GENDER TRUST BLOG: Draggy Halloween!

Yup, it’s All Hallow’s Eve, Christmas for Goth’s and my favourite day of the year – October 31st. To celebrate, I’ve compiled a list of pop-culture’s draggiest witches. Don’t say you’ve never had your suspicions….

WINIFRED “WINNIE” SANDERSON

(Hocus Pocus, 1993).

BEST QUOTE: “Oh look, another glorious morning. Makes me SICK!”

SUMMARY: Ever the showgirl, Bette Midler is scarily good at this whole witch thing, and her fantastic performance of I’ll Put a Spell On You is total carberet. She’s arch, musical and intensely funny. But if I wasn’t 100% sure it was Ms Midler… well. Also, watch out for a fresh-faced Sarah Jessica Parker doing her best fag-hag impression….

VERDICT: “Pure Drag”

DRAG RATING: 5/5

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Winnie cooks up a treat in Hocus Pocus

GROTBAGS

(Emu’s World, 1982)

BEST QUOTE: “I know that you stupid overgrown lizard… take that!”

SUMMARY: No wonder gender variance is on the up. Did nobody stop to think about the effect .We know Grotbags, we know….

VERDICT: “Camper than Christmas”

DRAG RATING: 4/5

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Dragalicious Grotbags – favourite childhood witch of 20-30 year olds

LAMIA

(Stardust, 2007)

BEST QUOTE: “Has your mind become as decrepit as your face Empusa?”

SUMMARY: How Halle Berry can look Michelle Pfieffer in the face – even with her Oscar – I’ll just never know. But it’s not just Michelle’s Catwoman the world loves. We heart this wicked and glamorous contribution to the Hollywood witch folklore. Mind you, she’s played a saucy sorceress before, alongside a fairly-draggy-in-her-own-right Cher. Clearly she took notes.

VERDICT: “Not as draggy as bygone witches”

DRAG RATING: 3/4

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Charmed, I’m sure…

T-BAG

(T-Bag Adventures, 1985-1992)

BEST QUOTE: (Shreiks): “20p for a cup of tea!”

SUMMARY: Star of shows likeT-Bag Bounces Back and T-Bag’s Christmas Ding Dong, is there really any question about Tallulah Bag? Character actresss Georgina Hale really helps T-Bag puts the T in transgender. And again, this was on kids TV, warping kids minds – not to mention the one of that poor little lad she bosses about. Out for herself, she’s glamourous and has diction to rival Joan Collins. Classic panto dame…

VERDICT: “Decidedly queenish”

DRAG RATING: 5/5

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Bafta-award winner Georgnina Hale as T-Bag

MALEFICENT

(Sleeping Beauty, 1959)

BEST QUOTE: “Oh, they’re hopeless. A disgrace to the forces of evil.”

SUMMARY: Our gal sure knows how to work that purple eyeshadow, and she has a healthy dislike of youth and beauty… when it’s not her own. She’s got a big chin, gorgeous eyes and a croaky cackle, and boy does she knowhow to make an entrance. That doesn’t convince you? Well, the name’s a bit of a clue….

VERDICT: “Doesn’t get draggier than this”

DRAG RATING: 5/5

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Hagtastic Maleficent

GLINDA

(Wizard of Oz, 1939)

BEST QUOTE: “Let the joyous news be spread – the wicked old witch at last is dead!”

SUMMARY: We usually think ‘nasty’ when looking for drag queens (after all, trans people are inherently wicked). But there’s something about which reminds us of a certain Grayson Perry. And come off it, what do you think she’s singing about with lines like: ‘Come out, come out, wherever you are’? Friend of Dorothy’s? You bet….

VERDICT: “More of a friendly TV”

DRAG RATING: 2/5

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Glinda the Good Witch/ Glinda the friendly TV

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Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry, dressed as his alter ego Claire

THE WICKED WITCH OF THE WEST

(The Wizard of Oz, 1939)

BEST QUOTE: “I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!”

SUMMARY: She’s caked in make-up, pernicious, and a total drama queen… nuff said. And to be honest she was kinda cool till she sold out and did those Orange adverts, setting a disappointing precedent for other evil celebrities like Jonny Rotton and Iggy Pop. Trendsetter.

VERDICT: “The voice gave it away”

DRAG RATING: 4/5

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The original and some may say the best – the Wicked Witch of the West

THE WITCH

(Simon and the Witch, 1985-87)

BEST QUOTE: “I’m headteacher now, the last one got sick. Sick and tired of YOU!”

SUMMARY: Doesn’t the title music sound like it was done by Culture Club? Shame she didn’t take some make up lessons form the Boy too. It’s been a while since this scruffy spellster graced the nation’s telly screens but a return to TV via Ten Years Younger might just give her the look to go with that acerbic tongue…

VERDICT: “More glamour please”

DRAG RATING: 1/5

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Come and have a go if you think yer hard enough!

VESTA SPELLMAN

(Sabrina the Teenage Witch, 1996)

BEST QUOTE: “Please, I don’t plan – I scheme”

SUMMARY: Again, the clue is in the name. Hilda, Zelda and their adolescent protoge never quite camp it up enough to make our list, but ‘Aunt’ Vesta definitely has a past. Played by the ever glamorous Raquel Welch, Vesta is one hot older woman – with some bitchin’ outfits. She also has fabulous legs, the kind which clearly come from another dimension. Case closed.

VERDICT: “Raises suspsicions”

DRAG RATING: 3/5

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Raquel Welsh vamps it up as Aunt Vesta

THE GRAND HIGH WITCH

(The Witches, 1990)

BEST QUOTE: “Everywhere I look, I see the repulsive sight of hundreds, thousands of revolting little children…”

SUMMARY: The more one watches this clip the more similarities seen between her coven and transitioning trans women. So the fact this scared me so much is slightly unsettling, pointing towards internal transphobia. That said, the GHW is definitely in drag territory. Look at how she holds a room. Lucky witch.

VERDICT: “Total drag queen”

DRAG RATING: 5/5



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Beautiful, but then …make up can make a big difference to drag artists…

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Happy Halloween y’all. Enjoy dressing up!

Paris Lees

(The views expressed within this blog are those of the author, and may not reflect those of the Gender Trust)

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