17 replies on “badlands”

I spy Victor Houston standing to the right of the front door in this photo. Love him from a scene from the VHS “Working Men”, and especially his scene with Ed Wiley (a single loop by John Gamble).

I remember Badlands, but am not sure which building became a porn store with a couple of glory holes in the back. Not Harmony, that was more inland, or maybe this was Harmony. But I’m pretty sure there was a store there in the 90s. I think there was another bar that lasted well into the 90s, and that might be the place just across the street behind Badlands. They both lasted longer than most of the old places. The one across the street (if that’s the other bar I’m thinking of) even had Sunday brunches like back in the bars of the 70s.

It came to me: It was The Dugout. I think it lasted longer than most. Wasn’t it right up from Badlands? Lots of people hanging around outside just like here. I think it was still there in the 90s though.

Badlands closed in 1981 after 2 people were fatally shot. The Dugout does seem to have lasted till around 2009, when it already looked really anachronistic. Keller Bar (“Killers”) closed 1998, but the sign was still hanging there the last time I was down that way. Ty’s is still there from what I can tell, but I never actually walk down Christopher anymore.

I am doubtful of the 1981 date for closure, unless it was temporary; Badlands was definitely around when I arrived in NYC in 1983. I’ll have to come back to this…..

I didn’t cite the source, so who says he knows? I’m sure you’re right if you went there. I just googled, and now I doubt the other dates he gave for the other places. No, I wasn’t thinking of the Ramrod, which I remember too. I wasn’t thinking of anything, because I wasn’t thinking of anything, didn’t know and just looked up. But the photo you have of the Badlands building prove to me that that was the video store with a few gloryholes at the back, so they must have still called it “Badlands Video”. “Harmony” was similar and equally unsatisfying as that kind of store, but was 2 or 3 blocks inland and had an equally unsatisfying downstairs with mirrored walls. The blog I found that wrong info (and it surely is) is ZeitGAYst by Rob Frydlewicz, and I just looked and he’s got lots of wrong things in it. Worth looking at, though, because a lot of places disappeared without my even noticing, and he’s got a fairly good long list. I hadn’t realized that Badlands in video incarnation had closed that far back, but that neighbourhood wouldn’t be able to accommodate it now, since it’s become very rich and fashionable. Some stores still last in Chelsea on 8th and two I know of on 6th–kind with giant rectangular glory holes, which are so much more satisfying than the mere holes.

I’ve seen the article – it’s bars he’s known – then lists a few he’s never been to, and locations that are wrong, and I just couldn’t go further – I guess just anybody can have a blog and say stuff!

I think you are thinking of the Ramrod – Ramrod in 2016 NYT article – a little bit up the street from Badlands (Badlands on corner of Christopher & West St. /West Side Highway; Ramrod up a bit towards 10th street on West St.

Just looked back at that blog. A commenter corrected the blog owner about the Ramrod murders (he then wrote that he would fix it, but didn’t.) Sneakers was on the same block as Ramrod. Old shingle kind of thing. It looks much like the also-defunct Peter Rabbit, also on West Street, which I went to once. That was enough–I never liked these old soft-sleazy bars much, and almost never went to them (unlike the theaters, which I went to all the time), but liked that they were there. And the piers across West Street could be great. There are some photos of sex moments, or just nude guys, inside one or another of the piers, at the Whitney–actually, somewhat depressing to see it reduced to that.

The Dugout became Rockbar, which is still there. The former Badlands building has been standing there vacant for eons. I know there’s been talk of another gay bar opening there as a kind of partnership with Rockbar to handle overflow or to offer some kind of convenient play space, but who knows if that will ever happen.

Currently next to the former Badlands spot is Rockbar. You can also see the exterior of Badlands and what is now Rockbar, plus the Westside Highway, in the straight adult film THE TALE OF TIFFANY LUST (1981).

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