It’s been about three months since I first mentioned Venus Flytrap, the ultra-tranny manufactured pop group from Thailand, signed to Sony Records, and something of a cash-in on the success of Korean tranny group Lady who first appeared some two years ago, and now seem kinda quiet. Like all good manufactured pop commodities, they have a mountain of publicists behind, and are no slouches at self-promotion, as their high-content blog shows.
But allow me a moment of smugness (or maybe despair) as once again something I stumbled on courtesy my insatiable consumption of media goes mental (and give me a job as a trend-spotter). I can understand why a group like this could get huge in Asia, where for a few years someone like Harisu is a mainstream icon, and from personal experience (and making a generalisation here based on my time in China and Taiwan), the cultural attitudes to sex and gender are quite different from English speaking countries and Europe.
I’m not so sure of the media push for Venus Flytrap into Europe though. Dana International was the Eurovision winner back in 1998, but this is single-capital-letter-pop, as in J-pop, or Canto-pop, which besides oddly socially awkward geeks like myself, westerners tend to look down on with a good blizzard of colonial disdain. Still, stealing candy from babies and all…
Anyway who cares? Venus Flytrap. They look hot, they sing ok-lah, they’re trannies and they are getting spread over european press like crazy. In no particular order, Metro in UK wonders Thai ladyboys next Spice Girls? (no, Spice Girls were a crap 90s record company stunt, Venus are actually human, and are probably only given Spice Girl names because westerners are generally too thick to pronounce any names not in Queen’s English), and have their video Visa for Love. Gay.com attempts something like an interview. Reuters has a a video report filled with lots of Venus looking smutty for the camera. Gay.tv in Italy has more pictures and video. Plus a few others that do the one paragraph plus photo filler thing. They also have one of those revolting MySpace pages now: www.myspace.com/venusflytrapfan.
Dana International proved that gender reassignment need not be a block to Eurovision success. The UK showed its fleeting love for transsexuals when Nadia Almada won Big Brother in 2004.
Coming our way, and to possible success is Thailand’s first ladyboys band called Venus Flytrap. to The five members were picked from over 200 applicants and have already signed to Sony BMG the global music joint venture with a roster of artists such as George Michael, Beyonce and Christina Aguilera.
The ‘girls’ wore white bridal corsets for their debut public performance last November. They weren’t introduced as sex-change starlets, they merely took the stage like any other girl band
In the middle of performing their debut single, ‘Cause I’m Your Lady’, the 10,000 audience at the Virgin Hitz Radio concert in Bangkok started murmuring, ever since then, they’ve proved quite a sensation.