there are no episodes where no one has sex. Even if no one's dating anyone there's always a hooker somewhere.
- The Secret Life of the American Teenager, to an extent that's nearly comical considering the central premise is that the main character had sex, got pregnant and it screwed up her life. You'd think that the characters might interpret this to mean that having sex all the time isn't a particularly good idea. Of course, they are teenagers.
- 30 Rock generally plays this straight, though not to as much of an extreme as many of the shows on this list. It was memorably subverted in the Season 5 opener where Liz's boyfriend Carol, a pilot, freaks out over the licentous life he leads of dead-end sexual relationships with women in random cities all around the world, declaring that he's had so many of these torrid encounters he can't even count them all. He ends up admitting that the exact number is six- comically low by TV standards, but very much an above-average number in Real Life.
- Of the regulars on 30 Rock, only Jenna and Frank really fit the trope, as Liz doesn't like sex, Kenneth is a prude, Lutz couldn't get a date if his life depended on it, Pete's very married, Tracey notably pretends to fit this trope because he thinks people expect it of a celebrity but secretly has never actually cheated on his wife. Jack gets around a little, but probably less than you'd expect for a single man who's rich, powerful, and looks like Alec Baldwin, although it appears he settles down when he gets married. Jenna, however, makes up for everyone, as nearly every comment she makes about her life involves a reference to some bizarre sex act, and she seems to only get worse when she finds a committed partner. Meanwhile, Frank's a lothario with the older women on the show's staff.
- Played straight and subverted on Married... with Children, depending on the characters. Al usually doesn't want to have sex with Peggy, who'd be perfectly happy doing the deed with Al more often. Bud tries to have sex as much as possible, but his lack of success means he usually ends up scheduling A Date with Rosie Palms. Kelly regularly does the deed with assorted sleazebags and degenerates. Marcy routinely had very kinky sex with both her husbands.
- The promiscuity of Captain Kirk in Star Trek: The Original Series qualifies for this trope if one regards kissing the space-babe of the week as shorthand for sex during an era of more conservative media standards. Much of the rest of the primary crew also had their moments of shore-leave on occasion.
- The ironic thing is that this only happens in a few episodes, but it's notable that it happens in just about every episode that it can, like the ones where they aren't dealing with Klingon or SpaceX, with the exception of Space Hippies.
- In the earliest episodes, Yeoman Janis Rand was being set up as Kirk's Designated Love Interest, which would have alleviated this, but then her character got Brother Chucked and wasn't seen again until a cameo in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.
- Invoked in the Law & Order episode "Mad Dog"; a convicted rapist was granted parole and set free about two months ago, and lawyer Jack McCoy now thinks he's guilty of another rape. So he questions him. One of the questions is, "When was the last time you had consensual sex with a woman?...You were released from prison more than two months ago, the opportunity must have presented itself."
- The L Word is this trope to a tee.
- All of Californication, to the point of it being rare for Hank to meet a woman and her to not be in bed with him in a matter of hours.
- Sirens treats the guys in uniforms like they're rock stars and generally one (if not all of them) will have sex during an episode.
- Torchwood. Yes, it's a gritty sci-fi spin-off of Doctor Who. Nobody said that should mean there shouldn't be tons of sex.
- Orphan Black: Except for Helena, the members of Clone Club all fit this trope to a T.
- In a Happy Endings episode, Penny has to wear a helmet because she has a concussion. She mentions that because of this she hasn't been able to have sex with her new boyfriend and that it really gave them a chance to connect better. In the next episode she say's that they've been dating for ten days.
- Battlestar Galactica (Reimagined) needs a chart to keep track of all of this. Well, President Roslin did say they needed to go someplace safe and start having babies, or words to that effect...
- In Phantasmagoria 2 the main character is a creepy, average looking, loner with a pet rat and yet nails several hot blonds over the course of the game. In fact only one non-villain, man or woman, isn't openly perusing him.
- Culpa Innata, where it's fashionable to be promiscuous.
- More than that. In the Union, "nuptual agreements" (what they call marriage) are illegal. Any immigrants that want to become Union citizens must first annul their nuptual agreements before being considered eligible to even apply. Family units are non-existent in the Union, with kids being raised by specially-trained people, leaving people to make as much money and have as much guilt-free sex as possible. Additionally, anyone who displays even an ounce of jealousy is considered to be a less than ideal Union citizen, as stoicism is considered a virtue there. An applicant for citizenship can be rejected for being too emotional. Not so in the so-called Rogue States (e.g. Russia, India, China), who still cling to "antiquated" traditions.
- If you want to, you can make a town like this in The Sims. Except it's called "woohoo".
- The Sims 3 runs with it, adding the possibility of having "woohoo" in places like elevators, hot tubs, and treehouses. There's also a Lifetime Wishnote to woohoo with five different partners in five different locations.
- A Dance with Rogues. The Princess can have sex with anybody. Well, most anybody, but still...
- In Da Capo II, from the moment you tell robot girl Minatsu you're in love with her, the sun shall not set three times before you have sex with her. I suspect she's been downloading dating tips from the internet as she also suspects you have regular orgies with your sisters.
- Fate/stay night: In Unlimited Blade Works Good End is very strongly hinted that Shirou, Rin and Saber stay live together in Shirou's household as a real Ménage à trois.
- Aside clearly visible feelings which whole triad have for each other, there is also a need for a regular supply of mana for Saber which Rin keep as her familiar. Forcing all three to a constant sexual intercourse between them due to the fact that Rin alone is not able to supply her mana enough. Of course, for Shirou's participation jealous and possessive Rin suggests only one (rather "unnecessarily" complicated) option, but is not difficult to imagine another much simpler.
- Webcomics about relationships can seem like this due to Webcomic Time, especially when a Love Dodecahedron is involved. Notable users are Questionable Content and Anders Loves Maria.
- Played for Laughs in Diesel Sweeties.
- Pretty much the raison d'être of Ménage à 3.
- Except for Gary... Poor Gary, who dreamed of joining this club. He did have lots of dates with Rosie Palms though. It didn't actually help much when his life underwent a dramatic shift in the first few strips, from living with two gay guys (whom he hadn't recognised as such) to having a practical harem of women around who were all very attractive, mostly very comfortable with their sexuality, and in some cases bisexual, and who were mostly living the trope.
- But then things moved on... Gary has now had sex with several attractive women, numbers depending on your definition of "sex" (and indeed of "women"). He no longer really averts the trope.
- With all the sexual antics of the various heroes and villains of Supermegatopia, it's pretty obvious that all the conflict is really a city-wide form of fetish foreplay.
- According to conservative estimates, a third of the content of the internet is about that.
- The Alternate History timeline Reds has the adoption of free-love social mores in America as a long-term consequence of a communist revolution in America. However, it's not entirely clear exactly how much sex constitutes "lots of sex" in this case; an in-universe discussion commenter castigates the in-universe version of Public Enemies for depicting so many threesomes, saying he can see "that sort of thing happening in the fifties, but not the thirties."
- It's also noted by a present-day member of a web forum from America that this is apparently exaggerated in-universe outside of America, at least with regards to how widespread it it; in something of a reflection of contemporary social mores in modern America in OTL, it's noted that while the major cities on the East and West coasts such as New York and Los Angeles tend to be very socially liberal (and thus more of a reflection of this trope), the Midwest and the South, while still perhaps more liberal than they are in real life, still tend to be more socially conservative about these sorts of things.
- Curvy can't seem to go more than a page without someone, somewhere having sex. It's deliberately ludicrous.
- That Guy with the Glasses. But what do you expect from a site that gave us four episodes of "Spooning With Spoony"?
- It should be noted that because it gave us "Spooning With Spoony", not all of it is willing.
- Amazingly averted in The Onion's Immoral Reality Show Sex House, where only Frank and Erin and later, Frank and the therapist have actually had sex.
- Probably half (or more) of the content on Texts From Last Night are about hooking up.
- Futurama. Hollywood Dateless characters like Fry and Leela still have many sexual partners throughout the show. (Fry more than Leela.) Then there are more liberated characters like Amy and Bender, who aren't really chastized for their gettin' around. Even the Professor gets some, although this is played for squick. Everyone Has Lots of Sex on Futurama. except Zoidberg.
- Well, he can't.
- Season five has him getting it on with Farnsworth (while Fry and Leela have swapped bodies with them) and season six implies he had it going with Mom for a while before the professor founded Planet Express.
- Pretty much everyone in Archer with pretty much everybody else. It gets creepy most of the time considering Cheryl's choking fetish, Krieger's Cloud Cuckoo Lander behavior and Malory's... well, Malory.