Sex Work and the New Morality in the “Eat the Rich” Era.
Prostitution is “the world’s oldest profession,” yet exchanging sex for money is currently illegal in all but 15 countries.
HBO’s “The White Lotus,” written, directed, and produced by the uber-talented Mike White, has captured the zeitgeist during Seasons 1 & 2 with its overarching theme:
Rich people are evil and should be punished at all costs.
2023 is a stressful time to be alive. The wealth gap grows vaster by the day, and the world is burning around us.
The Wealthy make ripe targets for the palpable rage of the other 99 %, and “The White Lotus” delights in showing us how thoughtless, narcissistic, greedy, and downright awful they are.
During Season One, viewers are encouraged to cheer for Workers at the fictional 5-Star Hotel (shot at the Four Seasons in Malibu) who fuck with the Guests.
However, it’s ultimately the Workers who take the fall while the rich literally sail away, oblivious and unscathed.
Season Two doubles down, tossing all moral codes out the window.
Any crime against the Guests is now acceptable, including but not limited to:
Drugging a man to the point of overdose
Emotional manipulation of a lonely and vulnerable woman
Enabling an addict
Gleeful, nonstop fleecing and extortion
Eat the rich, indeed.
Season Two raised the stakes on the battle between Workers and Guests to an unpalatable level.
Stealing large sums of money and nearly killing a man or not acceptable in any context. The larger issue is the missed opportunity to explore the elephant in the room — sex work.
Mia and Lucia, played by Simone Tabasco and Beatrice Granno, are vibrant and entertaining as 20-something Sicilian prostitutes. They make for charming criminals, and spend the season robbing, manipulating, and tormenting both the Guests and other Workers at Season Two’s…