April 22, 2021

Romantic Banter

Romantic Banter

Banter is the best kind of romantic conversation, full of wit and emotional tension, leaving clues for us about how the couple really feels about each other. The best banter strip teases for our brain. It's verbal foreplay for the hot action to come. It's all about the juicy, sexy romantic banter in this episode.


After I said the word aloud, something didn't sound right, so I looked it up and it's pronounced Yah-KUZ-ah. Sigh. Apologies to my Japanese listeners--but it gives me an excuse to bring up Drunken Angel, a fascinating 1948 yakuza film directed by one of my favorite filmmakers, Akira Kurosawa.

If you've never seen a Spencer Tracy/Katherine Hepburn movie, you can't go wrong with Adam's Rib. Everything about it is perfection: the script, the acting, the plot and the fabulous costumes and sets. It was made in 1949 and still feels fresh. Plus I have a weird thing for that cozy kitchen in their apartment.

Destination Wedding is one of the funniest rom coms I've seen in years. I go into greater detail about this movie in my All the Words Romance episode. If you like sexy-smart banter, don't miss this one.

Friends with Benefits is the funniest rom com that I forgot to watch. If you are a banter fan like me, rush to your nearest streaming service and watch this.

Enemies with Benefits is part of the Loveless Brothers series by Roxie Noir. I can't express how much I adore the band of brothers trope in this series. It centers on a family of five hot, hunky, slightly bad boy brothers who live in a small Virginia town, and the cool, sharp, bantering women who fall for them. And the delicious dialogue and insightful interior monologues? Let's just say I strongly suspect LA-based Roxie Noir is a screenwriter too.

So many romance fans adore the Blood and Ash fantasy/romance series by Jennifer Armentrout. I haven't read much in that category, but wow, it sounds like I need to.

As you can tell from her confession, Monique is a warm, sparkling presence, and you don't have to be a business woman to get a ton of healing heart messages from her podcast, Her Entrepreneurial Spirit. It's a don't-miss podcast for me.


This is Confessions of a Closet Romantic, a  podcast where I celebrate my favorite romantic TV shows, movies, books and talk in detail about why I love them so much. Without embarrassment or shame-mostly. This is Poppy and in this episode: It's all about romantic banter.

Romantic banter is my kryptonite. My knees get weak when I hear it or read it. Sexy smart banter engages the best sex organ – our brains.

My favorite romances are full of banter: clever, affectionate, teasing  – that “I’m singling you out for my attention because I see you as an intellectual equal” thing. It makes me breathless.

Of course the original banter maven was Jane Austen. Lots of classic Hollywood movies have spectacular banter— screwball comedies like Bringing Up Baby or Adam's Rib with Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn.

In this 1949 movie, they are the prosecutor and defense for a woman (played by Judy Holiday) accused of attempted murder of her cheating husband. And on the way to court…


Usually, in a romance, banter reveals the true feelings—not yet expressed—of someone in the couple —oh I adore this trope. Banter is the best foreplay. Because they’re actually amusing each other and the audience, sending signals, sizing things up, figuring out if they’ve got what it takes to go the distance—beyond the insane sexual chemistry.

My favorite aspect of banter -filled stories is the couple usually overlooks the banter’s hidden message  (I like you, I really really like you like you) because they’re too busy thinking up zingers. 

it’s a great plot device because we see what’s difficult for the love interests to see. It gets us invested and creates excellent romantic tension.

Hey please contact me at confessionsofaclosetromantic.com and tell me your favorite banter filled romantic books or movies because I need to know them all.

I'm sure this will be a multi-episode theme because there are way too many good examples to cram into one episode and new ones pop-up all the time.

I will stick with a romantic story all the dingdong day if it strings me along with good banter.

The very best heroes in these situations are those sweet soft cinnamon rolls with kind hearts who also use their clever words to make the heroine laugh or think or just bust chops and keep her around trying to spar with her… it’s so sexy. 

I fell in love with my husband before we even met—as you know—because he made me laugh, teased me, got to know me, all in letters. I had to wait weeks for his responses as a penpal. It built quite the tension. Oh banter, you seducer you.

Lately I've read some books with delicious banter that’s one long striptease and foreplay for the sexyitmes to come. 

[read aloud]

I must've been living under a rock because the 2011 movie Friends with Benefits has all the banter that I desire. In case you haven't seen it, it stars Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake as NY-based headhunter Jamie and Dylan, an LA-based web wiz who meet when she headhunts him to work for GQ magazine in New York.

From the opening credits my face cracked into a huge grin. it's a montage of lightning fast intercuts and killer banter as Jamie and Dylan both break up with their partners.

Fast forward and Jamie is setting Dylan up in his new magazine job in New York after headhunting him for 6 mos. They develop a friendship because they have incredible chemistry and totally hit it off. they both feel burned by those prior relatioednships, so they decide hey we miss sex, we like each other—why don't we sleep together?

 Their negotiation for sex without strings… Dylan trying to place his hand on Jamie's Bible app and swear to not get emotionally involved… what a visual. At the end of the clip, the montage with their little inventory of sexual preferences and eccentricities? If only we could all sum it up that cleverly.


 I read that they workshopped the script first because they wanted the banter to be authentic and channel the sparky energy of Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn. They did good—the banter in this movie is off the charts.

Unfortunately the plot falls apart a bit in the third act with a resolution that's just too easy —which is a shame because this film has such a cool tone, is so cleverly written and acted, and then it just…fizzles. 

But the snappy pacing and banter in the first hour and a half of this movie—and the moment where they realize they're falling for each other and actually making love instead of having sex—are really worth the whole thing. Damn Justin Timberlake, you always surprise me with how good your acting is. Your comedic timing is on fire. And so are those abs and that azz.

And now listener Monique brings us a little romance storytime featuring a few of her favorite tropes with a dollop of delicious banter.


Woo… that tackle? That villain? Reading a romance a day and there are still new romance sub-tropes to explore…?!

I’d love to feature YOUR romantic confession on the show. Tell me about your favorite romantic movie, TV show, or book and why you love it so much. Just contact me or leave a voicemail at confessions of a closet romantic.com.

If you enjoy this podcast, hope you’ll consider clicking share from your podcast app, or following me, or telling a friend about it. 

 Find show notes with links to what we’ve been babbling about at confessions of a closet romantic.com 

So nice to have your company…until next time, wishing you banter-filled, shame-free romance…!