How many BL movies or dramas have you watched where the couple is supposedly super in love and there is this constant lingering sexual tension between the characters, but never once they touch each other more intimately? Or even when there is kissing in BL, have you ever felt that the discomfort of the actors was so acute, it made it hard to look at the screen without feeling second-hand embarrassment?
Obviously, a kiss is not the magical ingredient that makes a story good. A bad plot or poor acting can’t be fixed with kissing scenes. A kiss is more like the cherry on top. It doesn’t make a good story, but it can make a good story great.
What is a kiss?
A kiss is an essential component of romance (to most people at least). Kissing is the tangible experience of desire, the feeling of bonding and fulfillment through physical intimacy, and the impetus to sex. Kissing communicates comfort, intimacy, longing and passion.
So yeah, kissing is of foremost importance in love narratives, and I am earnestly adamant about it for many reasons.
Not Kissing Indicates Prejudice
It’s one thing to refuse to kiss both men and women on screen for whatever reason. But when it’s exclusively gender-related, there are no arguments or excuses that can hide the blatant prejudice behind it.
Don’t get me wrong, no one should be forced to do something they don’t want to, including kissing someone as part of an acting job. My point is, actors who refuse to kiss shouldn’t be hired to begin with, not for those specific roles.
With so many talented actors out there that would give up anything for a chance to shine, it’s inexcusable to cast actors who can’t do their jobs properly. Actors should know how to fake feelings and emotions, including intimacy. A male actor who can only fake intimacy on-screen with a woman is incompetent, period.
Especially now that BL is increasingly becoming more popular as a genre, not only in Asia but worldwide, many young actors accept BL roles as a springboard to fame. And that would be fine if they’d respect their roles and the genre.
But as a fujoshi, I feel insulted when actors use BL to profit off of it without even making an effort to overcome their prejudiced minds and give us a good performance.
A Kiss Can Make or Break a Love Story
A deep, earnest cinematic kiss has the power to enrapt the audience and to make them care about the characters’ relationship. It immerses the viewers and brings them right into the core of the romance. On the other hand, a sloppy and awkward kiss can make the audience cringe and ruin the dramatic experience altogether.
The Story Demands It
When two characters are enwrapped in a love story filled with passion, kissing becomes mandatory. There are very few exceptions where kisses can be omitted in romance stories without compromising the overall credibility of the characters’ feelings for each other. But it requires exceptional chemistry between the leads. And let’s be honest, unless we’re talking about Advance Bravely (2017) or Guardian (2018), there aren’t many of those, regrettably.
Kisses Are Climactic
In a romantic movie or drama, a kiss is normally the couple’s reward for all the challenges they had to overcome until that point in the story. The kiss is the consummation of the emotional build-up, that blissful moment where they stop fighting against their feelings for each other. It’s when they put all their differences aside and their long-lasting suffering comes to an end. It’s that ‘aww’ moment that virtually every fujoshi longs for in a BL romance.
Kissing in BL conveys the message that both parties desire to touch one another intimately. It expresses the coupling’s romantic love physically and declares desire in a material way. A kiss transposes the intangible craving for carnal passion into the tactile world.
More kisses in BL, please!
To sum up, I wholeheartedly believe in the importance of kissing in BL.
Not just kissing. kissing in a way that matters. Kissing with passion. The kind of kissing that sparks magic and that makes you lose yourself in time for a moment.
I just wish there were more BL movies and dramas with more memorable kisses in them. Because without a kiss, a love story carries a bittersweet taste of unfinished, never-to-be-concluded romance.