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Do It With Class does The Rocky Horror Show

I’m Not Angry
Kyle Leitch

A&C Writer

This weekend, I had the great fortune of winding up at Do It With Class’ production of The Rocky Horror Don’t-You-Dare-Say-Picture-at-the-Live-Performance Show. My history with the Rocky Horror Screw-Everyone-I’m-Going-to-Say-Picture-Because-That’s-How-I-Remember-It Show has been long and storied. My love and emphatic hate relationship with this production aside, and my feelings about this particular production aside, I couldn’t help but wonder just why it is that we in the western world – and particularly around here – have developed such a Rocky Horror fetish around Halloween.

I mean, where else are you going to see burly, hairy dudes in frilly panties, and women who look like they have applied their faces with Homer Simpson’s Make-Up Gun? And the other people in the crowd wearing their frilly pink tutus and their parents’ favourite BDSM outfits don’t bat an eye? But it’s not even really that. It’s that we all seem to love the hell out of this every year, and the problem is that I end up being the bad guy, the Halloween Scrooge for pointing this out.

Questionable attire aside, what about the actual Picture Show itself? All I have to say is wow. Do It With Class’ theatre troop certainly have outdone themselves. Themes of violent pornography, polyamory, cock-bulges, and Nazis were the rule of the evening. At the intermission, The Narrator read “fan” questions – that clearly were not filled out by the actors at all. One of the questions was, “why are you all such bad actors?” The Narrator threw up his arms and emphatically declared that they weren’t bad actors, they just didn’t give a shit. Message received loud and clear, kemosabe.

The big problem is there are other very viable options that can replace the Rocky Horror Picture Show as a staple Halloween production. 2008’s Repo! The Genetic Opera is, as its name halfway implies, a rock opera with dark subject matter that suits itself perfectly to Halloween. Live productions of the film occurred regularly around the Halloween season as a part of the annual Repo Roadshow. These performances relied heavily on audience participation, and they were encouraged to dress up as their favourite characters. Things were going great until Miguel Sapochnik’s 2010 film Repo Men exercised “creative licence,” and released the exact same movie with all of the charm, music, and Anthony Stewart Head removed, thus destroying most of Repo!’s popularity. 2003’s The Room was another perfect example of an audience-dependent production that would make a fine substitution. Yet, like a whole flock of whore-looking sheep, we are herded into auditoriums to watch some dude in a sparkly banana-hammock sing Sweet Transvestite off-key.

And you know, I do believe I’ve figured it all out. The reason people have such an unnatural fixation on this particular show is the same reason there’s a Conservative majority, and is the same reason Michael Fougere is the new mayor. We are afraid of change. We elect for the sameness, and we go to the theatre to view sameness to try to distract ourselves from elected sameness.  Difference scares us, and if you dare try to be different around here, you’re going to get wiped out. Wow, a review and a political statement encompassed in one I’m Not Angry? That’s efficiency, my friends. But I’m not angry. Honest.

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