It's almost Halloween. If you plan to attend the halloween Rocky Horror Picture Show Shadow Cast Screening, especially if you live in Toronto and are going to the Bloor Cinema this blog entry is for you. What is Rocky Horror? Rocky Horror started in 1970s England as a campy, satirical take on American rock and roll, culture, and horror movies. Prior to meeting Dr. Frank N Furter Rocky Horror's iconic, young, couple, Brad Majors and Janet Weiss are products of a world of conservative values, where things such as sex before marriage and homosexuality are frowned upon. If you've seen pictures of, or have actually watched the first ever King Kong and Frankenstein movies you will immediately understand what many of Rocky Horror's most iconic costumes and moments are light heartedly satirizing. Threats are immediately defused and not worthy of being taken too seriously thanks to the musical's infectiously catchy tunes, eccentric outfits, and overall campy nature. Rocky Horror is also jam packed with subtle references to everything from 1950s rock and roll to Micky Mouse. Dr. Frank N Furter, Riff Raff, Magenta, Columbia, and the chorus of partying Transylvanians are from a Liberal world where you're encouraged to celebrate and openly express sexuality. It's a world where homosexuality is considered super cool. Brad and Janet have no other intention beyond finding a phone on a rainy night. They never find the phone they were looking for. Instead they have their ideas of what's "normal" and "acceptable" challenged. So what's it like going to a Rocky Horror Shadow Cast? Rocky Horror fans expect only one thing out of both fellow Rocky Horror fans and first timers when they attend a screening: an open mind. If you've ever been to a Pride parade it's literally the same kind of scene. People are there to celebrate who they are. Rocky Horror fans will be kind and welcoming if you are willing to celebrate whatever makes you "different", while being shameless about looking ridiculous. The most important part of the Rocky Horror experience is throwing everything you know about movie theatre etiquette out the window. Everyone will be yelling at the screen whatever reactions come to mind. Please remember that if you tell someone to be quiet they'll fight back and you'll be doing something that's one of the most uncool things you can possibly do at a Rocky Horror Screening. Don't try to stop the yelling: join it! Don't bring your inner thought censor with you because caring what people think is pointless. Also: the happy birthday scene and the Time warp are super easy to pick up on and sometimes the shadow cast hosts will encourage you to stand when Tim Curry first shows up on screen in order to "show some respect for the legendary Tim Curry". Don't opt out of the rituals! Just so we're clear Rocky Horror shadow cast first time attendees are all called "virgins" in the Rocky Horror community. Don't tell the hosts you're a Rocky Horror virgin unless you want to risk participating in a goofy initiation ritual in front of the entire movie theatre. I don't recommend this unless you literally have no shame. This is one of the Rocky Horror rituals that's optional. I will not reveal what it is in order to avoid spoiling the surprise and excitement of going for the first time. All I really have to say is have fun! There's nothing as liberating as escaping to the Rocky Horror high of looking goofy for a couple hours. Dressing up is encouraged but optional. I will be attending a screening in Toronto in a Magenta inspired look this halloween. You're in for a treat Rocky Horror virgins! Hope these tips are useful and you become as hooked on the musical as I did, back in my final year of high school. Let's do the time warp again!