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If you’re a pornoholic or a member of a political cabinet, you’ll definitely want to give this a whirl.

DVD Review: Porn-O-Rama (1992)

Leave it to dubious men and women behind the Private Screening Collection, ladies and gentlemen. Just when you thought they couldn’t push the boundaries of sleaze any further, their label unleashes Porn-O-Rama, a five-part behind-the-scenes look at the adult film industry of the early '90s hosted by none other than porn legend Ron Jeremy. Throughout each 30-minute episode, Jeremy and his co-host Alexis DeVell take us on location of several of the many (mostly forgotten) shot-on-video XXX-rated productions from writer/director Paul Norman (who also created and produced this series), the man who brought us such memorable masterpieces as The Erotic Adventures Of The Three Musketeers and Edward Penishands, the latter being one of the better, um (pardon the pun here) entries from the '90s porn circuit.

While those of you looking for hardcore action will probably be disappointed (everything is edited just right so you can‘t see any penetration), anyone in the market or mood for some honest-to-goodness T&A will be more than content; there are so many boobies and booties in this series that it would even make vintage sexploitation filmmakers like David Friedman and Barry Mahon say, “Okay, enough already.”

But Porn-O-Rama wasn’t made just so that we could see the likes of Samantha Strong, Chantilly Lace, Brittany O’Connell, Shayla LeVeaux, and Alicia Rio (among others) gallivanting about in their birthday suits — no siree! In fact Porn-O-Rama actually does succeed in what is sets out to do: it gives us a look at the personal lives of the women and men of the industry and shows us a little of what it takes to produce and manufacture porn flicks, from the make-up guy to the photographer (a round of applause to Ron Vogel, ladies and gentlemen) and director (Paul Norman again).

No matter what you may think of Ron Jeremy, there couldn’t have been a better male host for this show: his nonchalant ability to simply walk in on an actress while she’s sitting on the toilet and start asking her if she’s into anal sex is both shocking and hilarious at the same time — and the many, many other interviews tend to bring just as many jaw-dropping (and sometimes forced) chuckles from viewers (take for example, the sight of the show’s hosts talking to an actor or actress while the crew films a couple gettin’ it on the hill above). Fans of male actors Peter North, Jon Dough, and Cal Jammer will enjoy Porn-O-Rama for their candid interviews — and it’s very eerie to hear Ron Jeremy ask Mr. Jammer “So if there ever came a time that your dick stopped working, what would you do?,” to which Cal jokingly replies, “Kill myself.” The late Splatman star actually did commit suicide three years after this 1992 production was shot (Jon Dough would also later take his own life in 2006). Spooky.

Virtually unseen in the States since its inception, Porn-O-Rama has been rescued (?) from the vaults of obscurity by Severin Films’ Private Screening Collection, which presents the docu-series on American home video for the first time in its original standard video presentation of 1.33:1 with mono stereo sound. Since the show was filmed with early '90s video cameras and the latest in hand-held mic technology, neither aspect is what you would call “perfect,” but then, who the fuck cares? The DVD’s menus give you the option of watching all five episodes back-to-back or individually, and that’s all there is to this release, kiddos: no saucy special features lie in wait for you.

While it’s unlikely to find a spot on the shelf of the average viewer, Porn-O-Rama is nevertheless a sordid journey back to the bygone era of porn when it was still a relatively wholesome affair (for lack of a better phrase) and was something that we discussed behind closed doors, long before the Internet had it popping up at us at every click (and yes, that was meant to be a double entendre).

If you’re a pornoholic, throwing a party, or if you’re a member of a political cabinet, you’ll definitely want to give this one a whirl.

About Luigi Bastardo

Luigi Bastardo is the alter-ego of a feller who loves an eclectic variety of classic (and sometimes not-so-classic) film and television. He currently lives in Northern California with four cats named Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Margaret. Seriously.

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