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My Play Toy 3

Studio: Smash Pictures » Review by Don Houston » Review Date: 11/20/04

XCritic's Advice: Recommended

My Play Toy #3

Smash Pictures

Genre: Virtual Sex

Director: Dan Silver

Cast: Lauren Phoenix, Selena Silver, Kris Slater, Nick East, Brian Surewood (semen donor only)

Length: ? minutes (there was no time code)

Date of Production: 8/17/2004

Extra's: The best extra (by far) was the inclusion of 28.5 minutes of Behind the Scenes footage shot by Don Fischer (formally of Simon Wolf Productions). There was about 18 minutes of worth of deleted footage and a couple of interviews with some bloopers to make up the BTS feature and I admit to liking it a lot more than average since Don has long proven his worth at providing such a show. There was also a photogallery but that was it.

Condoms: None

Audio/Video Quality: The picture was presented in the usual 1.33:1 ratio full frame color that it was originally shot in by director Dan Silver. For the most part, the grain was minimal except in a few scenes where the lighting wasn't adjusted correctly (at least for a given camera angle) and the video noise never bothered me too much. The composition of the shots seemed a bit off at times with the camera either too close or too distant, cropping off parts of the gals in a manner that surely didn't enhance their looks, but it was the color saturation that bothered me the most (it was too rich, helping to cause the visual flaws mentioned earlier). The audio was presented in the stereo MPEG format, certainly weaker than the more standard Dolby Digital used elsewhere, with minimal separation between the channels and limited dynamic range. The show sounded kind of weak much of the time since the background noises were never edited (and there was a bunch if you listened), there was a slight hiss throughout the show, and the mixed levels varied enough that I had to hold the remote control in my hand rather than what most people hold when watching porn (the strip tease sequences were way too loud and the dirty talk often way too low; both rookie sound mistakes that should've been fixed in post production). Essentially, the sound weakened the heat somewhat but less discerning consumers might not care as much as I did since it wasn't the worst I'd ever heard.

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Body of Review: With the rampant success of the My Plaything series by Digital Sin and Virtual Sex series by Digital Playground, it seems as though every other company on the market is trying to cash in on the virtual sex genre. The idea is to provide what amounts to a video game where you can control the actions of a porn performer in a limited fashion (I believe the general consensus is that they are considered "rail" games since you are limited to a handful of discrete choices on a linear track) using a series of loops where they masturbate, give oral sex to an unseen male in a point of view fashion, and then engage in various sexual positions before taking either a computer generated pop shot or a real one at the viewer's discretion. There are two major factors in how good such shows are; the star and the technical values, with each being equally important in pulling off the show. Most of the smaller companies trying to imitate the "big two" as I tend to refer to them, attempt to add a bit of their own flavor, often with mixed results. I vividly remember VCA's attempt to push the limits of technology using a voice activated command system with their Fantasex line (it could be made to work for a limited time), just as I remember the low budget Don Goo Digital Pleasure release starring Brooke Hunter providing the fun solely on her efforts. Other companies continue to attempt breaking into the field and the latest is a series by Smash Pictures, with My Play Toy #3 being the most recent show marketed by them (I never saw the first two for comparison purposes).

Okay, the first order of business is telling you who the two female performers were: Lauren Phoenix and Selena Silver. This is the hook that Smash Pictures uses for their series; two gals instead of one. While they could've added more interaction between them to liven up the action, which will have to take place in a later volume since no one apparently thought enough about adding it in here. Lauren, the hot gal with lighter colored hair on the front DVD cover, is the gal that has taken the porn world by storm this year, having filmed dozens upon dozens of releases for a number of companies, showing her heat and sexual skill in everything from oral to anal with many no-holds-barred scenes under her belt. If there was ever a gal deserving of her own virtual sex release, she would be the one. Selena, on the other hand, is an Australian in her mid 20's that has found a somewhat less successful career path, working in far fewer titles, often for lower budget companies. She's the brunette on the front DVD cover with the all natural body used to provide some contrast to the talented Lauren. It's not that she looks a bit generic in terms of performers so much as her usual method of trying to pass off loud vocals as actual sexual heat, a practice that you often find in the wannabe's of porn (although, to be fair, even some of the top talent have been caught doing this so try to be fair to Selena if you see her other performances).

The action caught on DVD this time was similar to that of the other companies with a choice for nice or nasty in many of the selections. By choosing "nice", the gal will act a bit less sexually aggressive and employ less dirty talk while selecting "nasty", the gal will act more whorish and as though she's in heat. To be fair, I like both options since my mood changes in terms of what I like to see (and hear) but the DVD doesn't consistently provide both options for each segment (leading me to think they either ran out of space on the DVD, forgot to shoot each type of footage, or simply had to edit out some of the more blatant mistakes in post production).

The first type of action provided was the standard masturbation material (no, not for you…for the performer on screen; it's ALL supposed to be masturbation material for you). You have a choice of the gals using their fingers, a vibrator on their pussy or a dildo in their ass with some ATM (ass to mouth) action. This was perhaps the weakest series in terms of this area of action except for a few times when the gals made it seem like they were doing more than picking up a paycheck. Not all gals excel at this kind of thing but I've seen both of these two do a lot better in the past so I'm willing to overlook the weakness here and press on.

Next up was the handjob action where the gals jerked off either Nick or Kris, depending on the selection. It was very similar (virtually no difference in the pop shots) to the following blowjob material but I enjoyed it a little bit. This was Selena's are of expertise. While I've never thought she was prime pussy in her scenes, she knows how to swallow a sword (and a load) as well as jerk one off. I couldn't care less about her stretch marks when she's working a dick this way and both selections (handjob and blowjob) were her chance to prove why she was on the DVD with the superior talent of Lauren better in the other part of the release.

Next up was the footjob action. For those who aren't overly aware of what this means (and I can't blame you), it's when a gal jerks a guy off with her feet. Much like some of the older Jim Holliday movies for VCA, the gals used their feet to jerk the guys off with Selena getting a real pop shot and Lauren getting a mixture that looked almost as fake as the CGI shot the major companies use in their virtual sex shows. Lauren seemed better at providing the kind of stimulation fans would want but she also benefited from a superior camera angle that showed off her body better than Selena's so your mileage may vary in terms of which you prefer. I strongly suspect that if you're into feet fetish material, you'll be happy that your wishes were considered when making it so the relative strength of the material probably won't matter much. If you're that into foot action, you'll be happier getting a DVD devoted to it; something like Ten Little Piggies but it's nice to see that foot freaks are getting recognized more in porn these days.

Okay, next up was the main reason you'll want to watch the show, the sex acts where you could pick from Missionary, missionary anal, doggie, doggie anal, and reverse cowgirl with an anal option there too. Lauren shined, even if it wasn't her best work, and Selena tried to keep up as best she could. The loops employed were decent enough, if a bit too short in length for my tastes, but they allowed for the action to continue if you didn't select option after option too. For the most part, the angles were okay but at times it looked like the director wasn't noticing visual flaws that fans write to me about all the time (such as stretch marks); flaws that could've been compensated for with a slightly different position or angle (or lighting, make up etc.). Fans of Lauren's will want to check this one out until she can make a better version at one of the bigger companies but it was worth the price of admission to see her in this manner now.

Last up was the strip tease footage. I'm a huge fan of this type of thing and both gals did okay but would benefit from a bit of training, if you catch my drift. This was also an area that could have been lengthened to give the fans a better show but that may be on tap for the next volume in the series. The gals each have a body type that guys like; Selena having the lean physique of a meth-head with Lauren having the curvier body of a fuck bunny. Which type you prefer is a matter of personal choice, although I like them built for comfort, not so much for speed.

Summary: I timed many of the scenes in order to get a ballpark idea of the running time and it seemed to last around 90 minutes if you don't count the repetitive footage in the loops. That's not bad although I'd have appreciated better extras and/or more positions to pick from with longer sequences. My biggest concern for the show was not so much the lighting but the other technical faults. When selecting some of the sequences, it would bounce back to the other gal for the pop shot or simply continue on as though the choice wasn't selected (I know it was since I could hear the beep on my machine). The audio problems were a nuisance too since they are fairly easy to fix; either when shooting the scenes or in post production (yes, I have a bit of a background in that type of thing so I'm speaking from firsthand experience; forgive the pun). In all though, I think both gals would appeal to a selected audience and the overall quality of the DVD worth giving it a rating of Recommended if you're a big fan of them. Digital Playground and Digital Sin won't have to lose any sleep over this series yet but looking back at previous volumes, I can see where Smash Pictures has gone out of their way to obtain some of the lesser known performers to star (I've long been a big fan of TJ Hart, Kaylynn, and Aria; each in volume one or two) so I'll wait patiently to see if they improve or try to rest on the middle of the road laurels they've earned here.

Note: You can see recent candid shots of both performers by visiting: My Photo's and read about their antics at 2004 AEE Show.

You can email me with questions at Houstondon @ hotmail.com if you have any constructive criticism of the review too. :) Also you can follow me on twitter @HoustonDon

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