Tell us: What's TV's sexiest show?

164451__grey_lAre TV screenwriters addicted to sex? Well, maybe not, but they’re certainly writing a lot more of it into primetime programming, according to a survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, which found some 3,800 scenes with sexual content in more than 1,100 shows studied, up from 1,900 in 1998. Of course, sex is in the eye of the beholder: Kaiser researchers counted scenes with as little as characters kissing or talking about sex, as well as scenes of sexual intercourse, while sampling a week’s worth of programming on ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, The WB, PBS, Lifetime, TNT, USA Network and HBO.

Call me na├»ve, but I was a little surprised that the survey results showed such a surge in blue material on television. I mean, while 70 percent of shows surveryed had sexual content, a lot of my favorite TV shows– Lost, Survivor, Commander in Chief, Threshold, and American Idol — don’t have much racy material at all. Then again, I guess all the freaky-deakies in the CSI, Law & Order, and HBO universes are doing their part to tip the balance. Oh, and come to think of it, the randy docs on Grey’s Anatomy (including Katherine Heigl’s calendar girl/health professional Izzie, above) spend more time making rounds of each other’s bedrooms than they do their patients’ bedsides. But at least the staff at Grey‘s Seattle Grace Hospital dealt with a syphilis outbreak, bucking the trend Kaiser found: Only 14 percent of shows with sexual content mentioned contraception, waiting for sex, or other safer-sex messages.

What do you think? Is there too much sex on TV today? Not enough? And what’s your pick for the sexiest show in primetime?


Comments (73 total) Add your comment
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  • Kelly

    The sexiest shows on tv are Grey’s Anatomy, which is getting even better in its second season, and the OC.

  • Me

    I’m against sex on television. I KEEP FALLING OFF!!!!!

  • Carly

    Sexiest show… I’m a bad one to ask, considering all I watch is ANTM, Nip/Tuck and Entourage. So I’d have to go with N/T in that scenario. But as for the sex on TV thing… I think that’s just an evolutionary thing. Society on the whole has become more open and communicative about sex, so it only makes sense that it would translate to viewing. If it’s sex for sex’s sake, it’s useless. But if it furthers a show’s plotline or character development, then why not?

  • Ria

    For me, it would be The O.C., Desperate Housewives and Friends… hahaha!

  • brandonk

    They can put as much sex on TV as they want. What I find repulsive and disturbing are all the gory scenes of violence on TV shows now. The occasional shock moments don’t bother me, but whole shows devoted to that sort of thing, like CSI or Criminal Minds, are just too much.

  • Emily

    Sexiest? I’m going to have to go with Nip/Tuck. Not that all of the sex is sexy. Some of it is down right horrifying. But when it’s hot, it’s really hot.

  • Nick

    Please…too much sex on TV? It’s time for a moral revolution in this country! I’m still waiting for porn to become basic cable. And for the F*** word to be allowed on Network TV. Bring it on, my friends, bring it on. Welcome to 2005.

  • Tommy G

    Hey, I enjoy my HBO series, mainly because they can say/do things that aren’t held back by the FCC. TV shows often reflect life, and sex, language, and adult situations are part of the world today. Pointing a finger at the reflection isn’t helping anything.
    I still say that if you don’t like it, then turn off the TV, or flip to one of the other 499 channels. Nobody is forcing anyone to watch content they don’t want to see.

  • Tom Brazelton

    If the Kaiser Family Foundation thinks there is too much sex on American television, they should travel to Brazil or Austrailia and watch what they broadcast down there.
    That’s why I hate these morality watchdog groups. Who gave them the authorirty to declaire what’s right and what’s wrong?
    One man’s porn is another country’s Saturday morning cartoons.

  • JB

    Since all the comments posted so far are pro-sex, I thought I would speak to the other side of the argument. Sex has becone so pervasive in our society that hardly anyone notices anymore. I do happen to notice as does my wife. If I am watching TV with endless, gratutious sexual images she feels that I am not showing her proper respect by gazing on other women. I would think that many women (especially younger, teenage women) are as tired of being compared to the sleeze on TV as my wife is. This stuff is causing our young men and women to think that sex is the end-all-be-all and not talking about the harsh emotional problems that it can cause. I hardly ever watch live TV anymore (Thank you Tivo!) because I can now zip through the gratuitous sex. I would just prefer it if I didn’t have to sensor my viewing as much.

  • EP Sato

    Gratuitous sex on Lost? I have the whole show on DVD and tivo (season 2). there’s hardly any sex in it at all! What is more, there is an unwed mother on the show. Seems to me like they talk about consequences pretty clearly there.
    Truth told, a lot of folks get in a hussy about something they really shouldn’t freak out about. We are all here because someone else had sex,so it’s clearly on the minds of some 6 billion people. To act as if that’s somehow not on our minds or unnatural is to ignore the obvious.
    But there is space for improvement. TV shows should be more willing to talk about and discuss sex in a frank manner. I remember when Nightcourt did an episode about impotence. Yeah, a lot of good jokes were made, but they also covered the topic in a grown up manner. This is bad somehow? The real problem with sex is that it’s given this taboo status, despite the fact that everyone has it.

  • Kaybar

    In contrast to what JB said earlier, I don’t believe that young people today believe that sex is the “end-all,be-all”. Rather, sex is so pervasive in their lives that they are becoming BORED with it at increasingly young ages. The problem is, I don’t know if that’s a good or bad thing.

  • India

    Um, nobody said there’s gratuitos sex on Lost!

  • Lyn W.

    There is no question that the best sexy show on TV now is “Rome.” You get all that sex with a history lesson too. What more could anyone want?

  • Mike in Moncton

    My vote goes to Battlestar Galactica. I’d be the 9 to Tricia Helfer’s “number 6″ character anytime.

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