Wigstock brought the largest crowd to the park of all the festival events as far as I could tell. It was a show of power, not just on the part of the performers but on the part of the public, and specifically the public that chooses a Wigstock to attend. On that note I think the show was very important for the culture of the city. Unlike many other alt-gender events here, Wigstock is in large part an event by gay/lesbian/trans artists for the 'general' public. And obviously that public has a hunger for the aggressive, totally high-spirited humor, pathos and sexuality of Wigstock.
I take Hattie's exceptions advisedly and I can be very critical of any aesthetic presentation low or high. I noticed from the moment Bunny opened the show that it took quite a bit of time for the crowd, which was somewhere around 50% straight from what I could see, to get comfortable with the aggressiveness and totally blatant obscenity of much of the content. The initial tentativeness of the crowd was a sad sign of how effective over 15 years of national and local cultural idiocy promulgated by the political regimes that have been in power has been. But in the end the raw humor was too much to ignore. I do cringe when I see a small child become the foil of an abusive remark but I think I will grant an exception because of the context, ( the child's mother, wonderfully done up as a corporate guy, obviously was nonplussed ) although I think there is plenty of room for doubt about it, and it has nothing to do with being politically correct. The reason I feel okay about giving consideration to what Hattie points out as being a preponderance of scatalogical content is just the very outright oppressive conditions of the present time we inhabit. With an overt, public display of pro-drug, pro-profanity, pro-wild sex, -with an overarching dsiplay of publicly performed transgressiveness sanctioned by what must have been an audience of 5,000 or more, it is an undeniable repudiation of every increment of sanitization that has been shoved down the city's throat since the first day of the last mayor's reign of brutal ignorance. Maybe it is just an air of 'nothing left to lose' that permeated the event, but as a resident of the East Village I was totally gratified by the marathon of uncensored performance. I am just cautious about anticipating the event happening again next year because I think 10,000 people will show up and the park will not be able to handle it all. Deja spew.
I think the larger question involves the idea of the whole festival. Does it represent a real steadfast presence of the bohemia, tollerance, concentration of creativity and diverse ways of living that the East Village had contained? Or is it just a kind of civic temperament-management excersize where once in a year the remnants of those characteristics are allowed to act out?