The Fun of Bondage

Caution: Adult Minds At Play!

copyright 2005 by Pat Powers

As regular visitors to these pages know, we believe that there is much that mainstream filmmakers can learn from commercial bondage filmmakers. Most of it is of a technical nature -- how to present bondage that doesn't look as if it will fall off if the bondagee breathes hard, how to pose the bondagee for maximum sexual attractiveness and dramatic effect, how to make the most of writhing ... it's the little things, but they add a lot.

Something has been niggling at me for some time, a feeling that I've been missing out on an important aspect of the whole equation. And I didn't get it until I started thinking about the difference between mainstream fiction and Internet bondage fiction.

My honest feeling is that Internet bondage fiction is more fun to read than most mainstream fiction. Now, I'm not speaking as one who has only ventured into the shallows of fiction. I've read all of George Bernard Shaw's plays, especially enjoying their prefaces. I've read about half of Shakespeare's comedies. I've also read extensively from Ring Lardner, H. Allen Smith, Joseph Conrad, Tom Wolfe, Ross MacDonald and quite a few others. I've read just about every science fiction writer who was publisheded from the 50s to the 70s. I've also read quite a bit of nonfiction, especially enjoying the histories of Barbara Tuchman and Alan Moorehead, and some of the better current events reporting, like Steven Levy's "Hackers" and "Engines of the Mind."

I'm not a former English Lit. major or anything like that. I find most of the current crop of mainstream "serious" fiction writers like Norman Mailer, John Updike, Joyce Carol Oates -- you know, the usual suspects -- to be major bores. I've never read because I feel I have a duty or responsibility to read something, I read stuff because I like it.

All this is to let you know that when I say Internet bondage fiction is more fun to read than mainstream fiction, I know what I'm talking about. I'm not Homer Simpson dissing something he's never tried. (And in fact I still like some mainstream fiction, I just don't cede it pride of place over the Internet as many old-school writers do.)

What makes Internet bondage fiction special is the sense of unfettered minds at play. The stories you read and the Internet-marketed videos you see are clearly not being produced by people who are excessively interested in what people in general will think of them. Some of the stories are clearly written by people who have no sense of an audience for their work -- real message-in-a-bottle stuff.

Let me explain for the sake of brevity with an example of an Internet-marketed video, "Voodoo Dolls" from ZFX. I know it's a video and not a novel, but it demonstrates the imaginativeness of bondage fantasists so adroitly that it will do as well as any written scene.

"Voodoo Dolls" is the story of a vodoun (vodoo wizard) who uses a doll to dominate and control a beautiful young woman. It's the old "stick the pin in the doll and she feels pain wherever the pin goes in" deal. Whatever happens to the doll happens to her, magically speaking. But the ZFX guys have more in mind that just pins and pain.

Near the end of the film, the vodoun has captured the damsel and brought her to an unfinished house -- the walls are just wooden frames, no sheetrock hung on them yet. He ties her in a doorway, naked but for panties, her ankles tied to the studs at the base of the doorway, her wrists tied behind her back and then secured above her to the doorframe, so that she's force to bend over with her legs spread wide. Ropes on her upper thighs keep her butt in the air.

The vodoun cuts off her panties and gags her with them. Then he puts KY jelly all over the doll (a small wax effigy, kinda like a candle) and also puts KY jelly all over the damsels anus. Can you guess where he shoves the doll? Right, exactly. After slowly and carefully shoving it in until only its base projects from her butt, he secures in place with a leather belt and leaves the furiously writhing damsel in the doorway for a time.

Pure cinematic genius, folks. Because although on one level all we are seeing is a little anal play and bondage, on another level, we know the damsel is writhing and mmphing because she has been magically shoved up her own butt and is now confined there!

Beat that, Edgar Allen Poe! Cask of Amontillado indeed!

That's why I love internet bondage porn. It's full of weird little surprises like that. It has the ability to surprise and delight me with its invention. Maybe not inventions that are likely to wind up on the front page of the Wall Street Journal, but perhaps they're more important in certain respects. Because everyone needs to let their sexual selves out to play sometimes, and these are the people who are bringing the best of the humanity -- their intelligence, their sense of fun and their sensuality, all together as they should be. Not parcelled out into neat little packages labelled "mainstream" and "erotica" and "porn."