My first sexual awakening

These SFU students open up about the characters and people that opened their eyes

ILLUSTRATION: Tiffany Chan / The Peak

By: Going Through Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes, One Hexed Girl, and Parawhore

David Bowie (by Going Through Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes)

While most know David Bowie as the lightning bolt face guy or “singing something about an alien named Tom or whatever the hell,” his role in the entertaining yet fucking weird film Labyrinth was unforgettable. At around age 13, David Bowie was just about the coolest person in the world to me and, well, Jareth the Goblin King was his face that I knew best. 

His incredibly tight leggings in the movie showed off his body in ways that I didn’t quite understand at the time. I knew that there was something attractive about the glitter-covered man surrounded by puppet henchmen. As he fondled his smooth (crystal) balls in the sexiest but most sinister way, the movie left me thinking that this androgynous icon was magic in more ways than one. 

As the Goblin King stole Sarah’s baby brother, I wished he would steal me into his maze of mischief too. When he brandished his magic rod, all I wanted was to see his other magic rod that was painfully obvious in every scene . . . and maybe learn why he carried a riding crop. As he said goodbye to Sarah, I was nowhere near ready to say goodbye to that half-unbuttoned shirt of his. Labyrinth definitely showed off Davie Bowie’s talents and body, making him the “Babe with the Power” that really awoke something in 13-year-old me.

The Hex Girls (by One Hexed Girl)

My brother was obsessed with Scooby-Doo — for whatever reason, children were obsessed with unmasking old men dressed as werewolves. Me? I was obsessed with it because of the Hex Girls. I will never forget watching their introduction when Scooby and Shaggy took time away from smoking bowls and discovered these potential witches in the woods. Those two may have been afraid, but what sparked in me was a different response — a response that would soon be suppressed by my Catholicism until the eighth grade when I realized that my best friend was way cuter than guys who sported DC shoes. That Scooby-Doo film was the first time I ever related to boring preppy Fred as he ogled over those three. 

Thorn singing “I’m gonna cast a spell on you / You’re gonna do what I want you to” was formative to my identity. It made me queer. It made me a bottom. It made me always long for a goth girlfriend, despite me currently having the antithesis of that: a gamer boyfriend. 

And most importantly, the Hex Girls made me eco-conscious. Whenever I use a plastic straw, I think of how disappointed they would be in me, and then I think of how they might punish me, and then I think thoughts not suitable for The Peak.

Hayley Williams (by Parawhore)

Hayley Williams has it all: she’s hot, she’s talented, she’s an entrepreneur, and again, she’s hot.

I’ve had “That’s What You Get” stuck in my head since 2009 and that woman living rent-free in my heart for longer. What I’ve always admired most about her is how bold she is. The only thing bolder I can think of is when I had that dream where she kicked me square in the nose when I was front row at a concert. To this day, I’ve never washed my nose. 

The orange hair, her fun outfits . . . she blew my mind and I was never coming back from it. As a regular Twitter user, I’ve found out this is somewhat of a universal experience. Every emo reject questioning their sexuality back then remembers the women of Warped Tour. I’m talking Jenna McDougall, Lynn Gunn, Ash Costello . . . if you know, you know. But Hayley, that woman has been my phone wallpaper for like five years. I still don’t know if I want to be her or if I want to be pegged by her.