Reports from the Edge.  By Jane Boon

Reports from the Edge. By Jane Boon

. 13 min read

Edge Play author Jane Boon’s stylish and witty column “Reports from the Edge” offers advice and encouragement on how to escape the bonds of convention, and how to pursue the unexpected and the exciting.

Reports from the Edge: Kinky TV By Jane Boon

Our columnist — an “Extra” on Showtime’s Billions — gives us her inside take on its BDSM culture.

The perviest show on television is starting up again: Billions on Showtime. Its fifth season got interrupted by COVID, but as of September 5th, the second half of the season will be airing. If you’re not familiar with the series, it’s basically a dick-measuring contest between Bobby Axelrod, the high-flying founder of a very successful hedge fund, and Chuck Rhoades, the Attorney General of New York. These men loathe one another, and every season features a new battle between the two, and new victims of their narcissism and ambition.

The show is very smart, slinging finance and game theory lingo around at a rapid pace. What it also does is offer one of the most nuanced and unexpected depictions of BDSM on television. Chuck Rhoades is an unrepentant sexual submissive and masochist.

I became a fan of Billions even before it aired. Several years ago, I took some improv classes in a bid to loosen up my public speaking style. My classmates were mostly young actors, eking out a living in New York, and some of them worked as background actors for TV. I was curious, and I love playing dress-up, so they told me how to find similar work.

Although I enjoyed period pieces—which meant wearing dresses from the 19th and early 20th centuries—even more, I loved fetish work. If some TV show or movie was shooting a BDSM scene, I always applied. And sometimes, I was even chosen. The chance to wear a corset, boots and gloves was irresistible.

In September 2015, this meant I found myself at a nightclub in Brooklyn that had been transformed into a BDSM dungeon. The show hadn’t aired, but I was familiar with the lead actors, Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis. Since background actors are only slightly more important on set than furniture, we were all waiting quietly, slouched in our fetishwear, to see what would happen. Would the depiction of BDSM be laughable, as is so often the case, or something else? When I realized it would be Paul Giamatti who would be down on his hands and knees on the club floor, I breathed easier. The scene would be interesting. To see someone with as much personal power and charisma portraying a submissive? The writers of Billions had made some fascinating choices.

That dungeon scene was in the middle of the first season. The first episode, however, began even more forcefully. We find Chuck lying on the floor, bound and helpless. He’s being tormented by a mysterious brunette who singes him with her cigarette, and then, to soothe the burn, she pisses on him. At the end of the episode the identity of the dominatrix is revealed, and it’s Chuck’s wife, Wendy.

What the show demonstrates is that for Chuck and Wendy, kink is basically a proxy for the health of their relationship. When things are going well between them, they get freaky together and they both take enjoyment from it. They understand one another, and their trust is deep. When their relationship is strained, Chuck seeks other outlets for his pervy inclinations, or hectors Wendy into topping him, when she’s really not feeling it.

We see what happens when an interest in kink is asymmetric. Chuck needs it. It’s an essential part of his erotic diet. Wendy? Her wiring is different. When their marriage falls apart, Chuck begins doing overnight sessions with professional dominatrixes to satisfy his cravings. His interest in kink is heightened, and he permits himself to pursue really hardcore kinds of play. And when he is threatened with being outed as a kinkster during a political campaign, he leans into it, and fesses up, practically basking in the public humiliation.

Billions offers both a how to and a how not to of kink. Chuck is an obsessive and single- minded kinkster. He doesn’t respect his partner’s limits, and in a few instances, he doesn’t seek consent when undertaking a scene. The show also demonstrates how kink and its many flavors of play can be part of a healthy, hot and dynamic relationship.

I can’t wait to see what the show does with Chuck and Wendy going forward. They’re going to be tortured by the writers for the sake of our entertainment, and that kind of sadism works great when you’re at home, on a Sunday evening.

Reports from the Edge: Latex Stretches.  By Jane Boon

What to wear to a fetish soirée in France? Our in-house expert and regular Edge columnist has some ideas…

“Latex stretches,” became my mantra as I tried to find something appropriate to wear to a fetish soirée happening outside of Paris this September. I’m doing a reading from my novel, EDGE PLAY. Because my book was published last summer, at the height of the pandemic, this will be my first live event in support of it. But I’m making my reading brief, because I’m no fool. There will be actual, elite dominatrixes there with whips to command the attention of the crowd. Up against them, a mere author doesn’t stand a chance, even if her novel is also about an elite dominatrix taking on one of Wall Street’s biggest swinging dicks, and bringing him to his knees.

The party is held every year by Gérard Musy, a top fetish and fashion photographer, and I’ve seen pictures and videos. It’s held in a medieval chapel. There’s champagne and great food. People dress for the occasion, wearing leather, latex, corsets. Regrettably, my wardrobe had nothing chapel appropriate, which gave me an excuse to shop.

My first stop was Google. A search on “latex dress designer” revealed that Saint Laurent had a sexy wrap dress in a rich burgundy latex for $4,290. I’d been imagining prices that were much lower, so I kept going. Soon, I found myself on some UK websites -- the English seem to have a knack for producing appealing latex and rubber garments at prices that won’t make you faint. My search got narrowed down to two makers:  Catalyst Latex and William Wilde.

I’m in my 50s. Wearing latex at this stage in my life is very different from my 20s, when I first donned a latex dress; a time when gravity had not become my enemy. Fortunately, “latex stretches.” It will conform to your body, and the trick is getting it just tight enough to give you a pleasant squeeze, but not so tight where if you sneeze, a seam bursts or a zipper flies open. Moreover, it looks great on most bodies. It’s forgiving and smoothing, like wearing a shiny girdle.

Wanting to hide the consequences of aging and of COVID-induced-sloth, I decided on something with sleeves and a high neck. There were two choices, each featuring a pussy bow. I picked the design with contrasting accents. At £160 (or about $220 USD + shipping), the dress would be made to my color and size specifications, a process that would take about one month. Since black and red are the most common colors at fetish events, I opted for a metallic peacock with milky white trim, just to be perverse. I sent in my measurements, and Kit (who works at Catalyst) guided me towards the correct size.

Seven weeks after I ordered it, the dress arrived in New York. I was nervous, as I opened the envelope. Would it fit? Would it suit? It looked tiny, but then I remembered, “Latex stretches.” I put it on. My husband had to help me with the back zipper because the latex needed to be pulled taut to be fastened. But it didn’t take long before I had that nice, snug feeling and the dress was on. No bra was required, because the latex compressed my breasts against my rib cage and molded to my body. My new frock would be both second skin and armor, the ideal thing to wear for a book reading, on a pervy Parisian night. And maybe I’ll wear it back in New York, too. After a year and a half of yoga pants, can’t we all use some fashion surprises and a little drama?

If you're new here, you'll want to read Jane's previous stories for PrimeCrush, Reports from the Edge: Skirt Club and Solo at the Sex Party.

An entertaining mash-up of "Fifty Shades" with "Billions," order Jane's novel EDGE PLAY here.

Reports from the Edge: Solo at the Sex Party.  By Jane Boon

Have you ever wondered what happens at a fetish ball? A Parisian dungeon? A bisexual women’s sex party? A bondage seminar? I have. So, I’ve gone to all of them. By myself.

I tell most people I’m doing it for research, but I’ve learned a few things about being a solo woman in erotically-charged spaces, which is that most people don’t care why you’re there, but they do care that you’re respectful and polite. Of course, they also want you to have a good time. I prefer to watch, and that is acceptable and common. There are lots of first timers in these milieus who just want to observe what happens, and who are there to soak it all in.

Although these evenings might seem mysterious and inaccessible, they aren't hard to find. I've identified many amusing opportunities through FetLife.com, which positions itself as Facebook for BDSM enthusiasts. Don't be scared off by the site's emphasis on kink: BDSM is a broad spectrum of activities, from the mild to the wild. Moreover, it's easy to do a search by city, and then to see what events are happening (look under FetLife's events tab). I've found out about organizations like SkirtClub.co.uk through magazine and newspaper articles. I follow many on social media, and there's almost always a mailing list to alert prospective participants to any forthcoming parties. My mailbox is filled with unusual possibilities, and even if I don't partake very often, it thrills me to know that others are out there doing outrageous things.

At the fetish ball (found via FetLife), I danced with men half my age and watched some BDSM scenes. I never felt pressured to do anything, and I never felt lonely, there was so much going on. At the Parisian dungeon, I watched the dominatrixes in action and made small talk about restaurants with a random gentleman in a PVC French maid’s outfit. At the bondage seminar, I watched Shibari enthusiasts practice their craft. And at the all women’s sex party -- I was the voyeur, serving the exhibitionists.

Perhaps it’s by dint of age—I’m now 53—but there’s never been any effort to push me beyond my comfort zone, even in the most outrageous spaces. I've gotten offers, sure, but a smile and a “No thanks, I prefer to watch,” is all it takes. The question of consent is taken so much more seriously and clearly now than when I was first visiting these outrageous spaces in my twenties.

Nora Ephron wrote a book about being a Wallflower at the Orgy. It’s a great title and a funny idea, but there’s nothing wrong with going to the orgy and standing back. There’s something exciting about being in spaces where pleasure is prioritized and emphasized. And even if you don’t feel moved to participate, there’s plenty to soak in.

So, if you’ve ever been curious about what happens behind closed doors, open them and step inside! Sure, it can be fun to have a sidekick for an excursion into the demi-monde, but don’t let that stop you if you can’t find a suitable partner in crime. Go by yourself. See how it feels. Enjoy the energy and the outrageousness of it all. Be a gangster for the night, and go. And if you feel so moved, go again, because who knows what could happen the second time around.

Reports from the Edge: Skirt Club. By Jane Boon


Take a glimpse into a woman’s-only sexy soirée where a high percentage of the attendees are married and everyone is glamorous.

I was sitting on the edge of a four-poster bed as three pairs of women got each other off. I wasn’t sure how I’d wound up in the middle of the throng, when normally I stick to the periphery at unfamiliar events, but the room was small and the orgy had moved to encompass me. There were arms and legs everywhere, and the lingerie was coming off. It dawned on me, if I stayed put any longer, I might cross over from being polite to being creepy. Fortunately, a pert brunette in a pale-pink bustier and matching panties gave me cover.

“It’s my birthday,” she announced, looking straight at me.

I decided to make a joke of it. “Where I’m from, that’d get you a birthday spanking.”

“Oh, would you?” she replied.

I said yes, because I figured a spanking would keep me fully clothed, while still giving me something to do in the middle of an orgy. And besides, she was adorable. Her long lashes batted at me whenever she looked over her shoulder as I slowly administered the blows. Her bottom and thighs were soft and smooth to my hand -- an extraordinary tactile experience that reminded me of when I was her age, 27, and I’d had boyfriends rhapsodize about the softness of my skin. At the time, I didn’t understand their enthusiasm, but while the luscious brunette squirmed across my lap, I finally got what they’d been saying.

When I completed the 27 spanks (and one for good luck) I passed the birthday girl on to another woman who seemed eager to celebrate. It was my cue to head to the bar in the basement of the elegant Upper West Side townhouse, where the party was being held.

Skirt Club bills itself as a club for straight and bi-sexual woman who are intellectually and sexually curious, with regular events in major cities like New York, London, Sydney, Miami, Berlin and Los Angeles. But what Skirt Club actually offers is soirées and weekends for women only, where the ladies often wind up naked. I learned about the club from an article a girlfriend had written for The Hollywood Reporter. It sounded outrageous and unusual, or the perfect way to spend a Saturday evening in December, so I filled out an online application and paid $150 to attend.

As someone who’s a 0.5 on the Kinsey Scale (0 is exclusively straight, 6 is exclusively gay), I wondered if I’d feel out of place at an all-women’s sex party. I was also worried about what to wear, since I’d read it was very glamorous. Fortunately, there was an elaborate Pinterest board showing ideas that vibed with the evening’s “Snow Queen” theme. I’d seen photos, so I knew everyone would make an effort, so I did too. I donned a black lace bustier, black fishnet stockings, a very short black skirt, and a silver shrug, in a nod to snow.

When I got to the townhouse at 9:00 p.m., it was already overrun with gorgeous women. They were mostly Millennials, but there was a smattering of Gen-Xers like myself milling about. As a first-timer, I was given a key to wear as a signal to the Skirt Club veterans to be extra nice.

As an icebreaker early in the evening, Genevieve LeJeune, the fascinating-flirty-founder of Skirt Club, introduced Tina Horn, who gave us all a quick lesson in talking dirty. This got everyone giggling, and soon many of us were upstairs where things escalated quickly.

Once I’d left the birthday girl and found my way to the bar, I chatted with a charming blonde lawyer, an award-winning journalist with long, wavy hair, and a grad student at Columbia who stood there casually, topless, as I wondered if my breasts had ever been so gravity defying. I felt envy for the young women, who had come of age when sexual fluidity was common, and who all seemed to have stories of past girlfriends and boyfriends. My own reticence was unremarkable. There were others who kept their clothes on, and no one seemed to care either way. All the same, it was wonderful being in the presence of so much pleasure.

Once I’d left the birthday girl and found my way to the bar, I chatted with a charming blonde lawyer, an award-winning journalist with long, wavy hair, and a grad student at Columbia who stood there casually, topless, as I wondered if my breasts had ever been so gravity defying. I felt envy for the young women, who had come of age when sexual fluidity was common, and who all seemed to have stories of past girlfriends and boyfriends. My own reticence was unremarkable. There were others who kept their clothes on, and no one seemed to care either way. All the same, it was wonderful being in the presence of so much pleasure.

When I got home at 2:00 a.m. my husband was waiting for me. “How’d it go?” he asked.

I told him that at the end of the evening, a tall, lithe dancer had asked me where I was going, and when I said Tribeca, she said she was a neighbor. It turns out, she wasn’t. She was drunk and confused. All the same, with a different woman on a different day, she probably would have gotten a ride home, and perhaps, much more.

A large percentage of the Skirt Club members are married women, like me. I wondered if their husbands were amused or even aroused by their same-sex flirtations, and whether the men savored the small, but non-zero probability that their wives might bring another woman home. A few months later, when I announced I was attending another Skirt Club soirée, my husband was unsurprised and said he was eager for another full report.

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