“Escort Boys”, on Prime Video: the delta of gigolos

The pink flamingos, the horses that gallop in sprays of water iridescent by the sun, the bulls and the farmhouses that look like they are sitting on the water, it's an invitation to devote your vacation budget to the Camargue

“Escort Boys”, on Prime Video: the delta of gigolos

The pink flamingos, the horses that gallop in sprays of water iridescent by the sun, the bulls and the farmhouses that look like they are sitting on the water, it's an invitation to devote your vacation budget to the Camargue. A well-balanced boy with a slightly melancholic face, another, even more handsome, dark, a young man more adolescent in his head than in his body and, finally, a touching teddy bear; neither one more than the other, they do not hesitate to take off their shirts, or even more: enough to fuel a naughty calendar. We think we can see where Escort Boys is located on the map of distractions, between the alluring and the mind-numbing.

Except that, to complete the quartet, here is a teenage girl, a good student, who, to escape boarding school and stay on the farm, the one that her recently deceased father was barely managing to keep afloat, decides to put the boys on the sidewalk. . Prime Video, a subsidiary of a multinational accustomed to selling products that do not correspond to their description, is it giving us a social and erotic meditation on the rural exodus, coupled with a reflection on the commodification of body ?

Annoying incongruity

At the end of six episodes of Escort Boys, the answer has still not been forthcoming, the incongruity of the project still annoying. It would be better to take the sequences one after the other, which go from cock to donkey: a burlesque montage of adults practicing striptease, under the direction of a child who has seen too many Full Metal Jacket , to the dialogue between a frustrated wife and her husband, who is reluctant to trade in her charms, through the soliloquy of a wealthy bourgeoisie (Carole Bouquet) who laments her condition as a trophy. These fragments reflect the state of the forces present in the war between men and women – for the moment it is only a question of heterosexuality.

We understand well, after Nicolas Bedos' Alphonse, that male prostitution is a convenient way to circumvent what some consider to be the unbearable dictates of contemporary morality. Here, our heroes sell themselves to save a beekeeping operation, to comfort a cancer patient sure she is no longer desirable, to brighten up the evening of a lonely baker in love with shibari. We barely understand why they are hiding, they should claim charitable status.

This indifference to the plausibility of social or romantic relationships could pass for inventiveness if the characters took on a little substance. The performers are content to make them slip into the mold required by the configuration of the moment. They should be by turns ridiculous, burlesque, irresistible, touching… they are transparent – ​​which at least allows you to enjoy the landscapes.