snark squad | where nostalgia comes to die

Fifty Shades of Grey Chapter 25 – Oh my, pretty serious situation right now.

and on September 26, 2012 · 35 comments in Fifty Shades of Grey

Previously: Grey crashes Ana’s family vacation, the couple tragically survive a flight in a glider, and Grey reveals that letting Ana buy pancakes from IHOP would be a threat to his manhood.

Sweeney: We are so near the end that Lor is off in a corner weeping with joy.

Lorraine:

 

Sweeney: Except, you know, there are still two more chapters, (L: KILLJOY.) so let’s get down to business. This chapter is highest in sexytimes of the few chapters I have done, which incidentally means less hulksmash, and more uncontrollable giggles because there is nothing appealing about Ana and Grey having sex.

The chapter begins with a tearful airport goodbye where Ana’s mother has dramatic parting words that make it sound like she’s sending her off on an epic journey of some sort.

Ana internal monologues about how much she loves her mother, which is funny since she has alternated between ignoring her and mocking her the entire trip. Anyway, even though Grey is several time zones away, we manage to talk about him right away, with Ana’s mom making some kiss-a-lot-of-frogs comment and Ana likening him to a Prince, and me getting my headdesk on good and early.

On the plane, in her first class seat, she gets out her BlackBerry and “stare[s] at it despondently.” This is generally how I look at my tablet while reading this, so I understand. She gets all deep and emotional about the unconditional love she receives from her mother and how every child should get that from their parents and oh, “What does Christian know of love?” Because ladies can’t resist trying to fix the broken guy, of course.

Lor: I can’t help but feel like Ana is playing her own version of “give me any word and I show you that the root of that word is Greek.” “Give me any life situation and I will immediately relate it back to Christian Grey.” Saying goodbye to your mom for an indertiminate amount of time –> Love mom –> Mom –> CHRISTIAN GREY’S MOM WAS A CRACK WHORE.

Sweeney: It might be an impressive game if I didn’t hate them both so much and if this game didn’t exemplify just how warped this relationship is.

We get more of the, “DOES HE LOVE ME? HOW CAN HE LOVE ME?” crap, complete with the ultra-pathetic sentence:

It’s true, and in a moment of startling clarity, I see it. It’s very simple: I want his love. need Christian Grey to love me. This is why I am so reticent about our relationship – because on some basic, fundamental level, I recognize within me a deep-seated compulsion to be loved and cherished.

Right, so you decide to stay with the guy who stalks you, regularly disregards your wishes, and occasionally beats you up for funsies? These ideas are totally compatible. Totally.

Lorraine: 1.) Guys, look at how super special Ana is! She needs to be loved and cherised unlike… OH WAIT, FUCK. NO. NEVERMIND. These are things universal to the human condition but it’s taken Ana 21-years, a couple of spankings and some period sex to recognize her need to be loved. GENIUS.

2.) I can’t shake the feeling of this underlying “if you are into BDSM, you are RUINED” theme James seems to be smashing us over the head with.

3.) Let me remind you all that Ana has known Grey, like, a month. And she already knows all the intricacies of his, and forgive me, childhood trauma. STFU, ANA.

Sweeney: Blah, blah, blah, he can’t love me if he can’t love himself, blah, blah, blah, more reasons she shouldn’t be in this relationship, but is going to keep trying to ~fix him~ anyway.

Since they are geographically separated, we are treated to more stupid email exchanges. This one starts out thankfully free of subject changing, though that is how we are supposed to see that something is off with the murderapist boyfriend. Eventually she has to turn the phone off, as per the rule that she not endanger herself, though she is still anxious about Christian’s mood and “the situation.” Probably because a moody Christian will end badly for Ana.

She briefly considers that the seat next to her may have also been purchased by Christian to keep her from talking to anyone, but “no one could be that controlling, that jealous, surely.” LOL.

Lor: Certainly someone that controlling would exhibit other outrageous behavior, such as cell phone tracking, cross country vacation bombing, memorization of family addresses, contractual agreements meant to dictate behavior- OH MY GOD. WAIT A SECOND….

Sweeney: At the airport Ana is greeted by Taylor and is still uncomfortable with being waited on, but decides she shouldn’t be so awkward since Taylor has bought her underwear before? I don’t know. This is so low-ranking on my list of Illogical Shit Ana Thinks that it’s not worth considering. She also gives herself a #hosuspension for wearing a short skirt in Seattle. See previous comment.

They spend a long time in the car, in traffic, and Taylor doesn’t want to talk to her, because who would? She refers to him as “taciturn” and I want to punch her in the face for the million and eighth time. We learn that Christian is “preoccupied” (Ana assumes this is also about “the situation”) and that’s about it for this useless exchange.

Lor: I wonder if it would change E.L. James’ life if someone told her that she didn’t have to write conversations in the car. Like, if someone just introduced her to “and then we drove home.”

Sweeney: We’ll be sure to include that in the multi-volume Guide To Things E. L. James Needs To Learn About Writing.

Ana gets to Christian’s apartment and in E. L. James’ usual style of sharing pointless things, Ana is thrown out of sorts by Taylor’s parking the car and therefore not greeting her when she enters. Fortunately, this allows her to be alone while she stands there and stares at Christian, becoming non-functioning at the sight of him.

As soon as he sees her, he hangs up the phone and marches over to her all possessive-like, which we are supposed to believe is somehow new and unlike anything Ana has ever seen from him, as if she hasn’t been around for the last twenty-four chapters of this book. He kisses her, and Ana makes note of his smell “all body wash and Christian,” for our chapterly reminder that he smells like himself. He orders her to take a shower with him and compliments the #hosuspension skirt.

He locks eyes with her even while he takes his socks off, which is a wholly unsexy bit of explanation.

Lor: Socks always remind me of Harry Potter. Forgive me, I just had to add my own useless bit of information as well.

Sweeney: Fantastic.

Ana “mirrors his actions,” by “stepping out of her black flats” which is actually not quite what he just did and renders the first part of this clunky writing pointless, but whatever.

Grey gets as far as the bathroom before pushing up on Ana, demanding to have her now, unwilling to wait for the shower. E. L. James continues to punk us all with more unsexy writing in her erotic novel, as Grey then asks, “Are you still bleeding?” That’s usually the best order in which to approach this: get me going and then ask about my period, because that’s the best way to push me over the edge for sure.

Anyway, he starts to go down on her and I laughed uncontrollably for a solid two minutes because of Ana’s “Oh my!” and the fact that Kirsti recently posted this on our Facebook:

Oh, internet, how I love you.

Anyway, I am also trying to figure out whether I find all of this disgusting because of the writing itself, or because I simply find them both so gross that I just can’t bear the thought of reading about Grey letting Ana “taste her arousal.” In any event, I am repulsed.

Lor: For me, I  find the writing horrible enough that the sex scenes were never anything other than “make it stop.” But now, I hate these characters so much that it’s a special kind of torture to have to read about their sexy times. Like if you suddenly had to read about sex between the asshole who cut you off in traffic and your dickwad of a boss.

Sweeney: YES. THIS. EXACTLY. So it’s both, then. I’m glad we’ve cleared that up.

They have sex, sans Grey “producing a foil-wrapped package” which is terrifying because even though Ana is on the pill, I don’t want us taking any chances of these two procreating. NO CHANCES. Though, really, her continued use of the word “producing” often made me wonder if he was getting a condom out of his pocket, or actually manufacturing one right before sex. That might be impressive, if a little mood-killing. (L: AMAZING.)

They chat a little about nothing and Ana has to restrain herself from touching his chest, because of the rules. Banter turns to Ana’s new job news. She is surprised that he hasn’t figured it out yet, and we get more LOL-worthy commentary of how non-extreme Grey is when he says, “Anastasia, I wouldn’t dream of interfering in your career, unless you ask me to, of course.” You so funny, Grey.

She tells him which publishing company hired her, and then they get in the shower, where Grey proceeds to wash her.

Lor: Dude, I loved the part where Ana gets in the shower, and she’s all “OW!” ’cause the water is hot. Grey says, “it’s only a little hot water.” Ana: “Actually he’s right. It feels heavenly.”

WTF. Did he just change her mind about how hot the water was, you guys? Oh, Grey said it isn’t hot. This feels wonderful! I repeat: WTF.

Sweeney: While his hands are on her boobs she mentions Josecob’s photography show, which is totally not awkward at all. He hesitates, but ultimately accepts Ana’s invitation to attend with her.

He’s surprised that she was so nervous to ask; she reminds him that he gets jealous easily. And scarily. Her internal monologue continues to remind me of a middle schooler than a recent college graduate, when Grey suggests that they take the helicopter: “More flying…cool! I grin.

It’s as if E. L. James knew she was being too easy on me, letting me chill over here in, “Ha, Ana’s ridiculously immature,” land, so she had to remind me of all! the! problems! with this relationship: Ana then asks if she can wash Grey, and gets shut down. She then asks if she’ll ever be able to touch him, to which he replies:

“Put your hands on the wall, Anastasia. I’m going to take you again,” he murmurs in my ear as he grabs my hips, and I know that the discussion is over.

Yep, perfectly health relationship that women everywhere should wish that they were in. That Christian Grey, so dreamy.

Lor: The best example of the manipukiss so far.

Sweeney: After shower sexy times they drink wine at the breakfast bar, which is probably the thing I most approve of in this chapter, as wine is the best way to get through this. Grey is evasive when Ana asks about “the situation” which we keep referring to as “the situation.”

Grey tells Ana that he has plans for her in the playroom in fifteen minutes, and Ana makes a point of emphasizing how murderface he is during this scene, so that’s not at all unsettling. He essentially sends her to her room and tells her that the closet is now full of clothing for her, and that she’s not allowed to complain. He leaves and she grumbles to herself about how she wouldn’t complain because “It’s more than my backside’s worth,” yet another sign of the healthy nature of this relationship. As if trying to outdo herself now, she lists all the shit he has bought her, and how she’s only a condo purchase away from being a proper mistress. AND THEN, she goes to her room, confused because he said she could sleep with him, but grateful that at least she will have “somewhere to escape from him,” and then I punch a wall because WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU STILL. IN. THIS. RELATIONSHIP?

In the Red Room, Ana is naked and waiting for Grey, filled with what seems like genuine terror as she searches for her “inner sub” who is probably “hiding behind [her] inner goddess.”

But we move quickly from terrified to “wet already” so it’s all good, guys! We’re not making a mockery of normal people with kinks here at all!  See, it feels wrong, but it’s OK because:

It’s right for Christian. It’s what he wants – and after the last few days… after all he’s done, I have to man up and take whatever he decides he wants, whatever he thinks he needs.

Wait, I’m sorry, what has he done? He stalked your vacation, demonstrating his creepertastic powers with his knowledge of your mother’s address (so now you’re leaving your mother in the path of your stalker). He is continuing to refuse reasonable concessions, likening allowing you to pay for IHOP breakfast to “emasculating” him. He refused to let you shower after you presumably spent the night bleeding all over yourself.

But, then, he flew a plane! Weeee! So, on the whole, a win?

Lor: Sweeney, he bought her first class tickets and a pancake combo and a closet full of clothes. The lesson here, ladies, is that if a man buys you something, you must do whatever he wants.

Sweeney: True story. It’s just one of the many amazing things I’m learning from reading this book.

Anyway, after more of her internal monologue then I cared to have to read, Christian finally comes in the room and he is naked except for his jeans, which seems like a pretty significant exception to being naked, but all right, Ana.

Lor: I’m often naked, except for my clothes, but I’m a rebel that way.

Sweeney: She rambles about all the things she wants to do to his feet and I have to try not to vomit, because even after the tampon scene, feet still rank pretty high on my list of Things That Will Never Be Sexy.

Grey tells her how beautiful she is and then reminds her that they have safe words, and asks her if she remembers them. She’s all dumbfounded and non-responsive at this question/command, because even though she was terrified thirty seconds ago, she suddenly can’t fathom why this would be necessary. She then adds:

I can’t help it…I raise my eyebrow at him and am about to remind him of my GPA, but the sudden frosty glint in his icy gray (!) eyes stops me in my tracks.

Yes, Ana, you’re a fucking genius. Truly.

Anyway, the safe word reminder isn’t because it’s going to hurt, but because what’s going to happen will be “intense.” She’s going to be blindfolded with headphones so that she can’t see or hear him, and Ana’s main concern in all of this is, “Jeez, I hope it’s not rap.”

Lor: Fuck your priorities, girlfriend.

Sweeney: More talking and waiting and Ana’s supposed to wait and picture herself “totally at his mercy” which shouldn’t be difficult since, you know, she is. Then Ana gives us another “Oh my” and I have to stop reading for another minute or two to laugh.

He then braids her hair, something I associate more with middle school slumber parties than sexytimes, so it mostly just gives me the creeps. Before he ties her up, he makes her touch the flogger and then uses it on her a few times and rehashes the safe words conversation. Then some pointless explanation of the technology involved: there’s an antenna on the iPod connecting it to the Red Room’s sound system, so that Grey can hear the music too and control it with a remote control, that Ana feels the need to tell us looks like a calculator, because she apparently has limited experience with remote controls.

Several pages after announcing the tied up / can’t see / can’t hear game plan, it’s finally a thing. The music of choice? SOME SORT OF HYMN. A HYMN, YOU GUYS. Again, what else is there to do but laugh? How is this supposed to be erotic? How/why is being reminded of church supposed to be appealing in this scenario?

Lor: So, I’m not gonna lie. When I read it, I basically skipped entire chunks of this scene and didn’t really pick up on that whole ‘hymn’ thing. As penance, I’ve Googled the lyrics for y’all:

I have never put my hope in any other but in You,
O God of Israel
who can show both anger
and graciousness,
and who absolves all the sins of suffering man
Lord God,
Creator of Heaven and Earth
be mindful of our lowliness

IS IT GETTING HOT IN HERE OR WHAT?

Sweeney: You know you’re my favorite forever, right?

Grey breaks out the first device of this odd little sensory experiment, which Ana eventually concludes is a fur glove. As Grey is feeling her up with the fur glove, Ana’s excitement seems to correspond with voices joining the church choir in her ears and I simply present that information to you without comment.

He moves from the glove to the flogger and Ana has a little epiphany about pain being pleasurable, and the next two pages would be totally acceptable erotica, were it not for all the other bullshit these pages are surrounded by in this book. Also the church music. Grey moves from the flogger to his mouth and then he undoes the leg restrains and fucks her in time to the aforementioned church music, which is on repeat. I can’t see the word “hymn” and think “hot.”

Lor: Girl, you put the hymn in hymen. Can I get an amen?

…no?

Sweeney: After the ultra intense orgasm, the music stops and Grey undoes the hand restraints and they have a little chat about the music. Ana tries to get him to tell her what she said her in sleep, to which he replies, “You talked about cages and strawberries.. that you wanted more.. and that you missed me.” Ana is relieved, and he wants to know what she thought she said. She jokes and avoids an answer. He jokes about being bad at jokes and blah, blah, he wants to know what she’s hiding and threatens to torture it out of her. CUTE.

Whisper Count: 5
Murmur Count: 11

 

Favorite comment last post:

“I’m totally hoping the job offer was a practical joke. If I were Kate Kavanaugh (that bitch), I’d be pranking Ana all the time.

I was going to say something about publishing houses not working that way, since they’re full of professional, intelligent people who actually DO read books. But then I remembered publishing houses also brought us FSoG, so maybe they do work that way and EL James is right and I am wrong and I officially quit life.” – Dani Denatti

 

Next time on Fifty Shades of Grey: THE END. THE END. DEAR SWEET HYMNS DURING SEX, THE END. See how it ends in FSoG Chapter 26.

Sweeney (all posts)

I collect elaborate false eyelashes, panda gifs, and passport stamps. I earned my MA in Global Communications and watching too many YouTube videos. Reconciling my aversion to leaving the house/wearing pants with my deep desire to explore everything is my life's great struggle.





Lorraine (all posts)

I'm a 20-something south Floridan who loves the beach but cannot swim. Such is my life, full of small contradictions and little trivialities. My main life goals are never to take life too seriously, but to do everything I attempt seriously well. After that, my life goals devolve into things like not wearing pants and eating all of the Zebra Cakes in the world. THE WORLD.





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  • http://twitter.com/WillieSun Wilhelmina Upton

    A big HALLELUJAH for the fact that the next chapter will be the last. Just in time for this recap, I stumbled upon this gem. Oh Ellen DeGeneres, how I love you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=on3JCwnwHbU

    The hair braiding thing just reminds me of 30 Rock cause in one scene Jack mentions that he wants to braid Avery’s hair. In his situation though, it was totally funny and not creepy unlike everything Christian.

    • http://thelatepartygirls.com Lorraine

      I know the END! Would you read if we covered the next book…? :

      I actually saw that video before I read the book, I believe, and I thought it was brilliant.

      Christian Grey can never be funny. Ever.

      • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

        +1 to that last comment.

      • http://twitter.com/WillieSun Wilhelmina Upton

        Sure I would read your recaps for the next book…if you decided to put that on yourself. I can’t even imagine the pain reading EL is causing.

  • http://ginadenny.blogspot.com/ Gina

    I’m betting five million dollars on the fact that James chose a hymn because she couldn’t be arsed to find something better that was in the public domain.

    • http://thelatepartygirls.com Lorraine

      So she went with HYMN?

      Okay, fine, whatever. Probably at chapter 25/26 she figured that if anyone had made it that far they probably wouldn’t care about that one little thing. Touche James.

      • http://ginadenny.blogspot.com/ Gina

        I’m with you: Worst Choice Ever.

        But for the lazy-person-searching-for-lyrics-that-aren’t-copyrighted, it’s a reasonably straightforward jump to make.

        • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

          I’m still holding out hope that this is just the world’s greatest practical joke. I am waiting for the day that she does an interview and she’s all, “JK, Y’ALL!”

  • http://twitter.com/ReadingFever Penelope Lolohea

    I can’t BELIEVE I’m even asking for this clarification, but you didn’t mention her answer, and I’ve got to know…she’s NOT still bleeding, right? I mean, he didn’t go down on her while she’s bleeding, right?!!! Because that would add all sorts of crazy to this story that I don’t need to think about.

    • Judith

      No, she was not still bleeding. We only had to suffer the horrific trauma of period sexy times the one time.
      This also means that Ana has the shortest period in all of womankind. That Bitch!!

      • http://thelatepartygirls.com Lorraine

        Judith answered- she was not.

        I almost commented on the mini-period but one of my good friends has a consistent three day period, and that’s her normal. Let’s all take a moment to hate on her. She may be reading this and if she is, she can at least rest assured that at least she isn’t Ana! :D

      • shelbyisrad

        total bitch

      • http://twitter.com/ReadingFever Penelope Lolohea

        Thanks for answering, Judith! Totally puts my mind at ease…well, at as much ease as it can be, when thinking about FSoG.

  • Judith

    “and the next two pages would be totally acceptable erotica, were it not for all the other bullshit these pages are surrounded by in this book”
    On the extremely rare occasions that James does come out with something slightly less than icky, instead of being happy, it actually makes me want to cry. We can’t … and dammit I won’t … have anything positive to say about this book

    • http://thelatepartygirls.com Lorraine

      She usually ruins it, though, so I don’t really take it to heart anymore. Like I remember when at one point I thought, “these emails aren’t even too bad.” LOLOL. Yep. They are bad. She ruined it.

      Have faith. She has one whole chapter and two other books to help make us forget that anything was ever ‘okay.’

    • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

      I know exactly what you mean because that’s more or less what I was thinking while I was writing it. The thing is, even those rare moments aren’t even good; they are just fleeting moments where we deviate from the usual standard of “soul-crushingly awful.”

  • KM

    Ok, I kinda want you to do the rest of the series because these recaps are hysterical. I can’t wait to read them each week.

    • http://thelatepartygirls.com Lorraine

      We’re pretty stuck between “OMG THIS SUCKS DON’T MAKE US READ IT” and “but writing the recaps is fun and we love our readers/commenters!!!”

      Please stay tuned for the official decision and announcement. Sweeney and I will probably make it over chat while we’re both consuming copious amounts of wine.

      • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

        If the decision is made to continue, it will surely have been under the influence of a lot of wine. Maybe that’s a general wink/nudge to our readers? Buy us wine and we’ll read more bad erotica? It can be cheap wine. We’re not picky.

        • wlreed

          I would buy you wine, and possibly tequila, if you will recap the other books. I feel for your distress, but these recaps are hysterical and somewhat eases the pain of the knowledge this book is being sold at Wal-Mart. And most of the people who shop at Wal-Mart are the last people on the planet that need access to this particular series.

          Remember, we are all naked beneath our clothes.

        • Denise

          Please please please do the rest of the series! Your recaps are the highlight of my week.

  • Melbourne on my Mind

    All I could think of when Grey was like “Put your hands on the wall” was “Oh, Ana. Didn’t anyone ever tell you not to drop the soap in prison??”.

    • http://ginadenny.blogspot.com/ Gina

      +1

    • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

      A+ for you.

  • Reba

    She couldn’t even go with Carmina Burana for sexy times classical music? You could get a whole jungle-fucking scene out of the intro alone. I guess the translation wouldn’t work, since it’s all about how cruel Fate can be. Then again, that sort of does fit.

    • http://www.sweeneysays.com Sweeney

      I guess church just really does it for E. L. / Grey / Ana. Who doesn’t love a good hymn during sex? -_-

      • Reba

        Here’s the thing: if church flips your switch, there are tons of games to be played that invoke the scents/feeling/ritual. That hymn is still the wrong choice to orchestrate said games. If inspiration has otherwise failed, go with Bach. At least you get great swells and crescendos. If James wanted Ana to seem educated and clever, she could have used recognition of Bach and a quick musing on how she’d never hear the piece quite the same again. But I guess that sort of depth was too much work. I don’t know why I want this to be better than it is. Oh, wait. It’s because I actually DO put in the effort to create interesting (and grammatically sound) narratives, and it breaks my heart that this is the trash that gets published.

  • shelbyisrad

    Quote from my friend: “I wish she [Ana] was a real person, so someone could run her over with a real truck”

    • Alexy

      I’d love to hear her inner monologue then. How long would it take for her to realise that she is about to get run over, I wonder?

  • http://twitter.com/fnisu Emilie Haugen

    I LOVE THESE SUMMARIES. I read 50 shades of grey just because I wanted to see what all the fuzz was about, and I basically cringed through the whole thing. This made my day.

  • Alexy

    Oh god, I realise what sort of bullshit they’re going with the whole church music playing in the background thing. It’s symbolism as to how Christian is Ana’s god. *vomits*

  • http://www.danidenatti.com/ Dani Denatti

    “I have to man up and take whatever he decides he wants, whatever he thinks he needs,” said no self-respecting woman, ever. You, know, for all that talk about Ana not being naturally submissive, she sure does a really good impression of a doormat. Or perhaps that’s just EL James’s clever writing style, telling the readers one thing (over and over) while showing something else entirely. Kinda like how she has Christian tell us how intelligent, amazing, and incredible Ana is, without ever showing us anything that would support such claims. We’re onto you, EL James!

    Goodness. I am completely torn between “Thank God it’s almost over” and “Whatever will I turn to when my faith in humanity must be restored?” As much as I value the brain cells of you lovely ladies, I must beseech you to carry on with the next book. It’s not as if this particular book will end in any sort of conclusion-y way, since the “trilogy” is really just one long-ass fanfic that was chopped into three books without regard to story arcs, or plot, or any of those other pesky details with which many authors concern themselves.

    I will personally send you a CASE of wine if you decide to continue. :-)

    • Laf

      Amen! We must be soul-sisters! I think I love you

      • http://www.danidenatti.com/ Dani Denatti

        Yay! The popularity of these books fills me with such rage – it’s nice to be reminded that there are still sane people out there!!!

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