What a lovely couple. “Frontline” did a story on these two a few years back. One of their films (I believe the one that prompted the obscenity charge) featured the rape, beating and simulated murder of a pregnant woman. Of course, some academic might be able to make a case for the movie as a critique of sexism, violence, blah, blah, blah. The female star may be able to declare that, somehow, she found her role “empowering” and some kind of feminist statement. Janet Romano, while tacitly acknowledging in an interview that the kind of people who find her oeuvre entertaining are probably disturbed, then abruptly shrugged her shoulders and made the excuse that at the end of the movie, the two rapists/murderers/woman-beaters are lynched by an angry mob, and that made everything that went on before just hunky-dory. Good times. Pass the popcorn!
The show was on porn and obscenity prosecutions, in general, and you can still find the web site for it online (with transcript and video you can watch) here. If you want any proof of how demented these people can get and the problem with the idea that anything anyone "consents" to is OK, from the show's transcript:
LIZZIE BORDEN: She knows me. She's my best friend. I know she can take it. And at the end, I give her a hug. I take her out to dinner. We go shopping.
INTERVIEWER: Is she going to take a beating, a real beating?
LIZZIE BORDEN: Yeah. She's really going to get hit. She likes it. It's good. Sometimes, it makes you more horny when you're getting hit. It makes you more, like, wet. It makes you, you know, more tingly down in your genital area.
NARRATOR: Before the scene is finished, Lizzie's friend, Veronica, will be kicked and beaten. She will have oral, vaginal and anal sex with each of these actors. Then they will pretend to cut her throat and leave her for dead in a pool of blood.
LIZZIE BORDEN: I'm a female director, and it's easy for me to say, "Oh, come on, do it," you know, and not just a man. If a guy asks, they're, like, "Oh, he's a pervert." But if a woman asks, they do it.
NARRATOR: We were here because this is one of the places where porn is now regularly pushing the limits. But this was more than we bargained for. And while it appeared that what was happening was legally consensual, we left. The incident, though, caused us to wonder not just about the content but about the human cost, a cost that even porn producers see every day.