3-D Avatars of Ultimate Intimacy

MACRO SHOT — The tendrils INTERTWINE with gentle undulations.

JAKE rocks with the direct contact between his nervous system and hers. The ultimate intimacy.

They come together into a kiss and sink down on the bed of moss, and ripples of light spread out around them.

THE WILLOWS sway, without wind, and the night is alive with pulsing energy as we DISSOLVE TO —

“Avatar’s” deleted sex scene is indeed the ultimate intimacy. The Na’vi tendrils couple electromagnetically, radiating with the heightened consciousness of tantric splendor. But more ultimately and intimately, Na’vi sex is three-dimensional.

It’s bliss all over your personal space.

If blue humanoids can ripple in the holographic zone between face and screen, why can’t we? That’s what French director Tom Sidrix asked himself, as he loaded up his 55-pound stereoscopic camera and set out to make the first-ever high-definition, three-dimensional porno: the soon to be released “Shortcuts 3-D.”

This genre is banking on the popularity of 3-D TVs. As a loyal child of the 2-D era, I have zero interest in a 3-D television myself. Yes, 3-D is more realistic and immersive, if the real world arbitrarily zoomed toward my face and assaulted my neurological depth perception.

I prefer to reserve that added dimension for National History Museum field trips, where I am dazzled and educated by epic swoops of camerawork and the epic cadence of Liam Neeson’s voice. “Antarctica,” “Everest,” “T-Rex: Back to the Cretaceous.” Powerful stuff.

But times have changed. This past year, “Avatar,” “Up,” and “Alice and Wonderland” have rescued 3-D from the “genre ghetto,” in the words of James Cameron. He called it “a watershed moment.”

Sidrix hopes to capitalize on these shifting tides, as do a horde of other adult filmmakers. Tarantino has publicly pondered making his own 3-D dirty flick. What does a $5 milkshake taste like? Pretty fucking good. What does a $5 inyourface-shake taste like? HOLY SHIIIIIT IT’S IN MY FACE.

The 3-D porn movement will likely be the major driving force behind 3-D TV sales, since technology and pornography have long been the best of pals. Porn helped VHS beat out Betamax tapes in the early 80s, while recently the Internet has expanded erotic tastes from the fluffered professional to the bored middle-aged couple with a mini-DV.

It’s because of this techno-porno symbiosis that I’m somewhat uncomfortable with Microsoft’s latest gaming system. Project Natal, when it’s released this winter, will be the first hands-free, motion and voice-sensitive controller system.

Watch the YouTube demo to see it in all its gloriousness. Wanna bloody up a street thug? Swing your arm. Destroy Tokyo? Stamp your feet. Drive a race car? Swish your hands back and forth with the soma-glazed grin of a screen-raised child. It looks both awesome and “Minority Report” freaky.

Milo, however, is the real problem.

Milo is Project Natal’s holy grail: an interactive, growing, learning, feeling digital child. He can recognize your face, see your pain, talk back and throw shit at you. Imagine if you grew up with Milo, learned your ABCs together, enjoyed synchronized puberties and shared your first kiss.

Imagine if you fell in love with Milo.

Your parents are out for the evening. On goes the Xbox 360.

“Hey Milo.”

“They’re out?” Milo asks, looking nervously around, as the video camera scans the surrounding area.

“Uh huh.”

“Are you ready?”

The high-def image of your naked body is converted into a megabyte that Milo likes very much.

No prophylactics necessary. This is the safest sex you will ever have.

My generation got its kicks from freezing Sims and deleting the shower, exposing the fuzzy naked form inside. Our kids will be able to the do the same, except instead of freezing the game, they can just bust into the shower and have sex with them.

You might think this is an unlikely use of Microsoft’s impressive technology. Won’t Milo help autistic kids build social skills? Aid dyslexic children in their reading and writing? Help channel the excess of energy of sufferers of ADD? Teach only children not to be total brats? Maybe. But if you know people at all, many of them will try to know Milo biblically.

A subculture of men already have long-term loving relationships with Real Dolls — flesh-like sex mannequins — who can’t even talk or feel. Last month, a South Korean man married a body pillow bearing the image of his favorite anime character. Last November, a Japanese man wed his virtual girlfriend on the Nintendo DS game Love Plus. As non-human sex partners go, Milo is up there on the humanoid scale.

On the one hand, virtual sex is better than normal pornography. Rather than staring at a staccato-streaming, pixilated PornTube clip of borderline sexual abuse, you’re with an interactive, engaged and tender “human being.”

On the other hand, your sex partner is trapped in a virtual world of which you have total control. He or she is pretty much your sex slave. If that’s what your kids do in their free time after school, it’s probably not nurturing a positive approach to sex.

And what if the memory card crashes? Your true love and sexual soulmate, in just a millisecond glitch, is DEAD.

It’s easy to dismiss all of this as “perversion” or “cyber rape.” But one day, artificial IQs will get so high and virtual reality so seamlessly immersive that you and a digital avatar can truly achieve the ultimate intimacy.

DISSOLVE TO —

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