The No on Prop 16 campaign is fighting back against Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s advertising blitzkrieg for Proposition 16, the anti-democratic ballot initiative it has bankrolled to secure its monopoly in the San Francisco Bay Area. Read more »
Thrillpeddlers peddle more Cockettes in Hot Greeks and SF Playhouse gets kinda Guignol with Slasher
On the principle that when you’ve got it you should really flaunt it, San Francisco’s Thrillpeddlers essay their second revival of a musical by the storied Cockettes. Hot Greeks, which premiered in midnight performances at the old Palace Theater in 1972, was the gleefully crazed cross-dressing troupe’s only other fully scripted musical besides, of course, Pearls Over Shanghai, which Thrillpeddlers revived to long-running fame almost a year ago and which will run in repertory with the limited-run Greeks.
While not the Oresteia or anything, Hot Greeks is more than an excuse for a lot of louche, libidinous hilarity. Okay, not much more. But it is a knowing little romp — supported by some infectious songs courtesy of Martin Worman (book and lyrics) and Richard “Scrumbly” Koldewyn (music and additional lyrics, and musical director-accompanist for the revival) — wedding trashy high school romance with the trashy ancient Greece of Aristophanes and the Peloponnesian War.
It’s hard to guess what fictive icons of popular culture will endure and which will evaporate from the collective memory. In the 1940s, probably few would have imagined kiddie heroes Batman or Superman retaining marquee value into the next century. Bigger bets would no doubt have been placed on the Shadow, the Saint, and the Whistler, long-running radio men of mystery with uncanny (but not exactly supernatural, or super-heroic) abilities to witness the moral misdeeds of mortal men, not to mention their inevitable comeuppance.
In fact, the S-men usually doled out that payback themselves. Even more evanescent than his compatriots, the Whistler was less hands-on, more a Greek chorus sardonically telling the tale of each episode’s protagonists, gloating over the impending arrival of their just desserts. He was never a participant -- was even a He, or an otherworldly It? He was, simply, a gimmicked-up omniscient narrator, the storyteller’s own voice turned into a character slash-framing device.
As a result the Whistler probably didn’t seem natural movie material -- what can you do with a character that isn’t seen and doesn’t interact with others? Yet the 13-year series’ popularity was such that Columbia Pictures took the plunge anyway. The result was eight films made between 1944 and 1948, six showing during the two weeks of “I Still Wake Up Dreaming!,” Elliot Lavine’s latest noir revival extravaganza at the Roxie -- in restored 35mm prints struck for the occasion, yet. (The Whistlers will also play Berkeley’s Pacific Film Archive May 29-June 5.)
By the looks of things, I’m set to become the sexiest lady in San Francisco. After all, two of my favorite activities, reading and riding bikes, are being sex-a-fied and objectified this week -- and I kinda like it. Check out Dr. Sketchy’s Cute Girls on Bicycles, and Naked Girls Reading for a double dose of tame-ass female hotness (Sketchy’s girls will have clothes on, but the bookworms will be in all their literary glory). Geez, I hope next week doesn’t bring a Naked Girls Drinking Beer night, or a Naked Girls Using Too Many Adjectives In Their Writing night -- they’ll be ripping off my clothes in the streets! Read more »
Curiosities, quirks, oddites, and items from around the Bay and beyond
Large, hairy gay men fashionably invaded Berkeley Art Museum on Mother's Day in honor of large, hairy Belgian fashion designer. Did you go? We'd love to hear your on-the-scene reports. (Alas, we were dining with Mum). Read more »
City Grazing, the adorable weed-eating goat herd in Bayview, has a ton of upcoming events, starting tomorrow, May 12, at 6 p.m., when City Grazing founder David Gavrich will talk at a community forum on the urban farming movement at the Commonwealth Club.
Community College Board Trustee Chris Jackson has thrown his hat into the District 10 Supervisor race. The move is guaranteed to upset the already crowded field of candidates in the district. District 10 lies in the city's southeast sector and is home to San Francisco's largest remaining African American community, and some of its most economically disadvanted communities and environmentally polluted lands.Read more »
Caught by the hairily wonderful DJ Rotten Robbie (and via The Awl), a "brief" look at designer Walter Van Beirendonck's furry fashion extravaganza that had all the cubs panting in Berkeley this past Sunday. Let the fur fly free! (Can you name all the bears?) Maybe NSFW?
EDITORIAL The 2007 ballot measure that was supposed to give Muni more political independence and more money has failed to provide either. It's time to say that Proposition A, which we supported, hasn't worked in significant part because the administration of Mayor Gavin Newsom hasn't allowed it to work. It's time for a new reform effort, one that looks at Muni's governance structure, funding, and the way it spends money.
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