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To be fair, the 50th anniversary of Pride was last month – June 2019. As for myself, I stayed local due to one reason; I hate crowds. Strange as that sounds. Considering I attend many comic cons and music concerts. Just didn’t want to deal with huge populations of strangers. Plus I hate parades. Most parades. Unless it’s Mardi Gras. Even bailed on this year’s annual Mermaid Parade over at Coney Island. Went to a nearby artist meeting instead.

However, I’m going to give credit where credit is due. When I first started out with Psycho Bunny, my friend introduced me to the promoters of M8. In 2004 or 2005, M8 was a monthly, then weekly gay men’s party. The theme was gay skinhead fetish. However, everyone was welcome. Orientation didn’t matter. It certainly didn’t matter if I was a cis female. The original NYC M8 parties took place at the Pussycat Lounge. During the day it was a topless bar where ladies stripped for straight men. At night, bands would be booked to do local gigs. When the M8 parties happened, the strippers stayed downstairs, as the gay men skinhead fetish event happened upstairs. Periodically, this would lead to a bit of confusion. The Pussycat Lounge was the stuff that Soft Cell sang about. Speaking of which, DJ Bejay would spin Punk, Oi and Hardcore. All the regulars got to know each other, and for a short period of time, we were like a small family. It was a nice vibe. In retrospect, I was treated with more respect than when I attended “straight” parties.

Towards the end of the night, a few of us would gather around, and watch various activities. One time we witnessed two leather clad men beat each other up, then kiss passionately, then beat each other up again, then kiss…this went on for the later part of the night. It was apparently the kink of these two gentlemen. These two men knew they had a captive audience, but didn’t care. M8 was one of those few parties where everyone got along.

The best part – I actually sold my comics.

I shall blog about those M8 parties another time.

Despite being a month late, here’s the Psycho Bunny sketch of the week. Pride 2019 edition, 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. Psycho Bunny, being who he is, will drink to anything. Doesn’t matter which flag is on which bottle. After all, he’s an equal opportunity alcoholic.

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Psycho Bunny – don’t care which flag is which; an equal opportunity alcoholic. Based on the comic written and drawn by Michele Witchipoo on WitchesBrewPress. July 2019.

Michele Witchipoo – Social media:

Facebook: pages for Psycho Bunny and for Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress.

 Twitter: One account for me, and one for Psycho Bunny.

Tumblr: World Ov Witchipoo

Instagram: there’s WitchipooArt.

Going to promote my RedBubble shop again. 

 Get yourself some cool stuff on RedBubble, featuring my designs.

If you haven’t heard by now, my latest comic is this:

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The first time I heard about the film Liquid Sky, it was through the American television show Siskel and Ebert. If you don’t know, Siskel and Ebert were two film critics who reviewed movies. Originally titled Sneak Previews, it was broadcast on PBS stations until it switched to commercial syndication, and the title change. Siskel and Ebert  created a new genre of television through their discussions and occasional polite arguments. It’s no big deal now, thanks to podcasts, blogs, social media, etc. It’s the internet, after all. A place where everyone and their mothers has an opinion about everything.

Anyway, back in the early ’80s, when everyone was watching The A-Team, I was more interested in watching Sneak Previews. Sneak Previews helped introduce me to art house, cult, and foreign films. So one day they reviewed this little ditty titled Liquid Sky. A few years later after entering high school, I saw the movie on VHS. Within the group of misfit friends I hung out with, Liquid Sky became our coming of age film.

When a local video store decided to go out of business during the early ’90s, it was celluloid paydirt for me. Every week I would go in, purchasing cult classics such as Andy Warhol’s Bad, Eraserhead, and yes, Liquid Sky. In fact, there was one time during my brief “Rave” phase. My parents weren’t home. After one of those Rave parties, a few of us, still tripping on some psychedelic, went back to my place to watch Liquid Sky.

In recent years, Liquid Sky has been making the promotional rounds again. Every time Liquid Sky had a theatrical showing, I had schedule conflicts. A few months ago, I opened an email saying Liquid Sky was going to have a screening right in Queens, New York. I thought to myself “Hey – that’s where I live!” Within the email it mentioned a showing at a public library in the Jamaica, Queens area. Huh. That was slightly off putting. Didn’t think the Jamaica area wasn’t the best place to show Liquid Sky. Still, I went with it.

Arriving late to the showing, my instincts were right. Most of the audience were broke locals who were happy to see a free movie. Unfortunately, the film’s plot of aliens feeding off sexual orgasms from downtown New Wave junkie club goers went right over their heads. There was a few others, similar to me. Fans of Liquid Sky who had seen the film numerous times, who decided to commute to the screening. We were either in the same age bracket or older. A group of us started reminiscing about how the East Village and Williamsburg used to be before all the super hyper-gentrification. Who would’ve thought we would’ve been so nostalgic for all those dive places years later.

During the screening, the film kept on freezing. On top of that, the film they showed was fricken’ edited! C’mon now. While this was going on, some audience members started heckling. For a brief moment I felt as if I was transported to a Times Square movie theater before the Giuliani clean up. Stranger still, there was a part of me that had missed public heckling. Like the time I saw Judge Dredd in 1995 in some East Village movie theater. Judge Dredd was so bad, the entire audience started loudly mocking the film. I digress.

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Anne Carlisle and Slava Tsukerman during a Q&A over at the Queens Library in Jamaica, Queens, NY. Summer 2018.

After the screening, the film’s star, actress and writer Anne Carlisle along with director Slava Tsukerman showed up to do Q&A. They graciously answered questions from the audience. Even when some burn-out kept on rambling. As much as I tried to retain my cool, I eventually geeked out. After all, this was a film that was a part of my formative years. It was through the Q&A that the audience learned what had become of Paula E. Sheppard. Better known as the brutal lesbian drug dealer Adrian in Liquid Sky. Sheppard dropped out of acting soon after Liquid Sky was completed. She’s now a yoga teacher on the west coast, wanting nothing to do with the film.

Another local, an older sweet woman made the observation that the characters in Liquid Sky weren’t exactly “nice” people. That comment took me back slightly. She was right though. Many people in the underground subcultures weren’t exactly “nice.” Yet I grew up within some of those counter-cultures. Sort of made me reflect.

I’m also reminded of a time back in high school. My friend was struggling with her sexuality. She eventually came out as a lesbian. Last time I spoke to her, she volunteered describing herself as pansexual. She had really identified with the film during her teen years. So Liquid Sky also reminds me of when someone is first exploring gender, androgyny and sexuality. Particularly when Anne Carlisle plays both male and female characters. Even if her portrayal of a guy comes across like an early ’80s version of David Bowie.

Liquid Sky has plenty of illicit drug references as well. During the Q&A, both Carlisle and Tsukerman reminded the audience that Liquid Sky was originally slang for heroin. Here’s a bit of a spoiler, so if you’ve never seen the film, you might want to skip this part. The premises of the film is based on aliens who come down to earth. The aliens feed off endorphins given off the brain during sexual climax. Once a human reaches orgasm, the aliens attack. The only sign of their attack is a crystal bolt left in the victim’s head. Margaret, the bisexual promiscuous cocaine addict realizes that she can kill people by having sex with other people. Meanwhile, on the other side of town, a German scientist attempts to track down these aliens. While the German scientist tries to track down Margaret, Margaret uses sex as a way to seek revenge upon others, such as her rapist. Why Margaret has survived is because Margaret never reaches orgasm. The film ends with the scientist being killed, and Margaret doing heroin so she can go up with the aliens. Heroin has similar endorphins as a sexual orgasm.

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Anne Carlisle and Slava Tsukerman during a Q&A over at the Queens Library in Jamaica, Queens, NY. Summer 2018.

Both Carlisle and Tsukerman dropped hints that they’re attempting to create a sequel to Liquid Sky. Liquid Sky just had a blu-ray release. So if you’ve never seen the film, you can purchase a copy here.

Capping off this blog post is a sketch I did loosely based on Liquid Sky. When the aliens come take Margaret from the roof top. While doing some online research, I discovered that Anne Carlisle also practiced psychotherapy in Miami during the 2007, thanks to her IMDb bio. Given that she co-wrote the Liquid Sky screenplay, this doesn’t surprise me.

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It happened yet again. Last Friday I received a surprise text on my cell. Apparently I won tickets to see Wasabassco’s House of Deveraux: Tribute to Led Zeppelin. This was the second time this year I won tickets to an event (double bill Judas Priest and Deep Purple), and third time winning tickets in general (to see Kite back in 2016). What luck! A few hours later I hopped on the subway to (Le) Poisson Rouge.

2018 has become a Led Zeppelin themed year. A few months ago I saw Robert Plant perform at Forest Hills Stadium. Since then I’ve been on a Led Zeppelin kick. Even if I still skip ‘Stairway To Heaven’ when using Spotify. House of Deveraux blended the art of strip tease dancing to songs like Kashmir effortlessly. All the burlesque performers did their own take of each Led Zep tune to a packed audience. Here’s a review of the show on Brooklyn Vegan.

Which leads to the weekly Psycho Bunny sketch of the week for Sept. 19th, 2018.

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Psycho Bunny takes in some burlesque! Based on the comic book written and drawn by Michele Witchipoo, on WitchesBrewPress. September 2018.

Social Media time!

Facebook: pages for Psycho Bunny and for Michele Witchipoo – WitchesBrewPress.

 Twitter: One account for me, and one for Psycho Bunny.

Tumblr: World Ov Witchipoo

Instagram: there’s WitchipooArt.

Get yourself some cool stuff on RedBubble, featuring my designs. There’s dresses, tee shirts, notebooks, etc. The notebooks, and the Quentin Crisp tees seems to be one of the best selling items.

Come back next week for a new Psycho Bunny sketch.

 

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During the years of 2004 to 2009, I self-published a pin-up sketchbook titled Babalon Babes. Not to be confused with Babylon, the name Babalon is a goddess which comes from Aleister Crowley’s Thelema system, or the 93 current. Babalon’s attributes have many layers. Among some of those layers are known as The Scarlet Women and The Great Mother. Babalon could be seen as a deity not afraid of her sexuality, completely liberated in which she could be seen as The Great Whore. American scientist Jack Parsons wrote about Babalon, taking part of a working known as The Babalon Working.

During 2003 – 2004 I was studying a lot about Thelema. This in turn influenced me to put together a collection of pin-ups containing both erotica and esoteric nature. Most of the Thelema influences went into Babalon Babes issues 1 & 2.

Issues one, two and three were sold for a while at Jim Hanely’s Universe at their previous location.

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Issues of Babalon Babes being sold at Jim Hanely’s Universe between 2004 – 2008.

With issue two, the transition between Thelema and my beginning interest in Chaos Magick started to merge. It was also issue two, and continuing into issue three that I mentioned the Cut-Up method, popularized by William S. Burroughs and Brion Gysin. This same Cut-Up Technique was later used by popular musicians such as David Bowie, Kurt Cobain and Radiohead. T.O.P.Y (Thee Temple ov Psychic Youth) also spoke about Cut-Up workings.

Then came issue three, which I had self-published during a tumorous time in my life. The abusive marriage I was involved with came to a head. Should have left after the new husband gave me a nasty black eye, but I foolishly stayed. Due to such, I ended up homeless, crashing on various couches, depending on the kindness of near strangers and having my vulnerability taken advantage of. Despite of all this, I managed to make it to MoCCA Art Fest 2007 in time to sell Babalon Babes issue three, and the first Psycho Bunny Scrapbook. That alone was a feat into itself. Strangely enough, the cover of this issue, drawn between 2006 – 2007 still stands on its own.

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Issue three of Babalon Babes released in the early summer of 2007. Artist Michele Witchipoo.

After moving back to NYC for good in late 2007, I threw all my focus into my comics. In Fall 2009, I released the last issue of Babalon Babes, which finally had a theme. This time the focus was completely on Astrology.

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Why am I posting past work? Well, as someone said recently, sometimes you have to look backwards to go forward. It sounds contradictory but there’s truth to this statement. Sometimes one needs a refresher on why one chooses the path they’re on. Think of it as a wake-up from a deluded nap. Then again, everything is just an illusion, isn’t it?

Looking back at these issues, I can’t believe some of my pin-ups were that sexually explicit. Would I draw these type of images today? Probably not, but I did draw the images back then, so best to own up to it. It was after all, a different time in my life.

I thought about doing another issue of Babalon Babes. Last time this came to mind, I thought about having a Rune/Norse theme. Then I scraped the whole ideal completely. Sometimes it’s best to leave things as they are.

There will always be a slight chance that Babalon Babes will come back, but for the time being, no. I decided to stop printing issue two aeons ago due to certain reasons. Issues One and Three got eventually got the chopping block a few years after. The only issue with copies still available is issue 4, the Astrology issue. Which you can always order off my website. Warning – there’s not many of those left either. Yet who knows? Never say never. At this point it’s either burn the bridge or go with whatever is left.

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Continuing again with the Norse/Asatru/Heathen theme:

Heathen Warrior Girls Oct. 2012. Illustrated by Michele Witchipoo.

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At my table I sold the latest issue of Babalon Babes, Psycho Bunny, assorted prints and issues of IF-X that I had done cover art for. In a back-handed way, its an odd compliment if a comic fan tries to steal one of your books. Especially if you’re an unknown artist. Okay, I’ll explain.

Cover for Babalon Babes No. 4, The Astrology Issue

So here I am at the show, when another pair of two young girls approach my table. As the girls were looking through my prints, a young male, probably about 13-14 years of age comes over to where Babalon Babes No. 4 was displayed. The girls were asking about the magnets, in which I replied the magnets were free with a purchase. So the guy standing next to the girl on the left, takes a magnet, and then Babalon Babes No. 4. Tries to walk away without paying. “Three dollars please” was my response. As the guy pretended he didn’t hear me, the girl standing on the left snatches the issue away from the boy’s grubby paws, slightly sucked her teeth in annoyance and puts the book back on the table.

Centerfold For Babalon Babes Issue 4

The girls leave, but the delinquent pre-teen stays behind. He looks at the issue of Babalon Babes No. 4 again. He picks up the issue and attempts to walk away again. Apparently this kid wasn’t so slick because he blatantly tried the thievery right in front of me. “Three dollars” was my second response. Again the kid turns around and puts Babalon Babes back in its rightful place on my table.

An adult couple walk up to my table, and they like what they see. Sold the very last Babalon Babes 2010 desk calendar to the dreadlocked gentlemen as his female companion purchases a Psycho Bunny sampler. Well wouldn’t you know it, during this transaction, the kid attempts yet again. He probably figured the third time might be a charm. Obviously the charm didn’t work, particularly when I observed him staring longingly at Babalon Babes for a good 5-10 minutes. And no, taking off his gray stripped sweater to disguise himself didn’t help. Nice try, but if he wanted an issue it was going to be three bucks. At this point I was starting to sound like that newspaper boy from that 80’s film ‘Better Off Dead.’ All I needed was John Cusack to show up any second. Two dollars!

Pisces Interpertation From Babalon Babes Issue 4. By Michele Witchipoo. Copyright 2009-2010.

I thought I had gotten rid of this sticky fingered pest after the third failed heist. After he left empty handed, I couldn’t help but snicker. It was kinda funny in an twisted way. Hey, you can laugh, I won’t get mad. Had to admit this whole exchange was kinda amusing. Now had he succeeded, that would’ve been a different story. Nice to know that my time in retail has served me well.

It suddenly dawned on me; the kid in question wasn’t your typical klepto. If he had wanted to just steal, he would’ve taken anything from anybody. However, his focus was on Babalon Babes No. 4. So in a way you know your stuff is good if people try to steal your product. Go figure.

If this kid wanted the item so bad, I would’ve given him the book in the end. I’m not such a hard ass, you know. However, had to extra careful because this preteen was exactly that-underage! All I needed was for him to have the book in his hands, and I would get in trouble for ‘corrupting minors.’ No thank you.

Then I started remembering back to when I was a preteen. Good old puberty. Those formative years where we discover what turns us on as human beings. Started to recall the stories that various exes and friends would tell me about what got them off during those precious years. Once again I realized that not only was this kid focused on stealing this one particular sketchbook, but he probably had something else in mind. Dunno, maybe I’m reading too much into this. Yet it wouldn’t surprise me that years later he’ll probably tell his girlfriend, or (most likely) his prison cellmate about this little self-published comic from way back when.

However, what I can suggest to Shifty Le Pew is to check out Abbie Hoffman’s classic, ‘Steal This Book.’ You don’t even have to physically steal the book, just read it online right here. ‘Cause if you’re gonna steal something in life, make sure you do it right. Just don’t go around stealing my shit.

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The year of 1979. It was the end of one decade, with promises of new on the horizon. American children chowed down on McDonald’s Happy Meals while wearing Underoos underneath their clothing. The golden age of Lego’s began around this time. China began its population control with its One Child Policy that year. Meanwhile, over in Iran, Khomeini seizes power. A Disco Demolition night in Chicago’s Comiskey Park far exceeded all expectations, resulting in a near riot.

Film director Russ Meyer was busy in the year of 1979. Continuing in his own tradition of mammary promotion, he was the auteur behind Beneath the Valley of the Ultravixens. The star of Meyer’s last theatrical release, Kitten Natividad was also his girlfriend during this period.

So here’s the movie trailer of the week for Monday, March 22, 2010.

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