Does anyone else think it’s sort of weird that celebrity sex tapes have become so common that every time we hear about a new one, we’re all just sort of, “Eh. Whatever”? (Unless it’s something like Farrah Abraham’s, because let’s face it: That wasn’t a sex tape. That was a full on porn movie.) Because Tori Spelling just revealed that she and her husband. Dean McDermott, made one and that it’s floating around in the ether somewhere, and really, all I can think is: “…So?”
Tori revealed to Us Weekly that she and Dean, who have been married for seven years, shot their tape together around Valentine’s Day in 2009. “Dean said, ‘We should tape ourselves having sex,’” the actress recalled, noting, “He had a little portable tripod, and he set up his video camera on it. Afterward, I checked my angles and they were good, so I allowed him to keep it.” They uploaded the video to their home computer—but unfortunately failed to password protect it.
Why unfortunately? You guessed it: Someone stole it. A “friend” of Dean (who is presumably no longer a friend) went snooping while visiting them, found it, and copied it. Tori and Dean didn’t find out about the fact that someone else had managed to get their hands on their tape until two years later, when a friend informed Dean that the thief was shopping the video around. Naturally, Tori was “horrified”; they sent a cease and desist letter to which the thief never responded. The incident sort of nebulously “went away” after a while, but the tape is still out there. Lurking. Waiting. Biding its time. Or something.
And still, all I can think is: “…And?”
There’s a difference in how we perceive sex tapes (and nude photos, and other things of a private nature) featuring A-listers versus B-listers, C-listers, D-listers, or Z-listers. It’s probably got something to do with the fact that D-listers and the like use their sex tapes to shamelessly catapult themselves into the spotlight; A-listers, on the other hand, are already in the spotlight thanks to their actual, y’know, talent, and often fear that said tapes will tarnish their image and make it difficult for them to find work. A-listers usually have their tapes leaked by other people, so we feel bad for them; D-listers usually leak their tapes themselves purely to draw attention to themselves. We love celebrities who are famous because of their talent; we dislike celebrities who are famous simply for being famous. Would we know who Kim Kardashian or Paris Hilton are today if it weren’t for the sex tapes they released right at the beginnings of their “careers?” I’m going to guess no.
Tori and Dean are sort of a wacky combination of the two celebrity “types,” which might muddy the waters here—except that it doesn’t, really. It’s true that at one point, Tori was a legit actress; it probably helped that her father was Aaron Spelling, but she started working when she was a kid and hit her height on a hit TV show in the ‘90s (hey there, 90210!). But these days, she and Dean are mostly known for their reality show about their rapidly growing family, so she’s lapsed into the “famous for being famous” sort of celebrity that we mostly tend to look down on.
And here’s why I REALLY don’t see a whole lot of difference between Tori and Paris right now: Tori just released a new book, a memoir entitled Spelling It Like It Is. The sex tape tale is part of the book—and to be honest, is there any reason she needed to send out that particular story from it other than to drum up interest in the book? No. No there is not. Tori may not have released the tape herself—and yes, it sucks that her and Dean’s privacy was so grossly invaded like that—but she did release the story of it, which has pretty much the same effect. It’s not quite on the level of a D-lister leaking their own sex tape, but it’s the same sort of idea.
And this is why, in spite of the fact that I’ve just written 700 words about it, I don’t really care about the fact that Tori Spelling has a sex tape. And neither should you. It’s not so much that they aren’t shocking anymore (that’s a whole ‘nother can of worms); sex tapes are just one of those things that no one should really care about anymore because maybe if we stop giving them so much attention they’ll stop happening. Yes, I realize that right now, I’m part of the problem; but if sex tapes become inconsequential, then two things will happen: 1) Meanie-pants people will stop stealing them from A-listers, and 2) D-listers will stop trying to grasp at fame by releasing their own.
Wouldn’t that be great?
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s senior editor.
Photo Credit: StarTraks Photo