Brawls with vegetables? Ingesting processed breakfast with a beer bong?
The Rad Girls are not your ordinary girls next door. They burp, scratch and mess around like a bunch of fraternity boys on their prank-filled TV show.
On April Fools’ Day, two members of the rad threesome returned to their native Santa Cruz to celebrate and promote the new release of the Rad Girls DVD among old friends and new fans.
The Rad Girls are three UC Santa Cruz alumnae who have taken the feminist movement to new heights on film. Their program is often referred to as the female version of the MTV shows “Viva La Bam,” “Wild Boys” and “Jackass.” Unlike their male counterparts, however, the Rad Girls say they write their own material and try to deliver an empowering message by focusing not only on physical stunts but also on elaborate, well-thought -out pranks with more female themes.
“We have periods, cramps, mood swings and other things that women go through in their lives that men can’t biologically go through, and we mainly work off of that feminine edge,” said Rad Girl Audra Clemens, known as “Darling Clementine,” adding that “there is a level of intellect to our show that ‘Jackass’ lacks.”
Ashton Hogge, owner of the Cypress Lounge where the DVD launch was held, was more than happy to welcome the girls home.
“The girls got started here and had their first venue at the Cypress Lounge,” Hogge said. “I wanted to let them come back and reveal their footage at their origins.”
Influenced by the skate and surf culture as well as the open attitude of Santa Cruz, the Rad Girls seek to prove that women can choose to break the traditional molds of femininity and don’t have to be afraid to behave indecently or to be practical jokesters.
“Being surrounded by people who are open-minded on many levels, and the Santa Cruz vibe, really influenced us,” said Lindsay Morrison, known by the moniker “Munchie” on the show. “We have definitely become strong women — we are outspoken and we are playing in a man’s world.”
The girls’ nicknames — Munchie, Darling Clementine and Ramona Cash — reflect each of the Rad Girls’ personalities and help them get into their television personas. The girls say that the right attitude helps them find the courage to take on the wild stunts that they come up with. The two stunts that the girls are most widely known for are agreeing to make out with 80-year-old men and get a bikini wax from the pull of a moving car.
As the Rad Girls raise their public profile, they are seeking out more opportunities to spread their message. With shows on cable networks such as MavTV and Fuse TV, the Rad Girls have been able to reveal their outlandish behavior to a much wider audience. Rad Girl Ramona Cash, who was absent for the DVD promotion, recently became the new face of Quizno’s Subs.
Longtime production assistant Flax Gor said the Rad Girls’ image appears to be growing stronger with their newfound fame.
“They are balancing their career between corporate identity and their own personal projects, which I really respect,” Glor said.
As their fame continues to rise, Darling Clementine dispels the comments of critics who think the Rad Girls’ take on feminism is outrageous or inappropriate.
“We are using our brains to make something funny,” she said, “and yeah, it’s a little twisted, but well-behaved women rarely make history.”