Monthly Archives: October 2017


2002, $1.50, at Goodwill Superstore on San Fernando

First Impression: This is my express ticket to a better body & buns!

Second Impression: It actually says that on the back cover.

Behold, two FIRM videos smooshed together into one DVD that will FIRM up all your parts! Normally I write one review per DVD, but this review needs to be split into two installments, because I have SO MUCH TO SAY.  So crimp that hair, smear on that eyeliner, and lace up your whitest Reeboks!

Both workouts on this DVD are cobbled together from the ancient library of existing FIRM tapes, making them a veritable bouillabaisse of fitness. It kind of feels like a clip show episode of a network sitcom. “Hey, remember when we used to put on really thick, flesh-colored tights to wear under our thongback leotards?”

The first FIRM routine is affectionately called Tough Tape 2. It’s a leg warmer party, and everyone’s invited. Party favors include a mat, a shining row of hand weights, and a cheap IKEA stool. This is known in FIRM-speak as a “tall box.” Also, you will be using something that is quaintly referred to as a “two-by-four,” because that’s exactly what it is. It’s meant to raise up your hands when you do reverse hip-dips, to make sure you get splinters and strain your wrists all at once. Tubular!

The FIRM workout takes place in a converted Roman bath house. The walls are painted in that shade of pinkish-purple that indicates, “blood-drenched vampire bordello.” Some call it Puce, I call it Awesome! Marble statues are placed about the room, taunting us with their physical perfection. Large Botticelli-seque murals dominate either end of the studio. This art is definitely not PG-13. Occasionally, a painting of a goddess’ bare breast will be visible above the head of the fitness instructor, who is so exalted that she gets a fancy patterned rug to go under her mat.

But by far, my most favorite detail is the visible boom mike bouncing up and down right above the instructor’s head as she does a pile squat. They don’t even try to hide the thing. It floats above her, like a cat toy just out of reach.