Well...I happen to have proof of how so far off he really is when it comes to analyzing porn.
In the essay that Ren fisked so well this last post ago, Jensen refers to 15 porn films that he claimed to study and analyze for their abrasive and injurous content. One of those films happened to be Delusional, a Vivid "feature" produced in 2000 for the "couples" market.
For those who missed it, here's Jensen's brief take on that video, as adapted from that essay:
This is what quality erotic film entertainment for the couples
market looks like“
Delusional,” a Vivid release in 2000, is another of the 15 tapes I viewed.
In its final sex scene, the lead male character (Randy) professes his love for
the female lead (Lindsay). After discovering that her husband had been cheating
on her, Lindsay had been slow to get into another relationship, waiting for the
right man -- a sensitive man -- to come along. It looked as if Randy was the
man. “I’ll always be here for you no matter what,” Randy tells her. “I just want
to look out for you.” Lindsay lets down her defenses, and they embrace.
After about three minutes of kissing and removing their clothes, Lindsay
begins oral sex on Randy while on her knees on the couch, and he then performs
oral sex on her while she lies on the couch. They then have intercourse, with
Lindsay saying, “Fuck me, fuck me, please” and “I have two fingers in my ass --
do you like that?” This leads to the usual progression of positions: She is on
top of him while he sits on the couch, and then he enters her vaginally from
behind before he asks, “Do you want me to fuck you in the ass?” She answers in
the affirmative; “Stick it in my ass,” she says. After two minutes of anal
intercourse, the scene ends with him masturbating and ejaculating on her
Which is the most accurate description of what contemporary men in the
United States want sexually, Armageddon or Vivid? The question assumes a
significant difference between the two; the answer is that both express the same
sexual norm. “Blow Bang #4” begins and ends with the assumption that women live
for male pleasure and want men to ejaculate on them. “Delusional” begins with
the idea that women want something more caring in a man, but ends with her
begging for anal penetration and ejaculation. One is cruder, the other slicker.
Both represent a single pornographic mindset, in which male pleasure defines sex
and female pleasure is a derivate of male pleasure. In pornography, women just happen to love exactly what men love to do to them, and what men love to do in pornography is to control and use, which allows the men who watch pornography to control and use as well.
[Final sentence emphasis added by me.]
Now, that certainly sounds like the ultimate in woman-hating, right??
Not. So. Fast.
Enter my friend and colleague Sheldon Ranz, who happens to be a serious porn auteur, serious enough to have been a paid in full reviewer for Adult Video News (AVN) magazine during the 1980s and 1990s, and who was fortunate and seredipitous enough to have interviewed Nina Hartley for a leftist Jewish magazine called Shmate way back in 1989. (He is still friends with Nina to this day; she was the first maid at his wedding.) [Not the other way around; thanks to Sheldon for the correction.]
Anyways....as part of a previous thread over at Nina's forum touching on Robert Jensen's myopia regarding porn, Sheldon decided to take on his own review of Delusional based on his having viewed the film more than a couple of times. Here's the results of his studies, which paints a, shall we say, slightly different tale than that of Mr. Jensen, to say the least:
[Posted by Sheldon Ranz to Nina Hartley's forum originally on 9-22-04;
reprinted tonight by request from moi and posted here with permission]
OK, sorry for the delay. I hope y’all think what follows below was worth
Oddly enough, no review of Delusional appears on AVN’s website, so I’ve
compensated by writing my own review in AVN mode, as I did for real from 1990
DELUSIONAL(2000). Vivid Film. Director: Robby D. Script: Robby D. &
Tiffany Enright. Starring Cheyenne Silver, with Ryan Conner, Kiri, Dale DaBone,
Joey Ray and Bobby Vitale. 69 Min.
Titled for the three delusions running rampant in this feature, the film
opens with office colleagues Cheyenne and Dale bemoaning their nowhere social
lives. Dale offhandedly wonders if he’s gay since he hasn’t dated in six months
and urges Cheyenne not to give up on men after she caught her husband (Joey Ray)
boffing a hooker (Kiri) in their own home. Now living alone, Cheyenne has a
on-line chat partner named “Alex” who strikes her as her dream man – kind,
gentle and loyal. After one nightly chat, she tabs over to her Enter button and
her joy bell rings. Later, she has a nightmare involving her getting laid by her
now ex-husband in some noisy dive.
The next day, she meets “Alex”, who turns out not to be a man (Delusion #1)
but a babe with a flamboyantly blonde hairdo, Ryan Conner. Both taken aback and
curious, and wishing to avoid her nightmare scenario, Cheyenne gives Sapphic sex
a shot. After auditing Ryan’s initiating cooz course, her lips smooch and smack
before saving Ryan’s privates for last. Cheyenne wakes up the next morning
alone, Ryan having left her a note with a flower. Later, she tells Ryan at a
restaurant that she’s uncomfortable having a relationship with a woman because
of what others might say. Ryan yells at her, but abruptly smiles and lures her
into the back for a torrid threesome with Bobby Vitale. Cheyenne conspicuously
keeps her high heels on, as if to say, “I want to be bad!” Ryan yells at Bobby
for spurting on them (which she spurred him on to do) and Cheyenne is put off by
Ryan’s increasingly hostile possessiveness.
Having said that he’s been saving himself for her, Dale finally gets his
chance to be with Cheyenne when she takes him home with her. Wearing earrings
and modest tattoos, he looks like a pirate out of a Harlequin Romance novel.
Their foreplay is sweet, despite Cheyenne’s dreadful acting here and throughout
this feature. After a brief but intense exchange of oral sex, she says, “I want
to feel you inside me” and intercourse ensues (as they say on "Law and Order:
SVU"). Equal time is given to missionary and cowgirl, with Cheyenne fingering
her pooper chute throughout. Finally getting the hint, he asks, “Do you want me
to stick it in your ass?” Relieved, she replies, “Yes, I want you to stick it in
my ass!” Shakespeare would be proud.
Watching this from outside, Ryan is fed up. Armed with a liquor bottle and
a gun, she storms in, claiming Cheyenne as her lover (Delusion #2) and
threatening to ventilate Dale. Cheyenne knocks her out with the bottle, but she
escapes while the couple call the cops. Cut to “6 Months Later…”, when someone
knocks on Cheyenne and Dale’s door, leaving behind Ryan’s telltale flower. [The
feature then fades out with 'scary' music.]
Delusion #3 is our heroine’s pop-culture cluelessness. As Michael Douglas
learned in "Fatal Attraction", any assertive blonde named Alex with a fancy
hairdo is asylum bait. I guess Cheyenne didn’t see that movie, since she came
Glenn Close to buying the farm. The feature includes outtakes and bloopers.
Market to those who like their sex scenes safe, short and to the point; and away
from those offended by the blatant homophobia of lesbian psycho
Comparing the actual contents of the film with Robert Jensen’s own
commentary, what do we find?
Jensen Delusion #1: as a self-proclaimed politically aware gay man, why
does he NEVER mention the "lesbian Fatal Attraction" subplot? This would be an
easy way to bash a mainstream, couples-oriented porn studio.
Jensen Delusion #2: it used to be that women would talk about "saving
themselves" for the right man - now it is a male protagonist (Dale Dabone) who
talks that way. Why does Jensen not see this reversal of stereotypes and how it
undercuts his notion of the man "using and controlling" women?
Jensen Delusion #3: Dale is comfortable enough with his masculinity that he
has no problem speculating in front of Cheyenne that he might be gay - also
overlooked by Jensen.
Jensen Delusion #4: the, ahem, climactic sex scene between Cheyenee and
Dale is totally directed by Cheyenne. Basically, he's a puppy who does whatever
she tells him to do. Not only is she NOT begging, but he's just grateful to be a
satellite orbiting her sun. Who's "using" and "controlling" here? And, as I said
previously, asking permission is contrary to the assumption of entitlement
underlying Jensen's notions of "control" and "using".
Jensen Delusion #5: since Jensen bashes "Delusional" precisely where it is
progressive, and ignores it, in part, where it is reactionary, you have to
wonder what sort of journalism he is passing on to his students. Is this what is
meant by, "Those who can't...teach"?
Now...the first reader here that is willing to skim through Robert Jensen's archives and find ONE essay on the original Fatal Attraction movie -- you know, the one where Glenn Close melts down and almost whacks Michael Douglas, perfect prep for his balling Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct, I'd say) -- gets a free pack of Oreo cookies and a gallon of milk for dunking. Would Jensen say that Douglas' character in FA was doing the dominating as much as he preposes that the guys in Delusional were??? Or, perhaps it's only in his mind that since real women don't ever ask for anal sex or ask for spooge in the face, those who do in porn are only either "degrading themselves" for the assumed male audience (must mean gay males, I guess, since by his rules, women are too pure to watch such contemptuous sex) or are mere slaves of the evol trenchcoat-bearing dungeon masters who trap them in such scenes.
You will also notice that Delusional is actually one of the darker "couples" films out there...a bit categorically different from the more conventional style of couples features which usually feature vanilla couples engaging in happy, joyous, mutually pleasurable sex for fun....without the head games and mindfucks. Perhaps it's dark themes were what probably attracted Jensen to review it in lieu of other videos out there??
But then again, it's not like Bob Jensen to extrapolate his own myopia about what men expect from sex and what he thinks women expect from men who view porn onto others....and call it "radical feminism", riiiiiiiight???