A few months ago some friends and I ventured into Good Vibrations in the Mission on a quest for some good porn. I was interested in seeing some “straight” FtM porn—i.e. a movie with a trans man having sex with a woman—but to my chagrin there wasn’t much of that genre to be found. Why not?
There seems to be a plethora of porn with trans women (MtF) and cis-men, often referred to as Shemale Porn, where straight men get “tricked.” Porn star, Wendy Williams talked to San Francisco Bay Guardian about her fanbase being largely made up of straight men and why she believes there’s a lack of FtM porn out there—commenting that FtMs still have “a female brain” while she still has a “male brain”—this is problematic to me on many levels and I do not agree with her in the slightest. In Julia Serano’s book Whipping Girl she suggests that trans men are less visible because they pose a threat to cisexual men. I can’t help but wonder if this is really why trans men are rarely seen in porn—especially “straight” porn.
Most pornography is made for and by heterosexual men; porn star with Trannywood Pictures, Dex Hardlove, stated that “historically, transmen have not been encouraged or often invited to make porn” therefore most trans porn comes from “politically radical organizations within the queer community who stray from heteronormative representation. I would like to stress that this has more to do with sexual identity than gender identity.” In a 1998 survey conducted by Adult Video News showed that roughly “90% of adult video consumers were heterosexual men.” According to Hardlove, Trannywood Pictures is “a gay porn company, not queer or straight, but gay porn company. They may change their genre in the future, but currently it is gay, men on men (of all kinds) having hot safer sex.” Hardlove also raised the question what makes something “straight porn?” If that consists of trans men having sex with a woman (which for the purpose of this article is my definition), then locally based companies Pink and White and No Fauxxx have such scenes in their productions. However, both of these companies are often labeled under “lesbian/ dyke porn.”
Buck Angel, known as the “Man With a Pussy,” seems to be the only well known FtM in porn. On his blog he even refers to himself as “the first and only FtM transsexual porn-star.” Angel’s goal is to bring FtM porn into the mainstream as a legitimate genre and not as a “freak show.” In 2007 he won Transexual Performer of the Year at the AVN Awards. He was the first trans male performer to do so. Interestingly enough, Buck Angel has worked with Wendy Williams in Big Boob Adventures. “It was the world’s first filmed FtM and MtF sex-scene” according to Wikipedia.
A friend who recently got a job reviewing porn websites commented that she’s “never seen any trans men porn stars except on user uploaded X-Tube, and Buck Angel.” She went on to say that she has rarely seen even Angel having sex with women. The real issue, according to Hardlove, is that there is not enough FTM porn in general. “We need to find more ways to include FTMs in all porn. As a queer person, I feel like FTMs are under represented in general, so it is not wonder ‘straight’ FTM porn is also under represented.”
It’s silences like this that add to the fetishizing of trans sex and relationships. In a world where we can watch a porn on just about anything, a couple ought to be able to find porn that somewhat mirrors them. “It is important to recognize that there are straight identified FTMs who may want some representation on the big screen. Also, there are straight identified women who prefer FTM lovers who would also appreciate some representation on the big screen” stated Hardlove, and I agree. So what can we do? Hardlove suggests that those who want representation organize it and create it. “I mean I would love to watch some hot porn made by passionate people, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.”