CrashPadSeries.com Volume 3

Crashbox

Crashpadseries.com Volume 3 provided by Blowfish

Joseph

In case you don’t know, The Crash Pad Series is based upon Shine Louise Houston’s 2006 debut film of the same name. The crash pad is a place where dykes and femmes alike can go to have uninhibited sex. Unfortunately I have not seen the The Crash Pad itself, but if it is anything like the series based on it, it is HOT.

The DVD that Blowfish sent us is a collection of episodes from the website. From the looks of it, that’s how these collections are offered; four or five episodes per DVD. Volume three features some performers that are quickly becoming favorites of mine: Dallas, Shawn (Syd Blakovich), Dylan Ryan, Princess Donna, Jake, Lorelei Lee, Billy Jack Gunn, Paul Gunn, Red, and Javier.

If you’ve been reading the site or following Houston’s work, you’ll recognize several of those names. Houston has a tendency to use familiar performers (I don’t really feel comfortable calling them actors because they are not acting in even the traditional porn sense. The people in Houston’s films are not pretending to have hot, enjoyable sex – they are) in her productions, which is fine since she has such stellar performers.

This particular installation of the Crash Pad Series involves deep throating, squirting, the fabulous Hitachi Magic Wand, and lots of authentic queer sex. I don’t have any complaints about this collection. None. I personally was not turned on by the scene between “cousins” Billy Jack Gunn and Paul Gunn because my sexual tendencies are unwaveringly hetero and those two look too much like biological men to do anything for me.

The particular copy that was sent to us has some issues with the sound being out of sync in a couple of spots. It was minimal in the beginning but by the last scene (Red and Javier) it was completely incongruous. I sent Blowfish and email to see if this was an artistic choice of Houston’s that I didn’t get or a simple defect but at the time of this writing, I have received no response.

If you don’t want to wait for a DVD to be shipped to you just go to http://www.crashpadseries.com where you can view any of the episodes (there are more online than offered on the individual DVDs.

Mimi

I have a lot of respect for Shine Louise Houston’s work so when it came time to watch CrashPadSeries.com Volume 3, I was really excited and my expectations were high, which is a pleasant shift from the usual. (I’m not a huge fan of porn, which is often boring, stifling regurgitations of sexuality and beauty to me. At best, it’s a good laugh.) I was not disappointed. I enjoyed every scene of this DVD, which I have not been able to say about any other porn thus far.

Whoa shit.
Whoa shit, indeed.

In episode 16, Dylan Ryan enters the crash pad, but instead of trying to join Dallas and Shawn, she hides nearby. While Shawn ties Dallas up to a chair, sucks Dallas’ strap-on cock, and then proceeds to fuck herself silly, Dylan Ryan is sneaking glances, biting her lip, obviously aroused. Eventually Shawn and Dallas move to the bed and continue to pleasure themselves and each other. I really enjoyed the chemistry between these two. They appeared to have a lot of fun.

In episode 17, Dylan Ryan comes out of hiding after Shawn and Dallas leave. She throws herself down on the bed, smiling and burying her face into the vibrant red pillows and sheets. Watching her writhe and inhale the scent of Shawn and Dallas’ sexual encounter is really arousing, perhaps even more so than when she actually strips and masturbates. It may be more of a personal thing than anything else, but entering the mindset of the voyeur, entering the fantasy of unknown bodies and personalities – the way she pulled the sheet between her legs, thrust her hips toward the bed, inhaled deeply, and smiled so big – is a huge turn-on.

That’s what I need. Honest arousal. Honest reaction.

Joseph didn’t seem to enjoy Episode 15 with Billy Jack and Paul quite as much, for reasons rather obvious, and we ended up talking more throughout its duration. We talked a lot about gender identification, bisexuality, pansexuality, and considered our relative ignorance when it comes to various lifestyles. For example, I trip over terminology quite a lot because I want to be respectful. It’s hard when everyone has personal preferences that may not be clear. Houston’s porn films are especially challenging, and I think she would probably smile if she heard me say so.

Despite the distraction of our talk, I found this scene just as arousing as the others. Aside from a little initial awkwardness, both performers seemed to forget that a camera was even there. They just did their thing and their thing was hot. (Also, how great is it that Paul Gunn has a “pussyboy” tattoo?)

In episode 21, Lorelei Lee enters the crash pad to find Donna and Jake ready to fuck, and she’s not so sure at first, but quickly convinced! (If only I had the powers of persuasion that Donna has…) This part of the scene was really annoying because the sound was a bit off; however, the three of them really made up for it. Lorelei Lee, god bless her, didn’t make constant obnoxious goat noises like she did in Superfreak. Jake was quiet, reserved, and yet really involved in significant ways. Donna, of course, dominated most of the actions in the scene. All three of them seemed really into it (when Lorelei Lee and Donna are making prolonged eye contact later in the scene, it’s pretty intense), yet joked and laughed occasionally.

Last but not least, episode 19 with Red and Javier was, sadly, hard to watch because of the sound disturbances. And you can watch it muted, like we did, but…. it’s not the same. Red and Javier are really sexy performers – I liked watching them even without sound. Red can wear a strap-on and bend me over anytime she’d like.

As always with Houston’s films, she places emphasis on safer sex practices, which I find really appealing in porn. Also, despite the reoccurrence of performers, there’s something really “fresh” about their presence. Perhaps it’s the scenery, the camera angles, the tone, the personal interactions between performers. You just know that it’s going to be sexy and authentic, yet light-hearted and fun. Perfect.

The Naked Truth:

Aesthetics: ★★★★★

Level of Arousal: ★★★★★

Educational Value: N/A

Storyline: ★★★☆☆

Overall: ★★★★★

Key,yo,Key

There is no Crash Pad where we live, but we do have a shed…

Champion

Can you tell it is a porn

Champion provided by Blowfish

Mimi

When we first received Shine Louise Houston’s Champion in the mail, we debated on whether or not it was actually porn because there is not one single finger going into anyone’s vagina anywhere on the cover. We hadn’t seen any of Houston’s films yet and joked in our ignorance, “Perhaps she’s trying to make a real movie and it will be the most painful display of acting ever seen.” Such movies are watched only with whiskey.

Naturally, we put it off for the right time and meanwhile we watched Houston’s older film, Superfreak, which made it crystal clear to us that Houston is someone to take seriously. Serious in the respectable sense, not in the sit in the dark alone and listen to Sarah McLachlan sense. There is an excellent balance of playfulness and hardcore eroticism in Houston’s work. It’s refreshing, really.

Champion is full of talented, sexy, charming performers such as Syd Blakovich (she has a great website), Jiz Lee, Javier, Dallas, Madison Young and Dylan Ryan. Syd Blakovich plays Jessie Eaton, a cold son of a bitch making her way into women’s professional Mixed Martial Arts, as well into the pants of various individuals. It backfires when her old nemesis, Bobby Malone (Javier), punishes Jessie for having sex with Bobby’s girl through blackmail. While Jessie is trying to decide what to do about it, she is also dealing with her sexual attraction to Violet Vahn (Dallas), her opponent in and out of the ring. Of course, this being porn, they end up fucking.  One can’t let hairy pussy go to waste.

There was not one single scene in Champion that I didn’t like, and any complaint I could muster up would be really minor. Not even worth mentioning. Houston has a great deal of talent to begin with, but it’s obvious comparing Champion to her older work that a lot of the awkwardness has been refined. In between loving Jiz Lee’s beautiful face in ecstasy and watching Dylan Ryan squirt, I spent a fair amount of time during the film admiring the camera angles or the naturalness of the lighting.

It’s true that this film is more like a “real” movie than your standard fair porno, but it didn’t ever leave me feeling bored or miserably hoping that the acting scene would end soon so the sex can commence. While Jessie is at the gym or watching a recorded fight in preparation for her match, there’s another sex scene going on simultaneously.  A working visual balance is created that carries through a sophisticated level of eroticism.

Champion is sophisticated because it acknowledges complexity within gender and sex, yet maintains a sense of humor and humanity. It’s not glamorized bullshit, it’s just fucking hot. Period.

Joseph

Mimi already covered almost everything that I had in mind to say about this film. It was well made, the stars were hot and the chemistry was real. As if that wasn’t enough, there was enough of a plot to give you some investment with the characters that you are watching have hardcore sex.

For me personally, the connection is what made every scene (except for Madison Young’s) go from hot to stellar. Even though the connection with the characters is somewhat cursory, it is very real and I think  Houston understands that giving that sort of depth will make us hot in our minds as well as our dirty bits.

The superb camera work and lighting choices even prevented Young from ruining the scene that she was in. While all of the other actors seemed to have real chemistry with one another and looked like they were genuinely enjoying themselves, Young is not convincing. It is almost like she watched some mainstream porn and then decided to take those traits into the queer porn world. Fake noises and all. I apologize, I know my problem with Young must be getting old by now. Maybe if I hadn’t watched Bride of Sin first, I wouldn’t loathe seeing her so much. She is hot, I’ll give her that.

I’m glad that Houston makes cameos in her films. I liked seeing her as the ghost of Rick James in Superfreak and she appears in Champion as the world’s most meek reporter. It is always nice to put a face with a piece of work and her perpetual small roles almost strike me as a signature. I look forward to watching The Crash Pad and seeing how she will put herself in that series.

I am really happy with the gender role blurring, power dynamic swapping, queer porn we have been watching. Because of the expert way that Houston handles these films,  I would be very interested to see what  Houston  would do with a hetero-oriented film. She does such masterful work playing with and setting up masculine dynamics within her queer films, I would love to see how she handles directing biological males. Perhaps one day…

Mimi says please with her fists

She said “chocolate?” -I said “No.”- She said POW!

The Naked Truth:

Aesthetics: ★★★★★

Level of Arousal: ★★★★★

Educational Value: N/A

Storyline: ★★★★½

Overall: ★★★★★

Shine Louise Houston’s “Superfreak”

Superfreak front cover

Shine Louise Houston’s Superfreak provided by Blowfish

Joseph

In non-porn movies there are several levels; good, okay, bad, and so-bad-it-is-good. Although I think that almost all porn is bad, I thought that Superfreak would be a so-bad-it-is-good porn.

It starts off with our pal Madison Young pretending to masturbate (badly) at home. Then the main and only plot device comes into the room: The ghost of Rick James. Said ghost dives into Young and, possessed by the funky spirit of James, she pulls out her trusty Hitachi Wand and masturbates for real. Watching Young please herself is much more enjoyable than watching her pretend to please herself or watching her speak.

Once Young has vibed and shaken herself silly, she puts on some clothes and goes to a party. At said party, Young immediately approaches Dylan Rion and says a wonderful pickup line, “It’s a good thing I brought my library card cause I’m checking you out.” Based on Rion’s reaction, I am glad I’ve never used this line. Rion proceeds to fuck Young in a room full of people. How rude.

This scene has some very hot moments but it also has some very awkward camera angles. The awkward camera angles are in every scene of Superfreak and never stop being perplexing. After the two are done fucking in the corner, James exits Young in search of a less spent host which he finds in Guy Handful who is arguing in the bathroom with Rozen.

However, because the film is anachronistic, we see James enter Shawn in the kitchen before we see Handful and Rozen. Shawn finds Vasa right after she is done pissing in the kitchen sink because the bathroom was taken (we see why later, yowza) but this does not deter Shawn in the least. She takes a mouthful of water, sprays it into Vasa’s pussy and then immediately goes to town. What follows is in my opinion the hottest scene in the movie. I say this not only because Vasa is super cute, but because the chemistry between Vasa and Shawn seems very natural (we learn in the behind the scenes that they are a couple in real life) and the sexuality portrayed is very raw and powerful.

After that hotness is over, we get to see what was going on in the bathroom with Handful and Rozen. They were arguing. But then James came in and with his supernatural superfreak supercharm ended the argument with one sentence. “Less talking, more fucking.” And there was. Rozen’s intense pleasure convulsions and wails really make this scene. Though, it makes her look like the one that is possessed.

Next we see Dana DeArmond and Princess Donna being bored on a couch. They discuss going home but before they can get up to leave, Lorelei Lee plops down between them and asks if she has missed the party. They respond the way any reasonable young women would, by throwing Lee down on the coffee table and tag-teaming her. This scene has some hot moments in it as well, but the noises that Lee makes (kinda like a goat) are so obnoxious to us that we had to mute it in order to enjoy the hot parts. The ghost of Rick James has nothing to do with this impromptu party sex, but walks in and sees it. And approves.

After the credits rolled, we watched the extras and I’m very glad that we did. There are interviews of every cast member and it is revieled that everyone but Rion and Young knew each other before shooting. I have a lot of respect for Houston for casting that way. It greatly reduced most of what I hate about porn which is its fakeness and it exploitative nature.

I was wrong about Superfreak. It falls into the good porn category instead of the so-bad-it-is-good category. Awkward camera angles aside, this was a great example of what porn could be. Granted it was silly and didn’t even try to have a real plot, but the sex was real and engaging and it was well lit and recorded. I look forward to seeing more of Houston’s work.

funkher

We were hoping to summon the ghost of Rick James.

Mimi

This is the first film of Shine Louise Houston’s that I’ve had the pleasure of watching. The DVD packaging looks very professional and sets the tone – freaky, funny, and hot. Reading “real people having real sex” in the synopsis led to a brief glimmer of lustful hope; however, I was still really skeptical about enjoying it because, well… Madison Young is on the cover and while I am a fan of her ass, I am not a fan of her work. Another porn with her as the leading star simply did not sound appealing.

Despite the film opening with a scene that had Madison masturbating, it is immediately clear that Houston’s films is different – colourful, stylish, good quality, good sound, wild, and intentionally funny. Intentionally is the key word there. Even the music that accompanies each scene fits in line with the humorous, casual atmosphere. It’s not over the top, but definitely lingering close enough to make you sweat.

The ghost of a funk singer inhabiting people and getting them to do “freaky” shit is a very simple plot, but it allows the viewer to know what he or she’s getting into from the beginning and provides a basis for the humor. And like any good film plot, it holds the scenes and characters together, making the scenes fluid and (I’m using this word loosely) believable. Who has sex in a crowded room? Young does if she’s got Rick James’ ghost inside her! She also, apparently, learns how to stop masturbating like she’s having a damn self-induced seizure and really gets down to business with her Hitachi Wand, rope, and glass dildo.

When Young gets to the party, Dylan Rion wastes no time to make her move, which Young intercepts with a bold (and wicked cheesy) pick-up line. They start kissing and fucking with a strap-on against a wall, which at some points was really hot on account of Young’s juicy ass being gripped by Rion’s hands. Rion’s animated playfulness is also really entertaining after the sex part of their scene is over and they’re kneeling behind a couch, recovering and acknowledging their actions. I still can’t stand the noises Young makes or her facial expressions, but it’s not enough to completely ruin the scene.

My favourite scene was the one with Shawn and Vasa because it was the most intense, energetic, fun, and those two are just flat out sexy. They both seemed completely comfortable and happy to be playing their respective parts. I love the inclusion of the water! Obviously, for practical reasons, some “cleaning” was necessary since Vasa just took a piss in the kitchen sink, but watching Shawn spit water onto Vasa’s pussy and then Vasa’s surprised/excited facial reaction was enough to make my hips stir and sexual appetite grow. (Note to self: We need a kitchen sink hose. Oh, and a bigger kitchen.) Nothing about their interaction feels fake, forced, or exaggerated. How fucking hot is that? When Vasa wiped some of Shawn’s nether juices on her face and in her mouth, I almost squealed. Seriously. This is one sexy scene.

In second place, regarding my favourite scenes, would be the one between newcomer real life couple Rozen and Guy Handful. The acting was about what you’d expect in porn (not very good), but their sex scene was much better than what you’d expect. (The second option is more important, if you ask me.) No obnoxious noises, no fake expressions, and Rozen has amazing, natural looking breasts. She appears to completely forget the cameras, bucking her hips hard and screaming.

The last scene was difficult for me to enjoy because I took such a disliking of the half-laughing, half-goat noises Lorelei Lee was making constantly. It would have been fine, really, but when I say constantly, I mean she stopped to inhale. We muted it so that I’d stop yelling at the television and startling the cats. I also took issue with there being ass to vag finger insertion because even though I know they stopped and cleaned/lubed up periodically, I think that porn should be held to a practical, safe standard. Like when Rion and Handful had condoms on their strap-ons – that made sense, that felt appropriate. However, if you’re not paying attention like I was at the time (hawk eyes!), then you probably wouldn’t even notice and, all of that said, it was still a hot “stone femme” on femme scene.

Having seen Bride of Sin already and knowing Young is a huge rope slut, it’s encouraging to know that Houston obviously let Young use the rope for her masturbation scene. Positive female sexuality? Houston’s not all talk. Frequently throughout this simple, fun film we are introduced to notions of gender identity, roles, and how people are challenging them everyday just by leading honest, authentic lives. You can see this fully articulated in the Behind Kink interview where a rather soft spoken, joking, encouraging Houston directs her crew and talks about challenging pre-determined roles, whether it’s directly related to porn or life itself. All of this is worthy of respect, if not titillation. Probably both.

The Naked Truth

Aesthetics: ★★★★★

Level of Arousal: ★★★★☆

Educational Value: N/A

Storyline: ★★★☆☆

Overall: ★★★★½