John Tumblred [Tumbld?] this yesterday about transmisogyny in Rocky Horror, which got me thinking. The original post focuses on the terminology as a source of transmisogyny, but the whole portrayal of Frank as a literally unhinged debasement of stereotypical painted femininity also reeks of transmisogyny. For example, there’s a part in Sword of Damocles where Rocky receives admiration from all the partygoers, which pisses Frank off because Rocky is eluding his control. He chases after Rocky, warbling his name, tripping up in his high heels and kind of running into the wall in melodramatic distress. Even though I didn’t identify this particular instant as transmisogynistic when I first saw it, I remember saying to myself, "He wouldn’t do that — he’s a flamboyant control freak, not a sniveling mess. I’m taking this character seriously — why isn’t the movie?" Well, okay, the response was less coherent than that; it was more like, "Why is he bouncing off the walls? That doesn’t fit." Now, a decade and a half [!] later, I can finally call out some of the rank bigotry at work here. Blarf.
Thinking about RHPS always gets me thinking about Mad Mazzy Mickle Goes Looking for Love, which, I reason, has its own problematic elements that I just haven’t thought up yet. Hmmm, let’s see: racism [two characters of color only], stereotypes about bisexuals [sexually voracious, attracted to everyone], disparagement of traditional femininity [characters not into car-related activities coded butch are looked down upon].
Peter: "It’s a cesspool of noxious stereotypes."
Isabel: "But I love it! It changed my life. I came out to the soundtrack!"
Peter: "Me too. But it’s still a cesspool."
Well, clearly, Isabel and Peter connect over their shared interest in this movie, though Peter examines it much more critically than she does. Wonder if I could work a Mazzy reference — and thus conversation — into their initial meeting, which does, after all, involve a car crash, and Mazzy’s all about souped-up drag racers [har!], so there’s the hook.