"If you haven't already been hurt by love, look out, you will be," MTV's crack reporter Kurt Loder reassures viewers early on in "Sex in the '90s V," a "documentary" that reveals that breaking up is hard to live through.
Tonight's episode of "Sex in the '90s" (airing at 10 p.m.) is the latest in an ongoing MTV series exploring the issue of sex for teens and young adults.
It's just what we need from MTV, which routinely regales us with images of blonds in Spandex and spike heels lasciviously groping rock stars: how to survive your love life, in only 22 minutes.
While the teen-age target audience is no doubt hungry for any material on the matter of enduring heartbreak, this "special report" is like many of the documentaries MTV produces: a smattering of anecdotes and context-free sound bites loosely knitted together with not much coherence. The average socially active teen has long ago likely figured out anything this program has to offer.
This production for MTV, produced and directed by Lauren Lazin, makes the dissolution of a love affair seem scarcely more traumatic than getting caught in a long checkout line at the Gap.
It presents a group of young and attractive people with names like Siobhan and Keelan spouting callow observations, interspersed with corresponding clips from hip entertainments such as "Seinfeld," "The Simpsons," "Fatal Attraction" and "Indecent Proposal" -- and footage of Amy Fisher and Lorena Bobbitt.
In one segment, a perky young woman named Kelly recalls how her marriage plans went awry when her fiance backed out a week before the wedding. When the reluctant groom -- shown in photos but apparently not offered a chance to defend himself -- told her he was having second thoughts, she says, "I had a horrible time working that day."
More to the point is a slightly creepy young woman named Piper who declares, "In theory, I don't feel revenge is good. But when people hurt me, I want to hurt them back the same." She metes out justice on her errant beau by purchasing a special candle at a witchcraft shop and taking a Learning Annex course in "How to Get Even Without Breaking the Law."
Sensibly, the overriding message behind "Sex in the '90s V" is a pragmatic "Get Over It" -- any way you can. One teen-ager exults, "I bought tons of clothes."