Dead Ass: Who Is Consuming Necro Porn?

The niche genre, it turns out, is about a lot more than having sex with a corpse.

by Mark Hay; illustrated by Lia Kantrowitz
|
Jun 23 2017, 8:39pm

Necro porn is exactly what it sounds like. In it, as in ho hum porn, actors have sex. The difference is one of them plays dead. It's certainly not for everyone.

And it's also not snuff, that quasi-mystical type of porn in which men "actually" murder women for viewers' sexual jollies. Instead, necro is fantasy designed for viewers with a death fetish, an affinity for simulated acts of murder and necrophilia. Although legal, major porn tube sites like Pornhub, Redtube, and xHamster ban this type of content—a rep from the latter told me they find it "repulsive."

While it may seem sick and marginal to many, several fetish studios churn out hundreds of faux-necro clips a year. In fact, they're so common on taboo hubs like Dead and Sexy, KinkBomb, and Nicheclips that you can sort them by kill type—strangulation and shooting are popular—and by whether the scenes feature just the death or also rape or incest. The films also manage to draw in mainstream talent, early-career stars like Moka Mora and established names like Melissa Moore and Stella Cox. All of which raises the obvious question: Who is this shit for and how is there so much of it?

Broadly speaking, death fetish content is for people psychologists call "necrophiles," although that term doesn't mean what you probably think. We're used to thinking about necrophiles as grave robbers fucking found corpses or murders having their way with their victims. But according to Anil Aggrawal, who in 2009 authored the most comprehensive modern study of necrophilia, the fetish exists on a spectrum along which he identifies ten distinct types. They range from people aroused by the concept of death (type I) or who want to fuck by a coffin, to murderers (type IX) and people who can't have sex with the living (type X).

Aggrawal says most people who're into death fetish porn are type I necrophiles. Usually, he says, different types don't mix in one person, so he doubts "if these people would bother with real-life necrophilic" acts. No one can accurately estimate how many type I necrophiles there are in the world, as there's never been a good demographic study. But based on the activity on the largest fetish forums and sales figures, producers and site managers estimate there are maybe 100,000 necro fetishers worldwide.

"The fetish has nothing to do with reality."

It bears repeating, we're talking about people who have a death kink here, but no interest in seeing real deaths. "The fetish has nothing to do with reality," says Geno, who runs a death fetish forum appropriately titled DeadSkirts. According to Geno, even too much fake blood can be a turn-off for many death fetishers, who largely seem to prefer bloodless simulated wounds or deaths. "I don't want or like real death," he says

This aversion to death probably corresponds to how many fetishers on boards like DeadSkirts believe they developed their kink watching old exploitation or slasher movies. A kid watches a sexy woman—breathing heavily, the camera lingering on her breasts—get gutted by a murderer and some connection gets hardwired into his or her nascent sexuality. "That's all it takes," says Guda, a death fetish producer at Bitch Slap Studios. "Being the right age, the right time."

Most death fetishers seem more interested in prolonged struggles than gore, a bit of dominance and submission. They'll role-play together, stretching out a strangulation fantasy for minutes rather than the seconds it'd take to choke someone out in real life, then playing with the "dead" partner's limp body. The way Grace X, co-founder and owner of death fetish forum FetNoir, an occasional fetish performer and rare woman in the scene, explained it to me is "most of the scenes we play out together [utilize] death as a metaphor for exciting sex. The strangles often mimic sexual movement and sound with thrashing, convulsing, gasping, and so on," for example.

Fetishers used to get their kicks by hunting down and compiling death scenes in movies. It didn't matter that these scenes rarely included sex, before or after the kill, as many fetishers get turned on just by the struggle, death, and proneness of a body. (Some, like Geno, are even hostile to the idea of including porn in the fetish.) But Hollywood clips rarely ever capture the overwrought emotionality fetishers prefer. Nor can they cater to the unique twists in each fetisher's death kink, some of which can get extremely specific.

During the early 2000s, a few folks realized death fetishers were so desperate for content they'd pay out the nose for it. Sometimes producers would develop their own storylines, but often they'd let fans commission custom videos to meet their peculiar sub-kink needs. Custom orderers—a growing market in porn across the board—would pay $300 to $10,000 up front, depending on the complexity of the production involved. "We've had some people that order and order," says Guda. "It is mind-freaking-blowing… In some cases, it's like a drug where people are bankrupting themselves on customs."

Mainstream performers tell me they jump into death fetish work because the pay is better than what they'd get for doing, say, an all-day gang bang for mainstream porn. They also say death fetish producers treat them well and don't pressure them into anything they're not comfortable with, possibly because the sector is so marginal, it wouldn't weather an abuse allegation well.

"If you can get beyond [any mental blocks about violence and necrophilia], it's the easiest day of work ever," says Odette Delacroix, a mainstream performer and custom video producer who has performed for several death fetish studios. "I have to deliver a couple of pages of lines and act for 30 minutes, but after that I have to do nothing," but lay there and get felt up or fucked.

In many ways, necro porn fetishers can be compared to those with a giantess porn fetish. Both fixations are hardwired at a young age, and are likely driven by some variation of dominance and submission. They also aren't necessarily about sex and are extremely niche. Again, death fetishers aren't into real death—if they were, they'd head to the types of gore sites sites that compile pictures and videos of human brutality, like Islamic State execution videos and the murders of black Americans by cops. Instead, they're coming to forums like DeadSkirt and producers like Guda to scratch an itch that may seem bizarre or downright disturbing to many. But hey, we all have our things. Fortunately for squeamish souls, necro porn is not a world you're likely to stumble upon unless you're looking.

Follow Mark Hay on Twitter.

More VICE
Vice Channels