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An Equal and Opposite Reaction

First of all, before you start screaming at Luke for his opinion, check out the byline on this story. I’m writing it, not Luke. Being the wonderful, shabbat-observing person that he is, Luke has given me access to his canvas to do with as I see fit. So yell at me, not him.

So I was hanging out with some porno folk today, and they starting talking about this huge Skeeter Kerkove rant over at Gene Ross’s site I don’t really know Skeeter, let that be said first. I’ve met him a few times, but most of my opinions are shaped by having seen dozens (if not hundreds) of his movies, and the respected opinions of other people in the biz who know him better than I do.

I really don’t care at all about most of the topics he touched on, but felt compelled to comment on a few. Here goes:

  • Jules Jordan is the best director in porn. Period. I’m not “sucking his pipe” (in Skeeter’s words), I’m just a guy who has watched more porn than I’d like to admit, and believe that this guy is the best working today. Like Gretzky in 1984, or the Beatles in 1967, he’s the best at his craft at this moment in time. That may change tomorrow, or next year, or never. But that is the state of affairs as I type this.
  • Speaking only as a porn fan, I can admit that Jules learned a lot from jerking off to Buttman movies. Jules was a porn fan with good taste, and when the time had come to shoot his own movies, he took his favorite aspects of his favorite directors, and incorporated them into his repertoire. The same thing anyone would do. Did Jules lift half his style from Stagliano, John Leslie and Tom Byron? Probably. But those are 3 of the greatest directors in the history of this business. He could have mimicked far worse styles. There are numerous directors today who have lifted far more stylistically from Jules than he ever lifted from his mentors.
  • I hate to break it to you, but over the past 5 years, Evil Angel has put out the best movies in the world. Any reviewer who gives most Evil releases high marks isn’t a shill, he’s just a guy with good taste. While I still like much of their stuff, I do feel the quality has slipped a little with the departure of Jules and some of the watering down of their directing corps.
  • Roger Pipe is probably the most well-informed, even-handed, well-written reviewer in this entire business. He has been reviewing longer than most of the guys doing it today, and his body of work speaks for itself. His tastes reflect that of the “mainstream porn fan.”
  • The “mainstream fan” who Rog represents is the guy who likes pretty girls and (relatively) normal sex acts. He likes women. This is the guy who jerks off to Jules Jordan, John Stagliano and Zero Tolerance movies because they are “just hardcore enough,” and is turned off by the extreme nature of Skeeter and Max Hardcore (et al.). Whether or not Skeeter or the ADT nation wants to admit it, this is the fan who keeps the business alive. It isn’t the guy who can’t get enough of Bridgette Kerkove double anal.
  • I know Belladonna and her “worthless, over weight, skin-condition husband” pretty well. Better than I know Skeeter. While Bella is certainly not a perfect person, she is a genuinely nice one. I truly believe any “extreme” or degrading act in her movies stems from her personal sexual tastes (what she likes done to her), not a malice or ill intent toward the performer. I’m not so sure that can be said for Skeeter or Max. I can’t speak on the specifics of the Kelly Wells incident because I don’t know them, but I can say that reputation does go a long way. Wouldn’t you react differently to 2 stories of Rob Black and John Stagliano bouncing checks? Of course you would. Because they have very different reputations.
  • As simple as it may sound, Bella has a different set of rules because she is a female. If Skeeter, Max and Bella all performed the same “extreme” act on a female performer, Bella’s movie will always be viewed differently… by fans and district attorneys alike. A woman degrading a man or another woman will always be perceived differently. It all stems from thousands of years of men taking advantage of women. The simple switcharoo is all you need to avoid cries of misogyny and the curious eye of a prosecutor. Sorry, Skeeter, but it’s true.
  • Peeing is gross. So is pooping and puking. It should be left in the bathroom and out of porn. Whoever is shooting it – Skeeter, Max, Bella, or anyone else.
  • Anyone who didn’t shoot Teagan (for whatever reason) missed the boat. The point of this business is to make money, and the bottom line is that Teagan – with or without cosmetic surgery, in her gonzo days or with Digital Playground – sells. When you spend money shooting her, that investment will pay dividends. It did for just about everyone who shot her.

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