Bad Habits

The blurb: Since 1979, the San-Francisco based Sisters Of Perpetual Indulgence have been have spent the last 40 years using drag and satire to promote human rights and expose bigotry and intolerance in all its forms.

Bad Habits features interviews from Sister Hysterectoria (Agnes de Garron), Sister Tootsie Tits (Eric Wolf), Sister Rosetta Stoned (Donald Gallagher) and Sister Gladiola Gladrags (Justin Gooding).

“What’s inspired me most about them is their choice to steer away from the exhaustion and fatigue of rage—a critical and valuable but often unsustainable part of activism,” director Gillian Zinser told Nowness.“Instead, they place a deep emphasis on using humor and joy because people don’t burn out of it.

I have a personal story about the Sisters Of Perpetual Indulgence. In 1995, aged 22, I spent an evening in the company of the Sydney chapter of the Sisters. It was the annual Gay Mardi Gras and – at that point of the 90s, in the wake of Priscilla Queen of the Desert – many straight Australians had started to embrace queerness. I was one of them. So me, my husband and a queer friend of ours were out in Oxford street and ended up hanging out with the Sisters. I cannot for the life of me remember how it happened, only that I was drunk and following these amazing men in drag around the city. They were incredibly friendly, welcoming and also just plain hilarious and I adored them. And from that point on, I felt like a part of the wider queer community, straight country girl that I was.

And I guess the point of this story is that the Sydney Sisters were very successful in creating a life-long ally. Which seems to be what the order is all about.

Length: 3:41
Director: Gillian Zinser
Year: 2020

Here’s Gillian’s website


The Film Festival category is a curated selection of films about sex with commentary. All films are freely available from Vimeo and Youtube.