|The Brat (1987)|
Jamie Summers, Siobhan Hunter, Brittany Striker, Sheena Horne, Rebecca Lynn, Jerry Butler, Joey Silvera
Double Sided, Single Layer
Full motion video main menu; full motion video chapter selection; 3 short video clips; profiles of 8 Vivid Girls; 15 random video clips on side B; 10 trailers on side B; and Dolby 5.1 audio
Bitchy wife, cum in mouth, rimming (f->m), adultery, office sex
Click for larger size (shown only to illustrate video quality)
The First Word: One of the first major video franchises, The Brat established Jamie Summers as a major star and positioned Vivid to be the dominant video force that it has become. It's directed by the legendary Henri Pachard and written by Paul Thomas, so it should be okay, right?
What's It About?: The movie opens with the main character, Debbie ("The Brat," played by Jamie Summers) having sex with her husband of 10 months, Mort (Jerry Butler) in their bed. But instead of being excited, Debbie is completely bored and more interested in the color of the ceiling than her hubby. When Mort climaxes into the condom she makes him wear (to avoid the mess), she warns him not to drip onto the comforter when taking it off. When Mort suggests that she could go down on him instead of using condoms, she's disgusted. This opening scene doesn't show much explicit sex, but that's intentional.
The next day, Mort, who's a lawyer, is at his office and confides in his friend and co- worker, Steve (Joey Silvera) that he's having problems in the bedroom. Steve suggests that he should mess around, but Mort is afraid that Debbie will divorce him and take all of his money. Meanwhile, we see that the office has been bugged with listening devices by Mort's secretaries, Verna and Gwen (Siobhan Hunter and Brittany Striker). Then Steve's wife, Constance (Asian cutie Sheena Horne) arrives at the office for a quickie. But rather than retire to his office, Steve decides to let Mort watch him and his wife have sex. In the process, Mort gets hot and bothered and starts to jack off, but then Steve instructs Constance to go and help Mort out, which she does with a quick blowjob before she goes back and finishes Steve off. Mort's secretaries hear the whole thing, and Verna decides that she's going to steal Mort away from his wife by making her jealous.
The plot turns to Debbie, at home with her friend, Sil. She complains that all Mort wants is sex and reveals that she only married Mort so she could shop. Her friend is in disbelief that Debbie doesn't enjoy sex and gives her a sex manual to try to get her to enjoy herself. She also warns Debbie that if she doesn't satisfy her husband, then he'll stray. Debbie ends up on the bathroom counter, masturbating to the book. But later, we see that she hasn't made any progress... Meanwhile, Verna tries to seduce Mort at the office, but he doesn't bite. Instead, he goes home and tries to get intimate with Debbie, but she refuses him.
With a serious case of blueballs, the next day he requests Verna to stay and work late. Of course she doesn't mind and ends up jumping Mort's bones after work. While she's planted on his face, Gwen comes in, making it a threeway. After this energetic sex scene, the story goes back to Debbie, who receives a videotape and anonymous note at home. When she plays the tape, she sees Mort screwing his secretaries. Upset, she calls Sil over. In the process of consoling her, her friend gets excited seeing the tape and the two women end up eating each other out on the couch.
Next, Mort and Debbie invite Steve and Constance over for dinner. When Mort and Constance go into the kitchen, Debbie takes Steve on a tour of the house, ending up the bathroom, where she asks him to make love to her so she'll know how to satisfy Mort in bed. Of course, Steve doesn't refuse and the two go wild in the bathroom. Hearing the two through the bathroom door, Mort and Constance decide to get even and fuck in the bedroom. Even as Debbie displays her newfound sexuality, she's still anal enough to insist that Steve cum in the toilet bowl to avoid the mess getting anywhere near her. :-)
The next day, Debbie storms into Mort's office, convincing Verna that she's set their divorce in motion. Debbie marches up to Mort's desk and yells at him in her bitchy "Brat" style. But rather than coming to blows, Debbie shows that her experiences over the last few days have definitely taught her to enjoy sex...
What I Liked: The nostalgic feeling: Wow, this one really took me back to my first days of watching porn. Ah, the crappy "shot on video and duplicated at EP speed" look! The cheesy sets and ridiculous scripts! A time when Jerry Butler and Joey Silvera were studs in their prime! The big hair and the gaudy clothing of the 80's! Also, the uncomplicated sex: no mandatory condoms, no piledriver positions, and no gaping anals. It doesn't make me want porn to return to those days, but it's a fun trip back, if only to appreciate how far adult has come in the last decade.
Jamie Summers: One of my favorite stars of the late 80s, Jamie is delightful to watch. In addition to being the perfect California blonde (playing the character of a ditz well too), she's an enthusiastic performer--not over the top, but just enough that you know she's into the sex. That, combined with her perfect body, make her the ideal "girl next door" and the favorite of many, including me.
What I Didn't Like: The nostalgic feeling: For the same reasons I said that I enjoyed The Brat, I didn't like this video. It may be a trip down memory lane, but so are Chrysler K-cars. Despite my general dislike of Vivid movies, any modern Vivid video runs circles around this one. Jerry and Joey may have been stars, but I never really cared for them that much back then. And the action seems almost amateur or sophomoric compared to porn today.
DVD Extras: I had higher hopes for the extras on this disc, especially since it's a new Vivid release. But it's pretty much the same as every other Wave DVD--a bunch of assorted, unlabelled clips and some trailers. The major "extra" would be the "Dolby Digital 5.1" soundtrack, which isn't anything to get excited about. Obviously, the soundtrack wasn't recorded in 5.1, and probably not even stereo. What you get out of the rear surround channels is a bunch of ambient noise to go with the music, such as birds chirping, telephones ringing, or general office noise. Considering the obvious low-budget nature of the production, it's just plain irritating to hear the same sound sample of a telephone ringing over and over. Thankfully, you can select the "plain" stereo mix from the audio menu and skip this "feature."
A/V Quality: Well, you know that I wasn't impressed by the audio, so what about the video? Although the quality is pretty average for a late 80's video, that's not saying much. Anyone who's watched pre-90s porn on VHS will feel right at home...there's no improvement in image quality over VHS. However, that's definitely due to the technology and budgets of that era. The video equipment nowadays blows away the cameras that were in use 14 years ago, so it's unfair to expect that it would be able to compete head-to-head with recent features. So keep your expectations low: colors aren't true, the image is fairly soft, and you'll see a good share of tape glitches. Check out this sample video capture for an idea of the image clarity.
The Last Word: It's pretty sad to think that this is the very best that adult had to offer in the late 80's (a period that's the industry's version of the Middle Ages). Henri's best work was behind him, and Paul's was yet to come. The Brat would make Jamie Summers an X-rated household name, and Vivid has been doing well ever since. But if I want to take this type of trip down memory lane, I'll just dig deep into my closet and pull out some old & dusty VHS tapes -- I don't need to shell out a couple of Lincolns to watch it on DVD.