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The XCritic Interview: Penny Barber


It’s a fun thing to do these interviews, even more so when things take a few twists and turns. I normally “think” I’ll know the direction the conversation will go before talking with someone. Most of the time, I’m halfway on target. But then, I get Penny Barber, and whatever I thought was gonna happen flies right out the window. I was lost, and then found, existing in Penny’s world for a while.

It’s not a bad place to be.

Penny is an incredibly strong woman and an equally capable performer. Many know her from one, two, maybe three genres ... a few different kinks. I was the same way. But, after talking with her; and after hearing some of the top directors in The Valley sing her praises, I am convinced that Penny is poised to transcend any given genre or category of the Industry.

Go ahead and take that check to the bank– That’s Church.

Penny Barber is an enigma. You think you know what you’re gonna get, and then she turns out to be something 1,000% better! A self-described switch up when it comes to preferences, she might strike you the first time around as the way too pretty housewife from down the street; then, the next chance she gets, Penny will dominate you. She won’t apologize. You'll thank her for it.

I got up close and personal with Penny, for just a little bit. I learned something about her background, the things she likes to do, what turns her on, and how she envisions the wonderful world of porn.

Penny Barber is one of the fastest rising actresses in the Adult Industry today. With her good looks and natural presence in front of the camera, she's going to new and exciting places! Penny Barber, the “Mommy To The Stars”, and “The Head of the PTA” is getting ready to explode across the screens of a whole new audience … Like I said, you think you know her, how good she is, what she can do ... she's gonna accomplish a whole lot more than anyone ever anticipated. 

C'mon. Let's hang out with Penny for a while.




Jim Steele– Hey Penny, how are you?

Penny Barber– I’m doing great, thanks!

Jim– I’ve looked forward to interviewing you for a while now, then it seemed like we ran into some delays, no fault to you, it was my wacky schedule… but here we are. I appreciate your time.

Penny– We’re all busy. COVID seems to have made scheduling more difficult rather than easier. I’m glad we’re doing this!

Jim– Alright, for me, I’ve gotta start with your look. I see you and you’ve got this beautiful face, the glasses, which I appreciate because even though I wear contacts sometimes, most days I march around in big glasses too. Plus, you’re a “normal looking” girl. You’re not rail thin or big and beautiful, just a pretty, well-proportioned girl. Then, another bonus for me, you look like a girl that I might meet in the library, as in a smart… dare I say nerdy looking girl. But then, like from the neck down, especially if you’ve got a spiked collar on. Well, I’d better think again. What I get, and what plays out in a lot of your work, is kind of a split personality. You’re almost an enigma, and I’m not always sure which side of you is gonna come out to play. A bossy Domme with a strap-on nailing a couple dudes, or the perverted mommy … then I look over and you’ve got pretty lace panties for sale at your website. You’re like this soccer mom from hell who shows up and… depending on what someone is expecting as far as normal fun and games go, they may or may not get their day ruined (in a good sort of way). Is that how you see yourself, as a normal, girl next door type but wait till we get behind closed doors to see what’s gonna happen type of thing?

Penny– I don’t believe in astrology, but I definitely embody the Gemini archetype. I’m a switch, I’m pansexual, and I act and direct. I’m a housewife and mom, but I’m also an adult actress. I’m an artist, as well as a businesswoman. I do think that most people are surprised by how kinky I like to get. The brown hair and glasses can be misleading.

Penny Barber, The XCritic Interview with Jim Steele

Jim– I like the glasses, but can understand what you’re saying. I know you mainly from the fetish type stuff. Are you looking to get away from that in the future, or just add to it? I understand you are interested in getting more bookings from “mainstream studios”. Are you gonna keep the latex and rubber gear when you show up at Sweetheart Video, Team Skeet … or wherever else?

Penny– I’m keeping the latex. If these mainstream companies appreciate it, great! If not, I certainly have a lot of lace, denim, and cotton, too. Since I started, I feel like mainstream has gotten a lot kinkier, and kink has gotten a lot more vanilla. I’m expecting it to swing back hard into very compartmentalized content again, but for now it’s fun to see things all mixed up.

Jim– So, that sounds great! Take what you’ve got and maybe show the other side what it’s missing out on. Count me in. I would hate to see that dominant side of you, the chick with a paper bag full of strap-on surprises, take an exit stage left.

Penny– A grocery bag full of strap-ons? Do you mind if I steal that idea for a photoshoot?

Jim– Feel free. It’s a good move. But you gotta have more than strap-ons. You know, feathers and other shit too. I’m referencing a college experience from about 30 years ago. Paper bags full of sex shop stuff are an easy win on Friday nights. Tell me about how you got your start. You started camming first, right?

Penny– Camming was barely a thing when I started back in 2003. I didn’t start camming until I came back in 2011 or 2012 after becoming a mother.

Jim– O.k., thanks for clearing that up.  So, then, you go and get married. How’s that working out?

Penny– I’m currently married. You can see my gold-and-koa wood wedding ring in most of my shoots. My husband, Rex Shepherd, is a photographer who’s moving into adult filmmaking. He’s very supportive of my career. In fact, we usually work as a team. He also does voice-over work—he has a great, deep voice, and you can hear him in some of my clips.

I started doing adult off of Craig’s List ads. Thank God I’m still alive, but that was more normal back then. I didn’t want to move to LA, which I heard was really polluted and competitive. I was already kinky and lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, so I just sort of started going to shoots and meeting people at events. Just as my career was started to take off around 2008, I got pregnant twice in a row. So, I took a few years off to focus on being an actual mother. I came back producing my own content and have only recently started working for other studios again.

Jim– Happy to hear another Craigslist survivor’s story. Dante Colle had a funny story about starting there too, but you know, he’s o.k. and everything. That’s cool about your marriage, it’s so important to be in a relationship where both are supportive of each other. Have you ever had an experience with a significant other, who was like, “Oh, you gotta stop this shit!” Someone who you absolutely felt was holding you back from what you really wanted to do, the ways you wanted to express yourself? I know some who have had experiences like that, and they’re like, “Oh, I just want to be out of this.” And then afterwards, you’re pretty much free to open the floodgates, and go shoot whatever trips your trigger, right?

Penny– I’ve never had a partner who wasn’t OK with my job. I think this is a fantasy for guys who want to save a sex worker. I know that some people are unlucky, but generally, people who date sex workers are OK with dating sex workers because otherwise, they wouldn’t date a sex worker.

Jim– It ought to be pretty much self-explanatory. I guess for some people, maybe not. Like you said, that’s an unfortunate some might have to put up with that kind of stuff. After you got into film, what pushed you more towards the fetish type stuff, or has that always been your thing? I’m talking specifically Domme, and even T/S work with strap-on, as opposed to just straight up boy/girl or girl/girl work?

Penny– I am a fetishist and sadomasochist. What someone sees on camera may or may not reflect my core sexuality, though I usually have a good time anyway. Even if the sex is vanilla, an orgasm is still an orgasm, right? As someone who spends 90% of her time at home, it’s really exciting for me to be on a movie set fucking beautiful people.

Penny Barber, The XCritic Interview with Jim Steele

Jim– Beautiful people make it easy, but what is your first love, as in… what kind of sexual vibe lies at your core? Is it straight, girls, kink? If you’re all alone, looking to get turned on, what kind of stuff do you think about or watch?

Penny– I’m such a switch. It’s all over the place, so I suppose one could say sexual variety is my core. I do have strong limits, but within those boundaries, I like to play around. I’m definitely not straight, though, I can tell you that. I’m a fetishist, and I like cartoons, so the sky’s the limit for what I might be masturbating to. It can be a beautiful woman writing with Mont Blanc fountain pens, Gijinka, My Little Ponies, or a muscle daddy smoking a cigar—mostly, it’s probably taboo role play stuff. It’s a bit weird for me to have become a MILF, because I’ve sort of turned into my own fantasy.

Jim– That’s it though. I don’t think it needs to define everything you do, but that’s where the glasses look, the soccer mom looking appearance really comes in, with the MILF business. Let’s talk business. I know that you work with Erika Icon at The Rub PR, who set up this interview. But you’re independent when talking about bookings, correct? Is that solely by design so that you keep control over what you want to do? And to follow that up, is it manageable? Are you enjoying doing that on your own? I think that many start out that way, only to find that they wind up with an extraordinary amount of work… outside of work. You start talking about trade shoots versus paid shoots, and there’s gotta be a lot of work, and it’s a different kind of work that goes into setting each of those up. I’m curious how it affects you when you are handling all that by yourself. 

Penny– I like to keep my money. One agent I spoke to wanted 20% plus extra fees! It’s expensive to shoot for studios anyway when you can do the same thing yourself on OnlyFans. I do work for others if I like their vision if they have a strong aesthetic. That’s why I enjoy working with Ricky Greenwood and his crew so much. His DP is very talented, and the scripts are classic yet fresh. Ricky really knows what he wants to see. I love being able to look at the footage afterward and see that I was a part of creating it.

Jim– Ricky’s terrific. I suppose if you’re shooting killer content, then maybe some of the rest, rebooking’s, etc. … maybe that helps to take care of itself. But, at the end of the day, you are gonna be tired from work. I suppose I was just curious if your worn out from getting laid all day or from being hunkered down over a phone and doing emails.

Penny– Yesterday, I was tired from driving back from Las Vegas after shooting a fun scene with Natalie Mars that will be up on kink.com soon. So, I just lounged around in bed, had some hot chocolate, answered emails, edited content, and posted to OnlyFans. I had my scented candle going and my vibrator within reach. It was nice.

Jim– Yeah, thanks. Your OnlyFans and ManyVids. That’s another good example of what I would call work outside of work. It’s not really film, it’s not necessarily camming, but it’s a whole other arena of skill sets and for many, it’s so very labor intensive. You’ve got messaging, customs… etc. How many hours a day do you figure that you invest in that, and is it all you, or do you get a little help with that?

Penny– It’s as much film as anything else is. As for the labor, I have a certain amount of work time and free time. They’re both finite. So, the free time is sacrosanct. That’s just for me. If I want to spend it staring at a wall, that’s what I do. (I usually go hiking or read a book about filmmaking or watch a movie or something, but wall-staring is always an option.) If someone wants some of my work time, well, there’s only so much of that, so I charge a premium, or I do other work that I know will make money. And that’s why I’ve been in the industry for 18 years. I have good boundaries. Work starts at 9:00 and ends at 5:00. I get an hour for lunch and other, smaller breaks, just like everyone else.

Jim– That’s good, to have and enforce those boundaries for work and rest. I’m not sure everyone does it like that, but it sounds like you’ve got it figured out. So, pitch me on your OnlyFans. This has become one of my favorite questions to ask performers– but pretend that I don’t know anything about you, nothing at all. The only thing I know about is a pretty profile pic of Penny Barber. Tell me, and everyone who reads this, why should I go over to follow, subscribe, and grab content off your OnlyFans? What am I going to see that’s going to rock my world?

Penny– I’m genuine and open—within boundaries, so I talk about what I’m doing every day, whether it’s a topless vlog that I film really quick in the morning to let you know what I’m up to. I also run my own OnlyFans. More and more models I know are using a service and, I know that they say they try to imitate your voice, but it still sounds generic to me. Honestly, it’s a cult of personality. I’m very into film and video production, but I’m also a housewife, but I’m also a sadomasochist who’s into high fetish. Is Manic Pixie Dream Mom a genre? Subscribe if you like the sound of Manic Pixie Dream Mom.

Jim– I’m googling that right now. … {Jim talking to himself, “Holy fuck! I’m bookmarking this for later. For now, back to Penny.”}

Jim– I think that most guys, and even girls (I’ll use that term generally because it applies to me, and therefore, probably everyone… Haha), prefers a girl now and then that’s willing to take charge and make things happen. That’s a sexy thing, no doubt about it. Here you come, and you’re obviously doing that kind of thing, the pervy mommy… your assertive personality. Then, you go and follow that up with a gigantic strap-on, pegging some dude for an hour or so. Is that you taking it over the top; or, is that just your idea of having a good time? 

Penny– You’re definitely focusing on the part of my content that you’re into, and that is a weirdly specific question, but yes. And if you can take a strap-on for an hour straight, Jim, you’re on the wrong end of the business!

Jim– Thanks for the compliment, I’m blushing. Not really sure I could swing that without some serious lube. Maybe I could get a sponsor? That last question kind of leads into this one, and it has to do with the dynamic that you bring to the party. I spoke with Lance Hart earlier this year, and he was telling me about a scene from BiFuck, “Spooky Bisexual Afterlife”, I think it was Parts 2 & 3, with Christian Wilde, Ruckus, and Lance, and yourself. There were some funny outtakes to our conversation, but the scene speaks for itself. The gist of the whole scene is you’ve got three gay/bi men and then – You. Here’s the deal. Lance shoots in a way that, even if it’s gay, it’s kinda not so gay that straight people can’t NOT find value in it. Then you show up, and even though you’re this gorgeous woman, sandwiched between two or three guys, it’s all anal, so it’s still gay but it’s hot as anything… and yet, it feels more bi, because you’re in there bossing them around. I’m not sure a lot of other actresses could pull that off without at least a part of it turning into a boy/boy/boy/girl “straight” scene. What do you think about that? Is it absolutely natural for you to just be in a moment, sexually, and not have to define it as “straight”, “bi”, or “gay”?

Penny– Oh, I love Lance! The issue isn’t that straight people jerk off to bisexual sex that is “not so gay.” I think it’s that many bisexual people (men?) aren’t completely comfortable with that identity yet. Stereotypes about what a bisexual man looks like still exist. That’s where I think Lance is a genius: he shows bisexuality without fetishization. This is really hard to do in porn, but he’s figured it out. There’s less stigma for a woman to say that she’s bisexual or pansexual, which is nice for me, obviously. People like Lance (who are really brave, but at the same time are just doing what they like) are going to help change the world to be a more open, honest place, where we can have conversations around sexuality and not be afraid of using well-defined vocabulary to describe what we like, don’t like, want to try, etc.

Jim– Lance is, in my opinion, a renaissance man in today’s Industry. I think the guy is fucking terrific and don’t think there’s anything he can’t accomplish. So, how about you when it comes to boundaries, anything goes? Where is your line at? What do you say no to?

Penny– Most of my limits have to do with endurance. I’ve been asked to do things on set that I can’t do for too long (suspension bondage, my thighs get worn out riding a cock, taking a strap-on up the ass for an hour, etc.), but most sex acts are pretty standard. I have some limits that relate to health and hygiene, but studios should be enforcing those anyway.

Jim– I think that the whole strap-on and Domme thing is cool. Still, I know it’s not always out in the open, so to speak… but it’s gotta be a secret kink for a lot of guys, and even girls. Even if you are into it, I imagine a lot of people don’t suit up and do it every single day. So, I see you as this otherwise straightlaced looking girl who is giving viewers an experience they can live out vicariously. Again, this goes back to your appearance of the soccer mom, and then suddenly here you are, and you’re this bossy chick in latex and a strap-on. I think it’s fabulous, but is that your aim? To take the image of the neighborhood car pool mom and make her into this fantastically sexually driven Femme? It’s good and bad, because before you know it, every other guy is gonna be looking at his neighbor’s wife, wondering if she’s got rubber outfit hanging in the closet! Haha.

Penny– Heh. Yes, I’ve noticed your preoccupation with the strap-on. I’m surprised it’s considered so taboo. I had no idea. You also seem to really enjoy pitching me very specific scenarios, then asking if I’d be into it. Do you want to get a custom?

Penny Barber, The XCritic Interview with Jim Steele

Jim– Sure, why not. Maybe I’ll do that and then post an awesome review of my experience on your OnlyFans. Now, moving away from the strap-on talk, if only for a minute, age play. You’ve written two books on the subject: The Age Play And Diaper Fetish Handbook from 2011, and The Big Book for Littles: Tips & Tricks for Age Players & Their Partners with Mako Allen in 2016. Tell me about that, what am I going to learn in those books and how did it come to pass that you wrote those?

Penny– Mako wrote the introduction, yes. At the time, age play was a very taboo subject. This was before Melanie Martinez and Miley Cyrus and all that. Now, you can find ABDL gear on Amazon. There is some cross-over, but the Handbook is more about practical tips, and the Big Book is more about identity, history, and community. I would suggest starting with the Big Book if you’re into age play. It’s a little more approachable.

Jim– Start with the “Big Book” … duly noted. Do you plan on writing more?

Penny– I’m not planning any new books, but I am writing a spec script. It’s about a sex worker in a post-apocalyptic situation who finds herself responsible for two little kids. It’s really about our collective Madonna-whore complex and what it’s like to experience that firsthand as both a woman and as a kid. Writing it has been cathartic.

Jim– Ahhh, I was gonna ask you about writing and directing scripts. I’ll be interested to see how that turns out. I agree with you, no matter the topic, writing is a wonderful form of therapy. You’ve got “Femdom Mommy Got A New Intern” with PervOut Network from 2020. Anything else in the works from you from the other side of the camera? I think it would be a cool move, because of a couple things. First off, with the performing plus the books, and you are kind of an in-house expert on, not only age play, but also how that can play into straight and T/S scenes. Then, there is the intensity you run with. If you were directing, I’m wondering if you could convey that to other performers… or, maybe it’s something that you own? Maybe it’s unique to you? It would be a neat thing to see more content as you envision it.

Penny– I’m always working on multiple projects, from exploring fetishes in artsy stuff to more mainstream sex. Rex (my husband), and I work as a team these days. We just started talking to Kink.com about producing some content for them and did our first shoot. It was definitely a learning experience, but I want to show what I can do, and continue to push myself. It’s stressful, but I love it. I’ve never before in my life felt called to do something.

Jim– Well, we’re all happy that you are chasing your calling down with a vengeance. Do that enough in this biz, and it can lead to accolades. We all like to talk awards and nominations. AVN just announced last month you are up for the 2021 Inked Awards. So, congratulations! You also had Fav Domme from AVN in 2020. In 2019 you had a couple, one from Urban X for Most Popular Fetish Star and then the Fleshbot for Best Clip Performer of the Year. I probably missed some. But, out of those, which was the most gratifying, as in– you didn’t think you were gonna be at that level in that genre? And secondly, which Award would just totally make your day if you were to get it, or get nominated for it, in the future?

Penny– Definitely, the Inked Awards, even though I don’t have any tattoos. It was the first nomination that was a complete surprise. Romi Rain, my gorgeous scene partner, actually told me about it on Twitter. I was thrilled!

Penny Barber, The XCritic Interview with Jim Steele

Jim– Well, congratulations again, for all of them. It’s gotta be a thrilling moment when you get that recognition for all the hard work put in. Your website is at www.PennyBarberFilms.com . The URL says something, that there’s more to Penny Barber than just getting an OF subscription, or the next booking. It’s artsy looking, not completely in your face XXX, but you’ve easily recognizable tabs for that, which is a nice touch. I think it speaks to the many different things you’re trying to accomplish. More than anything, I look around your website and see about fifty different things I could go look at, but then I also see a lot of room for growth, areas that you plan to add to and fill in some blanks. What are you looking to do over there, start a filmmaking and distribution empire? I don’t mean for that to sound rude, or too forward… but you know, it’s not a bad thing to want to keep driving and moving ahead. Is that a good way to describe your online presence, as in “Yeah, I’m here, but I want to be everywhere and do a whole lot more”?

Penny– Penny Barber Films (PBF) is definitely not a sales site. It’s more of a portfolio. Mostly it’s a mission statement. It’s about what I want adult entertainment to be and what I’m doing to try to shift together the dimensions of what I envision and what is. It’s psychedelic, kitschy, sexy, and surreal. I want more fantasy in porn, stuff that comes straight from an erotic fever dream.

Jim– Cool, I think the Site is a standout, and it’s definitely a breath of fresh air. I liked it. Penny, thank you for talking with me. I am absolutely looking for you to be at the forefront and always on the horizon with new and exciting material. Thanks Penny, this was truly a pleasure!

Penny– It was lovely! I hope you get that strap-on in you real soon.


Jim– Who knows, I’m free next Sunday. Maybe you could get with Lance … Let DeMarko or Mo do the scene review? …. Penny?


{Editor’s Note: Nothing but silence on the other end of the line…}


Jim– Alrighty then. Looks like a bit of “technical difficulty” on that other end with Penny. I’m sure she’ll call right back. But, in the meantime, everyone go and check out Penny Barber’s Website, Follow and Subscribe to her OnlyFans, ManyVids, and Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.


Many Thanks to Erika Icon at The Rub PR for Setting This Up!! FOLLOW TheRubPR on Twitter & Instagram!




Follow Jim (awaiting a return phone call) on Twitter @TheJimSteele & Instagram


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