Emperor Wang the Perverted (William Hunt) – ruler of the planet Porno – aims his mighty Sex Ray towards Earth, turning everyone into sex-mad fiends. Only one man can save the Earth from this carnal chaos – football player Flesh Gordon (Jason Williams).
Along with his girlfriend Dale Ardor (Suzanne Fields) and hermit scientist Dr Flexi Jerkoff (Joseph Hudgins), they set off towards the source of the Sex Ray.
Along the way, the trio encounter wild Penisauruses, Prince Precious (Mycle Brandy) – the rightful king of Porno – and his band of merry (gay) men, Queen Amora (Nora Wieternik), the Secret Lesbian Underground, a giant toilet called the Royal Flush, Wang’s band of rapist robots (old-school tin men with drills for penises, pictured below), and the Great God Porno – a Ray Harryhausen-type monster voiced by none other than Craig T. Nelson.
This cheerfully filthy sex parody is obviously made on a shoestring budget, but the script is genuinely funny and director Howard Ziehm lovingly recreated the look and feel of the original Flash Gordon serials of the 1930s, which raised the film above the usual 70s porn fare and turned it into a true camp classic.
A number of up-and-coming special effects artists also worked on the film, including Rick Baker, Dennis Muren (both of whom went on to work on Star Wars), Jim Danforth and Dave Allen. The effects ended up being so good that the film was actually in line for an Oscar nomination for visual effects but the Academy chose not to give an award in that category that year as so few films had featured visual effects.
The enduring popularity of Flesh Gordon has led to several items of merchandising including resin kit models of the monsters, a 1982 home video game, and a 1992 comic book series.
Howard Ziehm, who co-directed and co-produced Flesh Gordon, resuscitated the character in a 1989 sequel, Flesh Gordon Meets the Cosmic Cheerleaders, with an almost entirely new cast. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the film was not well received.
Dr Flexi Jerkoff
Emperor Wang the Perverted