We all figure out our predilections in our own ways. For some of us, it was something we watched or read as a child that woke up a part of our mind to possibilities untold; for others it was a person we met later on, someone who saw something in us we hadn’t fully understood about ourselves. For the two young ladies trapped together in this week’s release, it was an idle play at first - then a mutual recklessness, a delicious sense of being in a fantasy land away from the strictures they were raised to think unbreakable.
It begins so innocently. A game of cards; an exchange of dares. A revelation - Lana has thrown off her petticoats, taken her quarantine as an opportunity to experiment with something a little more daring. Pandora is more cautious at first - whatever will the landlady think? - but it’s not long before they’re both topless and skirtless, stripped to their stockings, admiring each other’s exposed breasts with a newfound, blushing desire.
This is not a story from our own quarantines of recent years, but still it feels familiar to us as this latest pandemic drags ever on. I’m certain there are people out there who explored new horizons during our lockdowns, too: who were spanked for the first time, learned an entirely new side of themselves, discovered the true depths of a friendship hitherto platonic.
I hope they had as much fun as these two, giggling and thrilling as they tie each other’s wrists and take a hairbrush to each other’s backsides.
There’s always been a rather Sapphic edge to the dynamic between a lady of noble birth and her slightly less privileged companions. This is particularly true in Victorian and early 20th century settings, where two unattached women might find themselves alone together for extended periods of time and bound by convention not to form real bonds with either the servants or the menfolk. In a world where emotive expression is not encouraged and intimacy is confined to closed doors and dark corners, human beings look for connection. Plus, you know...that power dynamic is hot as hell.
Which is precisely the conclusion reached by Miss Bower, the titular Lady’s Companion played by Rosie in this week’s release.
She mostly took the job out of necessity, we suspect; she needed to find a husband, which would be easier in the company of Lady Pandora than from her own reduced circumstances, and she needed to support herself in the meantime, which the house and wage on offer would enable her to do. And if her new mistress’s idea of discipline seems a little draconian...well, it’s a small price to pay.
Once she’s been there a while, though, she makes a startling discovery. There’s much more to learn from this rich widow than simply etiquette and connections - Coleridge and his “woman wailing for her demon-lover” give Miss Bower quite a start - and as for the discipline, well, it turns out there’s more to like about that than she could ever have imagined.
There’s a fun moment in the backstage footage where Rosie remarks that her character is clearly never going to marry - the two of them will be quite happy together for a long time yet, she suspects. I can’t say I can blame her.
High dudgeon on the high seas this week as rival pirate queens Rosie the Brave and Banshee Blake have a run-in of truly epic proportions. There’s nothing meek or submissive about the Dread Captain Rosie, for all she’s found herself in a highly compromising position: one rather gets the impression that she’s often bested Banshee Blake, who is clearly half-mad with power at having her counterpart so thoroughly in her clutches.
Perhaps the Banshee really will be Admiral Blake someday, with Rosie’s ship forming part of her piratical fleet. Till then, she has her captive rival to occupy herself with - and plenty of ideas for how to break her.
Chief among them is to transform this former Captain into the Ship’s Wench, tied down and presented for the whole crew to use at their leisure. She’ll be bound there, helpless, as one by one Blake’s men come and pay her a visit. This parting promise particularly caught my attention; many of my own fantasies run along similar lines.
If that’s a predilection you share - or if you simply love seeing curvaceous piratical brats display their ample cleavage and get marked up beautifully by a leather tongue whip - this one’s for you.
I’ve written here before about how Clara Hewitt’s work with us has become something of a favourite of mine. She’s a woman of remarkable talents - we’ve seen her give six strokes and leave one mark, which I can’t imagine is easy! - and there’s a sadistic gleam in her eyes that I find rather compelling. It makes her a natural for our popular English Headmistress roles, the indomitable leaders of old-fashioned boys boarding schools and swanky finishing academies for elegant young ladies.
In this week’s film, though, a slightly different skillset is called for: she punishes the two recalcitrant girls by tawsing their hands and thighs, virgin territory unused to receiving such treatment. Even veteran Pandora is left with a beautiful set of fierce red welts!
There’s a good reason most spanking fans prefer to receive their beatings straight to the bottom. One’s hands or thighs will sting far more, and skin that hasn’t often been punished is far more prone to mark. From the top’s perspective, aim becomes more important than ever: you must be mindful of potential wraparound to the incredibly delicate skin of the inner thigh, for one thing.
If you’re a fan of spankings off the beaten track (or off the beaten bottom, rather), watch this space - there’s actually a Part Two for this period drama, in which Clara’s cane is applied to yet another painful location...
This Halloween we’re returning to the kingdom of Avarinth, where last we saw our duchess-to-be receive a humiliating bare-bottom spanking from her mysterious new mentor.
Just as with Part I, what makes this spanking story so great is the character of Riva herself. She represents a side of submission rarely portrayed in porn: the fortitude and resilience found in being beaten. In the face of hardship - and this time hardship comes in the form of a particularly nasty, biting cane - she endures.
Few things in my life have given me a more immediate sense of my own strength than a severe spanking. For me, as for Riva, it was something of a rite of passage; I discovered BDSM as I came of age, and learning that I could withstand a rain of literal blows showed me that I can also survive the metaphorical ones. As Riva herself asks, “how can I come to terms with the reality I have created when you refuse to impart to me the strength that comes from pain?” (Don’t worry, listeners: she definitely gets what’s coming to her in the end!)
And of course it’s not all about learning valuable life lessons - neither in my real life journey nor in this fictional tale. The description of Riva’s harsh caning vividly conjures up how it feels to be caned; the anticipation of every new stroke, the sensation of welts forming on a red-hot backside.
If lockdown has you missing the punishment you crave, this audio story is sure to help you out.
One of my favourite things about working at Dreams of Spanking is how varied the content I get to write for is. One week I’m waxing lyrical on the virtues of pornography made by real life couples who are truly, deeply in love; the next I’m laughing out loud at a queer comedy pastiche of a BBC period drama. And then this lands in my inbox: an aristocratic fairytale about the haughty future Duchess of a magical land. Never a dull moment!
I think my favourite thing about this story is that it looks at submission from an angle we rarely see: the focus here is on Riva’s fortitude. She’s portrayed not as someone receiving a punishment they richly deserve, nor as a person having a dream fulfilled; those are both true and excellent stories about people who love to be spanked, but they’re not the only roles submission has to offer. This is spanking as a challenge that can be overcome, and a woman who finds strength in overcoming it.
In a way, this echoes some of my own journey with kink and BDSM. This might come as a surprise to some of my former play partners, but I’m not really a masochist in the truest sense; pain itself is rarely my goal for an encounter, and I’m mostly in it for the power dynamics and headspaces. Some of my most memorable scenes involving corporal punishment have been the ones where I’ve finished the session feeling as though I’ve achieved something; I can take pride in knowing that I have these bruises because I weathered the storm. It was difficult, and I wasn’t sure if I could do it, but I stuck it out and I came through to the other side. There’s a life lesson in there somewhere.
(It’s a mistake, incidentally, to assume that the amount of pain someone is in is directly proportional to the amount of fuss they’re making. For some of us the reverse is true - yelps and wriggles mean we’re still warming up; silence and stillness mean I’ve centred myself to ride the wave. Tops, remember to check in with and get to know your bottoms: this has been a PSA! But I digress.)
Riva might end her spanking crying at her new mistress’s feet, but she is not portrayed as a weak or broken woman. She was strong enough to conduct an excoriating self-analysis without shying away from her worst qualities, she was strong enough to trek for hours through the forest to reach an unknown destination, and she was strong enough to take an hours-long OTK spanking without even shedding a tear till it was almost over.
I kind of love Riva, honestly. She’s got this. And so, perhaps, do we
It’s almost always a shame to take sex too seriously. Let’s face it, fucking is kind of an inherently ridiculous thing to do: it’s messy, it’s often unflattering, it’s practically inevitable that someone will get a painful cramp at an inopportune moment. The ability to laugh with our sexual partners is what makes all these things okay, and it can be a bonding experience in and of itself.
So sometimes I think porn could do with a bit more humour. Not all the time, of course - we all love our severe, headspacey scenes too - but why shouldn’t porn sometimes be funny? Life is funny. Sex is often funny. If porn is an art form in its own right (and I believe that it is, or can be) there’s no reason it shouldn’t imitate life in all its ridiculous glory.
A Spot Of Bother is a male/male bare bottom spanking film in a historical setting. It is also, at times, genuinely laugh-out-loud funny. It’s a sort of Jeeves & Wooster (or perhaps Holmes & Watson) period pastiche, a queer trans sendup with a sense of humour as uniquely British as caning itself. “They insulted the Queen, I suppose?”, asks Blake at one point, trying to work out what has caused his dutiful manservant to act with such uncharacteristic impulsivity. You can see the twitch of Charlie’s lips trying to keep a straight face as he replies: “In a manner of speaking, sir.”
This is a guest director film, produced and edited by Charlie Forrest himself. He clearly had as much fun with the editing as he and Blake with the ad libbing. The result is a rollicking gay spanking film with some jolly good jokes. That doesn’t take away from the hard caning we all love to see here; in my opinion, it adds to it. This scene is as well-rounded as Charlie's bottom, and there’s no denying that Blake makes a fabulous queen.
OK, so this one was a particular treat for me: not just because I absolutely love a bit of genderqueer action with subversive undercurrents, but because both performers happen to be people I regard as pals. Charlie Forrest and I made our Dreams of Spanking debut together in Please May I Come, Mistress, a couple of years ago (and we ended up winning an award for it – have I told you that already?). In Carpe Posterium, though, he’s playing an irascible Latin tutor who has been requested by the father of lazy student Blake to provide some old-fashioned discipline.
Blake, though first appearing somewhat nervous (and well you might be, lad. Well you might be!) is in no mood to accept Mr Forrest’s criticism and reacts with sulky petulance which turns into outright rudeness. Naturally, this can’t be allowed to pass, and it isn’t long before Blake is obliged to bend over and submit to a sound thrashing. This is expertly administered with a proper old-fashioned tawse: first over the trousers, then on the pants, and finally the tawse is applied to Blake’s bare bottom, which blooms with delicious red marks.
There are many fun touches to this film which lift it out of the ordinary: Blake’s gorgeous tailcoat-and-trousers ensemble, suggestive of the young rake about town, certainly works on me and anyone else with a thing for a bit of badly-behaved posh. Charlie’s extraordinary waistcoat and cravat (and distinctive sideburns) give the perfect impression of the faintly-eccentric academic.
Though both performers are playing it straight, there’s a nicely snarky, even absurdist atmosphere, which is something you tend to get in all the best spanking erotica. Sure, some people prefer hardcore disciplinary spanking to be intense, serious and quite dark, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but I’m always more drawn to stuff that’s either full-on fun or has a satirical edge rather than a sadistic one.
As it happens, the background music here is slightly discordant and gives a feeling that things are teetering on the edge between funny and a little bit frightening: after all, the out-of-control posh boys are often the ones who end up wrecking the place, and it’s perhaps a pity that certain real-life ones don’t have the equivalent of a Mr Forrest around to teach them that actions – or inactions – can have painful consequences.
There’s always something endearing about behind-the-scenes material. I’m rather fond of that photograph of Robert Powell taken during the filming of Jesus of Nazareth: the actor, strapped to his cross, is wrapped in a blanket and being given a drink and a cigarette by a crew member between takes, which deliciously demystifies the whole thing. There are some similar enjoyably fourth-wall-breaking moments in this excellent look at the making of Mrs Smith’s Method: Pandora strolling into shot in modern t-shirt and knickers to give a bit of directorial advice; the discussions over how to achieve the impression of an utterly frenzied birching of Amelia Jane’s bare arse without going beyond what would be safe, sane and consensual for the actor.
Mrs Smith's Method, released a couple of years ago, is one of the more ambitious and elaborate Dreams of Spanking productions. It pushes many buttons: sly pokes at Victorian moralizing, hypocrisy and weirdness, especially via Molly Malone’s fabulous portrayal of a thrashing-obsessed, for-your-own-good religious loon; the ritualistic elements involved in hardcore discipline, such as kissing the implement and thanking your chastiser, and the closing blissed-out, yielding contrition. However, seeing the cast interact between takes as themselves is endearing and a good reminder that, no matter how dark the scene you want to play out might be, it can still be enjoyable fun entered into with full knowledge and great enthusiasm.
I’ve recently been dabbling in spanking shoots again myself and, along with the indisputable fun it is to yell at a cute girl and spank her pert bum till it’s glowing and hot, the laughs and hugs and the reassurance afterwards that she enjoyed it, that it was fun working together, and that we’re all good, are as important a part of the experience as the actual scene.
Severe punishment, the sort that comes with a few darker overtones of wretched humiliation and the crushing of a free spirit, may not be to everyone’s taste, though it’s definitely hotter than hot for a lot of people. I’d have to admit that my own preferences run more to the knockabout comedy end of the spanking scene, so I probably like this making-of version slightly more than the original. It’s also a good way of showing just how much work goes into the making of a porn film that’s a little bit more ambitious than most, and would be just as helpful as a masterclass in making your own historical romp, should you be so inclined. Mrs Smith Behind The Scenes is certainly a terrific companion piece to Mrs Smith’s Method: watch them back to back, if you have a free afternoon. As to whether you prefer to tantalise yourself with the making-of and then watch the film proper, or enjoy the feature first and then go back and see how it was all done, that’s entirely up to you.
Since Dreams of Spanking launched, I've been impatient to edit and release The Victorian Brothel. I chose the image of me over Tom's knee, wearing bloomers and a corset, as the homepage header image back when I designed the site in the summer of 2011. I always intended to create a rotating gallery of images on that header, showing a wider variety of scenes, but somehow I never found time.
I was incredibly proud of this film when we shot it. This was my second ever shoot as producer/director, a day with Zille Defeu, her husband Duncan, our friend Jay, Tom and me. The first Dreams of Spanking shoot had just been me, Jay and Tom. Those early shoots were a steep learning curve for me.
Until The Victorian Brothel, every scene was a crash course in new aspects of filming that I had to work out from scratch. There was a lot of stopping and starting. Trying to juggle the mental demands of directing with the physical and emotional challenges of bottoming on camera, I found it hard to avoid getting stressed. But The Victorian Brothel was our final scene of the day, and it was the first scene I'd produced that felt like it went well at the time. With Duncan, Zille and Jay behind the camera, Tom and I got into character and the roleplay flowed. It felt as natural as the roleplay scenes we played in private. Trusting our friends to capture our live improvisation, I was able to immerse myself in the scenario, get fully into character, and surrender to the beating without having to balance that headspace with other, more technical concerns. As a result I was able to take a much harder spanking, paddling and caning than I usually can while performing/directing, and I was really happy about it.
That was over seven years ago, in early December 2009. The reason I didn't edit this film before the site launched, along with the other two scenes we shot that day - Caned in Jodhpurs and Liberated Ladies of the Jazz Age - is simple. The Victorian Brothel was originally written as part of a series of films entitled The Adventures of Molly Brown. I'd written several episodes of it; this was the fourth chapter in the story. I hadn't had a chance yet to shoot episodes one to three, but the shoot with Zille and Tom was a perfect opportunity to shoot the episode in which my character meets his for the first time. I very much intended to shoot the others at some point, however; and I wanted to wait and release them in story order.
Sadly, I never got a chance to film the backstory. Episodes one, two and three fell by the wayside. And when I realised that the age verification policy in the Digital Economy Bill was going to put a cut-off point on my ability to keep the site alive in its current form, I finally accepted that I wasn't going to get the chance to shoot them any time soon. Meanwhile, I'm trying to release as much of the content I care about while the site is still legal in the UK.
So Molly Brown's story starts here: with her first appointment with a new customer in Mrs Slater's brothel. An urchin who grew up in the streets and the workhouse, Molly was sent out to work for various undesirable trades, but somehow always found herself sent back to face the the steely glare - and the hard leather strap - of the beadle. When Mrs Slater turned up to see if he had any new girls for her, he packed her off to the brothel - and Molly's life entered a new chapter.
Scrubbed to within an inch of her life, Molly began her transformation into a girl Mrs Slater's customers might find appealing. She earned her share of licks from the madame, too; but it was nothing compared to the beadle's strong right arm. When Mrs Slater saw how well Molly took her punishment, she thought to send her to one of her more eccentric clients, a gent with a predilection for administering corporal punishment to the plump bare bottoms of comely wenches. Molly lacked the elegance and accomplishment of other girls, but she was resilient and quick-witted, and Mrs Slater saw the potential to train her up to please her more unusual clientele.
Molly took well to Mrs Slater's training, and was finally declared ready to meet her first customer. But although Molly is no stranger to taking a beating, she still is not particularly inclined to behave submissively. Sparks fly between her and the gent as he tries to bend her to his will, and her quick tongue and stubborn nature get her into more trouble than she'd bargained for.
So that's Molly's backstory. You never know, it's not impossible I might be able to shoot the previous episodes sometime in the future - although perhaps I'll look too different by the time the stars align, and I have affordable access to the venues and cast I need. In the meantime I think this scene stands well enough on its own. Although I can tell you now that the next chapter has also been shot, and will be released in the coming weeks, starring myself, Tom, and a new character played by Leia Ann Woods...
Coming back to this film to edit it, seven years after it was filmed, was a weird experience. Tom and I split up three years ago, and it was very strange to watch us on camera. I almost felt like I was watching someone else; and yet in other ways seeing us together all those years ago felt very real, and very personal.
I remember writing this scene for us to play. Although Tom plays a very overbearing, bullying character, and to the uninitiated perhaps this scene might be edgy enough to seem non-consensual, I can tell you for certain that this scenario was my fantasy, and performing it was an authentic act of self-expression. But it was fascinating and somewhat dissonant to watch this recording, a piece of my own personal history, and reflect on how much has changed since then.
There are some aspects of this film that I would definitely do differently nowadays. For instance, the way that Tom's patriarchal character throws around the word "whore" makes me wince, now, as an advocate of sex workers' rights who is fighting against stigma and whorephobia. These days I would seriously consider before I took on the role of a historical sex worker, but back then I didn't think twice.
Editing this, I had the opportunity to reflect on how far Dreams of Spanking has come - not only politically, but technically. The Victorian Brothel was shot before I knew to record audio separately from the cameras, or to use face lights. It was a frustrating edit in some ways, as I struggled to salvage a legible soundtrack from two cameras that both had audio isses - one picking up a lot of wind noise (from where I have no idea, given we were indoors), the other plagued by mechanical clicks and whirrs from the operation of the camera. But I feel like I've managed to massage it into a shape that communicates my vision, hopefully without too many technical distractions. I hope you'll forgive any that remain.
For me, the power of this film comes from the interaction between the characters. It's a hard corporal punishment scene, both physically and emotionally - the intensity brings me/Molly to tears towards the end. But not only is the spanking itself severe, the atmosphere of the scene is rife with tension. The scenario unfolds as a battle of wills between a cruel gentleman with particular tastes, and a spirited wench who doesn't know when to keep her mouth shut. I certainly took more strokes, and harder, than if Molly Brown had been submissive than rebellious. But I loved it.
Life has moved on since Tom and I filmed this scene. We are no longer together, and there have been many changes for both me and Dreams of Spanking. But this film holds a special place in my heart. It shows what Tom and I did best - hard, accurate spanking that pushes me to my limits, quick-witted dialogue, sparks flying between two strong characters, and Tom's trademark brand of elegant, articulate dominance.
When I filmed this scene, it seemed to encapsulate everything I wanted to achieve with Dreams of Spanking: immersive roleplay between real life partners, lush costumes and locations, and imaginative historical settings with a quirky sense of humour and a rich attention to detail. That was why I chose a still from this scene as our banner image - and why, although much has changed since then, I'm still very pleased to share it with the world.