“Humb Day with Lupe Fuentes,” below, first appeared on August 25, 2010. I posted a photo of this shoot over on my @gramponante instagram page, with tasteful Ns and a V over the shameful parts, but it got taken down. This was the same week that the plot thickened with one Jeffrey Epstein, whose involvement in a certain P word that should never be typed on a porn site made a revisit of the term “Lolita” relevant.
Early in my brilliant career at AVN I met a fellow editor who, one day as a staff meeting was breaking up, asked me why a Lolita, or little lollipop, as she thought it meant, was used as a term for racy, young-looking women. She didn’t know about “that book by Nabokov.”
And I’m convinced that any mainstream pornographer who featured the word “lolita” or “lolitas” in [his, let’s be honest] title or boxcover copy had similarly not read the book. That was the third in my three Content Pet Peeves. The first two were the liberal misuse of the acronym “MILF” and the number “69.” It was as if 69 was, to them, simple shorthand that sex was involved, somehow, forgetting that it referred to something specific. (These things still upset me, and I blame them for my not being able to move on with my life.)
And yet it was the fringe pornographers who knew exactly what “Lolita” was, and who crossed that line in their product, that made things very scary for awhile, and colored the entire porn industry thusly for people on the outside.
So today, as Epstein, a man deep in the Rolodexes of two U.S. Presidents, a British prince, a celebrity attorney, and hundreds of other moneyed and influential people waits to further validate the light-years-more-wholesome Stormy Daniels, I take you back to the Canoga Park set of Wicked’s “Lolitas.”
Humb Day with Lupe Fuentes
August 25, 2010 (And Yeah, that day was a Wednesday because I cared)
Not since Leo Tolstoy’s “Anal Creampie Karenina” has a great work of literature become porn shorthand as quickly as Vladimir Nabokov’s “Lolita” has. Today I watched little Lupe Fuentes become the fire of my loins as she lolled by her lemonade stand.
If I am at least a decade older than the spicy Colombian Fuentes, then I am several decades older than her breasts, which her Wicked director, Brad Armstrong, made sure were only covered with authentic lemonade. This made me the perfect person to cover Fuentes’ first Wicked movie.
Armstrong’s “Lolitas” features classic bits of Porno-Americana, with Fuentes staffing a lemonade concern and other tiny spinners like fellow Wicked contract girl Kaylani Lei showing up on a merry-go-round.
“I didn’t want to be too on the nose and do a schoolgirl thing,” Armstrong said, “but Evan (Seinfeld) gives Lupe a tattoo in the credits, she gives him a blowjob, and we see that the tattoo is ‘Lolita.'”
Armstrong has won several tons of AVN awards but, as this was a lighthearted gonzo movie and not a big budget feature, he did not bring any to the set for motivation. It was a relaxed day, and as Fuentes expertly posed for several still and video cameras at the same time, late-period Madonna played through a MacBook connected to a bullhorn.
“It is time for El Orgasmo,” said Armstrong as Fuentes finished her masturbation scene.
“Lolita” as a porn niche is a tricky one because the term is a buzzword for the wrong, criminal kind of mainstream crossover, where men who should know better prey on the underaged and precocious, as did Nabokov’s faulty narrator, Humbert Humbert.
So, despite the legality of porn featuring women who are of legal age but who look very young, most directors have shied away from “lolitas” with a small “L” in favor of terms like “Barely Legal,” etc.
What’s different about the Armstrong movie is that the women are clearly of legal age but playacting with certain archetypical props. It would be like me wearing a fedora with a sign reading “Scoop” in the band.
Porn magic was happening on the set because, though Fuentes was shooting her lemonade stand solo scene, which will be a later vignette in the movie, she had not yet shot the opening scene, because her partner was sitting right next to me with full nuts.
“I don’t go on until later,” said Evan Seinfeld. “Right now I’m the driver, the administrator, the guy who carries suitcases…”
Seinfeld is Fuentes’ manager and boyfriend, but he scrupulously avoids saying ‘suitcase pimp,’ the term for porn dudes who make their income off their pornstress spouses. Long ago, Seinfeld was photographed carrying Tera Patrick’s suitcase and he was amazed by the self-satisfied vitriol of porn’s chatboard lurkers.
“Listen: I make my own money,” said Seinfeld then and now, and he proceeded to show me an Internet-based money-making venture that promises to make a lot of people a lot of money.
But money matters little to me, as I’m all about Art, which you well know.
Under the hot lights (and it didn’t help that it was 101 degrees in Canoga Park that day), Fuentes was becoming dry. A makeup lady was dispatched several times with a spray gun filled with olive oil and water to make Fuentes shiny.
I have yet to meet a porn makeup lady who wasn’t distractingly hot like fire, and I’ve been on several sets where the talent has not shown up and the director has looked wistfully at the makeup lady, knowing that she could apply her own foundation as well as not give anyone an STD.
Meanwhile, Fuentes continued cavorting amongst the lemon baskets.
I believe that one of the things that makes porn valuable is that, the simpler it is, the more it allows the viewer to supply his or her own context, and do his own thinking, This the viewer is always happy to do.
So as I watched Fuentes take off her clothes, I remembered a couple of things:
In my high school Spanish class, the very first conversation I learned involved a much tamer version of what Fuentes was doing, and not involving her olive oil-slicked vagina at all..
“Hola! Una limonada, por favor. Cuanta costa? Si, cinco pesos. Gracias! Adios!“
The other thing I ruminated on was the presence of AVN’s Mark Kernes. Kernes is AVN’s longest-surviving employee, having just finished his 26th year there. Kernes is a fan of 3D photography, and has been buying 3D equipment at his own expense for more than a decade. He has a 3D still camera on which he showed me some hardcore photos.
I thought back to the first porn set I;d ever been on, 2002’s “Whoriental Sex Academy 4” (starring Mika Tan and Alex Sanders), seeing this man who looked like a jolly Bavarian toymaker, and then being introduced to Kernes, with whom I’d later work with, briefly.
And today the genial senior citizen was plopped next to me showing me dirty pictures on his camera. I thought, “Things would be much different if we were sitting at the Enterprise Drive Inn in Bogue Chitto.”
Even in the thousand-degree heat, I was happy to see so many people with paid work to do; a stills and behind the scenes photographer, videographer Francois Clousot, a couple of production assistants, Wicked production manager Mark Nicholson, press liaison Heth Mares, the makeup lady, Armstrong cracking the whip in Spanish (“Masturbaccion aqui ahora“), Seinfeld as the celebrity greeter, and Fuentes herself: barefoot, naked, and citrusy.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, exhibit number one is what the seraphs, the misinformed, simple, noble-winged seraphs, envied. Look at this tangle of thorns.
“Lolitas” will be released in November.
The story below, “Humb Day with Lupe Fuentes