Mud wrestling with the Mud Queens at Reggie's: Live review and photo gallery
Female mud-wrestling troupe the Mud Queens of Chicago got down and dirty last night at Reggie's rock club as the Bad Knights (a quartet of what looked like former-D&Ders in cardboard medieval helmets) comically ripped through speed-metal riffs.
Backstage before show time, the colorfully-named cast of hard-drinking Mud Queens—among them Smother Theresa, Twisted Fister, Tinker Hell, and Andy Kaufman's Cancer (printed on her shirt: "You can fight cancer, but you can't beat it")—were most of the way through a 30-pack of PBR cans. However, the troupe's founder and ringleader Meg Bell (wrestling name: the Fulsom Prison Manhandler) was a little worried. "You can show your whole breast in public, but you can't show nipples," she said, wondering aloud whether the girls should should apply duct tape to their nipples before hitting the ring—you know, just in case. "No one said anything about it, so I think we're okay," she concluded, tipping back her head of jet-black hair toward the ceiling and taking a big gulp of beer.
Bell's concerns were not baseless: As the bikini-clad Mud Queens pummeled each other in the ring of mire, it seemed bared nipples were unavoidable. Lucky for Bell and Reggie's, the cops didn't show.
Exiting the stage coated in mud (two types of art clay mixed with water), the wrestlers seemed as happy as—excuse the cliché—pigs in slop. Even the woman I saw scraping out hunks of mud from under her eyelids seemed elated. So what's the appeal? "It's all about loving women—and not in a sexy way," said Resident Eva, a Northwestern student whose outfit consisted of zombie makeup and a nuclear fallout suit. Proceeds from Mud Queens events benefit the Young Women’s Empowerment Project, a local charity that helps women and girls impacted by the sex trade and street economies. "Yeah, it's not about being sexy," added Rainbow Bite who donned ROYGBIV thigh-high socks. "It's actually about being hardcore, being tough and having fun having a cocktail with cool chicks."
And for audience members who come just to see a little skin? "Those are the people," Rainbow Bite said sneering, "who get mud thrown directly in their faces."
Photos: Andrew Nawrocki