I mean, I'm pretty sure everybody reading this knows that already but it looks like this is sort of revelatory news for even mainstays of liberal, birkenstock wearing, sexually liberated web co-ops (where we volunteer two days a week to get a 2 percent discount applied to our purchases of local turnips) like Jezebel
and The Daily Beast
To give you a quick overview: Annette Bening and Julianne Moore are starring — and getting rave reviews — in a little flick called The Kids Are All Right
, about a pair of lesbians, their kids, and their kids' biological sperm donor father. By some accounts — though not all
— it's a great movie for many virtues, apart from the fact that the leading characters have an interlude while watching some retro gay porn with dudes fucking on a car. (In case you're curious about what this retro dudes fucking on a car thing is, see here
. Obviously, not safe for work, nor is anything else on Fleshbot, for the record.)
As a significant portion of slash fandom identifies as lesbian/queer/bisexual, this is hardly news to us, but apparently it’s been the source of much eyebrow raising elsewhere, as Jezebel notes. And yet, while the movie has sparked a conversation about lesbians enjoying gay male pornography, it hasn't really catalyzed into much of a discussion about women watching gay porn, or, regrettably, a larger discussion about female desire.
Slash fandom is the Galapagos Islands of female sexuality, and a plethora of unique species flourish here that would die if we lost our habitat. We have our jungles of kink memes and their forebears, the FQF; we have unique and delicate ecosystems of Livejournal community within Dreamwidth post that caters to every possible sexual need. In short, slash fandom is what the internet looks like if you have a dick.
For any girl who's gone looking for some gratification outside of our gated and self-selecting community of hedonists, you're going up against a gritty, shitty sahara of inevitable disappointment. Most of the pornography out there isn't made for you, isn't meant for you, and frankly, the XY-carriers in your life would probably be happier if you and his account at RedTube and YouJizz never crossed paths. There's a whole other essay that deserves to be written about the paradox of women being eternally the object and receiver of sexual desire and at once completely divorced from it; endlessly gagging for dick — or, in the case of popular erotic depictions of gay women: fists, ribbed dildos, anal plugs with sparkly shit at the handle, that sort of thing — and yet somehow completely excluded from wanting sex for ourselves.
Circling back to the basic point of girls and gay dudes fucking, there's probably a larger underlying psychology there, about why we enjoy watching hot men riding it until the wheels fall off, but to me, anyway, the question becomes, does it really matter? Obviously, I see this becoming a critical piece of scholarship for some deeply awesome psychology masters student, but in the practical world, I think the more important point isn't what
women are getting off to, just that they're getting off, that female desire is being cultivated, being teased, that maybe this is some tiny indication — and it is hella tiny — that someone out there wants to tap my line of credit and start selling me porn.
But if the scene from The Kids Are All Right did remind us a lot of slash fandom as a whole — two women watching dudes fucking as a way of getting each other off is highly reminiscent of fandom’s perpetual lady circle jerk — the porn did not. It was so laughably awful — pornstaches! EXTREME MUSCLE DOMINATION! — as to be completely undeserving of being referred to with implicit capital letters as The Tape. We’re disappointed in you, Julianne Moore and Annette Bening, and we at FG, as discerning consumers of filth, thought:( They need our help. They need recommendations. We have trained our whole lives for this. If it is one thing we at FG can do, it is gay porn recommendations. )
And in conclusion, you should all be really grateful. The first draft of this piece started with this line: Whenever I start thinking about the geography of female desire it looks like a Salvador Dali painting, only guiltier.