3 years after my old site crashed, I’ve managed to dig out the blog posts from the debris of the database. This is one:
Which isn’t so much a review as a towel being thrown -
I’ve tried and I’ve tried to write this review, but I just haven’t been able to gather the enthusiasm for it. The fact remains that as much as I want to like Moore and Gebbie’s Lost Girls, it seems to fall short of the expectations mounted by the pre-release controversy and massive coverage. The book has all the makings of a (in)decent Moore romp, and I openly admit to being touched in the right places (metaphorically) by the erotic pornographic material – somehow, the two parts are at odds, though. It’s like two people attempting to have sex with their backs turned to each other, which gives an oddly fitting picture of the reading experience.
It will take a sturdier reader or a more hardened porn fiend than me to identify which element gets in the way of the other, but there is a persistently unsatisfying feeling of “Goddammit, I was this close – !” in reading Lost Girls’ alternating takes of retelling the classic children’s books and the main characters engaging in rollicking threesomes. A good-humoured tease is fine and well, as is retardation, but what do I get for reading through 330 pages of it? A bomb crater with a dismembered penis next to it? In some ways I liked the Hyde/Invisible Man sex scene from League of Extraordinary Gentlemen better.
That was sarcasm; I don’t want to paint Lost Girls as a horrible turnoff. As mentioned above, there are genuine thrills of either kind to be had. However, the hype leading up to the publication of the book(s) was partly concerned with Moore and Gebbie’s aim to produce a) a pornographic work of literature and b) porn that isn’t degrading or obtuse. In my opinion, they only succeed in the latter – but one out of two isn’t half bad, really. The attention that Lost Girls garnered prior to its collected release may have been hyperbolic when it came to the use of established characters, but the critique for openly displaying imaginative, sexual intercourse actually just showed that in the 21st century there are still people among us who are afraid of sex. Moore’s the pity.
Sorry ’bout that one. I don’t have any conclusions to this, other than a faint hope that I’ll like the LoEG: Black Dossier more. And an encouragement to Top Shelf not to use the same Photoshop texture on the dustjackets of all three books next time? It cheapens the look on a quality publication.