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In some works of fiction, prostitution is portrayed as a dream job, or at least as a joyful and reasonably unproblematic career, even if other jobs can still be even better.

Common elements include:

  1. The prostitute has lots and lots of enjoyable sex, and is paid for his or her pleasure.
  2. No physical stresses: they never get STDs, never have unwanted pregnancies, never have to work when they simply don't feel like it. They have one customer a night, days off whenever they want.
  3. No, or only very mild, social stigma is attached to prostitution.
  4. With High Class Callgirls especially, they make lots of money with no taxes and no-one demanding a cut (see #6).
  5. Always treated well; no violent customers, no dangerous customers, no gross or creepy or twisted customers. If the customer has a kink, it's one that the prostitute either shares or at least doesn't mind. They typically don't have sex with people they would never choose to have sex with if they didn't get paid - and if they do, this doesn't cause them any emotional problems.
  6. Either there's no pimp or madam at all, or they exist, but they're always looking out for the best interests of the prostitutes, and are nothing but kind. At worst, they're a vague annoyance.
  7. Everybody cheerfully pays whatever her going rate is. She never gets stiffed.[1]

If a character in this role has a personality of her own (rather than being a pure Ms. Fanservice or similar), don't be surprised if she's a really good person who you can really talk with.

Sometimes Truth in Television in regard to #1, #2 and #5, since the girls would try to avoid at all costs people who look dangerous, violent, gross, visibly drunk or drugged, and respond to people who look nice, for their own safety.

See the analysis tab for why sex work being portrayed as unproblematic is a trope.

No Real Life Examples, Please.

Examples of Unproblematic Prostitution include:


Anime and Manga

  • In the hentai comedy manga Spunky Knight, the exceptionally lusty female protagonist is a part time adventurer for hire, part time prostitute. She only prefers adventuring because the brothel customers aren't as exciting as those she encounters on missions.
    • Ironically, being a prostitute actually pays the bills a LOT better even though she takes on a lot of high paying mercenary jobs.

Comic Books

  • Played very straight in Buck Godot, where the Velvet Fist is a famous galactic corporate brothel-empire and the workers therein are, as far as we know, quite happy with their jobs.
  • Vary in Finder: her job has its stresses, and she's more complex than the usual example of this trope, but she's still mostly fulfilled and happy in her career. It's clear that nastier forms of prostitution do exist in the Finder universe, however.

Film

  • The American, where the main character starts dating a woman that he's been buying sex from and after barely interacting with her apart from that. There doesn't even seem to be any problem with the line between work and personal relationships here.
  • Deconstructing Harry has Cookie Williams, a hired professional who seems at peace with her choice ("beats waitressing") and overall well adjusted.
  • In Pretty Woman, a hooker (played by Julia Roberts) is picked up by a millionaire (played by Richard Gere) and they fall in love. Julia's character is a good person (although she does have some emotional baggage, it's not related to her work) and, over the course of the week he hired her for, completely turns around the millionaire's way of dealing with the world through her sheer goodness and sweetness. Although this is a change he wanted to do for as long as he can remember - what she gave him is emotional support rather than insights. His business partner doesn't care either way about her, until she gets in his way; then he calls her a dirty whore and tries to rape her.
  • Sin City: While the violence and drugs are present, the girls have banded together so there are no pimps and violent customers are quickly disposed of without police interference. However, they are constantly threatened by the organized crime families.
  • In Caligula Caligula decides the best way to recover from government debt is to turn the wives of all the senators into prostitutes, with the government getting the money. While the senators themselves protest, the wives seem at least OK with it - anyway, we don't see any complaining, and we see lots of them on the job.
  • In Mammoth Selling sex and "girlfriend experience" to silly white guys comes across as emotionally stressful or maybe even draining... But it still comes across as far less awful than the alternatives presented. Try being a night-shift doctor, not getting enough sleep and spending your nights watching children die without being able to save them. Or try being a nanny, hearing on the phone how your own children's lives are spiraling into hell while you are busy taking care of another woman's child... a rich woman who is jealous of you, frightened that her daughter may love you more than she loves her.
  • In Trading Places, Jamie Lee Curtis plays a prostitute who gives a short rundown of the reasons why it's a safe and profitable venture for her.

Literature

  • Spider Robinson's 'Lady Callahan' (Callahan's Lady/Lady Slings the Booze) books. She runs a "house of healthy repute" where both the staff and the clients have a good time.
  • Secret Diary of a Call Girl
  • Used reasonably straight in Mercedes Lackey's Bardic Voices by "Amber's," a house of High Class Call Girls where Rune spends some time working as a musician. None of the girls mind what they do, and Amber, the madam of the establishment, is a kind and lovely woman who looks out for all of her employees like a mother. (The books do at least acknowledge that places like Amber's are not the norm.)
  • Xaviera Hollander, called her autobiography The Happy Hooker: My Own Story.
  • Robert Heinlein's Time Enough For Love. In the far future on the planet Secundus, prostitutes are considered as artists who are looked up to. They don't just provide sex, but emotional comfort as well.
  • Paulo Coelho's Eleven Minutes. The protagonist (and her fellow hookers) is perfectly happy being a prostitute out of her own will, the only drawback to the job being that she's unable to achieve a proper orgasm.
  • Used with Rosa in Much Fall of Blood, an army Camp Follower.

  "Some of them have lost everything and had nothing else to sell. Some who want money. Some, like Rosa, who are too wild to keep to one man."

Live Action TV

  • Two and A Half Men: to the point where Alan's attempts at being respectful to a hooker was a joke
  • Game of Thrones: Even when a hooker leaves town to seek success in the big city, she sticks to being a hooker. Her pimp is actually depicted as one of the more sympathetic characters and when the facade breaks it is because of his Chronic Backstabbing Disorder, not his establishment. Oh, and apparently hookers here genuinely like having sex with each other on demand. On the other hand, unwanted pregnancies are quite frequent, judging by the noisy litter of children in said brothel's garden, and in case of the king's numerous bastards, become a major plot point... also, Jon Snow appeared to be very much aware of and bothered by this issue.
    • Season 2 in general seems to be averting this, sometimes to disturbing extremes.
  • Firefly shows two extreme ends of the spectrum of prositution:
    • The Companions Guild, whose members are among the Alliance's upper class, can wield a fair amount of influence with their favored clients. It is also Guild law that a Companion chooses her clients, and they are paid very well for what they do. Companions get regular health screenings and have systems in place to blacklist clients who don't treat them with respect. One such Companion, Inara, is considered to be the most respectable of Serenity's crew, and the only one who makes a completely "honest" living. She is shown to enjoy most aspects of her work, but at the same time her lifestyle causes some degree of friction. One of her clients snubs her when she politely refuses to settle down with him (and it is implied that this happens a lot) and another calls her a "whore" when he loses his temper with her (and she subsequently blacklists him from the client registry). Companions are also more than simply prostitutes, and are shown providing counsel and psychological help with their clients.
    • Heart Of Gold shows the other side, with a whorehouse run by Nandi, a former Companion, where the girls are explicitly not Companions. Their harsh lives make a big contrast against the good companion life. Nandi also remarks that it used to be much worse, with many of the girls being abused drug addicts, until she killed the brothel's previous owner and seized control.
  • Dollhouse either something-verts this or it encompasses most versions with how their whores don't mind it at the time and don't remember it later. They are very well-paid in flat-rate service, their pimp tends to protect them, and they don't even know they're being prostituted, genuinely believing that they are in love during the encounter.
    • Later though things aren't so glamorous.
  • That Mitchell and Webb Look parodies this using the recurring scriptwriters who never, ever do any research. Their show "My Shags as a Whore" is about a prostitute who outright states that "being a prostitute is brilliant!"

  Who wants to be a doctor or a lawyer when you can be a prostitute like me? A proper one I mean, not one of those grim ones, a nice, pretty, clean one, which in reality, most of are.

Theatre

  • The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
  • In the musical Tenderloin, the prostitutes have only one thing to be unhappy about: reformers trying to close their Red Light District down.
  • Sweet Charity: While Charity is a taxi dancer rather than 'officially' being a prostitute, this trope is still played with; it's not presented as a bad life, although she hopes for something better. Her problem, according to one of the other girls is that she falls in love too easily.

  Nickie: "You run your heart like a hotel — you've always got people checking in and checking out"

  • In George Bernard Shaw's play Mrs. Warren's Profession, Mrs. Warren defends having sold herself to men as having been at least better paying and less damaging to the health than other supposedly respectable occupations for women.

Video Games

  • Dragon Age, which comments on just about any other aspect of Thedas society, doesn't use the brothels for anything but throwaway sexual adventures for the player and sources for information about missing people (because everyone seems to frequent them).
  • Mostly avoided in Fallout 2, in which many prostitutes are Jet addicts, and some in New Reno are actually chattel slaves. Played straight in the case of the Cat's Paw, which seems to be a brothel of clean, consenting, prostitutes who take professional pride in their skills.
  • The Slave Maker flash game depicts this completely straight. Very rarely are prostitutes unhappy about their profession.
    • Not completely straight with the PC slaves, unless the Obedience and Joy stats are high.
  • In Arcanum of Steamworks and Magick Obscura, you can convince a maid to give up her terrible job for a glamorous career as a brothel prostitute. You can visit her later at the brothel, where she is ecstatic about her new job and even gives you a freebie as thanks. One has to wonder exactly what her old job required of her...

Web Comics

Web Original

Notes

  1. [Pun|Snerk]]
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