Never Have I Ever Had a Sexiest Man Alive Crush

I started watching ‘Never Have I Ever’ because 1. I love teen comedies and 2. It was from the mind of my writing muse, Mindy Kaling. I kept on watching because, holy hell, it’s addicting. The way it gets you invested in the love life of Devi is wild, and in her quest for teen romance and raging hormonal satisfaction, we meet Jaren Lewison’s Ben Gross. 

He’s sort of her foe but anyone who has ever seen a teen movie or show knew all too well that feelings were brewing between the two. Even if they were too dumb to admit to them throughout the series. Alas, Jaren Lewison slowly became one of my favorite characters on the show because well, I could 100% relate to being that overachieving high school kid who thinks their path to a better life is education-based. For me, it twas not. For Ben though, in this fictional world set in the San Fernando Valley, I think he’ll be okay. 

Other than knowing exactly what kind of person Ben was, what I continued to love about Ben was his insecurities. Perfect characters are never great, which is why even those like Thor have to have something fucked up about them to make them relatable, and ben had plenty. On the service, he was this rich, smart kid from a home that would ensure he never had to financially struggle in life. Peeling back those layers though, you find this highly-insecure teenager (which, what teen isn’t like that?) whose dad is always away, has trouble making legit friends and is so focused on his perfection – he lands in the hospital. I won’t spoil too much but things do get better for Ben…

Aside from that, I couldn’t help but fall for the dynamic between Ben and Devi. It’s hard not to watch a movie or TV show and think, why the fuck couldn’t that have happened to me? It reminds me of the time we talked to author and podcaster Lala Loves about her Book Crush from ‘The Duff.’ She admitted she’d often imagine herself in the stories she’s read, which I think is commonplace for fans of any form of entertainment, right? Yup, it’s just one of the aspects of a fandom; the fantasy. Devi is often stuck between her foe turned crush turned her (possibly we don’t know how that scene panned out) first time and Paxton, the typical hot guy everyone wants in school. 

Oh, it’s a whole thing within this fandom between Team Ben and Team Paxton and while both have amazing attributes, my heart always leans towards Jaren Lewison because in real life that’s likely the guy I’d be crushing on every year until we went off to college, and then I’d just befriend him on Facebook and wish him happy birthday every year. That crush that never amounted to anything because I didn’t grow up with the balls that Devi has to go after the boy(s) she wants, especially ones like Ben at that age. 

Jaren Lewison has one more season to dazzle the world as Ben Gross and I, for one, will be so sad to see ‘Never Have I Ever’ come to a close. Again, if you haven’t watched it – please do, it’s streaming on Netflix. If you’ve listened for a while or have read anything I’ve penned, you know I don’t take those teen shows lightly and ‘Degrassi’ is a passion of mine, but once this fourth and final season wraps – I’ll know for sure if it is indeed my current #1 teen show or not. It doesn’t hurt that Jaren Lewison is also easy on the eyes…

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