Queer Performers

All posts tagged Queer Performers

Thriller Nights: Ramon Novarro

Published March 10, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

ramon stud shot

Heralded as one of the big screen’s most exotic lovers, Ramon Novarro’s filmic legacy has often been overshadowed by the notorious circumstances of his death. As a gay man, known to hire hustlers in his declining years, this former matinee idol met his end, violently, by a pair of brothers in 1968. His demise has since been highlighted in short stories, books and songs.

ramon mataBut, significantly, Novarro’s early beauty easily matched that of his co-star Greta Garbo, sultry pose for sultry pose, in the fun 1931 spy drama Mata Hari. Later in his performing life, he gave eagle eyed horror buffs a boost with a featured role in the beloved Boris Karloff hosted anthology show Thriller.

In the 1962 second season episode La Strega, Novarro appeared opposite the stunning Ursula Andress as Maestro Giuliano, the mentor to a besotted painter, played by the swarthy Alejandro Rey (Satan’s Triangle, The Swarm, Terror Vision). Working with authority and concern, Novarro supplies the proceedings with a compassionate figure here who believes that Rey’s involvement with Andress could end in tragedy, as her aunt is a powerful witch.Ramon 2

This doesn’t mean Giuliano isn’t up to a little adventure. He accompanies the entwined duo to a black mass which, kudos to the art direction of Howard E. Johnson and the cinematography of Benjamin H. Kline, contains some of the episode’s most fiery and striking visuals. Unfortunately, Guliano finds himself on the receiving end of the sorceress’ revenge here, making Novarro’s appearance an important yet all too brief one. Although, proving the adage that a woman scorned is a dangerous thing, everything does not go well for the characters portrayed by Andress and Rey either.

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Nicely, besides highlighting Novarro’s subtle talents as a performer, this tale is directed with gothic sweep by Ida Lupino. One of the few working female directors in the ‘50s and ‘60s, Lupino is known for guiding taut noir pictures like The Hitch-Hiker and, perhaps less elegantly, for her acting work in such gonzo genre projects as Devil’s Rain and Food of the Gods.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!


Music to Make Horror Movies By: Rough Trade

Published March 6, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

rough trade

Get out those bedazzled telescopes! You might need them to spot Carole Pope and Kevan Staples, AKA Rough Trade, who were so far ahead of their time, musically and culturally, that they almost belong in outer space.

Blending cinematic violence with humor and advanced queer politics, a mixture more effective than a combination of Anita Ekberg and Mamie Van Doren, this duo revolutionized sexuality through their sophisticated new wave and pop tunes (and tongue-in-cheek name) – and also, occasionally, entered the public consciousness at large with such tunes as High School Confidential and No Contact.

Pope’s work has even found its way onto the soundtrack of horror parody Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday the 13th. But the bloody consequences inherent is such songs as Vertigo, Endless Night, Grade B Movie and others should have placed them on many a terror film soundtrack if this was truly a just world. In fact, the video for Crimes of Passion, one of their most noir-like creations, serves as prime evidence to back up that statement.


While Staples (www.kevanstaples.com) has successfully concentrated on composing for film, as of late, Pope is still battling it out in the singer-songwriter trenches and can be found at www.carolepope.com. Send them some much deserved loving!!

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!