Do Production Values Matter?

48 Responses

  1. EKG says:

    Personally? I place production values rather low on the priority list. I think some of the earlier genre work in the mid-2000s was actually better than a good bit of the recent stuff. The underground feel made it easy to excuse some of the occasional mistakes, today it tends to stand out a bit more in that odd middle ground where it’s hard to really give it an identity.

    Another issue that comes with increased budgets is the pressure to hit a larger market, which in any sort of media leads to a “samey” feel with many productions that try to be as general as possible in its target audience. In turn we’ve seen a large swing towards PG material in the last few years, which granted does have an audience, but it’s also pushing a lot of the adult material right out of the game. The desire for more adult-oriented material is part of gave rise to the amateur superhero productions in the first place and it’s becoming an endangered entity. Higher budgeting also often comes with the need for higher pricing which can make it difficult for both the producers and consumers, when you start seeing videos above $40 there’s cause for concern.

    In general, I think the content should be the main focus above all else, most viewers are willing to forgive some shortcomings in the production quality if the content is there, the best budget and effects won’t do much for the same person if the content is lacking or generic. Zen/Giga has become a victim of this, as too many of their videos now are following the exact same pattern and don’t hold a candle to the gritty and daring nature of the earlier stuff.

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  2. HorseWithNoName says:

    @ bogie: enjoy 🙂 I have also the audio book version which I listen to time and again “on the go”. Always interesting and insightful. Wish a producer would pick this book up as well. Morrison is an interesting example of a fan of sexy superheroine material which clearly had influence on him, and the way in which he describes what is erotic to him does clearly reflect some segment of fans of this material. There are probably only a handful of writers who would bother to describe the type of lipstick worn by the original Batwoman for example 🙂

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  3. bogie says:

    @ Horse. I have them occasionally, cobber. Btw, I have received Supergods, looking forward to starting on it.

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  4. HorseWithNoName says:

    @ bogie: great idea, mate!

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  5. bogie says:

    @ Sidekick. I’ve really enjoyed following the opinions expressed in this thread. Who knew we were such an erudite lot? Apropos one of the most-mentioned production values, how about starting a thread on the best performance by an actress in 2014 (or whenever), the accent being on ACT? Not a poll or anything time-consuming, but just an opportunity to hear what would surely be some interesting views.

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  6. Gene says:

    It’s important not to confuse production values with production quality. One of my favorite fight scenes is in a video by primal( Fire hawks shame0 and is entirely shot in a what appears to be someones bedroom with some foam stuck to the walls and a weird oriental partition thing for no clear reason. The special effects are not overly impressive and the choreography is simple, but the heroine sells the blows well and you genuinely feel that she is a woman who is used to just dominating everyone and is completely shocked and lost at being overmatched by this villain, she keeps trying to come back using her powers but the bad guy just has an answer for everything she throws at him and eventually wins and knocks her out. The poor special effects to detract from the experience at all for me because I feel like the heroine really is outclassed and will go down to this bad guy and be humiliated and suffer horribly and that’s the feeling that I want from this genre. One of the problems i have with a lot of the high production value producers is that they sometimes seem to forget that people come to this niche because mainstream movies won’t show them what they want to see, Namely (for a lot of people here) Heroic female characters getting taken down and humiliated by villains. If this is represented well in any way in a film, whether it is sold through special effects, top notch fight choreography or just plain old acting, I think most people will love it. Of course the very best genre films combine elements (Beaten by the Billionaire from Alex Bettinger for example has great choreo, a perfect location for the story and a pair of women who really seem like two young, headstrong, powerful heroines who have very suddenly found themselves a long, long way out of their depth and now face a horrifying defeat.)

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  7. To me, yes production values DO matter. They matter to me because they tell me that the film company/producer is serious about the genre, and is eager to please the community, and not just make a few bucks by jumping on this (ever growing) particular bandwagon of super-damsels in distress.

    Like some here, I will state that location absolutely DOES matter. That is one of the reasons I prefer Giga/Zen over most of the Western productions because they get this. If you see a bedroom or living room there, it is in context of the heroine in her off time and civilian identity, and NOT as the location of the actual antagonist v protagonist final battle. Same can be said about hotel rooms. Such locations pretty much guarantee that I won’t be purchasing that particular movie.

    Next to cover fights and choreography. Again, a little time and effort will make a big difference here. So often it seems that the heroine can barely stand because she has no idea of balance. Good for posing but terrible for action. Granted, having them fight in ridiculously tall heels is part of the problem. Taking some time for fight rehearsal and to check camera angles would go a long way to selling the story.

    Of course, the actress counts greatly here! I have to see an actress that can actually pass as a heroine. Does she look like she can run a couple blocks to catch some muggers? Can she actually put out her lines with some authority, and also actually sound like she believes what she is saying?? To often the best looking model is the most wooden when it comes to delivery, and that just collapses all credibility to the scene. Also, my personal peeve is a heroine with multiple and very obvious tattoos… especially when you try to promote this heroine as one with a secret identity. Really?? With a huge sleeve or thigh tat that no one will ever recognize??

    So those are pretty important, but also the type of movie makes a big difference to me. Is it a scenario where weakening the heroine is the primary focus? If so, the actress needs to be able to act and vocalize not only convincingly, but also with the understanding that such vocalizations many like myself find to be quite arousing, when done right! Is the movie mainly about fighting? Then obviously choreography and athleticism are extremely important, as is camera use. Is the movie about capture and bondage (which we need so much more imo), then actually do some rope work that would hold a lethargic puppy, let alone a super heroine!

    Yes, there have been great examples of how things can and should be done in these regards. It is obvious that producers and directors are starting to learn those lessons. But, that is not to say that there are still those out there that put a crappy mask, a shitty costume on an overweight and unenthusiastic model in a cheap Motel 6 and then try to promote it as quality superheroine action. Sorry, but I skip over those pretty much by default, just because I know that they are not serious about the genre, only what they can score financially from the fans.

    So, in conclusion, yes and absolutely production values make a difference to me.

    Thank you for the forum and the question!

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  8. jdn says:

    I’m with you Sidekick, I’ve always had a fondness for New Goddess Cinema also. Their movies, despite the obviously low budget, just appealed to me. They just always hit the right buttons.

    As for the overall question about production values, I guess they do matter to some degree as the companies who produce this kind of stuff seem to be getting better and better at it. I’m curious to see what a big budget studio movie like the upcoming Wonder Woman or Captain Marvel will do. Should be exciting to see where they take it.

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  9. Geeray says:

    Production Values are, to me at least, a subjective measure of the overall quality of what I am watching; Ignoring the subject matter, how close does it come to being acceptable if it were part of say, at its lowest denominator, a scene in a television show?

    As such it is the blend of many details, large and small. It is a blend that has no set formula, but ought to contain a generous helping of most of these:

    A story that has a start, middle and end that are contiguous with each other, that makes sense enough to give things a point.

    A beautiful heroine, played by an actress who has the sensitivity and ability to become her character. One who can display all the emotions A to Z: Superiority, confidence, surprise, mild concern, determination, fear etc before, between and during being humped. If nothing else she can be relied upon to carry the story.
    If she happens to be sexy, as well as attractive (the two are compatible, but not inclusive, sexiness is a matter of attitude and poise), then that helps too. {A plea to film makers. Give your girls a chance. Before trying to disguise she’s only 5 feet 2, with high heels and 4” platforms, make sure she can at least walk naturally in them and is not staggering around like a drunk heifer in clogs?}

    Sympathy and respect for the concept of Super-anything. The heroine is supposed to fight the forces of evil by some means other than surrendering and letting them wear themselves out on her. I’m sorry, but too many times the bad guys could not outwit a 98 year old grandmother and if that is the impression, everything goes down the pan!

    Choreography and action. It does not need to be as technically perfect as NGC, but it needs to flow, fit and make sense.

    Imagination. We have to accept that we are seeing the same basic story retold every time and certain elements have to be portrayed to gain as wide a segment of the fetish market as possible, further limiting things. But imagination can be used. Imagination lets you paint a sink plunger silver and attach it to a black box to create a beam emitter that paralyses people. Imagination can create sets, make the inevitable empty warehouse look as if it might be a lounge, office, anything to give the film a real world feel. Even a radio playing in the background helps. I live in hope that one day somebody might even use some of these set props, or even props period?

    Fun. Believe it, or not, we, the viewers, do know when the people involved just turn up. We don’t usually recognise it, but it does make a difference to our enjoyment. So please film makers, enjoy yourselves. It helps us and it helps you to develop.

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  10. Scott says:

    Do production values matter? Yes, they matter.

    Do we need “jaw-dropping special effects, picturesque locations, and Oscar-caliber acting”? Not necessarily.

    For me, production values matter only so far as to make the story and characters believable. I’d place higher emphasis on the direction, filming style, and editing in post than the overt elements of budget.

    I’m not a fan of “motel room” videos because they don’t sell me on the heroine or scenario. I just see the woman in a thrown together costume, probably with visible tattoos, and that removes me from the fiction altogether. The single long continuous shot with clumsy fight choreography is the exclamation point to end the sentence. Could a motel room encounter with a heroine and villainess be good? It could be EPIC. But it needs the proper direction to work.

    And budget isn’t everything. There are many high budget videos that get so caught up looking great that they neglect the peril altogether. They forget the basics of establishing the heroine as a force and then watching her get overpowered or outsmarted and put in a place of weakness. The new CG effects are great. You can now see Supergirl use heat vision or villains project blasts from their hands. However, that’s all meaningless without the proper story behind it.

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  11. HorseWithNoName says:

    Man, this needs proofreading, sorry, pressed “post” too quickly.

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  12. HorseWithNoName says:

    Again, and purely subjectively speaking, while I appreciate great costumes for both the heroine and the villain(s) and well-chosen locations or sets that are well put together, and the highest image resolution, does all of this matter? No.

    Dragon1 ordered a costum from Primal once, called “Mighty Girl – Mind Controlled”. The outfit of the superheroine is very simplistic, both the villain’s outfit and set are rather “poor”, and it clearly shows that this was shot in a day or two. And the story and the script are very “basic”.

    And yet it is (subjectively speaking) one of the best videos in this genre I have ever seen. Not because it goes further content with (i.e. this one is highly x-rated) than most videos that are discussed on this site, but because the performance (hence the direction) of the actress (Callie Calypso) is utterly fantastic. You just can’t take your eyes off her.

    So while others (producers and fans) may place some value on sets, costume etc. (like I do as well) this is outstanding film based on the strength of its female star. We should hand out an “superheroine best acting Oscar” to her right away.

    And compare this to the most likely highest budgeted superheroine film around, Kink’s “Broken Heroine”. While I enjoy their production values (and they are high comperatively speaking) it feels very “slick” as far as the performances go and it totally loses steam in the third act (like so many videos do).

    I would content, you can shoot a fantastic heroine video on a cell phone with next to nothing. Remember, “Blair Witch Project” was made with a very small budget, and Jason Blum has built an empire around low-budget herror films, some of which are outstanding.

    Innovation comes from having to work around obstacles like having no budget. There is a great number of directors who deliver their best work when they start out in independent productions or on TV. Spielberg made fantastic stuff in his early days on TV with hardly any budget because he was “just another” director at that time.

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  13. Logan says:

    Probably irrelevant, but as a producer, they matter. They let us take pride in a project. Even when watching others’ films, I can’t stay in a film when the production value is lacking. So yeah, it matters. For what it’s worth.

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  14. LtStrange says:

    For me the movie needs to have the right fetish elements (girl, outfit, peril elements) and good quality (HD) and lights so that I can see what I am looking at. If it is a nice environment its a small bonus but not at all important.

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  15. LoveThemHeroines says:

    Production values do matter. Without a story, without context….we’re watching Gonzo super-heroine action. For some that’ll be ok. But in the end, it’ll diminish the value.

    I appreciate the acting and the special effects. The build up always makes a good flick. Look at the TV or Movie Super-heroines that many of the videos are templated after. Super Girl, Batgirl, Power Girl, Wonder Woman, etc. Don’t we watch videos of similar super-heroines in peril? It’s because we know what’s their back story. How powerful they are in some way and how they succumb to the evil forces, whether it’s fondled, beaten. seduced, mind controlled or what have you.

    Keep em coming. I love the production values, I’d love more back stories to the heroines. There was one that was more original where they were two sister heroines that could feel what the other would feel. I thought that was a cool vid.

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  16. Burclee says:

    Quoting:
    Gil
    on November 17, 2014

    An addendum…”Far more worser than death” was the actual line!”

    My personal favorite was the film which featured the villain whipping out the green rock and:
    Villain: “Take this, Supergirl! It’s kryptonite! A radioactive rock from your home planet which can destroy you!”
    Supergirl: “Oh no! What is that?”

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  17. Eagle says:

    I tend to rate videos based on these:

    – Gorgeous model/actress who starts strong and is overcome
    – Good camera work / angles especially during the money-shot(s)
    – Good amount of time lingering on the money-shot(s)

    Production Value just doesn’t matter until you can get these basic 3 things right in the first place. If you can’t, the time and energy spent on production values is wasted.

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  18. Gil says:

    An addendum…”Far more worser than death” was the actual line!

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  19. Gil says:

    By “production values” are we talking about extensive sets, special effects and multiple camera angles? Because, leaving budgets aside for a moment, I have always found that sometimes simplicity is the best strategy. I actually do appreciate the work that a producer puts in if he , say, gives the heroine a back story. No, it is simple, easily fixable , continuity errors that bother me. As does bad grammar, unintentionally used. The recent Villains United (which I generally enjoyed, I want to quickly add) had one moment where big, muscular Mercy says to the heroine ; ” There are things far more worse than death!”….now, that bothered me. I know Rye does not use scripts, but how much work would it have taken to correct ? To me, Mercy had gone from a mystical, dangerous character who could beat the stuffing out of a full powered Amazon, to just a muscular dude in a skull mask, there to administer the obligatory beat down. The grammatical just struck me as sloppy…I think sometimes that producers are spending more money on these videos than in the past, and what I see is an understandable rush to get the edited, downloadable film to the boards to start recouping their costs. I was an original member of SHC, and I think what other posters have alluded to in many of their short films was an unpredictability of action; not a desire to fulfill a fetish element quotient. Subscription sites, frustrating as they were in many regards, had this as an advantage over a one-off movie…since revenue to fund the films was generated from subscriber members dues, they budget was easily achievable. Well, I’ve gone on for too long, but it is an interesting topic!.

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  20. sabrejack says:

    I want – nay, DEMAND! – perfection now!!!! On all levels!!!!!

    I want it all, and i want it now – gorgeous models, perfect acting, all fetishes perfectly satisfied, unsurpassed production values, all at a ridiculously cheap price!! And no having to wait a long time before releases; no “Coming Soon” or “Here’s a little teaser” or “Some production stills of a movie due to be released after 87 more sleeps.” SCREW THAT!!!

    I WILL NEVER SETTLE FOR ANYTHING LESS, AM I UNDERSTOOD???!!!! NEVER!!!!! I DEMAND MORE AND MORE, BETTER AND BETTER, TIME AFTER TIME, FOREVER!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks, I… I needed that…

    (but seriously – whatever comes out that more or less matches my tastes, then meh, good enough. We’ve come a LONG way since having to videotape heroine-type shit in the 80’s, that I can personally attest to. Spoilt bunch of bastards we are now; there’s so much awesome shit to choose from, my long-forgotten adolescent self would be so pissed at what he’s missing out on… 😉

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  21. veggicidal says:

    For me, the most important thing is the model and the costume. If the girl looks good, and the costume is well-done, then I can forgive a lot of other things. Beyond that, some good acting and some good girl-power are the priorities – lots of exercising her powers and dominance over others. I can forgive the hotel room, but obviously I don’t think it will be worth quite as much as the same thing shot in a real location.

    Of course, given the general lack of girl-power in relation to peril, I’d almost be willing to pay top dollar just for the hotel rooms at this point. 🙁

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  22. bbsucks says:

    I haven’t read through all the responses so hopefully I’m not repeating anyone.

    I’m going to say the ever useless “yes and no” answer. Production values totally matter, in that a better produced video is more fun to watch than a less well produced video. But does it mean everything? Absolutely not.

    If you ever read comments on this site, you know that everyone has slightly different little fetishes and things that they enjoy. Some guy might like boots on a heroine while another person might really like bare feet. Someone might like sexual peril while another person absolutely hates that. Some people like things to look more realistic while others enjoy things looking kind of campy and fake. Point is, the odds that a video speaks to every one of your personal preferences while completely avoiding the things you don’t like as much is extremely rare.

    So sure, I like a nicely produced video, but if I see one that appears to speak to all of the things that I REALLY like, I don’t care if it looks like it was shot on a phone and has no special effects. I’m probably going to get it.

    That being said, I have found that the producers that do have really nice production values (with the exception of Zen, which I kind of feel like are the same videos over and over again, though they are still fairly enjoyable), tend to put a level of thought into what they shoot that lesser produced videos often don’t take the time to do. So I always feel a little safer buying a video with high production values that might not speak to everything I enjoy, because I do feel like it’ll be a more thoughtful video with more to offer, even if it’s not made “just for me.”

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  23. Ambassador says:

    @Horse, DarkLord, Sugarcoater, understand and agree with your comments, no need to re arrange them. A good actress and director can sell anything with little to nothing. Look at some one man/woman shows…Robin Williams commanded the stage with nothing more than a microphone and occasionally a few back props.
    More vocal variety than the same ol grunts and yipes. Let me know what she is feeling or thinking through her thoughts as she is enduring whatever peril at the momnent as is very clear in some of the more well written stories out there.

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  24. HorseWithNoName says:

    @ Lumpy: no I wasn’t comparing apple and oranges, you were 🙂 Yes, comic book movies are much better today than TV shows with comic book characters were in the 1970s. Yes, you do need a huge budget to make “The Avengers”, but I think we can all agree that without a guy like Joss Whedon it won’t be good despite the budget, look at “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”.

    But no, TV shows have not become better due to higher production values. Have you ever watched the original “The Outer Limits”? I mean the old black and white show, not the re-boot from the early 1990s. The stuff they did with virtually no budget beats most TV today. Watch the episode “The Invisibles” and tell me it does scare the pants of you. Or “The Architects of Fear” which has the same plot as “Watchmen”, but twenty years earlier. No, it is today like it always was: some shows will be great, some will suck, budget or production values have really nothing to do with it nor will they make a bad show any better.

    Hitchcock’s “Psycho” is him saying: I can make a movie that looks like a B-movie, but will be groundbreaking and copied hence forth. Or think Spielberg’s “Jaws”. You hardly see his mechanical Jaw in it. Yet no sequel was better even though they had higher budgets.

    Or look at the original “Star Wars” movie and compare it to the much higher budgeted “The Phantom Menace”. Only because something looks better does not mean it is better. Some will argue the “Memento” is still Christopher Nolan’s best film and it did not cost much. With “Interstellar” he had a huge budget and look how that turned out. I will content that the last 20 minutes are the best part, but it is something Rod Serling did in the 1960s cheaper and better on TV. Much cheaper and much better.

    So, yes, when you want to make “The Avengers Age of Ultron” you better have a huge budget, but when you make “Redwing” you cast a “fresh, unkown” face, make a decent costume, put a good script together and find a director who can pull it off. It will be great because it has a small budget. I personally find it odd that heroine peril producers feel that they need to include “special effects” or other fancy stuff in their movies. There is really no need and in some cases it is there to make up for lack of talent or originality.

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  25. kingles says:

    I agree with Digvol too…

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  26. kingles says:

    Yes they are important to me. I basically agree with what Chillyplasma just said. To me things like wooden acting, ludicrous dialog, and fight scenes where the blows clearly aren’t close to connecting…make it impossible for me to suspend disbelief and get into what’s happening. I don’t need Oscar caliber performances or Shakesperian writing, just for everything to be reasonably credible.

    Fortunately for me, but not for my bank account…there is plenty of content out there that exceeds my standards. 🙂

    @Sidekick: The Slayer Paris series is amazing! Definitely still one of my favorites for all the reasons you mentioned…and more.

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  27. Digvol says:

    I couldn’t agree with @Chillyplasma more. For me it starts with the script – you can have great actresses, but if the script is naff it doesn’t matter who is delivering it. By script I include the concept as well, it has to be based around something that matters to the characters, where jeopardy is developed and emotion and believability can be delivered by the actors and actresses. I don’t care about expensive locations, it just shouldn’t look like cardboard or obviously be a dustsheet draped over a few nails as a backdrop. You don’t need a multi-camera you need a sound, engaging concept that gets you involved immediately. Some of the old videos noted here are dated and lacking in style. Don’t get me wrong its not about wanting to see some hardcore pounding, for me, its about eroticism a feisty heroine who’s hope is eroded, powers are lost, good corrupted, guilty pleasure. If you’ve got all that with the more subtle aspects of control and domination.you’re on to a winner for me. Chris styles is a man who gets alot of this for me. .

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  28. Chillyplasma says:

    I may have said this before, but it seems people here equate “production value” with “money”.
    The most important production value is a script, and it surprises me that this is the most neglected thing in this genre as it costs nothing (but time), and it’s very easy to write a good script (people have been doing it for centuries and the basics haven’t changed). The difference between the Avengers and Man of Steel movies was basically script… and that goes to prove that huge budgets can’t save a bad story.
    The next production values are good directing and acting. Again these don’t really cost anything, it’s a skill. You can tell with these videos if the director is involved or just standing and watching.
    Then there is camerawork and editing. Once again it surprises me that producers in this genre are re-learning something that is already well-documented. Little tricks that cost nothing but a few minutes make a world of difference.
    Location? Doesn’t matter. If all you have is a dirty basement write a movie that takes place in a dirty basement (Saw).
    Some of the best films in history have been cheap, Reservoir Dogs is mostly 3 guys in an empty room, the trick is making it look like you didn’t want more.

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  29. random47 says:

    For what it’s worth, my criteria for purchase are:
    1) Does the video cater to my fetishes?
    2) The attractiveness of the actress
    3) The actress’ ability to “sell” or:portray the fetish.
    4) Does the video include fetish elements I strongly dislike?

    If 1 through 3 are strong I’ll try to ignore 4 but I often regret these purchases.
    I will pay more for the “bells and whistles” if my initial criteria are present but that is because I am weak-minded.

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  30. bogie says:

    @ Darklord. I’d say you articulated beautifully.
    @ Sugarcoater. You too. I have a great fondness for the SHC videos. The models and costumes and beatings were fantastic. Dano tended towards the gooey though.

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  31. Maar13 says:

    I use to like those New Goddess Cinema videos for a while too, yes they were repetitive as they come but the girls were good looking, also some of the Super Hero girls guys when they were starting, some were not good but you try to get along with the story, which for me was kind of a big deal and still is.

    One day they hired a great looking girl, I was “oh my God, this girl is gorgeous!” and then unfortunately for me I see her act on a clip and completely killed everything for me, so bad that every time I saw this good looking girl, I remembered the clip and I avoid photo stories with her. The one of their producers called BPD created one fill called “Prototype” with a whole different light and with a girl that was not that good before but on this one, acted really well (too bad she retired after that) and I said to myself “Wow! so this can be this good then..”

    After that for me effects and acting, besides peril elements and good looking girls started to become a must, I dropped the New Goddess Cine subscription and started looking for better movies.

    I bought a couple of Ring Divas destruction movies and some were cool, the acting in those were decent, the part I didn’t like is that the girls pretty much always ended up death, then they made a big movie called Inara (this is most recent) which in the act was not that great if you will but the story won my over completely and the locations too.

    Then I kind of found about Next global crisis and The Battle for Earth, I liked their movies, the acting, effects and everything was better, Next Global Crisis does not use as many especial effects as the other companies but I love the way they shoot the movies and the girls can act, really act and also, what drove me the most about both companies was that they have an arc, a storyline that keep on coming every episode, so most of the time I was hooked, even if the girl was not that attractive to me, or if the elements I liked were not there I needed to find out what was going to happen next!

    Then CTLE came along and added great effects, which also, like Next Global Crisis, had very beautiful actresses that can act, and get some really cool story lines over there too, different storylines, you have HK which is only fights, Shadowgirl, the SVE universe which has a story on it’s own, HL which is their “custom” department (which have me hooked by the way) and so on, yes got it out of the way, “the wall is the same for like 10 movies” but sorry, I get hooked by the girls acting and the effects, the location can be secondary and they are PG-13, which makes me love them even more.

    Sorry for the long rant but with all being said I do need some production values there, now more than ever before, that is why CTLE and Next Global Crisis are my favorite Superheroine producers.

    Honorable mention to RYE, like some of his movies, the PG-13 ones, but I have to recognize his production values are really cool. KAK and KAF should be mentioned too, not superheroines but Kick Ass girls and they can act, that is awesome.

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  32. Christopher says:

    It really doesn’t matter to me. It is in the eye of the beholder hehe. Seriously, I have always liked NGC and the older TBFE films. They had a lot for the buck so to speak. But hey, anyone remember dyna-flix and the DareDolls? They was were funny short films for $15 and the actresses were pretty hot. While I have never have gotten any Zen Pictures, there was the Steel Ange, and the formally mentioned Astro Girl films.

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  33. Darklord says:

    For all the talk about the “advancement” of this genre, does anything made today hold your interest as much as SHC and vintage punished heroines stuff?

    I feel like there’s been way too much emphasis on production values to the point that the producer is trying to hard to make the video feel “cinematic”. Let’s be real, we buy these videos to please our perverse minds haha. I don’t need some epic piece of cinema. I want an overmatched sexy heroine walk into her doom.

    For my money, to this day no one competes with Classic SHC videos. Some videos today are pretty good but it’s hit or miss. Those SHC and old punished heroine vids just seemed like they had more at stake. They felt more real and raw. Like the heroine actually had her life and or career on the line.

    Now? Meh… They don’t capture that essence. Perhaps it’s nostalgia talking but I don’t think that’s the case. Maybe I’m not doing a good job of articulating the fine difference but anyone else see where I’m going here?

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  34. bogie says:

    It’s more a matter of tone and mood for me, rather than special effects. Who seriously expects you beaut sfx in a 30 minute fetish video? The sets don’t have to be out of the box either, as demonstrated by some of those early Paris Empire Girl movies in a bedroom. I just like the film to take itself reasonably seriously, to have a beautiful heroine in a sexy costume who can throw and take a punch. Defeat by knockout and ideally a carry of the limp heroine.Direction is important, with some coverage other than a static camera. I also like some to-the-point dialogue. And I’ve got to say I prefer decent acting to bad. Now, all of these things could be construed as ‘production values’ and they are, but the basics, nothing flashy. The latter are good if supported by all the basics, but absolutely not essential. IMHO….

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  35. H. Myers says:

    The production value is not my top concern unless it’s as bad as early years Dr.Who.

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  36. I’m going to comment from the other side of the aisle.
    I have come to learn that if the model is attractive, and the peril is good it will sell for the peril lovers. If the models are hot and the chemistry between them is good it will appeal to the girl/girl erotic lovers. If its a well thought out story and not just something thrown together it will also be accepted by those who appreciate story…. Having said all of that. If the effects are good then there is an extra level of appreciation. we get more emails from people when we had an fx that was obviously hard or that was obviously time consuming. we get emails from people telling us they appreciate the effort and time it must have taken.

    We get feedback from people as to how to improve future fx.
    So while we have found that it doesn’t cause a difference with our bottom-line (we get the same amount of sales with none fx films than with fx films)
    we have found that when there is fx we get more written appreciation

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  37. Burclee says:

    I can understand how some producers might start aspiring to thinking of themselves as artists, not just fetish content providers, but that doesn’t mean I’m interested in supporting their dreams.

    Does the video contain the fetish elements I like? If yes, I’ll give it a shot, if not, it hardly matters that it is more elaborate a production or has special effects.

    Even the worst regular films are better than the best fetish flicks, there is only so much anyone can do with “I’ll have my revenge on Super Slut!” style scenarios, it still comes out as unsophisticated, not a real story where you are intrigued by the plot for its own sake. If the fetish elements were not there, no one would be watching these things whether or not they were otherwise well done.

    My standards aren’t too demanding, I’m okay as long as they don’t do anything genuinely stupid, which they do an awful lot. Superheroines will fall for the dumbest, most easily seen through tricks, or it never seems to dawn on Supergirl that she can simply reach out and close the lead box with the green k in it. Really bad acting is annoying, too much focus on the villain is especially annoying.

    So, sorry to you video makers who want to do art, you’re in an industry where fetish content trumps all other concerns for the majority of your customers.

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  38. Herp says:

    Honestly I just care about whether if the actress is hot and the film delivers sexual perils. I come to see the wonderful costumes as well. Having good production is always a bonus.

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  39. Decendingskulls says:

    For me it’s all about the acting, and the eroticism. You can have great acting without eroticism, but not the other way around. I need the actress to be invested in the eroticism. Everything else is icing on the cake to me. Most times there is a direct correlation between acting and production values, but for me a movie with great acting on a shoestring budget is just fine. High production values are certainly appreciated, but not necessary for me.

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  40. Lumpy says:

    @HorseWithNoName, Those are good examples you cited, but I think you’re comparing apples and oranges. Look at superhero films or tv shows made back then and compare them to what is being made now. The ones today are far better for both their production value and A-list actors.

    That being said, I do agree that in this genre, good directing goes a long way. Production value is great, IF, it’s used the right way. Look at the Axel Braun movies, good production value but mostly just straight forward porn. There’s not a lot of interest in his movies from guys on this site. Well at least not me anyways. Were as the stuff Jim Weathers does with his O-Girl character, for me at least, is spot on. Christina Carter’s Wonder Woman XXX parody is another example of costly sets costumes and cast, and the cost is reflected in the price, but guys like me will gladly pay it. But there are videos shot living rooms, basements, garages, etc…, that I will watch over and over, because of the way it is shot, or the actress and her costume hit the mark. There are specific actresses that always grab my attention. I have a thing for Christine Carter and almost always buy her videos. And, yes, some of those better than others.
    This is a niche genre, and we know going in that we’re not gonna get Christopher Nolan or Josh Wheedon, movies. So we buy what is offered based more on fetish elements then production value. Yet, if they can add some good sets and effects to it, cool, I’ll pay extra, if it’s what I like.

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  41. rizo says:

    Hey Sidekick,

    It’s funny you should mention Zen Pictures. Been a while since I’ve visited them but I think this new release has everything I love about Superheroine fetish:
    https://www.akiba-heroine.com/product/download.php?menu=1&product_id=4902

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  42. John says:

    I don’t care about sets so much, but the acting/costumes need to be at least semi-decent. I’ve bought plenty of videos clearly shot in hotel rooms that I’ve been able to enjoy thanks to hot models, good costumes, and good peril. Having said that, I appreciate producers like Jim Weathers who have really good props and sets in their videos.

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  43. Raiderman says:

    For me its mostly the attraction of the actress that catches my attention and at times it has been the costume the heroine is wearing. So the production value comes secondary, but in a perfect world I would love to have all the above at a reasonable price. The one thing any movie I purchase has to have is enough MB to make a high quality picture. A couple of what I consider low production value films I purchased are also New Goddess Cinema due to the actress Annick Blanchard and films on the Cali Logan(Batgirl) clips 4 sales. What I consider high production value films I purchase from are CTLE and NGC and that again is due to some great looking actresses (Kelly Kula,Tia Meddins and Harriet Moran) and best costumes in the genre IMHO.

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  44. HorseWithNoName says:

    No, they don’t. Watch the movie “Zabriskie Point”. Apart from two scenes with Rod Taylor, this movie has no actors. I mean no actors. The cast is all people with no acting experience. No sets were build. It is all shot on location.

    Watch The original “Psycho” by Hitchcock, done almost on a TV show budget with a TV show crew, or the original “Night of the Living Dead”, on a shoestring budget.

    And yet these movies are classics and put a lot of major productions to shame. Why do they work? Because they all have great directors with a vision.

    And then look at some of the films in our genre which are considered classics. None of them because of their production values.

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  45. Mike J says:

    Some things matter some don’t.

    1) I honestly couldn’t care less about a story or acting. When I say this I’m counting selling peril and acting out dialogue as two separate things. I think there’s too much focus on story in videos lately, large chunks or even entire videos of heroines in civilian clothes as you’re given exposition. It’s a heroine video, I want to see heroines in costume in peril. That’s what I’m paying for, there’s a villain that’s bad and a heroine that’s good, have at it.

    2) Locations, I really don’t care. I’ve been buying heroine videos since they were filming them in hotel rooms, and peoples living rooms. If the peril is good I couldn’t care less where the video is filmed at. If people want to shoot films in the same warehouse more power to them.

    3) Choreography, I like a well choreographed video where the moves are not repetitive. I think Zen-Pictures the best at this. They make those heroines look like fighters, the fights have good combinations, blocks, counters, they’re just great fights. Thing I don’t like about Western videos sometimes, too much one punch, heroine writhes for a while, stand her up, low blow heroine writhes on the floor for thirty seconds, etc. Too slow and boring for me sometimes, especially when it’s the same move over and over and over.

    4) Special effects, didn’t used to think I cared about this but CTLE does a really good job with these. It does add something to the video to superheroines looking well, super. Seeing heat vision, super strength, super speed, etc adds to a video. Better than the one throat lift, toss aside Supergirl does to a villain to show her strength in a lot of videos.

    5) Costumes, if it looks good on the heroine I really don’t care if its store bought or handmade.

    Just my 2 cents

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  46. wid says:

    There are three things I need: good looking actress; good quality costume; and believable action. With just these three elements, I’m willing to spend some money but not the $30 plus range. In order for me to justify spending more, I need good production value, locations, acting, etc.

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  47. Blx says:

    To me, they do matter. I remember the same New Goddess Cinema videos and I really felt it was a waste of my money. That there was hardly any effort put into it and that it was just a quick buck for them. I think I watched one video and never went back to the site again. It was the fetish elements and the models that sparked my interest, but the lack of effort/quality put into it (in my opinion) turned me down.

    Now at the same time, they don’t mean everything. I don’t need thousand dollar props, exotic locations or 4K HD resolution. If you have it, that’s great, but it’s not a deal breaker for me. I feel that good movies with good actresses deserve to not be diminished by a cheap costume, but at the same time, I can still enjoy the movie. SHL’s Batwoman Returns was a great example of a fantastic film with a subpar costume.

    I guess what it comes down to is that, I want to see that they’ve put effort and thought into their product. That as viewer, I can see that the producer wanted to make a good and finished product. Like I said, not just a quick dollar, but a film that can make a producer be proud of himself. If that’s not there, then I kind of feel ‘cheated’ as a viewer and it’s basically a letdown.

    Of course, fetish elements, models, previous vids also all matter when it comes to a purchase but effort and thought from a producer, translated into production quality, is always a very nice bonus.

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  48. Underdog18 says:

    INB4 Judah writes a novel of a reply…hahaha.

    Seriously though, I guess if you could have your cake & eat it too, then we could have it all. I’m no producer, but I assume better production values would mean increase in pricing as well as delays in releases of video due to all the extra editing. I think your video production is already pretty damn good and would not trade off paying more and waiting longer just for some outdoor footage and Hollywood special effects.

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