'50 Shades of Grey' Cheat Sheet: Everything You Need to Fake It

At this point, it seems like anyone with even an ounce of curiosity about E.L. James' BDSM romance, Fifty Shades of Grey, has picked up (or downloaded) the books. If you haven't yet, I'm guessing you probably never will -- either because you feel like James' amateur writing will make you want to gouge your eyes out or you're simply rebelling against the pop cultural tide. 

And if that's the case, more power to you! But there's no reason you should be left out of copious, inevitable, and surely heated conversations about the books. Here, The Stir's exclusive cheat sheet on the first book, with all the info you'll need to know if you want to play it off like you're totally down with Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele.


Basic cast of characters:

Christian Grey - You know Paula Adbul's late '80s tune "Cold-Hearted Snake"? E.L. must have been listening to that one on repeat when she came up with Christian, an aloof, impeccably dressed (but so not gay!) billionaire. Besides running his own company (obvs) filled with various mergers and acquisitions related to eco-friendly business, he also has a penchant for hot and heavy S&M. As a dominant, he has a track record of making various petite brunettes his submissives. But, as we'll learn later, despite his mercurial moods and control-freak facade, he's actually a romantic at heart. And he's only into this kind of sex because he has serious emotional issues -- aka he's "fifty shades of f-ed up" -- because his mom was a crack whore, he was abused as a kid, and had an illicit relationship with a MILF as a teen.

Anastasia Steele - She's basically Bella from Twilight (tomboy, book-ish, shy, clumsy, brunette, has no idea she's attractive but adored by men, etc.) with a more insatiable libido. At 22, she's about to graduate college with a degree in Literature, is still a virgin, and doesn't even own her own computer or have email. She meets Christian when going to interview him in place of her roommate ...

Kate Kavanaugh - Ana's BFF and roomie is an all around more assertive, confident, and attractive young woman who wants to be a journalist.

Jose Rodriguez - A photographer and Ana's guy friend who is head over heels for her, but she's just not into him.

Bare-bones plotline:

Ana meets Christian Grey after interviewing him for her college's newspaper. Christian is interested in making her his next conquest, but only if she'll sign a contract that makes her his submissive (in and out of the bedroom). Ana's never had sex before, but once she starts having both "vanilla" and BDSM sex with Christian (prior to signing any sort of contract), there's no going back -- she must have more! Until she realizes she's fallen in love with him, and she decides he's incapable of having the kind of relationship she wants and she leaves him. To be continued ...

5 Most Talked About Scenes:

  1. The interview - Since Kate is ill, Ana goes off as her "understudy" to interview Christian for the paper. She falls (literally) into his office only to have completely awkward interaction -- even asking him if he's gay! But their chemistry, at least from Christian's end, is apparent. And although Ana thinks it was a total fail, we know they'll meet again.
  2. Jose's kiss and Christian's rescue - When Jose attempts to turn his platonic relationship with Ana into something "more," Christian shows up and is all, "I think the lady said no." Be still Ana's heart!
  3. The elevator scene - Whenever these two get into an elevator, sparks fly! But not as much as the one time Christian decides to "f**k the paperwork!" (as in the dom-sub contract) and pin Ana to the wall "with his lips."
  4. The debut of Ana's "inner goddess" - She performs oral sex on Christian for the first time ("He's my very own Christian Grey-flavored popsicle!") and suddenly, her "inner goddess" is "doing the merengue with some salsa moves."
  5. The tie - Christian uses his mystical grey tie to bind Ana's hands together, then proceeds to torture her with kisses, toe-biting, cunnilingus, and of course, hard and fast f-ing.

Now, check out the Fifty Shades Darker (book 2) cheat sheet ...

Image via Universal Pictures; pbombaert/shutterstock

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