British Show 'Sex Box' Challenges 'Porn' Sex

Oct 10, 2013 4:30 PM PST

LONDON — When planning the location for your next public sex romp, would you consider a box? How about a sex box? The new British show “Sex Box” follows three couples who do just that.

The Channel 4 show that debuted earlier this week hosted three couples who entered a soundproof, opaque box, that reportedly resembled a chic hotel on the inside, to have sex in front of a live studio audience and discuss the experience afterwards.

There were no cameras inside the Box, and no sex was shown or simulated.    

Waiting to coach the tousled contestants-of-sorts was a panel of three sex and relationship experts that included Tracey Cox, Dan Savage and psychotherapist Phillip Hodson. Mariellas Frostups hosted.

“The sex we see on screen, in magazines and increasingly online, bears little relation to the real experiences of real people. This will be a frank conversation about an essential element in all our lives,” Frostup said, adding that he was skeptical of the whole Box concept at first.

The three guesting couples represented distinct demographics: featured was a young 20-something couple, a gay couple and an older, married couple.

The show purported to “reclaim sex from porn”; but many reviewers snubbed the one-hour program, including The Daily Beast and The Telegraph, calling its premise gimmicky and the discussions awkward. New York Magazine described it as “a highly produced version of Seven Minutes in Heaven.”

Backlash notwithstanding, the controversial show drew quite a buzz from U.K. audiences, reportedly pulling 900,000 viewers.  

“Sex Box” is part of a season on Channel 4 called Campaign For Real Sex. It  kicked off in Sept. with a show called “Porn on the Teenage Brain,” in which former lads' magazine editor Martin Daubney discussed porn.

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