‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’: Talking About the Cult Classic
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” though a cult classic, seems to be in a category of its own. The 1975 film adaption is a musical that meshes comedy and horror. The plot revolves around Brad Majors and Janet Weiss, a typical, recently engaged ‘70s couple that enters the castle of Frank N. Further, a transvestite from the planet Transylvania. Let’s just say, they don’t leave unscathed.
As if the movie wasn’t strange enough, it soon became popular for people to act out the movie on stage while it was playing. Audience participation is encouraged as people recite lewd quotes from the film. It’s all steeped in grand traditions involving props like rice, toast, toilet paper and newspapers.
“Rocky Horror” is a paradoxical case of a wildly popular cult classic. On Sunday, Oct. 27, students packed into Rutgers Cinema’s largest room on Livingston Campus to see a rendition of this classic. The show was put on by The Friday Nite Specials Cast, which puts on the same performance weekly in Aberdeen, NJ.
Adrianna Slomicz, a first-year in the School of Arts and Sciences, is no stranger to “Rocky Horror.” Slomicz started going to see “Rocky Horror” in the eighth grade, and has been hooked ever since, joining the cast when she was 17.
"It really brings people together," Slomicz said. "No matter how weird you are, you're among friends here… 'Rocky Horror' is definitely somewhere you can be as big of a freak as you want to be."
Now, Slomicz acts with The Friday Nite Specials Cast. She opened Sunday’s performance as the Usherette, a character that fans affectionately call ‘Trixie.’
Raven Lawless, an SAS first-year, exists on the other end of the spectrum. She, and people like her, are referred to as “virgins” – those who have never been to a performance of the cult classic before.
“I’ve seen the movie a lot, I’ve shown basically all my friends, but I’ve never been to a showing,” Lawless said.
Lawless explains that the film has had a profound effect on popular culture.
“I think there’s the fact that it doesn’t make sense,” she said. “It kind of became popular on accident.”
Carol Galli a senior in the School of Arts and Sciences, who played the “heroine” Janet Weiss, offered a different perspective on the popularity of the bizarre sci-fi musical.
“I think it all starts from the underground gay culture and I think it’s grown into something more, and I think it’s become something really great,” Galli said. “It really let a lot of people be who they want to be, starting from that and turning it to not just gay culture.”
Either way, it would seem that the popularity behind “Rocky Horror” stems from it’s welcoming ambiance. Though intense and strange, people are always welcome to join in on the cult classic’s atmosphere.