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P-P-P-Porn?!: Adult Playground

Digital Playground's "Jesse in Pink"
by L. Pete Morton

There are numerous companies distributing adult moving pictures of wildly varying degrees of quality, but there are only a handful which seem to genuinely care somewhat about production values, being sure that their titles look and sound as good as they can when they hit the streets. Since I’m not terribly interested in poorly-lit clips of amateurs and more interested in porn as a legitimate product to be produced, sold, and marketed by creators and performers, I must admit I gravitate toward these studios (though remain open-minded that good porn can conceivably come from anywhere).

On the strength of their film PIRATES, which kicked off this series of occasional looks into the porn industry, I must admit enjoying the stuff coming out of studio Digital Playground, and expressly mention how patient and cooperative they’ve been with my questions and requests. I also have to say that one of their recent titles is one of the strongest in all the market in the past few months. It’s titled JESSE IN PINK, and though it features a few different performers it’s largely a showcase for DP’s most prominent “contract girl,” Jesse Jane.

Though typically large-breasted and pouty-lipped, Jesse has a natural screen presence and performs her scenes with a feral intensity that all the boys like. She’s improved as an actress, as well, though I hope she’ll continue to improve and make her films that much better. She’s fortunate to be paired with newcomer Shay Jordan in the film’s final scene. Shay is a non-enhanced brunette of melting pot ancestry who might be the closest thing in the industry right now to “the next Tera Patrick;” here’s hoping that she’ll keep the natural breasts and not allow herself to become a caricature.

The film lifts its plot from a film I hope to write more in depth about someday, SHORTBUS, about a woman who can’t have an orgasm and tries a variety of ways to achieve the little death (I also imagine this is a fairly standard trope in porn, but what do I know?). That’s really all you need to know, because it’s pretty much wall to wall bangin’ after the scenario is set up, ending with the aforementioned Shay Jordan pairing (the fortunate woodman is a dude named Ben English) and the long-awaited release for Ms. Jane.

The director, Celeste, is known for utilizing music soundtracks to set her moods, which works well on a sun-soaked fever dream like, for instance, director Joone’s four ISLAND FEVER movies also released by Digital Playground, but when you’re aiming more for the raincoat crowd, it’s advisable to keep all your performer’s squeaks, squeals, screams, and pleas clear and present in the sound mix. Happily Celeste has done so, and it has helped make one of her most entertaining projects.

Now for the (minor)criticism. I am unabashedly a fan of storytelling, particularly storytelling in film. I believe “vignettes” or scenes in porn can be fine, but they’re usually the easy way out, a way to collect a bunch of screwing scenes that may or may not be thematically linked. JESSE IN PINK is better than most, but even the simple plot “Jesse tries to have an orgasm” could have been utilized for much, much more dramatic or comedic weight. Also, even though Ms. Jane’s wardrobe utilizes the color pink in each of her scenes, I’m not sure it’s really the best title for the film. Even something evocative like JESSE NEEDS IT NOW! would do, but I understand Digital Playground is trying to class up the porn joint, and the title sounds, well, nicer than JESSE GOTTA HAVE IT!

All told, this is another strong addition to the Digital Playground catalog, and if most of their releases are even half this entertaining, they’ll keep their fans very, very happy.

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originally posted: 09/06/07 08:47:05
last updated: 09/07/07 08:04:30
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