Thumbs Up for OTS

People who enjoy spanking imagery also tend to be fond of the over-the-shoulder carry, or ‘fireman’s lift’. It’s easy to see why.

The girl will end up, hoisted and horizontal, in a position that looks strikingly similar to how she would appear if she were across the man’s knee and not over his shoulder.

There’s often the same sense of panic,

the same fluttering legs,

and since she’s face down, it follows that another part of her will be up!

And that’s sure to catch the attention of a spanking enthusiast!

OTS imagery is often associated with earlier times in human history, from primitive cavemen

to pillaging Vikings

to romantic swashbucklers:

But the imagery remains popular in contemporary times,

including with those primitive cavemen, who seem to have not only survived down the ages but also picked up some modern habits…

Everybody’s doing it, from Santa

to schoolgirls

to cosplayers,

and often in regular contemporary clothes,

which offer their own timeless sights,

and entail certain risks.

The exact nature of the risk is delicately suggested in this example from the cover of a 1940 comic book,

where the white flash of frilly hints at the fuller display we’d have enjoyed if the artist had changed the angle by 180 degrees, as in this later instance from Mexico in 1994:

So when wearing a short skirt…

beware of OTS!

Obviously that isn’t a good reason not to wear a short skirt,

but there are other ways in which you should also take care about your coverage.

Wouldn’t it be simpler just to wear shorts?

Maybe, but it won’t eliminate risk!

And opting for leggings instead of legginess still leaves a girl exposed to the perils of VPL!

In spanking circles, OTS may be appreciated, but it is also, understandably, something of a poor relation. Spanking scenes are lovingly documented and catalogued, but the media proliferation of OTS imagery is treated less systematically.

Screen examples sometimes feature performers who also have spanking experience on their resumes, like Fred MacMurray and Claudette Colbert,

Lucille Ball,

Howard Keel and Jane Powell,

Michael Craig,

June Allyson,

Robert Mitchum and Angie Dickinson

In the theater, the imagery is widely associated with The Taming of the Shrew, in both period costume

and modern dress,

and even an eclectic combination of both.

But there are many other plays that don’t have traditions of spanking business too, such as this Russian stage version of the Decameron from 2019,

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, the 1978 stage adaptation of the 1954 film whose Italian poster appeared above,

Pillow Talk (1959), adapted from the same year’s Doris Day movie by Christopher Sergel (whose other work includes the first stage version of Meet Me in St Louis and the extraordinarily popular Men are Like Streetcars),

Bus Stop (1955) by William Inge (also known round here for his short play The Rainy Afternoon),

and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel (1945)…

We’ll give pride of place to an Indiana production of Carousel in 2008 that’s of especial interest,

because the lady being lifted is the great Amber Burgess, whose very next role was Lilli Vanessi in a first-rate Kiss Me Kate production that not only saw her OTS again,

but also took the spanking scene to what was surely an unbeatable apogee.

(You can read about it here and here.)

That isn’t intended to reinforce the point about the relatively lesser pleasures of OTS as compared with OTK. But it does bring us to the key element that’s often missing… but not always.

When a girl is over the shoulder, feet off the floor and bottom in the air, she is just as vulnerable as she would be over the knee. Many an actress in an OTS scene has found herself getting a smack on the rear, not just in The Taming of the Shrew,

but also, unscripted and non-traditionally, in these productions of Carousel and Bus Stop:

Just like OTK, the fireman’s lift puts the girl’s bottom in easy reach of the fireman’s hand, even if he’s not really a fireman,

though admittedly it’s not always clear whether what we’re seeing is a smacking hand or just a steadying one.

What’s he going to do?

The intention is sometimes unmistakable,

especially when there’s a third party involved!

And that brings us to a key point. Purists justifiably define spanking in terms of the OTK position, because that is its primary connotation: if she’s across someone’s knee, the default assumption is that she’s there to be spanked (and that remains true despite a multitude of Faux-TK cases where she isn’t). If we’re disposed to be just a bit more flexible, without altogether abandoning semantic specificity, then we might say that a spanking amounts to the administration of a sequence of smacks on the girl’s bottom after she has been put in a special position to facilitate it, by both restraining her and ensuring target accessibility; if she’s not actively placed, just slapped wherever she happens to be at the time, then it’s more correctly described as a smacking, not a spanking.

In those terms, OTK is perfect for spanking, with the especial advantage of stability; but the available alternatives, such as SLB, arguably allow a more emphatic display of masculinity simply because they are more strenuous. And OTS falls into that category: nobody will ever respond to each and every OTS picture with the first thought that a spanking is taking place, but there are examples where that interpretation is surely beyond dispute.

We’ll develop the issue of the visual semantics next time, but for now, it’s thumbs up for OTS, not just as a piece of attractive imagery, but a full-fledged spanking position too!

10 thoughts on “Thumbs Up for OTS

    • Harry says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed it, as many others seem to have done. It’s not really an ‘update’ so much as a whole new topic. I did SLB six years ago (anyone interested but having trouble finding the article should go here) and I don’t really have anything much to add, but maybe you will enjoy this picture from a 2013 production of David DeBoy’s comedy It’s a Scream:

      It is worth stressing that this is not actually a spanking: she is being forcibly carried onto the stage by a gangster, so it’s the SLB equivalent of Faux-TK.


  1. John Smith says:

    Nice post. It raises almost philosophical questions about what we really like about spanking. Is it just something we like in and of itself, or is it the dominance it shows we like? For me, the OTS and OTK position are appealing, even without spanking, because it showns dominance on the part of the man and vulnerbality on part of the woman.


    • Harry says:

      You’re welcome, and thanks for the compliment. Sorry to have used the scissors, but both the other examples you wanted to mention are upcoming in articles I have already written, and which I don’t want to spoiler…!


    • Harry says:

      Thanks. I try to give the origin and/or context of images when I know it and when it’s relevant or appropriate, sometimes in the filename rather than the text. However, I suspect I may not always succeed in that ambition, especially in articles like this where the images are essentially illustrative rather than the primary subject; I notice, for example, that I failed to give sufficiently specific identification of the image from the 1994 Mexican comic book Sensacional de Luchas (it’s from the cover of #449). Don’t be afraid to ask specific questions in cases where I may have been negligent, and where you’re genuinely interested in the answer; but do bear in mind that often I may not know myself, sometimes I may have deemed attribution to be inappropriate and occasionally I may need to do some digging around my files to unearth the answer.


  2. Bloomers fan says:

    The Bloomers in Carousel‘s 4th photo are great!
    I would appreciate it if you could tell me the information and videos of related performances.


    • Harry says:

      Two things.

      Firstly, as I have said before, don’t assume that just because there is a still photograph, there will also be a video available. I can’t provide content that doesn’t exist.

      And secondly, I also can’t provide information that I don’t have. All I can tell you about the production you’re interested in is its date: November 2013. That’s when the photograph was taken (on the 7th, to be precise). I don’t systematically keep production information about this kind of marginal material, for reasons which I suppose are to do with the ethics and etiquette of running this kind of mainstream-facing site.

      This is a site about X/F spanking in the arts and history, because that’s what I’m interested in, and credit where due (i.e. to the original creators) is an important point of principle. If a performer appears in a spanking scene, it’s not unreasonable to credit them and give the context, so long as it’s suitably respectful and doesn’t misrepresent the material or try to turn it into something it isn’t and was never meant to be (as done, for example, on the kind of fetish-facing website whose core message is, to put it very bluntly, ‘here is something for you to masturbate to’).

      However, while I’m glad that you have found things here that appeal to your different interests and tastes, documenting this type of material is not central to my objective. You could argue that, technically, non-spanking imagery is being misapplied when it appears on a spanking website, so, since I have no wish to harm or embarrass anyone, I don’t usually give credits or detailed context for it. Someone who does a publicly accessible spanking scene and then objects to it appearing on a (non-porn) spanking site is a hypocrite; someone who does a non-spanking bloomers scene and is later startled to find themselves on a spanking site might just have a point.

      Putting it another way, if this were a bloomers website that occasionally featured non-bloomers spanking scenes, then the bloomers stuff would be documented and credited, whereas the spanking material wouldn’t be.

      This is probably not ideal practice but at least I can say that it is thought through and conscientious. I’m sorry that one of its effects is that I can’t tell you what you want to know.


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