Firing Blanks
October 10, 2008 11:37 AM   Subscribe

Jame's Gunn's PG Porn ('For people who like everything about porn...except the sex.') - Nailing Your Wife starring Firefly's Nathan Fillion. Interview.
posted by fearfulsymmetry (38 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite


 
HA HA HA HE SHOT HER IN THE HEAD HA HA!!!!!
posted by hydrophonic at 11:55 AM on October 10, 2008


James Gunn + Nathan Fillion = awesome.
posted by killy willy at 12:01 PM on October 10, 2008


That's...a different take on the money shot.
posted by never used baby shoes at 12:13 PM on October 10, 2008


HA HA HA HE SHOT HER IN THE HEAD HA HA!!!!!

I thought it was a weird and troubling end to what was essentially a softcore porn video that was not funny at best, and misogynistic at worst. This is the kind of thing the rental car outlet corporate sales guy who occasionally calls on me might find funny.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:13 PM on October 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


is it just me, or have i seen porn parodied this way a lot before?
posted by shmegegge at 12:17 PM on October 10, 2008


Yes, because most porn ends with death.
posted by graventy at 12:27 PM on October 10, 2008


Isn't that what Dworkin said?
posted by Artw at 12:33 PM on October 10, 2008


“The hammer is my penis.”
posted by erniepan at 12:33 PM on October 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


That was really lame. I miss Firefly.
posted by finite at 12:34 PM on October 10, 2008


I miss firefly, too.
posted by shmegegge at 12:46 PM on October 10, 2008


"...release them all on DVD -- about twenty minutes worth of PG-Porn and the accompanying eight hour behind the scenes documentary."

hahaha
posted by ZakDaddy at 12:47 PM on October 10, 2008


That wasn't lame at all. That was funny. Beat for beat it nailed it.

Yes this kind of thing has been done before, A LOT. But are people really missing the fantastic timing that Fillion and the direction has in this?

I'm sort of distressed by these reactions. Misogynistic?

This is the kind of thing the rental car outlet corporate sales guy who occasionally calls on me might find funny.

Really? That's the last anyone would describe my personality and I found it hilarious. Porn is incredibly misogynistic and the short kind of exposes and plays with that. It's wholly self-aware... god... I'm kind of speechless.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 12:48 PM on October 10, 2008


I'm kind of speechless

Not as speechless as the corpse on the floor
posted by KokuRyu at 12:53 PM on October 10, 2008


The guy who made this gets to be Jenna Fisher's ex-husband.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:55 PM on October 10, 2008


I thought up something like this when I was a teenager. Porn without the payoff. I probably should have gone somewhere with it. (That whole pesky having to work thing got in the way though.) Plenty of ways to do it badly. This is ok though.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:56 PM on October 10, 2008


god... I'm kind of speechless.

i don't know what to tell you, dude. not everyone can laugh at the same joke no matter how many times they hear it. even the best comedians have to write new material.
posted by shmegegge at 1:01 PM on October 10, 2008


I laughed. I dug Fillion's performance a lot. The "punch line" at the end really sold me. I don't see the misogyny in this project, because of its nature. I see where one would think that, but it's a parody of porn. It's one of the key elements the parody, along with shitty camera work and the VHS picture tracking (wonderful touch).

Reading the interview, though... I'm not sure what it is, but I just don't understand the fascination with porn stars. I understand why Gunn used porn stars in this project (for the most part), but I don't understand the men in the project's "OH SHIT YES" reactions to the promise of working with a porn star. Am I on crazy pills? Is this something I'd have to be mostly straight to understand?
posted by gc at 1:03 PM on October 10, 2008


I thought it was a weird and troubling end to what was essentially a softcore porn video that was not funny at best, and misogynistic at worst.

I think the violence is kind of the point. Penis, vagina, cumshots: definitely not PG. Killing a woman in a horrible way (by accident): PG.

I blame society. American that is.
posted by philip-random at 1:06 PM on October 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


Not as speechless as the corpse on the floor


Huh?

Isn't that what porn does? Once a woman has been "nailed" you just leave them dead and walk away.

Am I the only one looking the critical subtext here?

James Gunn actually has a history of writing about this kind of stuff and has done some pieces on prostitution and violent sexualization.

All his work seems to deal with this kind of territory (slither especially) It's just he has a great, bizarre sense of humor that combines with these critical subtexts that give a weird hybrid kind of film/short/what have you. They're subtext comedies. I don't get it. Why does a criticism have to be serious and on-the-nose?

We're not laughing at the corpse. We're laughing at him.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 1:06 PM on October 10, 2008


When I saw it yesterday (yeah, I'm that far ahead of the curve) I took the sudden violent ending as a statement about how US media treats sex vs. how it treats violence -- the whole thing is, as the title says, "PG"... and just when you think it's about to go against its name and turn un-PG, well, instead a woman gets a massive fatal head wound. Thus keeping it PG.
posted by BaxterG4 at 1:09 PM on October 10, 2008 [8 favorites]


On lack of preview, what philip-random said.
posted by BaxterG4 at 1:09 PM on October 10, 2008


god... I'm kind of speechless.

i don't know what to tell you, dude. not everyone can laugh at the same joke no matter how many times they hear it. even the best comedians have to write new material.


I hear what you're saying and definitely acknowledge that, but I'm saying there's room for when something is done well.

And I thought it was done well. But that's where we get into the whole "opinion" thing and not discourse.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 1:12 PM on October 10, 2008


Tangent: The best "bad porn actor/actress" performance ever was in Julianne Moore in Boogie Nights. This is not even up for debate. She was operating on a whole other purposely bad actress level without a)hamming it up b) sounding like reading c) any of the other things most actors do when trying to act bad on purpose. I'm consistently fascinated by her performance in that scene.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 1:16 PM on October 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


THAT was porn. That was real porn. That was Bataille porn. That was a transgression of pornography so extreme as to be itself pornographic.

Formally this video mimics the vast majority of pornography: two individuals meet in a seemingly banal situation only to traumatically shift their transaction for the quotidian, not overtly sexual one it is, into a hyper-sexualized universe. This transformation occurs with no respect for the continuity of the illusion that they are 'normal people.' In the PG Porn narrative, a narrative that purports to be a porn narrative in the same way that porn purports to be a 'normal' narrative, the death serves the same function as the sexual act - what we 'thought' or at least were willing to collude with the story-tellers was one kind of narrative was in fact, something completely different. Something that would set out to transgress the limits of the ur-narrative and galvanize the whole, transforming it into something else again.

The video disassembles all the expectations one has of what should happen next, she's sexually aroused for no apparent reason he is a willing, if slightly passive participant, and then instead of even the beginning of any kind of consummation, any kind of acting out of their desires, the story takes a hard turn out of the narrative it had been telling, the narrative of porn movie wherein the characters all but wear their genitalia on their faces, and becomes a narrative about death and the freak collusion of chance events that, can if infrequently, bring about extinction. It would have been no less exceptional had the 'set' of a construction site suddenly evaporated and the two main characters found themselves on a bluff alongside the Grand Canyon. They are about to reveal their genitalia, consummate the sex act thus providing that which renders a pornographic narrative pornography, when a condor swoops by, knocking her momentarily off balance as she is afraid it might strike her and flinches and he, in trying to right her, accidentally shoves her over the precipice.

The moment of frisson is not the revealing of excited genitalia, but the concatenation of events that culminate in death.

The only aspect of the PG Porn that does not follow through on the promise, the premise and the ultimate purpose of pornography, is the excitation sexual excitation of the viewer. Which, this witness will confess, though only recognizing that nothing and no one is perfect, was a bit of a disappointment.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:16 PM on October 10, 2008 [9 favorites]


I hear what you're saying and definitely acknowledge that, but I'm saying there's room for when something is done well.

word up.

The best "bad porn actor/actress" performance ever was in Julianne Moore in Boogie Nights. This is not even up for debate.

i'll give you julianne moore for actress if you'll give me that dude in Logjammin' from The Big Lebowski for actor. The Nihilist dude who came to fix the cable.
posted by shmegegge at 1:19 PM on October 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


i'll give you julianne moore for actress if you'll give me that dude in Logjammin' from The Big Lebowski for actor. The Nihilist dude who came to fix the cable.

I'll see your Karl Hungus and raise you Gil Bang.
posted by BoatMeme at 1:34 PM on October 10, 2008


Tim and Eric do the fake-old-VHS thing very well. I wonder how they do it. I figured it must be pretty easy with today's technology, but apparently not.
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 1:47 PM on October 10, 2008


i've always suspected that they actually shot that stuff on shitty old 1/2 inch tape.
posted by shmegegge at 3:07 PM on October 10, 2008


No, it's FUNNY because he SHOT HER IN THE HEAD.

I can see what people are saying re:the PG rating and a comment on what is PG and what isn't. But it's hard to imagine that this is what James Gunn was going for. And - given his target audience at SpikeTV - it's all about the bad pun title, "Nailing Your Wife". Which makes it kind of despicable.
posted by crossoverman at 5:12 PM on October 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I liked Fillion's acting, hamming it up, but I get the feeling Giovani was just trying to act as best as she could. It was a nice balance. The unnecessary point of the finger, saying the other guy went to the lumber yard was well done.

Still, wry commentary on violence in America aside, I wasn't thrilled with the ending. I mean, I get that it might be a commentary on sex/violence, the thought crossed my mind. It was simply crass and easy though. It's the kind of punchline that just naturally follows. Sitting down and thinking it over, instead of the "and, get this, he accidentaly kills her with the nail gun" knee-jerk reaction, they might have come up with something funnier.

Just as a random concept, make it British "Office" style painful humor: Husband comes home just as the pants are pulled down. Short cuts of awkard scenes follow, meetings with incredulous lawyers who all assume she'll screw them, too, up until, and including hot lesbian lawyers, embarrassing scenes in court, where the judge essentially says, "Sex with the carpenter? What, did you think this was a porno?" and awards the house, the dog, and the kids to the husband. Ends with the carpenter and the now ex-wife in a trailer, wondering what the hell they'll do now, since she's got no money, and he can't get a job, having been fired and blacklisted by the angry ex-husband.

Then again, nail-gun to the head is pretty much par for the course for Troma.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:15 PM on October 10, 2008


To replace the lack of bollocks, we really ought to shoot some more blank verbiage at it.
posted by gorgor_balabala at 5:40 PM on October 10, 2008


It doesn't do much for me, frankly. No laugh, just a big meh. But comedy is the most personal and subjective of all the arts. I did like Tromeo and Juliet, however.
posted by MythMaker at 5:56 PM on October 10, 2008


Wow, Fillion has been hitting the gym. Dude's chest is like twice the size it was on Firefly.


I'm sorry, was there something else in the video?
posted by The Whelk at 8:08 AM on October 11, 2008


I didn't really need to find an acceptable sociological argument to laugh out loud at the punchline. For me it was just doing what a lot of good comedy does: injecting a realistic perspective into a fantasy event. No, not that killing someone is realistic, but the whole "hey let's slip off your toolbelt" when the toolbelt has a bunch of dangerous tools on it would, in the real world where women don't usually go to construction sites to have sex, be a possibly awkward and dangerous thing to do. So, for me, I laughed.
posted by Billegible at 10:25 AM on October 11, 2008


Something that I hadn't realized until I lived in Oklahoma briefly is that a lot of hardcore porno, at least back in the day, was deliberately shot so that it could be turned into softcore by deleting the shots showing penetration without having to delete the sex scenes entirely.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:01 AM on October 13, 2008


I am trying so hard to figure out where living in Oklahoma fits into your understanding of porno editing.
posted by shmegegge at 11:27 AM on October 13, 2008


shmegegge, porno videos rented in Oklahoma used to be all soft-core - no penetration allowed. Likewise, all the beer was 3.2% alcohol, and all the politicians were Republicans.

Okay, not all. Some were Libertarians.
posted by yhbc at 11:37 AM on October 13, 2008


ahhhhhhhh. fascinating. thanks.
posted by shmegegge at 12:53 PM on October 13, 2008


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