In 1980, during production of Rocky Horror's "sequel" Shock Treatment, behind the scenes cameras were busy filming a making of documentary. This interesting Shock Treatment footage would tie in with another documentary about the Rocky Horror cult. Combined, the film was titled Rocky Horror Treatment. It aired in the summer of 1981, just a couple months before the official release of Shock Treatment. This documentary aired on television, complete with commercials. However, due to the times, VCRs were not as common as they are now, and the Rocky Horror community was happy to have found someone that had actually recorded it. Unfortunately, they made a copy, who made a copy, who made a copy...I think you know where this is going. Nowadays, it's nearly impossible to find a good quality copy of the show. The video copies are so generational that the images are usually blurred beyond recognition. In fact, most copies have been so distorted that the color has actually escaped, leaving a blurry black and white appearance. But the audio is usually acceptable.
Therefore, I present to you now a written transcript of the Rocky Horror Treatment. When possible, the image on the screen is described, written in purple. I hope you enjoy this chance to experience this Rocky Horror legend.
Documentary opens up with footage from the RHPS: the song Time Warp, Riff Raff singing the first verse.
NARRATOR: Ever since there was a Hollywood, there has been cult movies for fans to follow for one reason or another.
Cut to footage of shadowcast actors, acting out the same scene simultaneously with the film.
NARRATOR: But when they made the Rocky Horror Picture Show, they threw away the mold. Never has there been a cult movie like this one.
Cut back to film footage as song continues, and then back again to shadowcast. "Let's Do The Time Warp Again! Let's Do The Time Warp Again!" Then a female fan appears, facing the camera in an interview. She is dressed as Columbia, standing in front of the famous RHPS lips poster.
FAN: "I've seen Rocky Horror almost 400 times."
Cut back to film, as Time Warp continues. The Criminologist explains how to Time Warp: "It's just a jump to the left." Cut to another fan in interview, dressed as the Criminologist.
FAN: "I've seen Rocky Horror 250 times."
Cut back to the film, as Time Warp continues. "...With your hands on your hips! You bring your knees in tight!..." Cut to more fans, dressed in various costumes from the film.
FAN, as Magenta: "Today's my 350th time."
FAN, as Columbia: "355."
FAN, as Janet: "267 times."
FAN, as Frank: "There's no harm in giving yourself over to absolute pleasure."
FAN, as Janet: "We're just like a family."
FAN, as Brad: "Very, very strange."
FAN, as Frank: "I'm speechless."
Cut back to the film, as Time Warp continues. "...Let's do the Time Warp again! It's so dreamy...oh fantasy free me...(etc...)..." Intercut with footage of Sal Piro leading a pre-show. It appears that he is dressed in white, in costume from Farley's Faith Factory staff, from Shock Treatment. He shouts into the microphone to the audience at a movie theater.
SAL PIRO: "Gimme an R!"
SAL PIRO: "Gimme an O!"
SAL PIRO: "Gimme a C!"
SAL PIRO: "Gimme a K!"
SAL PIRO: "Gimme an Y!"
SAL PIRO: "What's it spell?!"
SAL PIRO: "I can't hear you!"
The film footage from Time Warp continues, cutting into footage of the shadowcast at the same time. Also, footage of audience interactions are seen. Film footage carries through Columbia's verse in "Time Warp."
NARRATOR: "When the movie begins, you're not gonna believe what happens in the audience! The fans actually get up and take control. And there's more of a show going on in the isles than there is up on the screen!
Cut to Sal Piro being interviewed, as he walks the streets of New York City at night. As he passes by a movie theater, we can see RHPS fans, in line, chanting, "We want Rocky! We want Rocky!"
SAL PIRO: "Hi there. My name is Sal Piro. And I'm president of the national Rocky Horror Picture Show fan club. Tonight is going to be my four-hundred-twenty-fifth time seeing this film. You know, The Rocky Horror Picture Show has been a midnight phenomenon in this country for almost four years now. Four years running at midnight. And it started right here in the village. Right here in Greenwich Village.
CAPTION: 8th Street Playhouse, New York. We can see the front of this theater. Cut again, to film footage of "Time Warp" as well as fans and shadowcast.
NARRATOR: Of course, this isn't just a New York City thing anymore. It's gone nationwide. Worldwide! Happening wherever people want and need to be different. There's more to being a Rocky Horror fan than just putting on a costume. (laughs) That's too easy -- and it's only half the fun. No, to really crack into the cult, you've gotta believe your fantasy and then go out and be it! You've gotta turn life into your own special kind of dream movie, and play out your favorite role at center screen.
Film footage continues: Columbia tap dances. Cut to Sal Piro standing at the entrance to the 8th Street Playhouse theater. He is ready to enter the building.
SAL PIRO: "Come on in the theater. We've saved a seat for you."
Film footage concludes: "Let's do the Time Warp again! Let's do the Time Warp again!" The Transylvanians collapse onto the floor. CAPTION: Title credit: "Rocky Horror Treatment." CUT TO COMMERCIAL.
This segment begins with footage of costumed fans, standing in line at the theater. They are still chanting, "We want Rocky!" Fans step out of cars, donned in full costume.
NARRATOR: Outside of the theater, hours before The Rocky Horror Picture Show begins, fans start lining up, in costumes, with weird make-up on, with tape recorders playing the soundtrack. All waiting in anticipation, whether they've seen the movie a hundred times before or never before. The real aficionados have a nickname for these newcomers. They call 'em virgins.
Cut to Sal Piro inside the theater doing pre-show.
SAL PIRO: We'd like to welcome you all here to Rocky Horror at the 8th Street Playhouse, and a warm welcome to all you virgins!
Cut to the audience cheering. On the screen, Science Fiction Double feature begins. A fan dressed as Trixie, the usherette from the stage show of Rocky Horror, performs for the audience. Other fans are seen getting dressed, awaiting for the time to hit the stage.
SAL PIRO: Rocky Horror is more than a movie, it's a way of life. And it means a lot to all of these people.
The song continues to play. We can see and hear audience participation. Cut to Sal in the crowd outside of the theater. He directs their attention to the cameras recording the documentary.
SAL PIRO: "Say hi, everybody!"
CROWD: "Hi, everyone!"
SAL PIRO: "How many times--How many times have you seen the movie?" (Various responses, including...)
FAN: "235 times."
SAL PIRO: "How many times, Debbie?"
FAN: "250 times."
SAL PIRO: (to another) "How many times?"
SAL PIRO: "And everybody in the front of the line was like..."
The song continues with fans in the audience shouting audience participation. Cut to Sal Piro, captioned with his name at the bottom of the screen, being interviewed in front of the lips poster. As he speaks, fan footage intercuts over and over.
SAL PIRO: "Well, the audience participation--it just gradually went from cheering and booing and singing along with the songs, to somebody throwing out the first line. In fact, it was a kindergarden teacher from Statin Island who replied to Charles Gray's comment, I would like, if I may, to take you on a strange journey. He screamed out How strange was it? And audience participation began. I mean, then everybody tried to top one another. And then the rice. And then the newspapers. And then the dressing up. And then the toilet paper. And then, then, you know, we had props, we had the lines, we had the costumes. I mean, what else was there to do but to actually get up and do the movie!"
Film footage cuts to the movie, where Janet faints when she sees Frank's elevator entrance. Frank starts to sing "Sweet Transvestite." Again, shadowcasts and fans are often intercut.
NARRATOR: "Some people look at all this--the costumes, and the play acting, and they misunderstand. They think there's something sick or sinister. But nothing could be further from the truth. Because Rocky Horror fans are as normal as anybody else. All they're doing is dressing up, letting loose, and taking part in a little bit of free expression just for the fun of it. It's just old fashioned street theater brought up to date and moved indoors. Nothing more, and nothing less."
Cut to the set of Shock Treatment. Little Nell, known now as Nell Campbell, is interviewed. White background. She is dressed as her character Ansalong. She is wearing her white Faith Factory Show outfit, complete with white cap.
NELL CAMPBELL: "Well, the last time I saw the film...I'd gone to New York...and I went into the cinema and it was incredible. I had heard about it but I had no idea. The details they went into perfecting the costumes!"
Cut to fan footage and film footage.
NARRATOR: "Part of the fun of being at Rocky Horror comes from the perfection of it. The real challenge for the live audience is trying to keep up with the words and music on the screen. They say it's a kick to keep the original of something and try to live up to it."
Cut to the set of Shock Treatment, inside Farley's office. TV monitors fill up the background. Richard O'Brien, dressed as Cosmo, stands there, dressed in his white Faith Factory suit. His name becomes captioned at the bottom of the screen eventually.
RICHARD O'BRIEN: "People would come up and say to me and say Hey, have you seen what they're doing to your movie?" Finally I went to see it. It was, possibly, the best piece of theater I've ever seen. It incaptivated (counting on his fingers) live action with film image and audience participation. And three out of three ain't bad."
Cut to film footage and shadowcasts again. The scene now is Brad and Janet, in their underwear, as they just entered the lab for the first time.
NARRATOR: "The Rocky Horror Picture Show is all about Brad and Janet--two nice, young American kids who get a flat tire in a rain storm one night and wander into the castle of Dr. Frank N. Furter, a mad scientist, who is about to unveil his creation. Not a monster, but a muscle man. Brad and Janet get caught up in all kinds of crazy situations and wind up never being the same. It's almost like the kids of the 50's getting caught up in a time warp and suddlenly landing in the middle of the 70's."
Cut to Sal Piro again, outside the theater.
SAL PIRO: "The whole Rocky Horror cult phenominon began right here in the village over five and a half years ago. But Rocky Horror began thousands of miles away...in London."
Cut to the set of Shock Treatment. We see the white convertible. The car's roof is down. In the back seat, driver side, we see Nell Campbell seated. Next to her, in the passenger side of the backseat, we see Patricia Quinn. Leaning over into Patricia's window (which is rolled down), we see Rik Mayall. In the front seat, behind the driver's wheel, seats Richard O'Brien. All are dressed in the Faith Factory white costumes.
NELL CAMPBELL: "Do you realize it's been eight years?"
PATRICIA QUINN: "Since what?"
NELL CAMPBELL: "Since Rocky"
PATRICIA QUINN: "Am I that old?" (laughter)
NELL CAMPBELL: "Yes!" (laughter)
RIK MAYALL: "Eight? Eight years ago, I was fourteen."
PATRICIA QUINN: "I am that old!!"
RIK MAYALL: "What were you doing eight years ago?"
RICHARD O'BRIEN: "The Rocky Horror Show."
RIK MAYALL: "What's the Rocky Horror Show?"
Both women stop laughing, in disbelief. Cut to Christopher Malcom, who plays Vance Parker, the policeman in Shock Treatment. He stands on the set.
CHRISTOPHER MALCOM: "What's the Rocky Horror Show?! Who is that guy?!"
Cut back to the convertible. Nell Campbell leans to the camera.
NELL CAMPBELL: "Fill the boy in, will you."
Cut to film RHPS, scene of Criminologist: "I would like, if I may, to take you on a strange journey."
NARRATOR: "How strange was it? Well, Rocky Horror was born in 1973. Not as a movie, but as an experimental stage musical, booked for only six short weeks at a workshop theater."
Cut to newspaper clips and reviews. "Shock!" "Horror!" "Mania!" are some of the headlines. Newspaper promotional images shown too. Following these images, we can see images from the original stage show productions.
NARRATOR: "To everyone's surprise, the show exploded into a super hit. The hottest ticket of London in years. Fans went crazy, and while Hollywood was talking movie, the Rocky Horror phenomenom was off and running wild on stages all over the world."
Cut to Shock Treatment set, dressing room. Nell Campbell, out of costume, sits with mirror behind her.
NELL CAMPBELL: "And then, of course, it went on to Rome, Paris, Sidney, Madrid, Los Angeles."
Cut to fans of the film, shouting and chanting. Intercut with Christopher Malcom again, dressed as before on the Shock Treatment set. This time, however, he is seated in Frank's thrown, now painted red, as it appears in the movie Shock Treatment.
CHRISTOPHER MALCOM: "The Rocky Horror Picture Show has become the first ever audience participation cult movie in motion picture history, and I wasn't in it! Aaahh!"
Cut to footage from various fan conventions, with fans singing and dressed in costume. They also shout audience participation lines to the film.
NARRATOR: "Star Trek groupies like to brag about their international conventions. But they come off like bridge club tea parties next to a Rocky Horror get-together. This is serious fantasizing. A pop cult tied closer together than any other on earth, just for the outragious fun of it all. People from every background you can imagine. Each and everyone of them walking, talking and living the message of their favorite movie."
Cut to a fan convention. Sal Piro is addressing people who are about to enter the costume contest.
SAL PIRO: "This is how you'll be coming out. A group of Frankies. A group of Magentas. Or a group of Columbias. You really wanna stand out. And what I said in the last contest is, show the judges lots of attitude. Like, let's show some attitude so the judges can pick you out among the other people on the stage.
We can see a cordinator for the costume contest. A woman.
WOMAN: Okay, how many Rockys do we have?
NARRATOR: "The high point of any Rocky convention is the costume contest, where cult members get to climb up on that stage and do their number. And simply looking like your charactor isn't enough to win. You've got to have the attitude, and that means bringing that character to life--from the inside out. This is the big leap. The ultimate challenge with the ultimate reward: The approval and applause from your peers."
The costume contest continues. Winners carrie their awards and parade as the crowd applauds. Then cut to Sal Piro standing in front of a Shock Treatment teaser movie poster.
SAL PIRO: "Even with cult, one thing leads to another. Time marches on. Things change. And now, after six years, they've taken the hero and heroine of the Rocky Horror Picture Show and put them in a brand new movie. It's called Shock Treatment."
Clips from Shock Treatment displayed against the final chorus of the song "Denton USA." Title credits read: "Rocky Horror Treatment." Cut to Brad in cage, screaming with gag in mouth. Text appears, reading: "Next...The Rocky Gang Rides Again." (Cut to commercial)
(Comercial ends, documentary resumes)
Sal Piro can be seen in pre-show for RHPS in New York City theater. He faces the audience and makes an announcement.
SAL PIRO: "Now I just found out this week and I announced it last night for the first time and for anybody who's here tonight for the first time...um...
AUDIENCE MEMBER (female): "I am..."
AUDIENCE MEMBER (male): "I am..." (laughter from audience)
SAL PIRO: "Then listen! Okay? Um...tomorrow I'm being flown to England because I'm gonna be in the sequel to Rocky Horror." (audience applauds)
Cut to England. Sal Piro approaches the studio where Shock Treatment is being filmed. It is daytime, and cold, as evidenced by Sal wearing a wind-breaker jacket. The glass door entrance opens up. We see a police man or security guard greeting Sal Piro. This may be staged, as it is actually Christopher Malcolm, in costume for Shock Treatment as Vance the cop.
COP: "Hold it. State who you are."
SAL PIRO: "I'm Sal Piro."
COP: "Sal Piro? From New York?"
SAL PIRO: "Yeah."
COP: "Alright. Come on in." (Sal enters and follows the cop. Sal turns to face the camera)
SAL PIRO: "He knows me!"
Cut to film footage of Shock Treatment: Marraige Maze, at Bert Schnick's entrance...then to the point where he calls for Brad and Janet in the audience.
NARRATOR: "In the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Brad and Janet are forced to spend the night in a weird castle. But in the new movie Shock Treatment, it's even stranger. They start out on a TV game show, and they end up inside a prime time insane asylum. Richard O'Brien, who wrote both Rocky Horror and Shock Treatment, says that Brad and Janet are victims of the modern world we live in. Their marriage is a mess, their lives are a mess, and that's something everyone can relate to, not just Rocky people."
Cut to a edited film clip of "Bitchin' In The Kitchen." It starts with Brad's verse, then cuts to Oliver saying "Ike would be proud," then cuts to Janet's verse beginning with "Shower Curtain." Then as Ricky comes out with the white wheelchair, it cuts to Bert exclaiming, "The subject is committed!"
Cut to behind the scenes footage from Shock Treatment as narrator talks more. First we see Richard O'Brien in the recording studio singing the chorus of "Shock Treatment" (wearing headphones). Next clip is of Barry Humphries, as Bert Schnick, kidding around on the set, swinging his blind cane. Next clip is Richard still singing. Then clip of Richard being photographed for a publicity photo against the wall on the set. Then back to Richard singing with headphones on. Then we see the audio board where sound is recorded. Seated in front of the sound board are two, people, including Richard Hartley. Cut to Richard with headphones again. Cut to behind the scenes footage of the filming of the song "Shock Treatment," including images of Jim Sharmon behind the camera, and actors listening to director, etc..
NARRATOR: "If the charactor's music of Shock Treatment seem to have a touch of Rocky Horror to them, there's a very good reason--a reason named Richard O'Brien. He's a little short on hair but he's long on talent...especially when he's plugged into the music of his longtime composing partner, Richard Hartley. Making Shock Treatment was something extra special. A family affair. A reunion of many of the same creative people that first brought Rocky Horror to the screen. Back again to direct all the sanity is Australian's Jim Sharmon. Just like Rocky, he broke in on the stage. But he made it big in the movies."
Cut to even more behind the scenes footage from Shock Treatment as narrator continues to talk. We see the gag being placed into Brad's mouth. We see costume fittings. We see various actors getting their make up put on by the make up artists. The song "Shock Treatment" continues to play.
NARRATOR: "The look is like Rocky too...thanks to the crazy costumes of Sue Blane. And the wonderful weirdness of production designer Brian Thompson. And the top, out of sight but in control, that's where you'll find Rocky executive producers Lou Adler and Michael White and produce John Goldstone."
Cut to even more behind the scenes footage from Shock Treatment. We see Nell Campbell in the recording studio singing with headphones. We see actors being taught their moves for scenes and dancing. We see the movie camera traveling around Brad's cage from the outside of it. We see make up being put on faces, including Barry Humphries, who asks, "Is there shadow under the chin?" Continue with more behind the scenes of filming the song "Shock Treatment."
LOU ADLER (voice-over): "We had never dealt with the cult The Rocky Horror Picture Show. And six years later, one day Richard O'Brien came to the office and said he thought he had a good idea for a film, which he then told me, and I loved the idea. And many moments later, a lot of work and effort, here we are in production of Shock Treatment."
Cut to Sal Piro, who has returned to New York after his brief London experience. He faces the audience of the RHPS once again. This time he wears a white Faith Factory costume. He holds a microphone as he speaks to the audience, who seem eager to hear about the upcoming sequel.
SAL PIRO: "Let me tell you something about Shock Treatment. Rocky Horror was the '50s meeting the '70s. And we all went from being little Brads and Janets to becoming, at least in spirit, all Frank N Furters, okay? And the person we have to especially thank for that state of mind is Richard O'Brien."
Cut to film clip from Shock Treatment, "Little Black Dress."
NARRATOR: "This is something brand new for Richard O'Brien. A giant step that moves out of the '70s and into the '80s."
Cut to fans of Rocky Horror standing in front of RHPS lips poster.
FAN #1 (as Magenta): "I want to see the people from Rocky Horror in different roles."
FAN #2 (as Riff Raff): "The same creative geniuses who brought you Rocky. It should be great!"
Cut to film clip from Shock Treatment, "Little Black Dress," in it's conclusion. Then, when the song ends, cut to Michael White in his office, facing the camera. Credits read: "Michael White, Co-Producer."
MICHAEL WHITE: "The thing that you've got to remember is that Shock Treatment is not a sequel, not a prequel, but an equal to the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Cut to film clip from Shock Treatment, "Look What I Did To My ID", which is near the end of the song. At song's end, we see title credits: "The Rocky Horror Treatment". Cut to commercial.
After the commercial break, the documentary now concludes, opening up with clips of Rocky Horror fans in line to see the movie, as well as in costume in the audience and in front of the stage. We see a sign on a movie theater window reading "Rocky Horror SOLD OUT". As these images display, we can hear the song "Anyhow Anyhow."
Narrator: "Talk about a phenomenon that just won't quit! The Rocky Horror Picture Show still plays to standing room only weekend audiences in more than 200 theaters coast to coast and around the world. And now comes Shock Treatment...
We can see the film footage for "Anyhow Anyhow" as it continues to play through the end of the segment.
Narrator: "...with a whole new creative dimension. The only cult of its kind keeps right on going, bigger and better. More than ever, for those who follow the Rocky road, it's a way of life.
As the song/film footage continues to play to the end, we can now see end credits roll. From time to time, images of Rocky Horror fans are displayed inside a small heart shape in various corners of the viewing area.
Fan #1 (as Columbia): "All kinds of people, from all walks of life, are into this cult."
Fan #2 (as Brad): "It's the best thing to go to on a Saturday at midnight."
Fan #3 (as Criminologist): "My parents still don't understand why I do this."
Fan #4 (as Riff Raff): "Acting, doing comedy...it's fun."
Fan #5 (as Magenta): "I'm a Rocky Horror aficionado and I think we're ready for Shock Treatment in the '80s."
END CREDITS as they appear at the end of the documentary:ROCKY HORROR TREATMENT
PRODUCER Chuck Ashman
DIRECTOR Don Kline
WRITTEN BY Rick Sublett
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER Bob Wagman
POST PRODUCTION SUPERVISER Penny Paplanus
VIDEO TAPE EDITOR John R. Peterson
GRAPHIC ARTIST Lori Precious
SPECIAL THANKS TO Sal Piro And The Rocky Horror Fan Club
SPECIAL THANKS TO The 8th Street Playhouse
SPECIAL THANKS TO The Shock Treatment Production Company
A PRODUCTION OF A.B. Productions