Elvira’s coming out last September was a tragic day for horny old men everywhere. The Mistress of the Dark snuffed out their delusional fantasies for good with the news that she had been in a committed queer relationship with partner Teresa “T” Wierson for nineteen years. If you listen closely, you’ll hear the tiniest violin playing for these crushed dreams.
But in a recent interview, Elvira (Cassandra Peterson) did acknowledge that these horny old men may be gone but not completely forgotten. Speaking to the Behind the Velvet Rope with David Yontef podcast, Peterson reflected on the reception to her coming out. She recalled, “Nobody was ready for that.”
Least of all the horniest and saddest contingent of her fan base. Peterson said, “I knew that there were going to be some horny old men out there who were just not going to like the fact that they didn’t have a chance with me anymore. And I hate to tell them they already didn’t have a chance with me anyway.”
Peterson went on to describe losing 11,000 followers on social media in the wake of her coming out. “People just said ‘Elvira, you lied to me. I don’t respect you anymore. Goodbye’.”
While we can all definitely agree that that the horny old men are the real victims here, Peterson was much more worried about the reaction from her queer audience. Peterson has been a queer camp icon since the 80s, famed for B-movie showcases that were rife with double entendres and jokes about her prominently displayed breasts. Even younger queer audiences have gotten in on the fun with RuPaul’s Drag Race’s constant references to the “How’s Your Head” joke.
“Honestly, I worried more about my gay fan base,” she said. “Because I hope they embraced it, but I was feeling like: ‘What if they think I’m a big fat hypocrite, and I was lying to them?’”
But the response from the queer community was overwhelmingly positive. She may have lost 11,000 followers, but she gained 60,000 new—and sure to be much more loyal—followers in return.
So now the real question: where did those 11,000 horny old men go? To some other Morticia Addams-esque mistress? Has anyone checked on Anjelica Huston lately?