So HBO set us off on yet another well-done adventure that focuses on shiny surfaces teeming with a things-aren’t-as-they-seem underbelly. The first season had a killer cast, the backdrop of the Four Seasons Maui Resort, a fascinating score and a very upstairs/downstairs approach to rich white people on vacation and the employees who serve them and their every whim.
There are lot of bodies in bathing suits, bodies in bed, bodies trying to connect and bodies hoping to escape a variety of situations. So if skin is what you’re after, you’ll find no shortage here. The acting is stellar, the writing is spot-on, the production is visually arresting. And the plot is definitely compelling.
In a later episode, HBO takes us where most mainstream networks have likely never gone before. We see two of the characters caught in the act of rimming by a guest and a colleague.
The actor at the backside of his sexual partner in the scene, Murray Bartlett, told reporters that the decision for the characters to partake in rimming wasn’t decided upon prior to filming. He told Decider: “There wasn’t a lot of talk [about] outside of the moment of what we were playing with. And I love that way of working, that Mike [White] just makes you feel like you can completely play on set. You’re just exploring, but he gives you this incredible library of information about the character in the script.”
Good for Mike White and good for HBO. Rimming, when practiced safely and with consent (as with all other sexual positions), can be very stimulating and pleasurable. And since it isn’t something viewers of a TV series often witness, it was as surprising to us as it was to the characters who open the door to a visual they most certainly didn’t anticipate. (It’s important to state that the sexual harassment occurring in the scene is NEVER okay, and it’s in no small part what leads to a very unfortunate ending for Armand).
Since the series was produced under very strict COVID protocol, I’m interested in how the cast and crew approached any and all scenes of intimacy on set as with all other shows created since quarantine began. And the reviews, tweets and other social media posts have been fascinating to note. So please try and avoid these posts if you haven’t seen “The White Lotus”, because it’s absolutely worth your time if you’re up for some social commentary served with lots of the unexpected.