Freshmen is a new project from the guys who bring us Bel Ami Online, and it replaces Kinky Angels. Bel Ami's producer and videographer George Duroy shot many of the covers of Freshmen magazine which published between 1982 and 2009. Feeling nostalgic for his time with the magazine, Duroy spent considerable effort securing the rights to the Freshmen name, and in November 2016 he finally launched this new web venture. I'm quite excited about it, so join me while I take a look at the site.
The guys are mostly Czech and Hungarian and range from 18 to their mid-twenties, although some may be a little bit older. And like the Freshman name suggests, Duroy aims to bring us fresh faces using established Bel Ami models to introduce these new guys to porn filming. Freshmen is a live test-run for these new models; some will make while others won't, and not every guy is going to be the first class models we're used to seeing on Bel Ami. That's not to say they're unappealing or sub-par, either. Most of them are cute and a few are pornstars just waiting to happen. The guys sport slender and smooth bodies, a few are a little more athletic and defined than others, and remember that European guys are generally uncut, so expect lots of foreskin.
Freshmen is a different kind of website - it's more like an online video magazine. The best way to understand Freshmen is for me to walk you through one of the issues. Issues are numbered instead of dated; all but one contain three videos, and Freshmen says there's a new issue every week. Issue #6 features Tommy Poulain and Andre Boleyn. The write-up says that Duroy is undecided about keeping Tommy and asks members to chime in with their opinions. Tommy is average in the looks department, but he sure knows his way around a guy's cock and easily takes Boleyn's big dick up his ass. Even as Poulain is let go, he's already filmed 12 scenes - that's quite the audition. There's a second hardcore video in Issue #6 featuring Hungarian beauties Danny Defoe and Jean-Luc Bisset. And the third video is a double solo with Joel Birkin & Lars Norgaard jacking off together. Other issues have featured solos, some with subtitled interviews in Czech.
There are currently nine Freshmen issues, all but one with three videos, so that's 26 videos altogether, and they add four issues with a total of 11 to 12 new videos every month. Since Freshmen is replacing Kinky Angels, members get access to the Kinky Angels archive of 45 issues with around 270 videos. The Freshmen videos are available to download in three sizes of MP4. There's an HD version at 1440x810 and two smaller versions at 960x540 and 624x350, and the smaller ones are mobile compatible. The visual quality is stunning, bright and crisp. You can also stream the videos online, available in both SD and HD qualties that both play at 960x540 and fare well at full-screen mode, although the HD versions hold up better.
Each scene has a description of the action along with the full names of the models, and there's also a gallery of 12 screencaps (I noticed one only had 11). You view these in a pop-up viewer with forward and back controls, however there's no slideshow feature. There are no downloadable zip files, but you can save the pics individually by right clicking from each thumb.
Issue eight added a set of sexy digital stills instead of a third video, and if you love pics, you'll hope for more of the same in the future. The pics are shown in a slider and are sized at 400x600 to fit your browser, but download the zip set for good-sized, high quality photos sized at 1200x1800. And while there's no slideshow, you can easily navigate from pic to pic.
Members are free to comment on each scene, and many do - the latest scene had a dozen comments. There's also a link in the member area that takes you to the Bel Ami discussion board where Freshmen has its own section, but you're free to browser through the various Bel Ami sections, too. That's it for extras except for the 45 Kinky Angels issues, which I have already talked about. And while not really an extra, if you are already a Bel Ami member you can join Freshmen and save $5 on your membership; you simple have to enter your existing login when signing up.
Are there any drawbacks? No deal breakers, but a few things I want to mention. First, neither the issues or individual videos are dated, but I've been checking, and there's been an update every week as promised. Second, the site has added a single set of digital stills so far, which is a little disappointing for me because I love photos, but the screencaps are good quality and preview the action in the videos. Finally, I would have loved to see model profiles for the guys with some stats and a short bio for each, especially since this is an audition site with many guys new to porn. Maybe that's coming, as the site's welcome letter indicates Freshmen is a work in progress, and they'll be adding other features like a behind-the-scenes reality series that will debut in 2017.
Bel Ami is in a league of its own, so it's no surprise that their new site, Freshmen, is a first-class act. The site is a live test run for new models and, like the tour says, "Before making it to Bel Ami, they start as Freshmen first". I was equally impressed with the quality of guys, the beautiful design and easy navigation, and the top-notch production quality. While the issues aren't dated, the site is adding a new one every week and all but one contains three videos, so you're looking at getting 11 to 12 new scenes every month - two hardcore sex scenes and a jack-off session, sometimes with an interview. Freshmen is off to a great start and I encourage you to check it out.