Extras: The first disc had some spam, an antipiracy commercial, and a 31:40 minute sampler from the Vivid-Celebrity line. Then came a second disc of extras called the "Vivid 25th Anniversary DVD". This disc had 211:06 minutes of edited scenes from the Vivid vaults, a great many of them very appealing as a sampler even if I would have greatly preferred to see them in their original form. Starting off with Ginger Lynn & Tom Byron from 1984 and working all the way to Nikki Jayne (with Mick Blue and Ben English) in 2008, it was an interesting way to see how scenes changed over the years, many scenes using condoms or edited so heavily that the true extent of industry changes couldn't be felt so much but well worth looking at a time or two. This disc also had some trailers and spam for those that care, the compression rate on the weak side for those that care.
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Audio/Video Quality: Karissa Shannon Superstar was presented by Vivid as shot by the leading lady and her boyfriend, Sam Jones III. It was encoded in MPEG-2, shot on a home camera, a lot of the footage from when the camera was laid down on a table or something, with all sorts of lighting issues, grain, color tint, and every other flaw you would see from a largely unedited home movie shot all over the place (from the streets in a moving car to Hawaii to an apartment and the like). Like most celebrity sex release movies, do not pick one up for the clarity of footage or to see professionally produced pornography because this one lacks in all ways on those accounts. The video bitrate hovered around the 7.4 mark at times or dropped down to less than half that, little consistency provided as the often blurry release looked better on a smaller television than my 60" Sony. There was a continuous Vivid logo on the lower right hand corner (typically called a "watermark") but as wildly bad as the compositional work was, most of the action could be seen. The audio was presented in a cleaned up 2.0 Dolby Digital English with a 48 kHz sampling rate and 256 Kbps bitrate, a lot of background noise (when outside) or issues with hearing the vocals (when inside mostly) due to the use of the microphone on the camera itself.
Body of Review: Vivid has almost made a game of reinventing itself in recent years, discarding old dynamics that did not work for them like contract performers and old time directors unable to offer new style scenes, moving into the internet market and celebrity sex release genres while competitors saw their market shares fall off the map. In the celebrity sex show game, there is no doubt that Vivid dominates the industry much as it has over the last 26 years in one way or other, their latest title on the stands being Karissa Shannon Superstar. Okay, first up, I have never been a huge fan of the genre, especially the promotion of fifth tier "celebrities" best known for their family or friends. When I heard the semi-familiar name of Karissa Shannon, I tied her back to being a Playboy Playmate but that was all, forgetting her horrid season in the "The Girls Next Door" that seemingly capsized the long running show I reviewed years ago at a mainstream website (last time I looked years ago, that review had close to a million hits so I know people liked the show). Karissa was a replacement when the series tried unsuccessfully to reboot with a new trio, her twin sister and another gal just not cutting it. Her partner though, Sam Jones III, was the real star of this one in terms of his celebrity status, the man having been a regular on "Smallville" as well as several other television series on primetime network channels. One glimpse of the footage with him in it and you will know why I allude to him as the star as well, the little guy having a fairly large cock.
Karissa Shannon with Sam Jones III
The back cover described the double disc set like this: "She's The Girl Next Door that never lived next door to any of us. She's the Playboy Playmate that was so hot she moved right in. Now you'll see her like you've never seen any celebrity before. With whips, chains, riding crop, and her boyfriend, TV star Sam Jones III all over her...in cars, hotel rooms, the bath, you name it! Watch some of the most controversial footage we've ever released...Karissa Shannon Superstar...never has a girl this hot been this nasty!" Here's a brief look at the show, noting that no condoms were used for those still interested, but I'm not going to break down every scene as usual since so many of the clips were travelogue oriented or snippets of sexual trysts that likely lasted a lot longer given the context:
The movie was a little disjointed in how the footage was strung together, the montage opening leading to Karissa bending over in green shorts by a busy intersection (Sam suggesting she was going to cause an accident). They were up next in bed where she was naked and he was purposefully looking at it as if to shout out to his homeboys "I'm tapping this sweet blond ass!" He diddled her pussy and she lubed him up with a handjob, some passive vaginal riding leading to no wads of genetic juice landing anywhere, the show reverting to the couple in public as Karissa drove her vehicle in traffic as they talked.
Then Sam drove along, his erection in hand as he beat off slowly, Karissa assisting him with some hand to gland action. That broke away to her slobbing his knob in bed, Karissa unable to put more than an inch or two into her mouth. She used both hand to jerk him and soon bent over for him, her moderately active riding giving away to her lying down as he did all the work. No clear pop shot came of this one either, though I liked seeing her ass cheeks ripple as he piled into her pussy.
The couple was next up in Hawaii, their hotel room a far cry from the travel footage displayed by the beach. The couple enjoyed some time getting ready in the bathroom before hitting the beach, going back to the room for her to suck him off with a degree of chemistry, though limited sexual skill. She then bent over for more vaginal sex, some tease footage and Sam beating himself off, for the first wad of spunk to hit that cute ass of hers. He massaged his seed all over it and there was then a very limited tryst leaving a wad of semen on her chest, the couple eating before yet another short session of vaginal boning took place. The rest of the movie seemed to emulate this approach with limited bursts of sexual energy to come, my favorite being when Karissa put on some sexy black lingerie for Sam, the tease alone strokable (even though Sam barely tapped her with the riding crop). He had a chain and collar for her and she blew him, the last sessions centering on her trying to sleep in a messy bed as Sam bugged her to get awake. She bathed in the window overlooking the city and showered off afterwards, the pool party and workers looking up at her likely receiving a nice glimpse of her.
Summary: Karissa Shannon Superstar by Vivid lacked on technical merits but the fact is, most people reading this are going to wonder far more about how sexually appealing Karissa Shannon was and how she interacted with Sam Jones III (best known as "Pete Ross" according to some). I thought they had chemistry together and despite the grainy nature of the travelogue material used in the show, she was a cutie that reminded me of former performer Casey Parker while Sam added something to the mix as the one with the most Hollywood credits (by far) of recent celebrity releases. While I'm not exactly a cheerleader for the celebrity genre, I thought Karissa Shannon Superstar earned a rating of Recommended for some of the spontaneity, the amount of action, and the fun factor provided. I'd rather see such a set of scenes shot professionally but part of the fun is how Vivid presented it, making this the best of the genre for the year in most ways.
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