Hindsight, 20/20, all that.
Occasionally I run across a piece of nostalgia that causes part of my life to finally make sense. When I look at drag queens and see the type of drag they do, I can't help wondering what influenced their "look." After all, when you do drag you essentially reinvent yourself. Why do we choose the elements we choose?
Over the last ten years I've been piecing together my inspirations. Here's one that inspired me when I was six or seven years old: the gender-bending, sexy, somewhat odd but extremely skimpy "Eldrad" from the Doctor Who story "The Hand of Fear" (click on the pic for a larger view). I remember pretending to be "Eldrad" in the playground. Gosh, I REALLY wanted to be her, which must have been confusing for my parents. It's one thing to have a cheesy sci-fi monster as a role model. It's another thing when the role model is a girl with an electronically pitch-bended voice.
The story has finally been released on DVD so we can now see Eldrad (played by the very statuesque Judith Paris) in all her glory. Tales already abound regarding the havoc she created wearing this outfit on set...typical of the Philip Hinchcliffe era of the show, they pushed the boundaries in all directions; this was the only time they got ridiculously sexy.
Thanks to the running commentary we finally hear from her own lips what it was like to wear this costume: she had to be stitched into it, couldn't sit down, and couldn't eat or drink. It crackled loudly and bits of it kept falling off. But nobody said that being "striking" was easy.
So here's to Eldrad, re-released on DVD, turning a new generation of children into queens.