When was the last time you thought seriously about getting reamed by a tentacle monster?
For most of you, I bet the answer is, “Uh, never?” For a sheltered few of you, in fact, the answer is probably more along the lines of, “I’d never even considered that as a possibility, and now I am confused and frightened.” But I know there’s a small number of you who looked at that question and thought, “Why, I was thinking about it not ten seconds ago, how did you know?” Which is awesome, by the way, and which is also how things like your more niche fetishes tend to work.
I’ll dodge here the various psycho-ethno-pseudo-whatsit explanations here about why people like the idea having cephalopod-like limbs all up in their business, and will suffice it to say that several people do—and those not even all in the same way. Plenty of people enjoy the force-fantasy aspect of being overwhelmed by a creature who can focus on several body parts at once and won’t let you protest about what you really secretly want. Others stick to the firm campaign platform of consentacles or nothing. Some like distancing the idea of sex from the necessity of a human partner. Some like the potential bondage-and-penetration combo. Some just think wiggly bits are cool.
Now, from a marketing perspective, here’s the kicker: While the vast majority of consumers with dollars out there wouldn’t be willing to pay even a nickel for the full tentacle experience, those enthusiastically into it would be willing to pay a lot.
This is where the geniuses at Bad Dragon come in. (And oh, unless you’re employed in the porn business, that and all the other links in this post are so not safe for work.) Makers and purveyors of pricey but high-quality fantasy silicone packers, penetrators, wearables, and accessories, they have a slightly different focus from most sex toy manufacturers. As their About Us page says, “Bad Dragon was founded in June 2008 out of a shared love of all things fantasy. At the time there was a very poor selection of fantasy-themed toys available, and so the focus of enthusiasm and talent went towards filling that niche.” In other words, they saw a hole and slipped right in.
If you’ve never heard of these folks, it’s probably because neither you nor anyone you love has ever wanted to get it on with a dragon, a horse, a shark, an uncut dragon (ever pondered the mechanics of dragon circumcision?), a werewolf, a cockatrice, or—oh, yes—a tentacle. (And if you have and didn’t know about them, well, I’ve changed your life forever, and you’re welcome.) That’s okay! They’re not there for you. They don’t have to be.
What’s of particularl interest to me—as someone who’s not the target of their wares, but who’s bought a fair amount of merch in my day—is how they’ve gone an amazing step further into the realm of mixing niche fetish with niche fandom, producing the amazingness that is the kaiju-colored dildo.
You remember kaiju, right? We all saw Pacific Rim? The giant transdimensional monsters with glowy blue toxic blood? Newt’s full-body tattooing seems like pithy devotion in the face of those of you who watched those city-destroying creatures rise from the sea and thought, yeah, I want to fuck that!
And for a brief, glorious time, you could. Alas for those of you who’ve gotten your hopes up, they’re no longer available, but there was a period in which you could get an amazing color selection to kaiju-ify even the least reptilian of their line. And considering the diveristy of kaiju as shown in the movie, I think it’s good they’re not being prescriptive about giant monster wang shape uniformity.
Those of us who are fans of things—and especially those of us who are fans of things dismissed as unserious but still not kid-friendly enough to get toyed up good and proper—are used to having a tiny array of merch available, and most of that of crap quality: the dinky Enterprise clock radio I had as a kid, the wide array of terrible telescoping light sabers in the world, my wife’s tiny Tifa figurine whose head just will not stay on. Despite what you think of the Hot-Topification of things, it’s still amazing to me to be able to walk into a store now and have a variety of Adventure Time shirts I could choose to put on my body. But anything that has a more bedroom-focused purpose runs quickly into the realm of cheap gags, for party jokes instead of serious use.
Bad Dragon’s kaiju-tinted dongs should show us all the way. They’re fun without being novelty—some of their wares can go for upwards of $130, moving this pretty solidly out of the realm of gag gift or impulse purchase for most folk. They’re geeky enough to satisfy a fan impulse without going over-the-top goofy. Like the rest of the site’s offerings, they don’t judge what holes you have to work with. And sure, you could choose to leave them on a shelf as conversation pieces, but they’re built for real use.
In conclusion, you don’t know how bad I want a Black Widow clit stimulator to be real. And maybe that Iron Man twin-motor vibe too, though the thought of letting Tony Stark anywhere near my squishy bits gives me pause. Nonetheless, I’d have to at least seriously consider it, and I know it’s not just my money Marvel’s missing out on here.
(image via el patojo)
Whitney Bishop is the editor-in-chief of Shousetsu Bang*Bang and spends a great deal of her life playing with her dogs and avoiding writing her dissertation.