Ah, how do I tell you about “Vegas in Space”? Well, it’s CAMP with all capitol letters, and so bad it’s fascinating. Yes, it’s intentionally bad, but they sort of make it work…let’s call it a sub-cult classic. It’s a 1991 release co-written and starring Doris Fish, one of the most popular drag queens in San Francisco in the late 1970’s through the end of the 1980’s. It was directed by Philip R. Ford, and this is science-fiction with no emphasis on science. The plot? Okay, here goes. Three male space travelers from Earth are sent to the Planet Clitoris to save that world from destruction. Per the “Articles of the Venus Convention,” only women are allowed on the planet, so Captain Dan Tracy (Doris Fish) and his two lieutenants must become women, by taking sex reversal pills. So, why couldn’t they just send women on the mission? What, and give up the chance to do all that terrible drag?!
Their mission is under cover, so they pose as showgirls who perform a mid-20th century lounge act for the Empress while investigating the theft of Girlinium, the rare gem that keeps the planet stable. Still with me? Okay, now that they are showgirls it gives the excuse to make this a musical. The soundtrack I believe was only privately released, and only on cassette tape. I’m fortunate the tape’s producer (Bob Davis) sent me my copy, many years ago. As for the songs, many are quite short but three you may want to check out are listed below, click to hear them.
Drag personality Connie Champagne guests on that last track, and she’s the only one with any claim of being able to sing. The film is out on DVD now, with lots of bonus material, including a campy Director’s Commentary, and interviews. As they had no budget, the film took ten years to complete and they scraped it into existence with the crudest of props and special effects. Doris Fish died of AIDS in 1991.
What? You want more? Here’s a page of my site with the film’s poster and a review.
And here’s an interesting site about “The Making of Vegas in Space”