After that last blog post I did indeed go back and rewatch “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and absolutely loved it – been quite a few years. For those of us of a certain age who grew up crossdressing there was the inevitable question: “Do I go see that movie or not?” I only saw it one time as a teenager, going with my brother to see it at the midnight movies in our ol’ hometown of Colorado Springs. It was just too threatening to sit there and play it cool and hope that no one would realize that, “OMG, that kid sitting there in the audience is a crossdresser – that’s the reason he’s here!”
It’s ridiculous in retrospect but that was probably close to what I was thinking. The movie just hit way too close to home. The funny thing is that I didn’t find anyone in it particularly attractive, though Susan Sarandon is very cute. But the crossdressing itself was so over the top and everyone had hairy armpits so I can’t say I was the least bit turned on by the spectacle. At the time it was fun enough and pretty silly but having seen it once I never watched it again for years.
Now as a mature tranny I absolutely love it! And it holds up really well as a movie, especially owing to the quality of the brilliant songs, especially that opening track with the big red lips! My brother bought the soundtrack album soon after we went and he went back many times with two lesbian friends from High School. But my brother is certainly not a crossdresser, so the film was no threat to him at all. It was just good fun.
Time sadly has been cruel to Tim Curry, stricken with a stroke about ten years ago – I actually thought he might be dead already, but no, he’s still alive. And of course Meat Loaf’s passing was the whole reason I watched it again. I didn’t realize till just now that the creator and songwriter, Richard O’Brien (Riff-Raff), identifies as non-binary. When I read that it was like, “Of course, now I get it!” Nice to read that he seems happy: “I know I’m loved.” Not a bad place to be.
Wow, Meat Loaf’s death really surprised me and made me sad. He was such a one-of-a-kind and by all accounts a really decent human being. I didn’t even know he was 74 years old – how did that happen?
I admit I never owned any of his albums and I really only knew his big hits but I always liked him and remember it well when “Bat Out of Hell” came out in Junior High School and how huge it was. “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad” is still one of my favorites. It’s easy to make fun of overly-grandiose music like that, but I sure do like it. Some of the lyrics still get to me. I can tell myself, “Aw c’mon, it’s just an over-the-top power ballad,” but it works.
So here I am feeling kind of misty eyed over Meat Loaf’s death but what’s behind it are a lot of memories that came up when I heard the news and remembered those songs. I’ve written a little before about my old friend whom I’ll call Kathy. She was a genetic woman with whom I was best friends for over twenty-five years, having met when I was about nineteen – she was several years older. If I’d ever gotten married to a genetic woman it would have been her, though it also would have been a complete disaster. Now though I like cock way too much anyway to ever marry a woman – although I’ve sometimes imagined clicking with a lesbian where we don’t have sex but are still very fond of each other. Somehow I think that could actually work (only half joking).
Kathy and I took lots of trips together, watched hundreds of movies together, and had a silly private language of inside jokes that in hindsight were just stupid. And then twelve years ago we got into a series of arguments and became estranged. We haven’t spoken to each other since and I doubt that the only way we would ever speak again is if some serious illness or accident were to befall one of us – even then I don’t know if either of us would reach out. It’s so strange how someone can be so close in your life and then suddenly it’s over. I used to think, Oh, Kathy and I will always be there for each other, how could we not be?
So that’s what’s on my mind. I heard the news of Meat Loaf’s passing and just started thinking about the past. This is probably a pretty self indulgent post and I may just delete it tomorrow. In the meantime I think I’ll go listen to some more Meat Loaf on YouTube while I edit some more pics. Might be time to watch “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” again sometime too in the next few weeks. Rest in Peace.
I was just in Denver recently seeing my brother and sister in law and one evening we watched Brian De Palma’s “Phantom of the Paradise” from 1974. It’s silly and campy but I really enjoyed it again after many many years. There are some spoilers below so be warned if you haven’t seen it yet.
I saw it first at a midnight movie when I was probably sixteen and it really freaked me out. The steel teeth really got to me and the plot was so cruel. I think my teenage brain was just going, “What’s happening to this guy is just really unfair!” I may have been a little buzzed on weed at the time too – can’t quite remember but that was a common thing at the midnight movies at that age, which would have only made it worse.
Paul Williams stars as the devil, which is perfect casting. And he has those cool ’70s bangs. I couldn’t place at first who the main actress was till the credits rolled and I realized it was Jessica Harper from Dario Argento’s “Suspiria,” which was one of my favorites when I saw it in the ’80s. (Goofy trailer here). She’s also a very good singer and has some dance moves to match.
“Phantom” has some similarities to “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” including a stage performance with a hunk who’s sewn together from various body parts, like Rocky (not Stallone), and a singer, Beef, who’s gay AF.
It’s not high cinema, obviously, but it’s a good guilty pleasure. I think De Palma’s “Carrie,” which came out only two years later, is probably much more skillfully done – and far more frightening. I actually found the poster for “Carrie” so utterly disturbing that I avoided looking at the movie ads all that season when it came out in late ’76. Even now I don’t like watching the pig’s blood scene from that movie. I once turned on a television and that scene popped up with Sissy Spacek and her wide horror-stricken eyes – Holy crap!
If you’re looking for something campy and fun though for Halloween “Phantom of the Paradise” could be a good choice. We just started watching it on a whim and I’m glad we did. Fun stuff!
Sandra Gibbons talks about what's happening in her world, both bondage related and not