Trends (2001): Compilations

In celebration of Adult Empire’s 20th anniversary, we look at some of the porn trends and genres that shaped the company’s history. In this edition: COMPILATIONS.

What’s better than a great compilation? It packs a lineup of terrific scenes from a particular star, genre, or studio into a compact, plot-free movie. As a result, compilations are pervasive in porn. Sometimes, it takes an attentive look at a movie’s back cover to determine whether it is composed of newly shot scenes or is simply a comp of existing material. And with such a rich and deep array of material to draw upon, it’s hard to blame studios for raiding their archives.

Compilations are an offshoot of porn’s transition from film to video in the 1980s. Newly equipped with remote controls to skip past dialogue scenes, consumers became used to creating their own “compilations” by switching tapes or fast-forwarding to their favorite portions of an adult movie. The industry took the next logical step by releasing movies that compiled themed scenes and cut out the storylines. “Video created genres that did the work of the remote control, creating compilation tapes of non-stop sex without any narrative,” the documentary Pornography: The History of Civilization noted. They permitted viewers to see exactly the type of action they wanted in abundance. “Porn compilation videos entirely eschew plot just to show the good parts over and over and over again,” said scholar Constance Penley.

By the time the new millennium arrived, a full two-thirds of the adult movies released in a year were compilations. The genre lost some of its juice in the mid-2000s when tube site supercuts made DVD compilations somewhat less relevant. Even so, any given week of new releases on Adult Empire will contain scores of comps, a testament to the genre’s perennial popularity even in the digital era.

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Adult Empire 20 Years

Feature (1997) | Shaved (1998) | Interactive DVD (1999) | Contract Girl Era (2000) | Compilations (2001) | Anal Obsession (2002) | Reality Porn (2003) | Gonzo (2004) | Cuckolding (2005) | Oiled (2006) | Celeb Sex Tapes (2007) | MILF (2008) | Parodies (2009) | Firsts/ Doubles (2010) | Rise of the All-Natural Girl (2011) | Family Roleplay (2012) | Threesomes (2013) | Interracial (2014) | BDSM (2015) | Star Showcase (2016) | High-End Erotica (2017)