It has been hard not to notice that “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” has developed a pretty serious fan club over the past 37 years. Throughout the U.S. and Canada, about 50,000 have become a part of this group of fans, and people still regularly attend the famous midnight showings with growing participation.
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” was released in 1975, but it didn’t get much attention until midnight showings began a year later. People began to yell back lines to the screen and dress up as the characters, procuring a fascination with the film’s spontaneity and a growing number of followers.
(Josh Shettler/CU Independent Graphic Illustration)
For those who are unfamiliar with “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” it is a film with the perfect balance of transvestites, men from Mars and dancing hunchbacks. Brad and Janet, a newly engaged couple, go off on a trip together, only to get stuck at Dr. Frank N. Furter’s castle. Here, they are introduced to his odd clan and discover his creation, Rocky. Through their weird journey of singing, dancing and increasingly weird encounters, we eventually find out that the doctor is actually a mad scientist from the planet Transsexual in the galaxy of Transylvania.
Newcomers are always welcome to go out and enjoy this strange escapade. However, if you have never experienced “Rocky Horror Picture Show” with a live cast and audience, then you are considered a “virgin,” and are at risk to be chosen to take part in the rituals set aside for those lucky few.
The jokes planned for the rituals can get pretty vulgar, but they are all harmless and meant for everyone to get a good laugh. They range from having to eat food from a randomly selected partner’s crotch to having to sing and dance an embarrassing song in front of the rest of the audience. They vary between theaters, and considering there are usually several virgins it’s not likely that you will get chosen. But, if you’re one of the lucky few, have a good sense of humor ready and have fun with it.
Once the rituals are over, you are most likely safe from any other potential humiliation. Enjoy the show and get ready to join in with the participation.
A lot of the lines and props are usually impulsive, considering people just shout random things back at the actors on screen and add props whenever they see a fun opportunity. However, there are some universal customs that you can be prepared for.
At the beginning of the film, there is a wedding that the two main characters, Brad and Janet, are attending. The on-screen guests will be throwing rice at the newlyweds, so bring your own bag of rice to join in. You could also bring a newspaper to mimic the scene where Brad and Janet get stuck in the rain and need to keep from getting wet, while audience members also usually bring water guns to make their own rain throughout the theater.
Later on in the film, a character named Frank will give a toast at dinner. In response to this, you should have pieces of toast readily available to throw into the air. (Because he is proposing a toast, buh-dum-chh)
Close to the beginning of the movie there is a dance called “The Time Warp” that the audience will take part in. It is a simple dance to get the hang of, considering the moves are in the lyrics of the song, telling you to jump to the left and step to the right, along with some pelvic thrusting and hip swivels.
Considering most of the yelled lines are fairly spontaneous and hard to memorize without experiencing the movie first, you can hardly prepare for that part of the movie. However, most theaters yell “asshole” every time that someone says “Brad Majors,” so join in loud and proud whenever you get the chance. For the rest of the show, just enjoy the excitement and pick up on any repeated lines and actions.
Although the show is meant to be crazy and fun, remain mildly respectful to the people and theater. For example, don’t aim the toast at the performers in front of the screen or be too destructive to the venue. Everyone is there to be a little weird, but don’t do anything to ruin it for you or anyone else.
Now that you’re certified in the going-ons at “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” I assume that you want to show off your new skills. CU-Onstage will be holding a show on Nov 10. Don’t be afraid to take part in the insanity and lose your Rocky Horror Picture Show virginity.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Taylor Dunn at Taylor.email@example.com.
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