By Terrence McCoy
By Scott Fishman
By Deirdra Funcheon
By Allie Conti
By New Times Staff
By Ryan Pfeffer
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Brooke Skye was a little nervous about going on the Bubba the Love Sponge show on Sirius radio. On the cusp of her 20th birthday, Skye has been in porn for a little more than a year; so far, it's been pretty much soft-core stuff, diddling and groping herself and tonguing other girls, and she hasn't acquired the veteran porn star's tough, impermeable shell.
She knew all about the Sponge, who had joined Howard Stern on satellite radio after the FCC-spooked Clear Channel canned him and his pushy way with guests. She knew he could be pretty brutal, especially with porn girls.
But on the day of the show, there Skye was, having the time of her life, standing almost nude in the Tampa studio whipping Chip the Intern in the balls with a nasty-looking whip. It should come as no surprise that Chip, who was wearing only blue gym shorts, didn't volunteer for the job. Bubba had shamelessly orchestrated a contest of sorts in which he cajoled various male employees at the studio to line up so Skye could feel their crotches.
After she winnowed the field down to Chip, Bubba had commanded the poor bastard to be strapped to a vertical torture rack. Chip yelped as Skye first fastened clamps on his nipples. Sporting only the bottom of a shocking-blue Wicked Weasel bikini and nipple tape, she grasped the black whip with four-foot tassels that Bubba had equipped her with. Bling dangled from her pierced belly button, next to a tiny tattoo of two stemmed cherries.
"Easy at first, easy at first," instructed Bubba, a fleshy, middle-aged dude dressed in a gray tank top and gym trunks, a man clearly enjoying escape from the confines of broadcast radio.
Skye's first swing was leisurely, more a pantomime of a beating than anything else.
"Oh, you're gonna have to do it like this, like you're whipping it around the farm," Bubba said, demonstrating with his arm.
The second blow still didn't make the grade.
"You gotta snap him harder than that," he bellowed. Skye put enough elbow grease in the next one to make Chip yipe. She bent forward, giggling in disbelief.
"Give him one right across the chest, really hard," Bubba shouted, letting the bloodlust flow. "Don't make me get Greg the Bulldog to show you how to torture someone."
Skye delivered the whip across Chip's bare chest with a vigor that surprised even her, and the leather on skin connected with a bass tremor that segued into the intern's shrieks.
The past two years have been a strange, wild ride for Brooke Skye. Until she was about to turn 18, she lived the quiet, predictable life of a small-town girl dated the same guy for a couple of years, carefully protected her virginity. "Before this whole thing, I was little Miss Goodie-Goodie," she says. Life exploded with an alcohol-fueled auto crash, a DUI, an unplanned pregnancy, a hasty marriage and divorce and, finally, porn and a move to Fort Lauderdale.
In Skye's case, however, porn was the life raft that helped lift her pummeled body out of the drink. Today, she's the star of an immensely popular website that receives an astonishing number of visitors. According to Alexa.com, a web tracking site that ranks the 100,000 sites receiving the most traffic, BrookeSkye.com has maintained a ranking of roughly 3,000 since last summer. (For perspective, Hustler magazine's site in late April ranked 6,846, and South Florida's own Sun-Sentinel came in at 1,758.) Thousands visit her site daily.
The site's success comes in part from Skye's online personality, a mixture of goofiness and sexual allure that's appealing to porn aficionados looking for something different from the standard pizza delivery boy trades a pie for nooky. With a few caveats, the Brooke you see is the Brooke that lives and breathes and cries and giggles and pouts. She's slim and girlish-looking, with unenhanced boobs "a far cry from the 1960s archetype of the womanly woman," says Vinnie Rose, manager of the popular porn review and merchandising website SkullGame.com.
Porn viewers say that BrookeSkye.com, which claims to be the first web-cam site to offer high-definition video, may represent a lunge toward new, less lurid territory in the collective male libido. The slight, schoolgirlish Skye has become not the latest hot porn vixen but a virtual girlfriend for hundreds of lonely web surfers. Rose compares the website to videogame representations of real-life situations. "She's like a sim, an avatar of the girlfriend, living her life on the video monitor," he says.
"You just keep coming up with the next new thing," says the man behind the website, Michael Strouse, a veteran of online adult sites who has meticulously flogged BrookeSkye.com, slowly increasing the number of other sites that promote it in return for a small fee. "Unlike what a lot of guys think that you have to go harder and harder and more raunchy you can go softer. Surprise, everybody still likes it."
On a recent Tuesday afternoon, Shawn Piscopo slides three tripod lights to full height in the living room of Skye's Fort Lauderdale apartment. A 22-year-old with a hulking build, Piscopo has filmed many of the dozens of videos available to members on Skye's site, which include the young woman involved in everything from girl-girl-girl fests and solo masturbation to a try at skydiving.