Saturday, May 21, 2011


This Sunday, March 22nd, the VHS SUMMER series continues at the Beerland Venue in Austin, Texas with a tribute to former Prince protégé, Vanity.

Most remember Vanity as front woman of the sexually provocative pop group, Vanity 6, which quickly rose to fame with Prince-composed songs such as "Nasty Girl." At he apex of their popularity, Vanity left the group and went on to do a lot of irrational things, such as "The Last Dragon," Nikki Sixx, and shit tons of crack. She was also a part of the New Motown label, a Motown reboot which Berry Gordy refuses to acknowledge for some reason. Seriously, I went to the Motown Museum in Detroit about ten years ago, and while on the tour I noticed a darkened corner full of DeBarge cut outs. The guide deliberately steered us away from the corner, so I asked her about the blacked out exhibit. She rolled her eyes and replied, "Oh, that's all that New Motown stuff. Mr. Gordy don't like us to talk about that no more."

In the mid-90s, Vanity nearly succumbed to a drug overdose, but apparently Jesus intervened and told her if she renounced the Vanity persona that she would be spared. She has since distanced herself from her days as Vanity, and gone on to become an evangelist. She's also written a biography entitled "Blame It On Vanity," which is probably just a bunch of inspirational ministry crap instead of stuff about naked, coked up Satanic bonfire rituals at Nikki Sixx's mansion. But still, if you're morbidly curious you can order the book from her website.

Fortunately we're not celebrating the reborn Denise Matthews this Sunday. Instead, we'll be getting down with the original nasty girl herself! First, we’ll be screening the incredibly strange “Tanya’s Island,” an early film for Matthews, wherein she was billed as DD Winters. I’m not even going to pretend to know what the fuck is going on in this movie, but the majority of the film seems to be mere fantasy inspired by Tanya’s volatile relationship with her painter prick boyfriend. Set against the beaches and jungles of a deserted tropic paradise, Vanity spends the majority of the film being violently naked and bickering with her boyfriend, Lobo, whose immature antics drive her into the company of a gentle gorilla she names Blue. Eventually, Lobo happens upon Tanya with her tender ape friend, which sparks a jealousy-fueled feud between the male counter parts which nearly destroys Tanya. The ending is both disturbing and unintentionally hilarious, and will probably haunt you for all your remaining days. Overall, a failed attempt at cerebral eroticism that still manages to be compelling. Also notable for featuring makeup by Rob Bottin and Academy Award Winner Rick Baker.

After that, we’ll be showing “Never To Young To Die,” starring Vanity, John Stamos, and Gene Simmons. Best Bond ever George Lazenby and Robert Englund also enhance the cast. Here, Stamos plays Stargrove, a budding gymnast (yes!) investigating the untimely death of his father, which ultimately leads him to uncover transvestite Gene Simmons’ dastardly terrorist plot to contaminate a reservoir. It’s up to Stargrove, with the expert aid of agent Vanity to help him keep our drinking water safe! This truly insane espionage action thriller cannot be missed!

The doors open at 8:30pm, and “Tanya’s Island” will starts at around 9pm, with “Never To Young To Die” following shortly afterward. Hope to see you there!

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