Bondage By The Numbers

copyright 2005 by Pat Powers

On Brians' Page, a discussion forum for people who like mainstream bondage scenes, they have a database of the movies and television shows in which such scenes appear. Over 10,000 films and TV shows are represented. The database is worldwide in scope, including films from England, France, Turkey, Japan, the Phillipines and even Canada.

Whhen you have a database of that scope to hand there are all sorts of interesting searches you can conduct, since the database is searchable by title, actress and keyword.

Recently, and just for fun, I did some statistical analysis of the frequency of bondage that occurred in several TV series that were noted for their frequency and quality of bondage scenes (see chart below). I calculated the total number of episodes of each series, then the total number of episodes that included bondage of any kind (though I did not include the more problematical kinds of bondage, such as handgags) and I counted the total number of scenes that contained bondage scenes that included gags.

I chose series that represented decades over the last 50 years, from the black and white Adventures of Superman serial from the 1950s to the full-color Adventures of Lois and Clark from the 1990s. This doesn't lend any significance to the numbers, because the sample is just too small.

Did this research prove anything or lead to any startling conclusions? In a word, no. The percentages appear to be all over the map. There may be some good information to be gleaned from this data, but I have no idea what it might be, except to say the 90s were a pretty durned good decade for bondage.


Bondage and Gagging In Mainstream TV By the Numbers

Title & Decade



total eps


all eps

bondage/all eps

Adventures of Superman
11 18 108 61 10 17
Avengers (1960s) 23 46 161 50 14 29
The Girl from U.N.C.L.E.
5 9 29 567 31
Scarecrow and Mrs. King
2 14 88 14 2 15
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
3 16 99 19 3 16
Xena: Warrior Princess
8 49 148 16 5 33
Adventures of Lois & Clark
12 22 81 55 15 27
X-Files (1990s) 7 9 148 78 5 6
Walker, Texas Ranger
17 23 195 74 9 15


Gags/bondage means gags as a percentage of all bondage scenes. Gags/all episodes means gags as a percentage of all the episodes in the series. Bondage/all episodes means the percentage of episodes in a series that had bondage of any kind.