Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Talk Dirty to Me

John Leslie, the porn star and director who some considered to be a successor to the legendary John Holmes, died last week. He became famous for his work on Talk Dirty to Me I and II, and he belonged to an era when plot was still an integral to pornography. Behind the Green Door, Deep Throat and Debbie Does Dallas exemplify the era of ‘70s and ‘80s porn, in which ever-more explicit sexuality was presented in the context of a script. Many of these films played in seedy inner-city theaters into which desperately lonely men wandered at all hours of the night, blasted out of their minds and seeking the companionship of prostitutes, who often worked the aisles. The use of plot was significant in the way it established artifice and the notion of delayed gratification, even for those whose ultimate aim was to get their rocks off. Porn has changed a great deal since the heyday of John Holmes and John Leslie. Firstly, the old triple-X theaters are gone, with pornography turned from a communal into a totally private experience to be indulged via the Internet. In addition, scripts have given way to scenes that get right to the point. There is no longer any magic, mystique or denouement when you go on a site like Red Tube or Naked On the Streets, and the videos no longer have exotic names like Emmanuelle or Midnight Plowboy. What you see is what you get, and the so-called loops go by names like MILF Likes It Hard, Facial, or Gang Bang, and when they refer to Deep Throat, they are not creating a medical fantasy about a girl with a clitoris in her larynx, but simply the shot of a man or woman with the talent and capacity to introduce the penis into the esophageal canal.

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