'Pretty Filthy' Offers Laughs And Tears

There have been other plays and movies about the adult industry, but they’ve been mostly depressing. “Pretty Filthy” brings the laughs, but doesn’t shy away from the sometimes harsh realities of a changing digital porn industry… in song.


Using actual interviews as a basis for the many songs, a group called “The Civilians”created a play about a young Midwest girl named Becky and her foray into the adult world. She wants to get away from her boring life and takes her boyfriend with her to the San Fernando Valley to be a star.

It starts out as fun and excitement, but changes as the realities of the adult world begin to emerge. One porn star laments about the times when her videos were selling for more than $50 each and now they end up on tube sights for free. Instead of being a big star, Becky ends up heading an Internet chat room host while her boyfriend goes into gay porn because it pays better.

Everything is set to a raucous song and dance as it shows the audience the many facets of a misunderstood industry. At one point, Becky and Bobby are in bed together after a long day of shooting scenes and they’re trying to figure out what they mean to each other.

“Pretty Filthy” definitely brings the funny, but since everything is based on interviews with people in the industry, it’s tapered with the sometimes unglamorous reality.

The play goes into the changing views of the adult industry as well. At one point, an adult industry agent talks about how porn was where people ended up, but now people start out in porn, to become a porn star.

While some adult stars have found success in mainstream acting work such as Sasha Gray, many are still pigeonholed into the mould of an adult actress and find it very difficult to get a job of any sort during and even after their porn career.

“The Civilians” are a unique troop and their plays and shows have set them apart from the many others out there. “Pretty Filthy” is a treasure for anyone looking to get a glimpse of the porn world with a good beat that you can dance to.

If anyone is in New York and would like to see the show, it’s at the Abron’s Art Center, 466 Grand Street at the corner of Pitt and Grand on Manhattan’s Lower East side.