Undoubtedly, all of the characters featured in My Hustler are miserable, misanthropic narcissists of the exceedingly egomaniacal sort with Mr. Man Meat himself being the least nauseating, if only due to the fact that he is a novice to the game of a lecherous life of gay prostitution. Unbeknownst to him, blond hustler hunk Paul played by Paul America – who Warhol himself described as, "unbelievably good-looking - like a comic-strip drawing of Mr. America, clean-cut, handsome, very symmetrical. He seemed to be exactly six feet tall and weigh some nice round number" – is being spied on by three scopophiliac degenerates of the dangerously debauched and devising sort. The old queen – a particularly pretentious and pompous odd fellow with a positively unpleasant appearance being bald and blistered – is a master of mental and rhetorical masturbation, which he makes a point of unleashing on his two cohorts and later Paul. The superannuated queer has a right-hand man and virtual sex serf on the surf named Joe (played by Joseph Campbell aka ‘The Sugar-Plum Fairy’) whose job is to wait hand and knees on both his boss and the boss’ lastest acquisition Paul. The third member of the terrible threesome is neighbor Genevieve (Genevieve Charbon) who – being a ferocious fag hag – gets “some kind of perverse psychological enjoyment out of stealing them (twinks) from faggots,” as declared by the old queen. Genevieve is apparently a master at “stealing tricks from hustlers,” which assuredly infuriates the posh poof because not only does she get to sleep with the high dollar twink for free – the same man that the seasoned fag has to pay top dollar for – but she also has the potential of sexually rehabilitating the salesman of his lust for sodomy. Despite stating salaciously that he would love to “run barefoot through all those goldilocks" in regard to Paul, the old queen thinks very little of his bought two-legged beefcake, later remarking that hustlers are, at best, one-dimensional creatures whose only interests are comprised of “leather boots and motorcycles.” Needless to say, the seasoned sodomite is the sort of slave-driving fag-master that abberosexual Aryan auteur Rosa von Praunheim warned about in his curious celluloid manifesto It Is Not the Homosexual Who Is Perverse, But the Society in Which He Lives (1971). In fact, the pushing poof admits “there are black slaves and there are white slaves,” with the young and dashing Europid being the apple of his erection. If one is to learn anything from My Hustler, it is that hustling makes for a humiliating, unstable, and short-lived (and oftentimes life-shortening) occupation, that fag hags make for meager mothers and lifeless lovers, and that ancient queens love to reign supreme over their self-created overripe realms.
I think that most fans of the Trash director will agree that My Hustler makes for a meager Morrissey film, but, nonetheless, it is an interesting excursion in the deconstruction of the 'romantic' gigolo life, thus making the considerably campy cinematic work mandatory viewing for those interested in the history of the so-called ‘Factory’ filmmaker. According to Gerard Malanga – who worked on a number of early Warhol films, including acting in Kiss (1963), Vinyl (1965), and Chelsea Girls (1966); and co-produced Bufferin (1967) – My Hustler (along with Chelsea Girls) was one of the first Factory films to turn a profit, albeit marginal, which is undoubtedly due in part to Paul Morrissey’s artistic involvement with the film. As for all-American hustler Paul America – who was a fullback and defensive linebacker on his high school football team – he only appeared in one more acting role after My Hustler as ‘Paul’ in Ciao! Manhattan (1972); a work featuring fellow “Warhol superstar” Edie Sedgwick in her last acting role before her premature death via barbiturate/alcohol overdose that same year. America lived at the Factory from 1965 to 1968 and to quote odious Warhol superstar Ondine, "Paul America was everybody's lover.... He was the personification of total sexual satisfaction. Without a brain in his head. Just beautifully vapid. He was a wonderful creature. Anybody who wanted anything from Paul could get it. He was there to satisfy. And he did" and according to art curator Henry Geldzahler, by the early 1980s the handsome hunk, "was a wasted creature after they [Warhol's crowd] had finished with him. They finally washed their hands of him and let him float away. He's a poor burned-out thing living in a commune in Indiana and trying to pull himself together." In 1982, Paul America was ran over and killed by a car while on his way to a dental appointment. Needless to say, he never acquired the life of “money, cars, education, travel and beautiful women” that was offered to him by the old queen in My Hustler.