A commentary and resource on Law and Sexuality by Professor Chris Ashford and guests
After my 2011 predictions, I guess it was inevitable that my first post of the year would be about the porn company Treasure Island Media. In wishing their followers a ‘Happy New Year’ they shared a couple of details about their new HIV positive line of porn that I’ve previously mentioned.
The first film is to be called ‘Buggery’ and we know that at least one scene features TIM regular Keer (NSFW link: profile of Keer)- and thus I think this is the first time he is ‘re-branded’ as out and positive. Any mild probing of Keer reveals what some might regard as a controversial history; he reveals on his website that: ‘The first time I fucked a guy, I was nine…I was a pervert. I remember playing with other guys’ cocks when I was a little kid on the farm where I grew up when it was bath time and in the back yard in a hidden area. When I was 14, I fucked this 24 year-old guy. When I was in my early teens, I seduced several men…I always knew I liked to fuck guys.’ Age remains the ultimate social and legal sexual taboo (at both ends of the spectrum) and it will be interesting to see if this fact – celebrated by Keer – is used to depict a ‘victim’ or someone ‘evil’. The same quote could also be used to show someone who has long asserted confident control over their sex life but I wouldn’t count on it. The linguistic narratives deployed will be fascinating.
This will also inevitably mean that his earlier TIM work will be re-watched and viewed through a new prism and will also inform future work that Keer works on. A scene has been published on the TIM blog, and if a bareback positive threesome is your cup of chai, then you can check it out here.
The scene suggests a return to basics by Paul Morris and TIM – the very title means that any legal action will be discussed as being against ‘Paul Morris’s Buggery’ or ‘Treasure Island Media’s Buggery’, evoking Wildean Victorian court scenes and the legal discourse of censored identity. As such it is entirely appropriate, but nonetheless fascinating, to see a legal discourse utilised by pornography in this way.
The released scene is curiously lacking in emotion for the early part; there is almost a boredom about the guys at one point but as counter-intuitive as this seems, it feels more authentic of a bareback scene that might be encountered by TIM fans in a venue such as San Francisco’s Mack Folsom Prison or other sex club. There is an eroticism about the scene still and the guys are obviously getting a sexual kick but it actually appears more ‘authentic’ than the typical porn fodder for some parts of the scene. However, for me these moments of authenticity seem in the minority.
Unusually, Keer seems very conscious of the camera – a characteristic which is not always evident in TIM’s films and does render his later action more a performance than documentary. The bio-hazard socks worn by the bottom are a witty addition, but also add an element of being self-conscious to the scene. At the moment of the bottom’s (Jayson) ejaculation, it seems Emil (the other top and TIM newcomer) has had enough and his nipple tweaking and self-masturbation seem bored – he then vanishes from the scene completely before his hand makes a brief half-hearted appearance at the end.
Apologies, I seem to be coming over all porn reviewer (a job I once passed up and then instantly regretted – back in the days when people got paid), but such is the importance that this film will surely have, it’s worth spending some time exploring it.
The film also marks a return to TIM basics with the captioning on screen. Tim Dean has previously commented on the significance of their use, highlighting as they do key aspects of audio narrative. Thus we not only hear, but see on screen ‘Fucking get ready to dump it in my ass’ and ‘fucking let me get it all’. This serves to underline the documentary moment, explicitly recording the moment of sexual extremis. It also serves to highlight what the video producer regards as the key moments of the scene – and both (as is typical with TIM) are about the imbuing of semen.
This release will garner controversy from within the porn industry, the gay ‘community’, health officials, LGBTQ campaigners/activists, government agencies and with them the legal world. It’s going to be fascinating for legal observers. The positive big bang is about to take place.