Dave Thompson, author of The Rocky Horror Picture Show FAQ, sat down with Wicked Horror to discuss the book just in time for the Fox production, The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again, airing October 20th. The interview covered the history of Rocky Horror and the show continuing its notoriety in the future.
I’ll be dating myself, but I first saw Rocky when I was 13 in the 1970s. I passed the signs for this spectacular looking thing and was curious. I remember going to school after seeing it and telling my friends how I had just seen the most amazing thing. I’ve always wanted to write a Rocky book. Since then I’ve been squirreling away information.
What was the most challenging aspect?
The chronology. I spent weeks trying to find dates and to compare them with dates in other databases. Finding details for the early stuff–and the discography! That was difficult. I’d find out something like Reg Livermore, who was Frank in the earliest Australian production of Rocky, released an album. Then I’d dedicate time to finding that record. Sometimes I would finally find something like that and it would be like “…Oh.”
I’m sure you’ve come across some amazing renditions of Rocky in your research. Fan-created works, especially.
Oh yes. One of the best versions I’ve seen was a small production in my college town. They did a brilliant job with it.
Given the extensive history and numerous versions of Rocky, what are your thoughts on the upcoming Rocky Horror Picture Show TV re-imagining?
I like that. You chose your wording very carefully. You likely think the same thing I do about the new version. It could be good. I’ve seen versions where there is too much focus on certain parts. I remember seeing the scene on stage the first time where Frank goes to Brad and Janet in their boudoir and it being shocking–everyone in the audience being shocked by that scene. Now some performances will deliver an iconic line, mumble mumble to the next shocking line, mumble mumble mumble through the next scene.
Read the rest of the interview here.