Editor’s note: Some spoilers included.
Remember the days in middle school when life always seemed so dramatic and complicated? If those memories have been successfully blocked out, “Big Mouth” is back to remind us of so many traumatic moments that were doomed to happen to the average group of 12 and 13-year-olds.
Season two premiered last Friday keeping the charismatic comedy within the show fresh and alive. This time, the storyline expands as we see more perspectives from Nick, Andrew and Jessi’s classmates and family members, along with the entangled relationships they develop.
The show highlights the intense sexual tension and confusion that often arises in our society during puberty — in cartoon form. Hormone monsters serve as the driving force of these feelings and all the astonishing decisions these characters make in their everyday lives as they grow more curious, horny and explorative.
Full of shocking statements and never-ending moments of laughter — “Big Mouth” persists as a roller coaster ride of hormonal action.
With the addition of more characters comes the inclusion of more embarrassing moments. Recurrent themes of peer pressure, slut-shaming and rumor spreading are portrayed through the public nature these events always seems to play out in.
This also allows for more educational perspectives to be shared. A sex ed episode covered common misconceptions about topics like planned parenthood and STD’s, even noting the significance of birth control for men outside of the commonly mentioned use of condoms or female contraception.
Discussions like these allow pubescent boys and girls to recognize the difference between truth and myth, and see how both partners should take precautions to be responsible for sexual behaviors.
Instead of sex ed teacher Coach Steve explaining how to prepare for sexual exploration with a partner, his students teach him due to his sexual inexperience and ignorance. His character creatively exemplifies what can go wrong when someone isn’t properly educated about sex soon enough.
In the same episode, “Miss Conception,” allows Nick’s older sister Leah to find the perfect method of birth control at the tender age of 16. Showcasing a variety of mediums such as the condom, pill, IUD and even the pull out method, the aspect of interaction allows less straightforward questions to be settled in a calm, comfortable setting.
One new addition, the Shame Monster, deserves a noteworthy mention as he gains a large role terrorizing nearly everyone in the show. It’s clear that shame is present in all of us at some point in life, yet how each of us decides to deal with such shame may lead to more guilt, or a positive path to being comfortable with one’s sexuality.
Comfort and discomfort often balance each other throughout the series as this group of newly-aged teens attempt to figure out what they want in life without following the expectations of others. The show isn’t afraid to draw outside the lines in any aspect.
Since season one touched a bit on the exploration of homosexuality, and season two delves further into the topic, audience members should anticipate the inclusion and discussion of more non-heteronormative relationships and behaviors in future episodes.
As these young adolescents undergo sexual exploration, it’s a friendly reminder that the process is something we all share in common. Many of us may even have had and still will be posed with similar inquisitions about the subject in the future.