A Steampunk Reality

Apparently, Goths discovered the color brown and sci-fi sometime within the past couple decades. They fused it all together with Victorian fashion and created steampunk. That makes some semblance of sense and I get what they’re going for. Plus, steampunk at least looks cool, you’ve got to give it that. The issue is that steampunk doesn’t exactly fit everywhere. Case in point: it doesn’t make much sense when combined with the Renaissance Festival. I’m just there to drink no fewer than a dozen glasses of mead and wear a kilt so I can have at least one glorious day of starting to drink before noon without wearing pants and having the whole thing be socially acceptable. Is that so wrong? Isn’t that just what every man truly yearns for? Since it’s always a good idea to start thinking while wandering around in the hot, hot sun under the influence of a belly full of mead, I starting wondering what else could be combined with steampunk. Since steampunk is one of those things that can make either a good thing bad or a bad thing good, I inevitably landed on a topic: reality TV. Let’s see what happens when we take our current crop of reality TV shows, throw some random copper tubes and watch parts on them!

Project Runway

Let’s start this thing off with an easy, obvious one to get us in the mood. My wife tells me that “Project Runway” is the one where overly emotionally invested chefs and hairdressers finally get a chance to live their dreams and actually be fashion designers for like six weeks if they’re lucky and everybody hates each other and in the end we learn that friendship is the most important thing – except for that one jerk that sticks around until nearly the end of the season. Because there has to be some emotional drama in a show about making clothes, right? Okay, my wife isn’t around right now so I have no clue what actually happens on this show. I’m confident that I’m correct in my completely uninformed assessment though. “So why would this make a good steampunk show?” You can’t seriously be thinking that. Do I have to diagram everything out? It’s simple. There’s no way that fashion designers making steampunk clothing would be able to go horribly wrong.



And here I bet you thought I would put in some sort of ironic picture instead of Willem DaFoe. For shame. See! Prada already did this for their Fall 2012 men’s line! And they chose Green Goblin to model it because…Well, I can’t explain that decision at all. I didn’t even have to research this point because I already knew it because I…Umm…Was looking for information on that “The Devil Loves Prada” movie. No! I mean the book! Wait! No! I meant the band! Actually, any of those are more embarrassing than the truth. I was looking for Prada’s Fall men’s line.

Billy the Exterminator

First off, just look at this guy.



Every picture looks like this. That’s weird, right? I mean really. Just look at this guy. He looks like he belongs in a washed up metal band named Whyte Spyyder. They may have had a minor hit in 1988 with their song “Venom Woman,” but they never really made it. They were pretty much just like every small club band in “Decline of Western Civilization Part 2”. But they’re still going, confident that they’re just five or six gigs away from really exploding. You can catch them at Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat this Saturday from 8:00-8:45 p.m. So now that I’ve completely destroyed Billy’s self-esteem, how do I make it better? The solution is simple: add steampunk. [That’s going to be the solution for a lot of problems in the article. I just have a feeling.] If there’s one thing that truly speaks to the soul of steampunk, it’s the creation of contraptions and if there’s one profession that could use some aesthetic pick-me-ups in regards to its tools, it’s probably exterminators. Think about it, Billy already uses weird looking stuff to spew poison all over the place. If the things were copper and had more dials they would turn the whole thing awesome. Plus, if we deck Billy out to the nines in steampunk regalia instead of whatever it is that he wears now, he will look like an awesome mad Victorian scientist instead of a sad has been.



Plus, he will take care of our pesky possum problem. Possums are not steampunk. They’re not even punk.

What Not to Wear

For those of you unfamiliar with “What Not to Wear”, it’s a show on The Learning Channel where you don’t learn a thing except not to wear “Hello Kitty” clothing past the age of 22 and that closet full of semi-tie-dyed T-shirts with majestic airbrushed animals on them are apparently fashion faux pas.



Who knew? Apparently, I need to replace my whole damn wardrobe now. Aside from these fashion “tips,” the hosts basically tell middle-aged mothers not to dress like their teenage daughters and that’s pretty much the entirety of the show. In all honesty, it’s kind of boring, but that could be easily changed! Do you want to know how? I’ll give you a hint: it’s steampunk. Stacy and Clinton may know what people are supposed to wear, but things change in our awesome steampunk retro past of the future! Wait…What? In addition, “What Not to Wear” may help people learn that steampunk is not all just throwing gears and brass and brass octopuses on top of brown leather and top hats. I’m not sure what else there is, but I’m sure those two would be able to tell us. Moreover, the show could then be educational, which is something that TLC sorely needs after abandoning all pretense and airing “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”.

American Restoration

Unlike many reality show stars, Rick from “American Restoration”, has some actual talent and ability. For those of you unfamiliar with the show, it basically goes like this: somebody brings in an antique that’s been mistreated for roughly 300 years, used as a planter and has been sitting out in the hot sun and they ask Rick to make it look just as good as it did back when Napoleon was still around and kicking. The client also never wants to pay very much for this service. I think it’s because Rick uses witchcraft and all that witches need are some amphibian parts and those can generally be acquired pretty cheap, but that’s just my theory. Anyway, the client goes away, Rick’s son with goofy hair tries to fix it and a dude called ‘Cowboy’ fashions some metal for some reason and by the end, the antique is rejuvenated. See? Witchcraft. Now, what if instead of just restoring these old display pieces, they made them better? Of course, by better I mean more steampunky. Have you ever wanted to turn an old pedal car into a steampunk deathmobile?



Of course you haven’t, but now that I mention it you sure do! Rick and the gang can build it. They have the technology and the radio tubes.

America’s Next Top Model
RuPaul’s Drag Race!

I was going to put down “America’s Next Top Model” but I refuse to give Tyra Banks and her cold, dead, unfeeling gaze any more publicity than is needed. Instead, we’ll go with a far superior supermodel drag queen, RuPaul! Seriously though, if you are forced to sit down and watch a show about a modeling competition who in their right mind would choose to watch overly serious 19-year-old waifs who cry at the drop of a hat when one could be watching a room full of 6-foot-tall drag queens that want to rip each other’s throat out while doing cartwheels in 8-inch stiletto boots? Also, Henry Rollins has been on “Drag Race”.



There is literally no contest as to which one is better. And if you disagree, you are objectively wrong. But how, oh how do we take this already over the top show and make it go overer the top? I think you know the answer by now!

I’m pretty sure that’s a steampunk drag queen, right? By the way, this is real. Steampunk drag queens, FTW! There is literally nothing more that needs to be said about this premise. Universe: make this happen!


Joe Vampire is a staff writer for HalloweenCostumes.com. Although he doesn’t want to admit it, he secretly loved researching reality television for this article.