Hardcore Content: 1
On Khan Tusion’s Meatholes.com, the tag line reads: “Feast your eye on the nastiest whores who love to be treated like worthless pieces of meat.”
Former University of California coed turned Extreme Associates’ contract girl/director Paris Gables is touted as “a filthy, fucking, cock-sucking, piss-drinking, puke-spewing, penis-loving whore.” The Extreme Associates’ website offers an Osama bin Laden-themed DVD, as well as “The Presidents,” which features actors in presidents’ masks gangbanging Lady Liberty. And the founder of Extreme Associates, the notoriously prosecuted Rob Black, aka Rob Zicari, is pictured giving a double “victory” sign against a backdrop of the American flag.
JM Productions’ synopsis for “MILF Meat 2” asks the question, “When was the last time you slapped your Mom across the face and called her a whore?”
Tear yourself away from these shadowy, sticky places on the web and you might find yourself asking, “Is it supposed to be sexually stimulating or just plain gross?”
Go a little farther down that path and it inevitably leads to an indefinable gray area, both legally and philosophically, where guideline words such as “prurient,” “offensive,” “obscene” and “censorship” add to the confusion in a niche with no clear boundaries, and you may ask yourself: “How far can they go?” Or should no line be drawn at all?
On his website, Max Hardcore’s biography list details of his start in the industry and various onscreen accomplishments. There’s a lot of background on his particular brand of content, a portion of which reads like a sideshow barker’s spiel on a carnival midway: “Max also uses speculums to pry-open their fuck-holes so you can look deep inside. He’ll spray his cum and piss into the gaping tunnels, even making them drink it out of their asses! Whether it’s a naïve teen or classy broad, Max delivers the same ruthless treatment.” While the sex acts featured on Hardcore’s website, or in other extreme producers’ content, may not differ from the activity in other adult films, the shock value is revved up by scenarios that are controversial, demeaning, misogynistic and even seemingly violent.
In an earlier interview on the related topic of self-regulation, Hardcore’s motivation for producing this type of material echoes what other producers in the extreme genre also might say in defense of their product.
“The public has spoken, and what they want is extreme material,” Hardcore explains. “Year after year, I’ve gotten more and more fan mail and emails from people who want to see this kind of thing. I have a direct connection with the public because I have a very successful website at MaxHardcore.com, which is pretty damn extreme. I have European content up there, and that’s with anal, fist-fucking, urination and so forth, and these are activities that are tolerated in Europe, where I’ve been many times, and the public doesn’t seem to get too upset about it over there.”
Hardcore adds that in his opinion, many of the girls coming into the business are not only comfortable with doing extreme hardcore, they actually enjoy it.
“Actresses in this business are always offered a role, not forced into doing these things,” he says. “It just doesn’t happen. They have a choice, and I think that choice should be open to them and to the viewing public that wishes to see material like this. There is plenty for everyone, from soft, pretty Vivid features down to Extreme Associates. I believe that as long as nobody’s getting injured on the sets of our productions and they’ve consented to the acts that they’ll be doing, then I see no problem with it.”
Whether or not the performers are completely aware of what to expect on set is a matter of some debate recently brought to light on a few Internet porn blogs in regards to a 2005 video release by JM Productions, titled “Donkey Punch.”
According to Wikipedia.com, “‘donkey punch’ is a slang term for a sex move performed during doggy-style vaginal or anal sex. The move involves the penetrating partner punching the penetrated partner in the back of the head or neck.”
Internet chat-board reaction to the video turned negative when performer Alex Devine reportedly posted on ExtremeGirlForum.com that “Donkey Punch was the most brutal, depressing, scary scene that I have ever done.”
In the post, which was excerpted on Lukeisback.com, Devine goes on to describe her on-set experience in detail, and though she states she initially agreed to be hit in the head during the scene, she also claims to have misunderstood exactly how physical the action would get.
Cram Johnson, one half of the Johnson Brothers team that directed “Donkey Punch” agreed to speak on the phone, but declined to be quoted about the video or on the topic of extreme hardcore content in general.
“Our movies show sex,” Johnson said, “but they’re not particularly violent. You can say that.”
If the performance is consensual and the participants are of legal age, producers of extreme hardcore content may be well within their rights to create whatever type of material they like, as long as they stay clear of what could be considered obscene in a court of law.
However, for generations courts and content producers have done a sort of schizophrenic tango in trying to determine what exactly constitutes “obscene.” The methods employed call for interpretation of ideological and geographical boundaries. Allowing for conceptually open-ended arguments seems to have no positive results on either side.
“My personal opinion is that obscenity is an outdated concept — an antiquated way to try to regulate media and human affairs that doesn’t make sense any longer,” says Lawrence Walters, a 1st Amendment attorney with Weston, Garrou, DeWitt & Walters. “It subjects individuals and companies to significant and substantial penalties, a lot of which they don’t realize the nature of. And to the extent that the government is trying to eliminate hardcore materials or the industry, it hasn’t worked.”
Legally, the “three-pronged” Miller test is the only means of discerning what types of sexually explicit speech are protected by the 1st Amendment in the U.S. Unprotected, and therefore prosecutable, materials must meet three criteria:
- The average person, applying contemporary community standards (not national standards, as some prior tests required), must find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest;
- The work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by applicable state law; and
- The work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.
“The Miller test is really flawed because it is based on a variety of assumptions that are just false,” says Jeffrey Douglas, chairman of the board of directors of the Free Speech Coalition and a criminal defense attorney who represents several producers in the extreme genre, including Max Hardcore.
“The one that is the most obviously problematic in this era is the concept of a definable community standard,” he explains. “In an era where locations are not geographically isolated, the illusion of community for the purposes of criminal prosecution is extremely problematic.”
In 1973, when the Miller vs. California case resulted in the current benchmark for obscenity, no one could have foreseen the Internet’s ability to create global online communities. With no definite geographical borders, it seems impossible to locate an “average person” in cyberspace, much less someone who can determine what sexual acts would appeal to “prurient interests.”
In part two, we'll look at Internet issues, self-censorship and beyond.