Bliss, a new Showcase Original Series, explores the desires, passions and fantasies of women.
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1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »
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Drama | Thriller
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Documentary
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 George / ... (2 episodes, 2002-2004)
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 Romy (2 episodes, 2003-2004)
James Berlingieri ...
 Mover / ... (2 episodes, 2004)
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Bliss, a new Showcase Original Series, explores the desires, passions and fantasies of women.

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Drama | Romance

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15 February 2003 (USA)  »

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Bliss II  »

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This one takes itself much too seriously
19 October 2002 | by (Scotland) – See all my reviews

You would never think, from watching "Bliss", that sex could ever be fun, or make people laugh. The characters in "Bliss" may sleep with each other out of revenge or some other primal need, to scratch an itch or to beat back profound loneliness, but never just for the fun of it. While people do have sex for the above reasons, this hardly makes "Bliss" the ground-breaking erotica series that its creators wanted. For a start, it is far too limited in scope. While three of the six stories deal with lesbian themes, several involve cheating and one involves a woman who likes rough sex, there are none with s&m or bondage (which seems a bit odd if this series is supposed to be riding the edge), or any number of even more liminal practices. There is precisely one major non-white character, who gets maybe five minutes of screen time. Also, the women get their kit off a lot more than the men, considering that this is supposed to be women's erotica. Conversely, the men are treated like meat--or worse yet, like living sex toys. Most of the characters are urban, and most of the female characters are, to be frank, unlikeable. The cinematography, as well, is washed out. I'd rather become a nun than live in the depressing, blue-gray world of this series.

The two best entries in the series--"In Praise of Drunkenness and Fornication" and "Guys and Dolls"--also contain the only sympathetic major characters over the age of thirty. The first story, about couple-swapping, works because the four main characters are awkward but engaging. Unlike their younger counterparts in the other stories, they worry about the consequences of their actions. They care about something besides their own physical needs--namely, will they still all be friends in the morning. "Guys and Dolls" works simply because its male lead, Peter Wingfield, surmounts the cliche of his character, George, and converts what appears to be considerable directorial humiliation into fuel for George's ironic malaise. That's what happens, I suppose, when you get one of the best character actors in Canada on board and then mess with his head.

While I found this an interesting experiment, I sincerely hope that "Bliss" does not reflect the totality of women's fantasies out there. Because if it does, then ladies, we are in trouble.


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