Apr 092015
 

Enjoy: bloopers from my April Fool’s Day video review:

I had many ideas for April Fool’s Day this year, but the idea of a sex toy video review was solidified one night when I realized I could craft a video which began well but devolved into a pile of shit. It would start out great, with an awesome theme song and me being my charming1 self. Then there would be strange cuts. Bad lighting. I would say weird shit I wouldn’t normally say. But it would happen slowly, so that for as long as possible, the illusion of sincerity would remain. Then at the end? The same theme song, performed horribly.

Even with this idea, I knew it would be hard to fool you people. I’ve been pulling pranks for five years now, and you expect one from me. So with each step of the arduous process of producing this video review, I took into account whether it would “give away” the joke.

First, I needed a toy. A carefully selected toy. It couldn’t be a toy that readers would immediately know I’m reviewing as a joke — so bad rabbit vibes from Cal Exotics were off the table. I wanted it to be rechargeable, so it would have enough features for me to talk about/butcher. I considered stuff from Jopen’s Envy or Lust lines or maybe mini vibes from Fun Factory… but decided on the Vibratex The Girls Princessa.

Then, I began laying the trail. Placing little clues on social media. This was the first one:

Meanwhile, I started writing the script. I’d lie awake at night thinking of stupid ideas and emailing them groggily to myself:

“Good for nipple stimulation. Kinda like using a weird vibrating flower.”

“Reminds me of that other toy I reviewed from Vibratex… hmm… can’t remember the name of it.”

“Thought I hit record but no. Had perfect take but whatever here we go again.”

At the beginning of March, I went on a trip with Aerie and Lorax, and we spent one night trolling YouTube for the worst sex toy video reviews from which to gather inspiration. It was here that I came up with the idea to show the sex toy in murky reddish water,2 vibrating awkwardly against its own bag, and held much too close to the camera with the ever-present qualifier, “I don’t know if you can see that.”

Ah, the usual sex toy video review shots

When I got back from my trip, a package was waiting for me. It was time for another subtle social media hint, so I took a picture of the contents. The comments only confirmed my choice of toy. “Oh, dear. I dread and eagerly await your review of the Princessa,” someone wrote. “I can’t wait to read your signature snark on the princess vibe from Vibratex,” said another. “It is so buzzy it makes my eye twitch.”

Filming the Vibratex Princessa on my not-at-all-staged charging stationI’d read reviews of the Princessa and felt it in person once before, so I knew it was going to be a disappointment. Still, I was appalled at how utterly useless it was. I assure you, every negative thing that I say in the video is true. I actually did question whether I was having an orgasm with it.

I began filming. It took two days to film b-roll of the toy sitting in various locations throughout my house, and to capture with precision my artfully-arranged charging station. It was time for another clue, so I uploaded this photo.

But it was too much of a give away. Some of you were just too smart. The moment I saw this comment, I hid it:

Comment reads: This just left me thinking, "Oh that's right, April is coming..."

I started to lose hope about actually fooling you. But I soldiered on. I needed my girlfriend’s opinion on the toy to add to my video, so I literally forced them to use it while I laid next to them with a notepad in my hand. They deemed the toy, and the experience, “really upsetting.” When I told them the toy retailed for $75, they yelled, “ARE YOU SHITTING ME?”

I set aside an entire day to film the main footage, a day when my boyfriend would be home to help me wrangle the cats. Script in hand and natural light on my side, I sat in front of my phone for hours filming myself. When the script read  “chug a glass of wine,” I followed its orders — and continued filming. Most of the post-wine parts were improvised.

Video editing in Pinnacle. Oh my god.

Editing the video was an endeavor all its own. I’ve been using Pinnacle since high school, so it’s unfortunately all I know when it comes to video editing. A decade later, the program is as buggy and inexcusable as ever. I’ll give Pinnacle one thing, though — it made my life super easy when it came time to add ridiculous transitions and sound effects.

Bad video effects such as ripple, tint, CD case, and fire

5,000 hours into editing, I talked to my dad on the phone. I thanked him for “blessing” me with the inability to do anything half-assed, including APRIL FOOL’S DAY JOKES. He said, “if you’re going to do something 90%, why not do it all the way?” So. That’s where I get it from.

The music was the final finishing touch, and thank goodness my boyfriend is a musician. For the music bed, I needed a 12-minute opus that sounded wonderful at first but degenerated into chaos, and boy did he deliver. The first inkling of weirdness comes right when I say the toy could be good for nipple stimulation. Truly beautiful. I wanted my theme song to include the phrase “discerning vagina,” which was a challenge — but the song he wrote was a home run. During the credits at the end, we decided on a karaoke version of the song, complete with drunken buffoon slur-singing along.

Finally, it was time to unleash the video for the masses.

 

The social media response was all I’d hoped for. Some people seemed to understand the video was a joke, while others thought only the toy was.

Facebook responses to my video

The truth is, I don’t plan to do video reviews from here on out. At least not regularly. Now that I have a sweet theme song and title sequence, though, I must admit I’m tempted. But for the moment, I’m taking a deep breath and remembering why I prefer writing. There is SO much that goes into a video, no matter how effortless it seems — actually, the more effortless something seems, the more effort it took. I have a whole new appreciation for Laci Green and Lindsey Doe.

"but where DID you put the pistachios"

So, peeps, did you know the video was a joke? Did it seem legit up until a certain point? How long was the theme song stuck in your head, and how on earth am I ever going to fool you again?

For more sex toy tomfoolery, check out Jewelry N’ Kegels,
the Kensington Wireless USB Presenter, and Fun Factory’s Orgasmia.

  1. questionable []
  2. actually, it was raspberry wine []
  • Lia Heavvymetalqueen

    Not gonna lie, you got me. I fell for it and thought the insanity was part of the review/video – like, seeing the tweets about the video reviews I just thought you were parodying that and I didn’t realize it was an April Fool’s until after a few hours. And then I kept holding a small hope that it WASN’T because I unironically love the video and the Chowder cameos and all the crazy wine and pistachios stuff in it.

  • “wine and pistachios stuff,” ha!

  • OpheliaV

    I definitely remember seeing the ‘Girls’ line of toys at a sex boutique and immediately thought ‘these look like something Epiphora would haaaaate’. Your April Fools’ Day pranks are elaborate as fuck, and I am definitely terrified of you. A+++ would get fooled again

  • Mary Q. Contrary

    I swear to god if you do a fake pregnancy next year I will find you and hurt you.

  • Phoebe

    You fooled the heck out of me! I started catching on to something partway through… but decided to stop watching because I thought you just had a massive character flaw in the form of tragically horrible taste and it felt more merciful to just pretend I’d never seen the evidence.

    I think it was the pistachios that fooled me. The level of planning you put into this thing is nothing short of absolute genius.

  • Nentuaby

    TBH I didn’t really register “joke video” until the pistachios. The initial part there were a couple bits you obviously didn’t mean, but I just took them for, well, *standard-issue* jokes/sarcasm.

  • Pegasister42

    I knew just because it was April 1st. Very enjoyable, though.

  • Leen

    I definitely thought it was legit. The theme song was golden, you should seriously use it for something. But when all the wackiness started happening…. I just assumed that was your ~artful choices~. I was a little weirded out, but still found it better than many other toy reviews, so…

  • T.J.

    I KNEW IT WAS A JOKE! Well, I suspected, but people were so convinced that I began to question myself. Glad to know I was right though!

  • Jayme

    2:37 [to Chowder] “So what do you think of the toy?”

    Chowder (looking at the camera with bored expression) “Seriously? You’re asking me?” [pause] “Uh, it sucks. This is cutting into my nap time, go away.”

    Yeah, sums up the Princessa perfectly!

  • Jayme

    I have to admit, I thought it was a real review at least as far as the crappiness of the toy itself. As for the rest… I figured the crazy video effects, the pink vision, all the other great stuff was just your snark at work and adding to the overall mocking of the Princessa. I laughed all over again at the planning of the pistachio scene and Chowder’s complete lack of interest in the Princessa and the whole filming process (showing only a glimpse of his butt behind you on the couch, classy!) It was fantastic either way and great job to you and your “crew”- your boyfriend, Aerie, and Chowder! I am glad you will continue written reviews though, I love your writing. And just you in general. Err.. better stop now lest you think I’m creepy… or FIND OUT I’m creepy, haha! Snark on, girl!

  • Zee

    It seemed legit at the very beginning-with the theme song and title sequence at all-but as soon as the phone cut out I started to suspect trickery.

  • JonS

    Hook line and sinker. By the time it was over I was half tempted to send a simple and direct message: “I love your written reviews. Maybe you should stick to prose.” The effort was epic and you should be congratulated. *takes one knee and bows*

  • glam

    Definitely thought it was legit! My partner and I watched it at the start of their birthday acid trip so we thought maybe the weirdness was not innate to the video itself, glad to know that it totally was!

  • Thirteen

    I completely and totally thought it was on purpose, as a parody of sorts because the toy was that bad. I DID NOT REALISE UNTIL READING THIS EXPLANATION THAT IT WAS APRIL FOOLS JOKE. But then again, I haven’t seen any of sex toy video reviews before. What a brilliant, excellent prank, thank you!

  • Three reasons why I thought you were serious:

    1. Is this the only time you actually showed your real self?

    2. You talked like you always do in writing, and you edited like how your writing is always edited.

    2b. I thought the pistachios happened because you didn’t want to bother with another take.

    3. You have already established a habit of reviewing toys whose very existence seems ridiculous.

    “When I told them the toy retailed for $75, they yelled, ‘ARE YOU SHITTING ME?'” Funny thing is, this is how I felt when I found out this video was a joke. It’s worth way more than that… maybe we can say that the idea this was a joke is the joke instead?

  • Xushenka

    I thought it was legit and the title sequence was awesome. But there were a few quirks that made me question it. However, you managed to tie them into the video, so I ended up being fooled anyway! Great job!

    For example, I was really surprised that you’ve included the bits like a sudden black screen and then an apology about your phone dying.. With the amount of work you always put into your blog, that seemed like something from a list of “things to never do in a video review”. Yet then you kind of saved it by using it as a transition into your next subject so I was like… okay, that was kind of clever. Also, vibrating the toy in a glass of liquid. I seem to remember you saying that it is annoying how everyone does it, so I couldn’t believe you included it.

    The stuff about women loving pink at the end seemed like a bunch of sarcasm when combined with the crazy effects, so I even bought into that…

    I only found out the video was a joke when I read this post. That’s good! I was thoroughly fooled. I can’t wait to see how you’ll top this next year!

  • grecia06

    I didn’t know it was an april fools joke. ._. But i did like the idea of video reviews. Please do more!

  • sophie2229

    I KNEW IT!! I was debating for about 10 minutes before I made my comment – figured I didn’t want to write anything discouraging just in case it was not a joke. But you did get me – I wasn’t confident enough to just call you out, so I was fooled.

    The giveaway for me was the length since you hate rambling.

  • Te

    Ohhh, my goodness. I was deeply put off and am super glad to learn it was a joke. It was thoughtful enough to be real, but then. Like. “I don’t know if you can see that.” D-: I thought you were making fun of SOMETHING with the awkward visual effects but wasn’t sure what, exactly. And I was just confused by the murky water thing.

  • Artemisia Absinthium

    I definitely just ugly snort-laughed alone in my workplace at the charging station reveal.

  • When you mentioned using it as a nipple teaser I was like WAT, no Piph, no! I knew something was up, lol. It seemed pretty damn legit though!

  • WhitneyM

    I didn’t know it was fake until much later after watching it. I was so relieved when I realised it wasn’t real.

  • Elsie Carroll

    When it was posted on April 1st, I knew it was a joke, but at the same time, it seemed so legit that I was unsure if it was a real joke, or if you were going to start doing video reviews with fewer effects. Sadly, I knew right away the toy was going to be a joke all on it’s own.

  • Sad I missed this!

  • I tore my house APART to make this damn video!

  • Oh man, I’m so proud! All of that was on purpose!

  • Very perceptive.

  • unstuck

    Fooled me! I was baffled at the “nipple stimulation” part, and rolled my eyes at the “I don’t know if you can see that”, but other than that I actually enjoyed the video! Sad you aren’t doing more.

    The pistachio part did seem rather forced now that I think about it, but I’ll admit I was fooled

  • Cakeface

    My boyfriend misheard in your theme song that you have a “concerning vagina,” and is still singing it that way.

  • Well that’s perfect.

  • Erika

    I so hate video reviews that I actually read the post, saw it had a video, and clicked away, shaking my head that one of my favorite bloggers was finally moving to the format the Internet seems to love.

    So! You certainly fooled me, even without ever watching the video. I’m relieved it was a joke, but please – stick to text!

  • Ouch!

  • KK

    Ok, so I didn’t see this until now, so no opportunity to be fooled. All the weirdness just came off as snark to me… Maybe I have a weird version of snark.
    Also, don’t think I’m completely a creeper or anything, or do, if you’d rather, but, um… this is the first time I’ve seen an actual picture of you, and I have to say you are freakin’ adorable.

  • I totally agree! I thought it was totally legit… and loved it!

  • Pantophile Panic

    I thought it was legit up until the crazy talk about pink and misogyny and how all women are the same.

  • Madison Archey

    OK wait but has nobody mentioned the best part, where the cat fell off the couch directly behind you?

  • tenzen

    It took me until the end to realize the video was a joke. Good job.

  • Ansel

    I only just read this, and the whole time I thought it was ‘a very concerning vagina.’

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