Bonding is a dramedy TV series, launched in 2019. (IMDB)
Tiff, a grad student who works as a pro domme, recruits her friend Pete as her driver and assistant. Pete, a milquetoast, sexually inexperienced gay man and would-be stand-up comedian, is our window into this world. He is overwhelmed and confused with this new underworld, though that seems to be his response to everything. We see his discomfort with his roommate’s sex life and his inability to go on stage as a comedian.
Driven by the need to pay his rent, Pete takes Tiff’s offer. He assists Tiff (as “Mistress May”) in the kidnapping and humiliation of a client, Frank. He adopts his own nom de scene, “Carter”, and reluctantly puts on a Muir cap and leather chest harness.
Tiff does a small penis humiliation (SPH) scene on Frank, urging Pete to participate. Pete refuses until Tiff turns on him, calling him out for being a coward. This jolts Pete into riffing on Frank’s (off-camera) penis. Frank is ecstatic, and even Pete is enjoying the experience. Right up to the moment when Frank ejaculates on his face (also from off camera).
The main point of this episode is Pete overcoming his inhibitions through sex work (of a kind). He accepts the absurdity of the situation and takes control.
The show’s direction employs some standard tropes of depicting BDSM. Pete descends into a below-street-level dungeon at the beginning, just like in POSE, and the BDSM scenes are full of black and red, just like in Going Under.
At only 17 minutes long, there’s only so deep the premiere of Bonding can go into its subject matter. Let’s see how the rest of the series goes.