Adult Continuity – Batman XXX: A Porn Parody

How often have you caught yourself saying this: “Gee, there are so many superhero porn parodies out there; how can I know which is the best choice is for my consumer dollar?”

Quite often, I’m sure.

I’m also sure your hesitation in selecting a title is due to the fact that you don’t want to be disappointed if it becomes apparent that the filmmakers have little or no clue as to what they are attempting to emulate. “If only there was someone I could turn to. Someone to advise me on selecting an adult superhero parody on the merits of its verisimilitude. A columnist, perhaps, versed in the finer points of entertainment production, an encyclopedic knowledge of comic book characters, and familiarity with adult entertainment.”

All the time, I bet.

Look no further, gentle reader, I am reviewing such things within the requested criteria. I’ll make sure to find the ones that get it right, alert you to the ones that don’t know what the hell they’re doing, and pass my knowledge onto you. I know you take your fandom seriously. That extends to your viewing of adult content, naturally. I mean, how could you enjoy, say, Thor boning Lady Sif if his hammer is covered in aluminum foil (Mjolnir, that is, not Thor’s metaphorical hammer… that would be scary and wrong)?

In short; nothing kills a stiffy quicker than nerd rage.

Mind you, I shall make little or no comment on the sexual aspects of what I’m viewing. We are a classy family outfit here. Just looking at the production elements involved. So without further ado here is the first issue of Adult Continuity.

BatmanXXX

BAM!

POW!

WHACK!

BATMAAAAAAN!

Several years ago, as a response to pirate and tube sites, the big adult studios figured that the way to counter people watching such things as “2 girls 1 cup” for free was to up their game. Porn “parodies” had been a staple since the eighties but this was different. The idea was to give the viewer stories with production value and some reverence for the source material instead of just a stupid “porn” spin on a title’s name. The adult industry, as with mainstream filmmaking, hedged their bets on audience familiarity. Into this new era came a director that was a hardcore fan. Hardcore as in serious about his fandom, not the other hardcore, though he was that too. His name was Axel Braun and his Batman XXX: A Porn Parody essentially set a new standard.

We all have seen the Batman TV show. The adventures of the dynamic duo usually was my last stop before heading off to school in the mornings. Even at such a young age I understood and enjoyed the cornball fun of the show; creative and comedic fight sequences, tilted camera angles (commonly called “Dutch angles” in the business), and weirdo plots hatched by a weirdo rogues gallery. Colorful, kinetic, and fun Batman was so distinct that it took decades, Tim Burton, and about fifty million dollars (that’s 80’s money kids) to shake that image from the public consciousness at large. At least the TV show was shifted to a different type of acceptance running on a different set of rules.

Axel understood those rules and put his knowledge to good use for his parody. The movie opens with a cold teaser setting up the plot just like the TV show. Bruce Wayne (Dale Dabone) is playing chess with his young ward Dick Grayson (James Deen). Of course this being Batman the chess board is four stacked boards and when his fiancé Lisa Carson (Alexis Texas) suggests that the game might be too complex for young Grayson, Bruce drolly responds “Nonsense. You only have to think fifteen or sixteen moves ahead”.

Apparently security is pretty lax at stately Wayne manor because the Riddler (Evan Stone) is lurking in the next room and kidnaps Miss Carson. Commissioner Gordon and Chief O’Hara (dead ringers in a set that is a bit flatter but captures the essence of Gordon’s office) get a ransom note and decide to call Batman. The bust of Shakespeare is pulled back, the red button is pushed revealing the Batpoles (labeled “Batman” and “Robin” naturally), the Batmobile is revved up, and our heroes are on their way.

Though the title music doesn’t have the iconic “Batmaaaaan! Nananananana! Batman!” words it’s as close to the original as probably legally safe (even porn studios don’t fuck with the MPAA). Aleck Knight’s animated sequence is spot on (though they don’t have the Batgirl swinging in to face kick goons like they did in the original episodes where Batgirl was featured). Seriously, seeing it brings a smile because the effort is apparent with results better than what could’ve been dreamed of for a “Porn Parody”.

All the beats and structure of a batman episode are done with a sharp eye for detail. Gordon’s office to lay out the plot. The visit to the villain’s lair with tilted camera angles, colorful lighting, and wide shots. The obligatory rope climb up a building side with a celebrity appearance (Porn legend Ron Jeremy). A go-go dance sequence including the “Batman” dance move most will know from Pulp Fiction. Robin delivering the “Holy (fill in the topically relevant word here)”. Cackling villains. An elaborately staged fight scene (choreographed by Even Stone) to surf music and even the vibrant, spinning onomatopoeia – “BAM!” “SMACK!” “POW!” Batman’s romance with Catwoman (Tori Black) comes into play as does the Dick Grayson/Batgirl (Lexi Belle) pairing which isn’t part of the TV continuity (as far as I can recall) but a sly nod to comic book history.

Of course the movie ends with the caped crusaders in a fix, and the declaration to find out if they make it out at the “same Bat-time, same Bat-channel”!

The costumes are detailed with a lot of care put into them. The only discernable difference is the “XXX” instead of the Batman and Robin logos. Even the henchmen have the distinct look associated with their boss, just like the series. The sets have the unrealistic soundstage quality that marked the look of the original series, and the lighting is imitated perfectly from the stagy flat sitcom look in Gordon’s office and Wayne manor and the splashes of color in the villain’s lairs to the psychedelic go-go look of the dance sequence.

Performances are uniformly great! Dabone and Deen just kill it. Dale Dabone mostly nails Adam West’s speech patterns and delivery. In fact, from an acting standpoint he is a bit more shaded. James Deen hits the right mix of innocence and enthusiasm that defined Burt Ward’s performance. Tori Black plays the slinky Julie Newmar version of Catwoman chewing scenery with a sexy, literal puurrrrr. Lexi Belle is looking beautiful and having a blast being Barbara Gordon. Her smile is infectious. Randy Spears is pretty fun as The Joker laughing and wiggling around like Cesar Romero turned up to eleven. Evan Stone won multiple awards, though I think he plays the Riddler like he has some type of brain damage. I think he just took the “Parody” idea to heart.

The Batman XXX: A porn parody set a new standard for the industry and paved the way for Axel Braun to do some amazing work in the future. It proved that there was love and art in an industry (mostly) wrongfully maligned as vapid and artless.

 

Other observations tangentially related but couldn’t be organically worked into the main column:

2 girls 1 cup is wrong, forget I mentioned it.

Another before school staple for me was Star Blazers or to you hipsters Battleship Yamato.

There was also Battle of the Planets, or Gatcheman to the people that claim to just read the Game of Thrones books.

Some of my first fan-fiction was for Star Blazers. That and Repto’s alien squad based on this cat from the Micronauts.

Repto 2 best

I always got excited for the Batgirl face kicking part in the credit animation. It meant Batgirl was in that episode Yeah, BATGIRL!

There was a PSA that popped up occasionally where Batman and Robin are tied up with a bomb and Batgirl pops in. She wants to discuss gender based pay inequality. This was always a point of anxiety for me “There is a bomb, just give her equal pay for chrissakes!” I would yell at the screen. This is probably why I’m pro pay equality because, aside from being right and fair, I always feel that damn bomb ticking in the back of my head.

Here is the PSA:

I can find no mention of a Lisa Carson anywhere as related to the Batman TV show. Forgive me if she was actually part of the show and I don’t recall.

I swear production used the Batmobile leaving the Batcave clip from the series.

The Joker actually brandishes a Star Trek tos phaser as his weapon. Considering the attention to detail the rest of the movie has, I chalk this up to homage.

Taken from the Wikipedia page on the video:

The film won “Best Parody” at the seventeenth annual NightMoves Adult Entertainment Awards Show, and also “Favorite Parody” at the fifth annual F.A.M.E. Awards. The film won multiple accolades at the 2011 AVN Awards. Nominated for seventeen awards in sixteen categories, it won seven awards, more than any other film that year. The nominations were:

Best Parody – Comedy (Winner)

Best Actor (Dale DaBone)

Best Supporting Actor (James Deen)

Best Supporting Actor (Evan Stone) (Winner)

Best Supporting Actress (Lexi Belle) (Winner)

Best Couples Sex Scene (Lexi Belle & James Deen)

Best Three-Way Sex Scene (Girl/Boy/Boy) (Tori Black, Dale DaBone, James Deen)

Best Director – Feature (Axel Braun)

Best Art Direction

Best Cinematography/Videography

Best DVD Extras

Best DVD Menus (Winner)

Best Editing

Best Make-Up

Best Screenplay- Adapted (Winner)

Best Renting & Selling Title of the Year (Winner)

Best Overall Marketing Campaign – Individual Project (Winner)

Additionally, Braun won several awards for his 2010 work as a whole, including this film. Braun was nominated for a total of forty-eight awards at the 2011 AVN Awards, winning several, including “Director of the Year (Body of Work)”. Also, Evan Stone (The Riddler) and Tori Black (Catwoman) won “Male Performer of the Year” and “Female Performer of the Year” respectively.

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