Sunday, May 31, 2009

Back in the Arena

Unfortunately, I was too ill to go to BoundCon for extended periods of time two weeks ago. I was there for a couple of hours on Friday evening with a friend, because she had come all the way to Munich and I really wanted to show her the convention. On my own, I certainly wouldn't have gone. I still felt pretty awful in my stomach. It got even worse over the weekend, so I didn't go out again. Ah well. There is always next year.

Still, I'm happy that I at least got to make a round on the first day and have a quick chat with my friends from SM-Circus, including Herr Direktor Sands, resident pet girl Marlin and the Gladiator from Hell. We almost had the whole team from the shoot back in March together again, minus Pandora Blake. She was at BoundCon, too, but already crashed out in the hotel by the time I came on Friday. I was sorry to not see her again. Alas, like I said, there is always next year, and who knows where my path will lead me the next time I'm in the UK...

For now, I still have a behind-the-scenes report to write, anyway, about the aforementioned shoot. It was my second visit to the pet girl masters. The first was in July last year, when I did German-English translations for Niki Flynn and Amelia-Jane Rutherford (and had an infamous cameo as Amelia-Jane's gambling addict boyfriend, who lost her to the Direktor in a game of dice!). It had been a great experience, so I immediately said yes when SM-Circus contacted me in February and asked if I wanted to do another shoot. They would be filming with Pandora Blake and could use my services as a translator again. I was always a big fan of Pandora - her writing, her modelling work, her smexy brain (not a typo - just read the linked post!). She was at the very top of my "spanking video actresses I still have to meet" list, rivalled only by Leia-Ann Woods (position 1a and 1b, these two). I couldn't wait to finally meet her in person and say hello.

If you ever read Pandora's blog, you will know that she is structured and clear in her writing like few others in our community. From that and from her emails, I expected her to be intriguing to talk to and also very nice as a human being, but perhaps a little reserved at first. Actually, it's an assumption people often make about me, for much the same reasons, so I guess I should have known that it isn't quite accurate! As it turned out, Pandora was open and cordial from the first moment onwards. When we met the evening before the shoot, she gave me a hug for greetings, which set the tone for the rest of the weekend. And, needless to say, she is just as interesting to chat with as I thought she would be.

The work at the circus was great, too. As usual, the scenes were filmed in non-chronological order, starting with one where Pandora was locked up in a cage and simply had to bark aggressively at the camera. She was alone with Direktor Sands to reduce her self-consciousness a bit - after all, this was her first shoot as a pet girl. I was outside with the rest of the team, listening to Pandora's growls and "Arf! Arf!" sounds. They were quite convincing, and I remarked: "Hmm, very talented, I would say..." Suddenly, there was a huge crash and we looked at each other, puzzled. But after a short moment of silence, the "Arf! Arf, arf...!" resumed. Eventually, the director came out and grinned at us: "Well, she was the first one who managed to knock over the cage..." Things had certainly got off to an auspicious start.

Marlin had injured her knee the week before and was restricted in her movement, so she only took part in a couple of scenes. In one of them, she and Pandora were cat girls, meowing and playing with a computer mouse (har har!). Pandora had been solid as a dog (as it were), but I thought that this performance was even better. She seems to be a cat person after all, like me. Isn't it funny how we are all either cat people or dog people? Of course, you can like both kinds of animals. But at the end of the day, there is one camp you belong to. I suppose it is one of those "Beatles man or Elvis man" things which Uma Thurman and John Travolta talk about in Pulp Fiction (I'm a Beatles man, by the way).

Anyway, before I digress completely, let's get on with the report. Step by step, Miss Blake was put through the rigorous SM-Circus training regiment. I loved watching the hyper-focused look on her face while she juggled with first two, then three oranges. For a novice pet girl, she made a pretty good job of it, too, but missed enough catches to earn some correction from Direktor Sands - on the palms... I mean, paws with a riding crop, and on the bottom with his gloves. The empty, heavy leather gloves are quite an interesting spanking implement. Like Niki and Amelia-Jane before her, Pandora noted that they don't hurt all that much. The marks they leave are also negligible. The loud thwacking sound, on the other hand, is all the more impressive. A really nice, attention-grabbing effect. In summary, while the instrument may not be well-suited for an actual, formal punishment, it seems ideal as a "motivational tool" in a lengthy training session like this.

(I'm still feeling a bit under the weather and catching up with a lot of work at the same time, so I'm splitting this into two parts. You're getting the next one on Wednesday. I have some other things in the pipeline, too. June will see more blogging activity from me than May did, that's for sure!)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Movie Review: Discipline Within the Home

Calstar (released in 2003)

Entire Story In Fewer Words Than Are In This Sentence:
Man spanks niece, wife

Victim Appeal:
I'm not a die-hard fan of domestic discipline. My preference goes towards more institutionalised, more ritualistic settings like schools, prisons, the military, mad scientist laboratories and virgin sacrifices. However, California Star produce some domestic-type videos which I find fairly watchable, because they are so unpretentious and unsophisticated, which in my mind suits this particular sub-genre very well. It's one kind of scenario where the usual weaknesses of this company, the lack of elaborate props and costumes, the amateurish technical quality, work in their favour. You feel like watching someone's home videos, and despite all the faux serious scolding, the overall impression is one of light-heartedness and merriment. In this form, I have nothing against the occasional "husband and wife" story.

Of course, for a home video to be entertaining, the people in it have to be entertaining. This is the case here. "Discipline Within the Home" stars two spankees, Natalie and Angela (as usual, Calstar don't give any credits, so I'm calling them by their character names). Angela, playing the wife of the domestic disciplinarian, is a mature brunette. The niece, Natalie, is a tall and slender sexpot with straight blonde hair, a shapely bottom and spectacularly long legs. Very easy on the eyes, that girl (and to be perfectly honest, the main, shamelessly superficial inspiration for this review).

Gratuitous Sadism:
As the movie opens, Natalie is confronted by her "Uncle Joey" about an email he received from her college. In the role, we get the familiar wild-haired bloke who does a lot of Calstar's male topping (he was in the last segment from Lady Vernon's Caning Heaven, for instance). I like him well enough, so it's an auspicious start. Anyway, the message says that the young lady under his guardianship stole the teacher's purse, dropped pins on the teacher's chair... You know, normal schoolgirl shenanigans (at least in CP video land!). It also says that she could benefit from a good spanking, the only trouble is, spanking was abolished at the school ten years ago, so they suggest Uncle Joey take care of it himself. Needless to say, he feels bound to oblige, and so, after some customary lecturing, protesting and surrendering, it's knickers down for Natalie.

Actually, it's "skirt up for Natalie" first, because California Star have their standard progression which they invariably follow. No surprises, never, but at least you know exactly what you're going to get for your money's worth. To start things off, a hand spanking over the knee, over the underwear. The knickers come down for the second part. Next, Natalie bends over the sofa so he can thrash her arse with a leather paddle. After a few minutes of that, Uncle Joey switches to a crop, which is actually a departure from the usual "hand, paddle, cane" formula. Its tip is shaped like the palm of a hand - which raises the question, why does he have this obviously kinky sex shop item lying around in his house? Is it really from his wife's cupboard, as he claims? Never mind. After only four strokes, he goes on to the next implement, another paddle. Last but not least, the cane makes its mark. Some of the strokes are repeated from different camera angles, but by my count, she gets ten "real" ones in total. By the end, Natalie is in tears and has some pretty nice welts.

In the second, somewhat shorter scene of the video, Uncle Joey thrashes his wife for over-spending money on clothes (another perennial favourite among spanko scriptwriters). She goes over his knee and gets smacked over the knickers, then on the bare. The paddle is next and finally the cane, thirteen strokes, some of them from different angles. Like the first segment, it is medium in terms of severity, the normal level for Calstar.

Best Reactions:
Natalie by a country mile. She offers a whole palette of delightful reactions, including long, protracted "Ooows!" and "Aaahs!", high-pitched yelps, surprised hysterical giggling (not an uncommon response when a spankee is on the limit), angry growling through clenched teeth, and quite a bit of swearing ("Fucking hell!"), which she gets properly admonished for. In a word, she suffers beautifully, grimacing and writhing a lot. Halfway through the paddling, Natalie moans "I'm gonna cry!" in a tone that is equal parts apology and plea for mercy. Uncle Joey retorts: "I don't mind. I did expect you to!"

But my favourite moment is when, during the caning, he makes a couple of feint strokes in the air (something I like to do on occasion, too). She flinches in fear, realises that it was just a feint, and angrily hisses: "You fucking bastard!"

Best Line:
When the wife, Angela, is told off about her over-spending, she points out that she didn't just buy clothes for herself, but also for the husband. Running a hand through his hair, she adds: "And while we're about it, we'll get your hair cut and a new pair of shoes as well!" It was a nice jest at the expense of the top, I thought, who really looks a tad out of place in stereotypical "rich guy" roles with his wild mane. Indignant, he replies: "How rude! I have to look like this, you know, for my job. I can't be looking like a straight head all the time!"

I wonder what job that is, where he can't look like a "straight head"? Evidently not a banker or a manager. Maybe he's supposed to be a famous concert pianist.

Nice Psychological Touch:
Uncle Joey keeps reminding his niece that it was all the school's idea, that he doesn't enjoy punishing her, that they suggested he should do it and he's basically bound to carry it out. Now, normally, I'm not fond of tops delegating their responsibility like that (stand up for your own decisions, man!). But in this case, it's kinda funny, because the girl uses the very same tactic, claiming that the mischief with the teacher wasn't really her own idea, that she gets dragged into it by "the crowd", yadda yadda... Like uncle, like niece.

How Good Is It Really?
As Calstar titles go, this one is very good. Obviously, it can't rival the famous Eastern European producers (or some UK producers, for that matter) in terms of professionalism and production values, but there is one wonderfully erotic spanking, paddling and caning session with Natalie, and that is enough to make it a highly enjoyable little video. The girl is gorgeous and her reactions are textbook material on how to make a sadist happy. The other half with Angela is merely average.

What You Learned:
According to one of the countless minions whom I pay to trawl the internet for potentially useful tidbits of information, Natalie aka Natalia also had a career in mainstream porn. My gosh, she looks dumb and bimbo-ish on that photograph! Not nearly as attractive as over Uncle Joey's knee. Good thing she kept her shirt on in "Discipline Within the Home", those tits are just too ridiculously and threateningly huge for this critic's taste.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Bound By Illness

Murphy's law, according to which "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong", seems to have a firm grip over my life these past two and a half weeks. To start with, I was extremely - and I mean extremely - busy with work. The next thing I know, I encounter two separate and persistent computer problems, one with the PC itself and another with my internet connection - as if I didn't have enough to do already! That took a while to fix And to top it all off, on Wednesday, just as I finally have some free time to return to blogging and write my behind-the-scenes report about the pet girl shoot with SM-Circus and Pandora Blake back in March, I get ill. Within one or two hours, I suddenly feel so sick in my stomach that I can hardly move, and I spend the rest of the day in bed instead of at the keyboard. Same thing today. It must have been something I ate, even though I have no idea what it could have been.

Anyway, enough yammering. I just wanted to give you a quick heads-up and let you know what is going on - or rather, what isn't going on. The illness comes at a very inconvenient moment (doesn't it always?), because the BoundCon fetish convention which is annually held here in Munich starts tomorrow, and I'm supposed to meet a lot of friends there. Including Direktor Sands and company, my partners in crime from the circus, Pandora, as well as pet girl Marlin and the Gladiator from Hell, who were also at the shoot. My original plan was to introduce them all here on the blog before I see them again at BoundCon, but obviously, that didn't work out, so I'll have to write about it all afterwards, one thing after the other.

I'm lucky if I can go to the convention at all. After a bit of "chemical warfare" the last two days, resting a lot and consuming only tea and zwieback, I feel a little bit better - well enough to crawl out of bed and make this post at least. I still feel the sickness in my stomach, though, so I'll keep this short and I'll go back to sleep. Hopefully, I will feel another little bit better tomorrow, and I'll be able to make a short appearance at BoundCon at least. Murphy willing, normal blogging service will finally resume next week.