Midnight Blue: Porn Stars Of The 70s

Midnight Blue 2Synopsis: It’s called “The Golden Age of Porn,” and late-night cable’s Midnight Blue was there for every sticky, succulent moment! In these full-length segments from the late ’70s, the legendary ladies of adult cinema reveal all like never before: Marilyn Chambers, Georgina Spelvin, Annie Sprinkle, Veri Knotty and Seka.

…plus XXX legends Jennifer Welles, Helen Madigan, and Bambi (Debbie Does Dallas) Woods, studs Marc (Mr. 10½”) Stevens and Jamie Gillis, director Carter Stevens, and original commercials for NYC’s long-gone swingers clubs, adult theaters, “leisure spas” and more!

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Midnight Blue: Porn Stars Of The 70’s 7.25

eyelights: the interview subjects.
eyesores: the lame “dancing” by the porn stars.

Unlike the previous volume of Midnight Blue, this collection isn’t focused on just one movie; but it does have one topic: ’70s porn stars, in particular female performers. It consists mostly of lengthy interviews with a few industry staples, as well as a few other notables.

And naturally, it is tied together by a few sleazy ads from the era.

Interviews
Marilyn Chambers: Dated April 20, 1977, here she discusses all her post-porn activity (she had only made two films and was attempting to go mainstream): a play she did in Vegas for 52 weeks, how she got the key to the city from its mayor, she wrote books, …etc. Eventually, though, the interviewer asks about her sexuality. But it doesn’t faze her: she remains composed, lovely, charming and fresh.

Georgina Spelvin: With Al Goldstein, she talks about being 36 when she got started. She sounds mature and really together; she intrigued me. We also get to see her tapdance and do a routine taken from one of her movies (consisting of writhing about with a snake) at a local strip joint.

Jennifer Welles: Also with Goldstein, they discuss the fact that she was 45 at the height of her popularity. They also show clips of ‘Honey Pie’, presumably her latest effort. She’s polite and friendly, but she seems quite unimpressed at the end, for some reason. Did Goldstein say something off-putting off camera (it wouldn’t surprise me, quite frankly)?

Bambi Woods: Unrecognizable with her short brown hair, she and Steve Kraus talk about the production of ‘Debbie Does Dallas’. Funny how she only talks about that one movie, ignoring the sequel completely. At the time of this interview, she was “dancing” in a club, so we get to watch her routine for a little bit. It’s nothing to writhe (!) home about.

Veri Knotty: She was a porn performer who could tie her 4-inch labia in a knot. Seriously! It was jaw-dropping that they actually showed her dance spread-eagle on TV. They even have a close up replay, in case you missed it. She discusses the impact this ability of hers has had on her personally, and on her sexuality.

Seka: With Al Goldstein on March 17, 1980, she talks about how she got into the business, the various Plato’s Retreat joints, her sexuality, and her relationship with John Holmes. Amusingly, Goldstein mispronounces her name each time he says it. Eventually, we get to watch her routine at the strip club, complete with letting men kiss and grope her. Um… seriously?

Miscellaneous
Nude Disco Dancing: Marilyn Chambers and Tommy Bush do a lengthy nude disco routine in a dance studio. Seriously. Thankfully, it’s there’s a cheeky text commentary from the DVD’s producers about the ’70s and drugs to complement it; this certainly helped make the show enjoyable.

Consumer’s Guide to Sex Tools: Hosted by a rather distracted Annie Sprinkle (apparently a regular correspondent on the show), who’s basically reading (poorly) from notes jotted down on a sheet, it consists of items a woman can use to masturbate with when the vibrator stops working (including a water pick, toothbrush, hair brush, …etc.).

Marilyn Chambers takes a sexy bath: In black and white. Woohoo. Then, in colour, she dances naked in a living room.

Behind the scenes footage from ‘Honeymoon Haven’: With a brief interview with its director, Carter Stevens. This leads to an interview with Jamie Gillis – who isn’t in ‘Honeymoon Haven’. Clearly I missed something.

Midnight Blue Goes to the Movies – A Closer Look: Marc Steven and Helen Madigan talk about the reasons why they left the business, about the downside of the job. They both talk rather candidly about the stigma, the lack of money involved, the work conditions. Wow… they must have burned some bridges with this.

Tara Alexander’s world record: A 1975 plug for Tara Alexander’s record-setting, Midnight Blue-sponsored, event in which she had sex with 88 men in one night at a Plato’s Retreat location. What’s notable about this is not only that they are trying to get the general public to apply for the gig, but she’s rubbing her pussy the whole duration of the plug. Wow… on TV?

Advertisement highlights
The adverts were the usual array of ads for grungy, unenticing-looking spas (then again, everything in the ’70s looking like cheap and grungy), films and magazines. But there was far less sleaze than in the last collection. There were, in fact, a few intriguing ones:

  • A magazine called ‘Puritans’, with lots of sexy pictures.
  • A Midnight Blue ad looking for video centerfolds. Video centerfolds, really?
  • VHS or Beta compilations of Midnight Blue, on sale at “only” 70$ (which was 300$ in 2005 dollars!!!)
  • Midnight Interludes swingers club – which is the usual crusty fare, except that it was then followed by an ad for a late night TV show for the club. The club had its own show? I wonder what that consisted of…
  • Al Goldstein hocking a magazine called ‘Death’, which is actually about death. I thought it might be a gag, but it ran for all of  of four issues. So weird.

It was interesting to see that all of the strip joint routines were done in the same club. And, despite the fact that they were shot at different times, perhaps with a few years’ difference, it always looked the same. Clearly, Midnight Blue had connections with that club.

On a technical level, although it felt far less scuzzy than the last one did, this DVD was mired by lots of tape hiss and whine. I guess these tapes weren’t preserved in vaults, huh? Anyway, the (optional) text commentary throughout made up for the DVD’s less palatable aspects.

If the rest of the set is anything like this one, it could be enjoyable.

We’ll soon see.

Story: n/a
Acting: n/a
Production: 3.0

Nudity: 7.0
Sexiness: 3.5
Explicitness: 4.0

Date of viewing: March 29 + April 1, 2016

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