Chabal2 on Mar 10th 2010 at 2:43:31 PM
Last Edited By:
Pichu-kun on Jul 4th 2018 at 6:47:40 PM
Page Type: Trope
This is an adult character who understands the physical mechanics of sex, but doesn't seem to have a conceptual understanding of sexual attraction. If they see or overhear a sex act, this character does notice what's going on and may even be able to call it what it is ("What I am seeing/ hearing is sex"), but they can't contextually understand the implications or importance of the specific act or why someone would engage in such acts. This character is not stupid or deficient. They're likely capable of understanding other "social" situations, and may even be an expert in a variety of fields of discourse, but when it comes to sex, the topic goes completely over their head.
This character may be too spacey or they've never found a reason to think about sex, like growing up isolated from other members of their own species or they may just be beyond sex. Other possibilities include being celibate from a young age or being anti-social. Whatever the reason, they just don't get it and other characters may feel too awkward to properly explain the act.
Common questions this character may have is "Is he hurting her?" or "Why are they fighting if they keep agreeing?" Possible statements this character may make include "She prays every night, enthusiastically and loudly."
This can also apply if the character sees an animal trying to attract a mate — such as birds dancing and singing loudly — and makes an innocent comment about how they're "playing" or "chasing one another."
Compare What Is This Thing You Call Love?, when the character understands sex but doesn't understand the emotion of "love."
Contrast Asexuality where a character understands sex and feels emotional attraction but not sexual attraction. Contrast Paralyzing Fear of Sexuality where the character understands sex and is very afraid of it.
May overlap with Not Distracted by the Sexy.
- "Children Of The Revolution": Joe gets arrested for refusing to be drafted, and he and his girlfriend Anna, a policewoman, have sex in an interrogation room. Outside, his mother hears the thumping noises and thinks he's being beaten by the police. Somewhat justified in that, as a Communist, she sees the police as stooges of the oppressors, and can't consider that her son might be romantically involved with a policewoman.
- The dog protagonist of A Dog's Purpose has no concept of sex, human or animal. This is in part because he's always neutered before he can mate. Bailey describes humans as "wresting" together at several points. When he starts feeling attraction to female dogs he doesn't understand why their smell attracts him so much. At one point Bailey (then called "Toby") tries to mount his female friend, but he doesn't understand the significance of the gesture and simply considers it a game. He gets jealous of other male dogs copying his game and stealing Coco's attention from him. Even when he's reincarnated as a female dog, she doesn't understand her heat and is just embarrassed by the scent.
- In The Giver, no one is allowed to have sex in their society. Certain girls are used for breeding and then their offspring are given to couples. When someone hits puberty they're given medicine to eliminate their sexual desires. Thus, no one has any grasp of sex.
- According to many stories, many women in the "Victorian" era knew nothing about sex. Their mothers would tell them a little just before their wedding night. The infamous quote "Lie back and think of England" reflects the idea that women knew nothing but to just allow their
- Supernatural: Castiel is an angel who has been around since nearly the beginning of time. He understands the physiology of sex, but doesn't really get the true concept of libido and why humans behave the way they do sexually. Importantly, it is implied that Castiel experiences physical arousal through his vessel but does not connect that to any particular sexual attraction.
Castiel: [while watching porn] That's very complexDean Winchester: M-hmCastiel: If the pizza man truly loves this babysitter, why does he keep slapping her rear? [pauses] Perhaps she's done something wrong...
- Looking for Group: Richard in overhears Cale and Benny going at it and calls out encouragement, thinking he is torturing her.
- Somewhat surprisingly, Norman the Anarchist from S.S.D.D. He seems to understand virtually everything else related to it, including pregnancy, but somehow manages to just not get it. Picture this: Richard's girlfriend, Anne, is visiting, and the two have withdrawn to their chambers for a while. Then Richard shows up in the living-room, naked except for a collar, and asks if he can borrow Norman's police-baton (why does Norman own a police-baton? Because his cattle-prod sometimes runs out of batteries, that's why.) Norman agrees with a shrug, and then muses "I wonder what he needed it for..." to a disbelieving Kingston. He also at one point wonders about how Richard's gotten more mature since meeting Anne, thinking "I dunno what they were doing when he went to study with her, but he always had the weirdest smile when he came back..."
- In Dragon Ball Z Abridged, Goku had no understanding of sex upon getting married. When he and Chi-Chi first made love, he thought she had "cinna-buns" hidden in her shirt. Even after having a son he still did not understand that sex resulted in children being conceived. It took his wife getting pregnant a second time before he finally came to learn that "SEX MAKES BABIES!"
- There's a famous crossover fanart in which a scared Johnny Bravo has to "bed-fight" against a horny Panty Anarchy and calls Carl to ask "What is Sex!?". The image was so famous that became a Memetic Mutation with other characters, included Johnny himself as Jenny Bravo from Season 4's Witch-Ay Woman episode.
Rolling Updates, since it seems we don't have it.
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