Review: Rocket Doll Revue’s “In the Shadows” at the White Rabbit Cabaret

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Note: This review is for the Night 2 performance on Oct. 20, 2018.

On a windy weekend in Indianapolis, Indiana, the first fall evening to bring chills, Indianapolis’ Rocket Doll Revue and some special guests put on a special performance the only way they know how with a two-night performance of “In the Shadows.”

Opening acts always set the mood for the evening, and Patsy Blue Ribbon and Desiree DeCarlo played the part of ghoulish welcomers; go-go dancers injected the spirit of Vampyra.

Host for the evening was Dorian Graves, a throwaway animatronic from the Disney Haunted Mansion ride who later auditioned for a part in the “Rocky Horror Show,” but instead found himself as an extra in an Oingo Boingo music video from the 1980s. He ultimately found himself in Indianapolis, bringing the macabre and kitsch together in an irresistibly entertaining mix throughout the evening.

Dorian Graves – Photo courtesy of Schwebach Photography

Graves would introduce the selection of performing Dolls in their final full production for 2018. Frenchy LaRouge (the “cans that can,” says Dorian Graves) performed what could only be described as Gothic country music, cold but inviting, dark and sexy– Wednesday Addams all grown up.

The offbeat charm would continue with a special debut from new Doll, Bunny Beaumont, bringing her own aesthetic of after hours Kate Pierson coupled with impressive acrobatic skills to sear her in the audience’s mind.

Directly following the excitement of the new were a couple of seasoned seductresses. Senorita Pussy’s tribute to Día de Muertos had a natural flow and was effortlessly sexy, even with the simple act of tossing a bouquet. Trini Bikini’s famous Ronald McDonald number married the disturbing with the trashy with the convenient (honestly, after a few beers who wouldn’t want some salty McDonald’s fries thrown out into the audience). And just in time for Halloween, her clown outfit is infinitely more disturbing than Pennywise’s.

Patsy Blue Ribbon – Photo courtesy of Schwebach Photography

Lula Lawless is a performer who demands complete attention with sheer magnetism alone. Playing the swampy, swaying succubus to CCR’s version of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ classic “I Put a Spell on You” made the mercury rise on a cold Indy night.

Complementing each other’s performances, Vagina Woolf’s empathy and personal touch positioned her as the audience’s very own S&M Gothic high priestess. In her ritualistic number, she seemed to be summoning Boybarella, who remains on fire as always. This evening he plays the part of sexy boy-devil Lucifer, performing a swirling crimson number dripping with menacing sexuality.

Sailem – Photo courtesy of Schwebach Photography

Joining the Rocket Dolls were the evening’s special guests from St. Louis. Jeezy’s Juke Joint favorite Rose Whip radiated an angelic air with catlike movements and the subtlest gestures that fixed the audience’s eyes firmly in place on their overwhelming sensuality. Second to perform was Sailem, transported directly from her namesake’s location circa 1693. Savage choreography and fierce sexual dark magic permeated a number accented with hellfire stage lighting.

Gurl Haggard- Photo courtesy of Schwebach Photography

MVP for the night was Gurl Haggard, in an engrossing and shockingly personal shibari number. The drama and unbearable levels of submission infused with a raw allure that only Gurl can pull off was altogether remarkable.

“In the Shadows” is not and won’t be the only themed show for an Rocket Doll Revue. However, Halloween may just bring out the best in the Dolls. Not only does it bring out an essential element in each performer’s personality, it fits the most within the charming weirdness of Fountain Square where the White Rabbit is situated. The Dolls can invite you in, but hit you with the hardcore in a heartbeat. Overall, a perfect show as the year draws to a close, inviting the newcomers, but deeply satisfying the veterans.

The Dolls and Special Guests – Photo courtesy of Schwebach Photography
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