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SuicideGirls hit the road with tantalizing Blackheart Burlesque

The purveyors of tattooed online vixens bring their pop culture style to masses

The Suicide Girls, the Internet's 13-year-strong bastion of nerdy sexy cool, is hitting the road again with this fall's Blackheart Burlesque, a tantalizing revue of pop culture channeled through the site's tattooed, punk esthetic. And if that's not reason enough to go, supporting the Girls puts you on the right side of the current online culture war. We spoke with the group's founder, Missy Suicide, about crafting the show, keeping it fresh and dealing with trolls.

You re-launched your live show last year. What's new about this year's tour?
There are a lot of new numbers. Last year's tour had a lot of pop culture references, but there were some non-themed numbers peppered through, but this year we've got so many new numbers and it's all themed out. There's an "Adventure Time" number this year, for instance, that I'm super-stoked about, and it's set to a Black Keys song. It's highly choreographed and super-sexy.

How exactly do you incorporate "Adventure Time" into a burlesque routine?
The girls are themed out, their costumes are "Adventure Time" and they're in character as different "Adventure Time" characters. It's so fun to see these characters that you know and love come to life dancing to these modern songs and doing it in a sexy, fun way.

You're going so many different places with this tour. Do you have a sense of how the crowds vary from city to city?
I feel like there are super-fans in every city. That's the thing that doing a Web site has taught me over the past 13 years is that there are small pockets of people that are into the same things you are, the same subcultures you are, in every city and every town all across the world. Before it was you just didn't know. But there are people around the world who all share the same interests.

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And with the Internet you can find your kindred spirits a lot easier.
Exactly. You can find your penguin or whatever. (laughs)

Is that a "Fight Club" reference.
Maybe. I tend to make a lot of Chuck Palahniuk references. (laughs)

You work so much online. You must have a unique perspective on the recent blow-ups about feminism and women's issues online. It's gotten really weird out there.
Social media has always had inherent trolls. It's been this kind of Wild West thing where people feel like they can say just whatever comes to their mind. Just saying the worst things ever. Meanwhile, in our society, we have so many choices available to us these days, and so now women are gravitating toward things that had been predominantly male-focused, like comic books and video games and stuff. So many of the girls on the site are into geekier pursuits. And it's that, which is great, coupled with the troll culture, which has clashed in this way that's really alarming and upsetting. But I think eventually no society really tolerates any sort of Tourette-sian outburst, so I feel like at some point the Internet is going to have some sort of check and balance and people will behave accordingly. (laughs)

God, I hope so.
I hope so, too. It's kind of shocking how long it's taking to get to that place. But hopefully. Sorry for that tangent! Hopefully people will come to the burlesque show!

BlackheartBurlesque hits New York Oct. 31, Boston Nov. 2 and Philadelphia Nov. 9.

Follow Ned Ehrbar on Twitter: @nedrick

 
 
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