Tomorrow night, the cast of Glee
will unveil one of their most ambitious and talked about episodes to date: "The Rocky Horror Glee Show," a tribute to the British play and 1975 cult classic film that spawned a massive, interactive following that continues to show to packed theaters to this day.
But that's the thing about cult classics: Not everybody is an expert. If you're trying to plan a Glee
-ified Rocky Horror
viewing party, need a little refresher on the film or are a Rocky Horror
virgin who justs want to know what to expect from tomorrow's Science Fiction Double Feature, give yourself over to absolute pleasure and read on ...
The Glee Rocky Horror
tribute won't be a scene-by-scene take on the original, so you won't be too lost if you've never seen the movie. But you also might not get as much out of it. Doing a little bit of homework will not only help you appreciate the episode, but also appreciate why they chose to make a Rocky Horror
tribute in the first place.
If you've never seen the 1975 film or just want a refresher, lots of web sites are willing to tell you what Rocky Horror Picture Show
is all about and how to participate (here
are most comprehensive and helpful). It's best just to watch the movie with your own eyes, preferably in the company of those who are well-versed in its culture and cult behaviors. (And preferably in a theater: Check here
to see if it's playing near you!) If you want to rent the movie but don't have a human who can guide you through it, this audience participation script from Badmovies.org
, which points out every standard audience yell and action throughout the entire movie, is the next best thing.
(Before you go out and rent it: If you're a Netflix user, the movie is available on Instant, and the Fox Movie Channel is playing it twice on Tuesday, October 26 and all day on October 31. If you don't have access to either source, find a friend who does!)
Don't have time to watch the whole thing? At the very least familiarize yourself with the characters (listed below) and brush up via this 30-second recap from the ever-helpful Starz Bunnies:Rocky Horror Picture Show Characters:
- Brad, a hero engaged to Janet (Finn)
- Janet, a heroine engaged to Brad (Rachel)
Riff Raff, a handyman/brother of Magenta (Kurt)
Rocky, a creation/Frank-N-Furter's lover (Sam)
- Magenta, a domestic, sister of Riff-Raff (Quinn/Santana)
- Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a scientist (Mercedes)
Eddie, ex-delivery boy/Columbia's boyfriend/former boy-toy of Frank-N-Furter (Mike/Carl)
- Dr. Everett V. Scott, a rival scientist/Brad and Janet's professor (Artie)
- Columbia, a groupie/girlfriend of Eddie (Brittany/Tina)
If you and your friends are getting together to watch the episode and want to really embrace the Rocky Horror
spirit (especially on a show as theatrical and over-the-top as Glee
), you've got to dress the part as one of the characters, or as any variety of partygoer. No one needs or expects your costume to be an exact replica. The most important thing is embrace the outrageous attitude of the movie (corsets, fish nets, glitter, high heels and the like are standard practice), and have fun with it. These hardcore Gleeks who attended a screening of the episode in New York City this weekend have the right idea:
Rocky Horror audiences have been known to tote everything from rice and toast to water guns and playing cards to screenings, all to throw at the screen at appropriate times. For a full list of what to bring and when to use them, go here. Here's a must-have list of the items you're most likely to be able to adapt for use during Glee's Rocky Horror episode:
Water guns and Newspaper: When Brad (Finn) and Janet (Rachel) get caught in the rain, Janet covers her head with a newspaper--that's when audience members bust out their water guns to simulate the storm, while others cover their heads like Janet.
Candles and/or flashlights: When the Glee cast sings "(There's a Light) Over at the Frankenstein Place," light up your living room with whatever's handy (and not a fire hazard).
Noisemakers: If we get to see Frank-N-Furter's (Mercedes) creation speech, celebrate in traditional Rocky Horror manner with a noisemaker. If we don't get to see that scene, hey, it's still a party--I'm sure you'll find a use for them.
Toast and a Party Hat: Thrown and put on (respectively) during the dinner scene when Frank proposes a toast and puts on a party hat. Still throwable/edible and wearable even if the scene doesn't make the cut on Glee.
Audience Participation: Since we won't see the whole play, it's hard to say which audience shout-backs will work for the Glee episode. But there's no doubt you'll be able to find opportunities to shout the two most important ones:
- When the narrator refers to Brad, the audience shouts back, "A**hole!"
- When the narrator refers to Janet, the audience shouts back, "Slut!"
Not as creative as Sue Sylvester's insults, but still quite effective.
V is for Virgin: At theater screenings of the film, it's tradition for anyone who's never attended a screening before ("virgins") to get up on stage before the show and engage in silly "virgin games," like an orgasm imitation contest. Most of the games are overtly sexual, but they're all in good fun. If you'd like to replicate the tradition before the episode, why not put a distinctive Glee spin on things? Before the episode, challenge your Rocky Horror virgin friends to perform their best rendition of "Like a Virgin," do an embarrassing dance to "Toxic" or consume a Slushie in any number of dirty ways.
The Time Warp:
You're gonna have to do the Time Warp. Obviously
. Don't know how? Take your guidance from the lyrics of the song
, the movie
or from this website
(with helpful foot-and-arrow instructions).Sing Along!
, so that's just a given. All the Glee
versions of the Rocky Horror
songs are available on iTunes already (and you can hear them for free here
) so there's no excuse not to belt them out along with Kurt, Artie, Quinn and the rest of the club.
Now grab some popcorn, tighten up your finest corset and get ready to Gleek out with "The Rocky Horror Glee
Make sure to watch out for Barry Bostwick (original Brad) and Meat Loaf
(original Eddie) to appear in tomorrow night's episode!
What's your favorite Rocky Horror Picture Show tradition? Are you celebrating the tribute in any special ways?
(Images courtesy of Fox)