We’ve spent six nights a week – seven if you’re a ‘Unseen Bits’ fan – over the last three weeks watching her deep-throat a Calippo and fall victim to the age-old ‘fanny flutters’, but what some are finding wildly refreshing and amusing about Love Island contestant Maura Higgins is intensely offending others.
Sexually liberated and unashamedly confident opening up about the ins and outs (and ins and outs…) of her physical desires, the 28-year-old ring girl from County Longford in Ireland hasn’t held back about such thoughts since she made her dramatic entrance in this year’s villa two weeks after the ‘originals‘ arrived.
Admitting on her first night to fellow new islancer, Elma Pazar, that Tommy Fury gave her “fanny flutters” and that she could hear herself “screaming his name” shocked the majority of judgmental viewers sat on their sofas at home scrolling through a catalogue of potential bonks on the latest dating app, while others justified her behaviour as “first night nerves” or “attention-seeking”.
As we soon found out, however, this wasn’t one-off behaviour. Maura was – and is – very open about her sexuality (God forbid). Within the next few days, she asked Tommy “Does [Molly-Mae] turn you on like I do?” and Tom Walker if he wanted to share a bed with her – on their first date, no less. When it was revealed that he would be sharing a bed with fellow male islander, Jordan, she declared: “No funny business, save that for me.”
While the majority of viewers were too astounded at the ‘Factor 50’ level sexual intensity – after two weeks spent watching Curtis Pritchard and Amy Hart smiling inanely at one another in a convincing impression of X Factor 2007’s sibling duo ‘Same Difference’ – to do anything but gawp, others managed to configure their thoughts and send their musings out into the world of social media.
“Maura is so f*****g sexual it’s cringe to watch”, said one. “Maura eww desperate girl” wrote another, while one particularly judge-y viewer said: “Maura needs to stop with her sexual comments… does she have no self respect I’m cringing so hard.”
And it wasn’t just Twitter users who took this stance, with newspaper headlines scribbling similarly cruel sentiments. “Love Island fans disgusted as Maura makes filthy comments about bedding BOTH new boys” read one, while others said: “Love Island’s Maura ‘makes fans vomit’ over cringeworthy comment”, “The Unbearable Horniness of Maura Higgins”, and “Love Island fans convinced Maura Higgins has a sex tape after her raunchy behaviour”.
And while there were also – legitimately – endless tweets, conversations and articles counteracting these opinions and questioning the double standards of the reaction to Maura’s comments compared to those made by male islanders – Tommy admitted on first-meeting that he was about to “climax” when he saw her, and that he “couldn’t keep [himself] together, and that’s just through looking at her”, for example – I couldn’t help but contrast this outcry to the adoration and respect we all felt for Sex and the City‘s Samantha Jones’s similarly brazen sexual appetite.
“Hi. I need something that’ll make a guy cum in his pants as soon as he sees me,” Samantha once declared when speaking to a clothing store sales assistant, much to the delight of the humoured audience. Other well-received lines included: “I will wear whatever, and blow whomever I want, as long as I can breathe and kneel”, “I’m busy masturbating. I told you I’d be doing that all day today”, and “F*** me badly once, shame on you. F*** me badly twice, shame on me.”
Samantha Jones could have said – and did, in fact, say – just about anything, and we would’ve continued to roar with laughter. So why are we holding modern-day counterpart, Maura Higgins, to a different standard? As she pointed out to Tom; “Everyone does it. Women enjoy it just as much as men, so I don’t know why everyone gets so shocked when I talk about it.”
Admittedly Samantha is a fictional character, but shouldn’t that mean she’s more considered and liable to be judged? Shouldn’t that mean that we allow Maura’s real-life character ‘flaws’ (if that’s how you view some of the things she says)?. Or do we only appreciate Samantha because she’s fictional? Is she merely an amusing character whose traits shouldn’t be even considered in the real world?
Samantha’s behaviour was even punchier than her words, with her openly acting on almost every sexual desire she had. Imagine the outrage if real-life-Maura did so.
Maura’s openness to talk – note: TALK. Maura hasn’t acted on any of her desires yet, while others in the villa have – about sex even prompted a segment on Loose Women asking: ‘Is a woman who’s sexually forward empowering or embarrassing?’. The same women asking these questions no doubt forked out a fiver alongside their Prosecco-sipping ‘girlies’ to watch the arguably diabolical Sex and the City 2 movie – squeezing as much as they could out of the franchise – and chortled away to every lewd comment Samantha made.
The seemingly impossible-to-embarrass has Maura not only refrained from acting on her feelings, but has even baulked at the suggestion that she’d be unquestionably up for doing so. When it was revealed that she’d “only” slept with six people, Molly-Mae congratulated her with a gobsmacked “proud of you, hun!”
When she was invited to spend a night in ‘The Hideaway’ – Love Island‘s traditional bonk spot – with Tom, she went outside to greet him only to hear him smugly state: “It’ll be interesting to see if she’s all mouth or not” whilst excitedly clutching a condom in his sweaty mitts. “You did not just say that, did you? Why did you say that?” she squealed in disbelief, before calling him a d******* and telling him to go f*** himself.
So what, she’s prudish now? Several viewers had the gall to suggest she’d brought that comment upon herself, as if her enjoyment of sex couldn’t possibly lead her to resist someone that was up for it. Much like those of us who enjoy yoga wouldn’t necessarily be so keen for a session were the instructor so over-excited by the sight of your sports bra that he was dribbling all over the mat.
Unlike Samantha, who famously did not care what others thought of her behaviour (“If I worried what every bitch in New York was saying about me, I’d never leave the house”), it seems Maura’s sexual confidence is not indicative of her more general conviction. Having acknowledged the negative response from her fellow islanders to her sexual openness, she has seemingly put a lid on it over the last few days. “I’m not going to talk about sex as much cos guys don’t seem to like that”, she admitted.
We wish she’d make like Samantha Jones and f*** the haters.
And we wish the rest of us would remember that ‘sex’ and ‘fun’ needn’t be mutually exclusive.