January 29, 2010

Pornocracy: From Indie to Next-Gen Porn

by minivanlibertine

I may eat Hamburger Helper, wear jeans from Costco, and drink water straight from the tap, but when it comes to porn, I’m quite the snob. In fact, I prefer “porn connoisseur,” because it makes me sound classy! (And nothing is classier than a woman who likes to watch people fuck.)

There’s No Excuse for Bad Porn

Apes we may be, but life is not only too short to have bad sex, it is too short to watch bad sex. I have seen porn so bad that it made me drier than the surface of Mars. If people want to have really bad, boring sex in the privacy of their own homes, that’s fine. But please—do not film it, Photoshop the package, and market it as a “spicy” relationship enhancement, and then wonder why as many as 26 percent of American women do not want to have sex. (http://www.healthcentral.com/sexual-health/c/824092/99308/hope-libido/)

The danger of living in a soft-core, Cinemax After Dark world is not that we become hedonistic gluttons incapable of doing anything other screwing our lives away, but rather that we accept this idea of sexuality and end up boring our libidos to death. When the sex we are shown comes from a greed for money versus a greed for the flesh, it is dull, monotonous, and induces sleep instead of arousal. The problem is not porn—the problem is really bad porn.

If the thought of Barbie, Ken, and Midge naked and throwing their plastic parts against one another leaves you cold, you’re not alone. Sophisticated consumers demand quality and authenticity, but are understandably intimidated by the thought of sifting through piles of porn for “the good stuff.” What IS the good stuff, and where can you find it?

When the Mainstream Runs Dry, Dig a New Well

Porn is still largely made by and for white hetero men who want to see beautiful women having the type of sex that the men themselves want to have, and that they think other men like them will pay to see. “Indie” porn is created outside of this framework. Although you would never guess by looking at top 10 adult titles of the year, there is porn produced independent of the studio system that is not only less exploitative, but also edgier, hotter, and far more authentic. As technology leveled the playing field for publishing and filmmaking, an entirely new generation of porno auteur has emerged. Queer people, trans folk, kinksters, and other subcultures, tired of being ignored, created their own communities and media.

In January 2009, queer pornstar Syd Blakovich caused quite a stir when she escorted fetish/bondage/porn star Madison Young on the red carpet at the AVN Awards. Apparently, some people think girl/girl scenes are only hot when both women are clearly straight and just keeping themselves busy until the penis arrives. Contrast that with THIS year’s AVN Awards, where the self-named Queer Porn Mafia not only showed up in force and fierce on the red carpet, but made it very clear that they were more than capable of bringing their own cocks to the party. The hottest shot of the night is of Dylan Ryan kneeling before Jiz Lee’s cock, while nofauxx director Courtney Trouble and rising superstar April Flores look on. It is quite possible that Jiz Lee is the first person to whip it out on the red carpet.

FUBU Porn

With this new generation porn, what you see is what you get. When you watch San Francisco lesbians get it on in Shine Louise Houston’s Crashpad, there are no fake nails, no pseudo cunnilingus, and no staged orgasms. It’s not two straight women faking their way through making out to get an off-screen male viewer hard. When you see a gorgeous man tied up, gagged, and deliciously tortured by hot women on the Divine Bitches section of kink.com, you also see him happily describe why he enjoyed it in the standard behind the scenes interview.

Indie filmmakers are changing the game by making films that the performers want to be in, not just what people want to watch. When plus size porn star April Flores graces the camera with presence, it is not with the typical “fuck the dirty fat girl” attitude of many BBW films. Flores’ size is a certainly a part of who she is, but she owns her sexuality as an entire person, and does not reduce it to one fetishistic aspect of her body.

Indie porn may not have the budget of mainstream porn, but as a result, its producers must be more creative. “Mainstream is shot better, has higher quality film, makeup, and has the most well known actors,” says Jay, a New York City DJ, but he concedes that he and his friends actually prefer indie better because it goes the extra mile. “I like to see certain things, and most big-budget porn stays safe and standard—fake tits and story lines—whereas, indies just go for it.” When porn is produced by people who understand the niche they are filling, it’s amazing how the raw sexuality and unbridled happiness of its performers more than make up for the lesser production values or a lack of big names.

As this sea change of new content floods the adult marketplace, the old guard is realizing that the same old recycled stories, scenes, and ideas are NOT going to cut it anymore. Indie pornographers have a real relationship with their audience because they seek and receive instant feedback from their fans. This mutual respect between artist and viewer is causing some consumers to vote with their pocketbooks and replace the current aristocracy of adult entertainment with a pornocracy lovingly run by the harlots themselves.

Join me as I explore this brave new world of indie porn, and find the realest of the real, the queerest of the queer, and ultimately, the hottest of the hot.

Oh, and people fucking.