The Valley

Susannah Breslin is a guestblogger on Boing Boing. She is a freelance journalist who blogs at Reverse Cowgirl and is at work on a novel set in the adult movie industry.


I took these photos on the set of an adult movie in the San Fernando Valley this April. It was April 10th, to be exact. Which is my birthday. Why I was on the set of an adult movie on my birthday is another story altogether. The story of my life.

The location was a hideous brown building in Canoga Park, not far from Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, where rocket engines are built and in front of which sits a giant rocket engine as if it has fallen out of the sky. Both sides of the soundstage were lined with themed rooms: a shower room, a weight room, a sex dungeon. That day's scene would take place on one of the ugliest adult movie sets that I have ever seen: pea soup-colored walls, a diarrhea-colored leather sofa, a faux wood floor. All the flowers were fake.

The name of the movie was "Interactive Sex with Tori Black." The director explained: "We were going to go with 'Existential Musings of a Porn Star,' but we thought we'd dumb it down. If you want to have sex with Tori Black and don't have chloroform, this is your next best option."

Tori is 20 and very pretty. She has long brown hair and long tan legs. When she came out of the dressing room for her scene, wearing pink lingerie and matching pink high-heels, she said: "And here we go." Then she said: "Off to work."


Her co-star was James Deen, who is the hipster generation's answer to Dirk Diggler. He's 23 and has been doing porn since he was 18. When I asked him if he had had sex with 1,000 women in his lifetime thus far, he looked down, thought for a moment, and replied: "More than that."

While the director filmed, Tori and James went at it like dogs. Even when he stopped shooting, they kept going. It was impressive. It was Olympic. It was also Passover. In between shots, all the crew guys standing around and watching kept making jokes about Deen being Jewish and what they called his "Hobbit feet." Deen ignored them.


When it was time for the money shot, which in the business is referred to as the "pop shot," somebody called out: "Actually, he can't pop until sundown." After that, everybody got very quiet and respectful while Deen delivered his closing shot. Then they burst into a rousing rendition of "Hava Nagila," and everybody clapped.

Afterward, Tori checked her face in the mirror. She told me that the heavy makeup makes her face break out. I thought it was the pop shot. But what do I know? I guess you learn something new every day.