EDITORIAL | VIDEO
"I Try to Resist
to The Bliss of Your Kiss.’
God Complex is a drag king alter ego of gender insurrectionist and multi-hyphenate creator Aeon Andreas. The Brooklyn-based 28 year old performer describes their character as a hedonist and a proud sicko. Usually adorned with horns, severed doll parts, a pentagram or an upside down cross somewhere on his body, God Complex is more reminiscent of a demonic creature rather than anything godly. The character of God Complex was born almost three years ago. Since then, he has garnered quite a buzz with his chilling performances and blood-curdling looks. In 2019, he was named as Drag King of the Year by Brooklyn Nightlife Awards, but the success and the reverence of the nightlife community didn’t stop him from almost abandoning drag all together.
The very first time God Complex performed was at one of Switch n' Play’s shows in Brooklyn. Switch n' Play is a Brooklyn drag collective established in 2006, which received the title of “Best Burlesque Show” at the same Brooklyn Nightlife Awards as when God Complex was named Drag King of The Year.
“After this first performance I was like OK, this is my life,”
says Aeon. Aeon has been performing their entire life. Before the pandemic they performed full time as God Complex, while simultaneously working as a resident performer at Brooklyn’s creative venue House of Yes and as a composition and movement teacher at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
“The feeling of performing drag is very different. I don’t often feel stage fright when I’m performing dance or theater, but in drag I really do. It's sort of positive, in a way— it's an electric feeling. For me, doing drag is like being a rock star.”
Aeon says that they were lucky enough for their dance and theater life to take them all over the world, but it wasn’t really on their own terms.
“I’ve gotten to travel all over the world with the company I dance for, or with a show I’m working on. Never specifically for just me. Now, as God Complex, I’ve gotten lucky enough to get flown out to perform. On my own. That’s a new experience for me.”
Right before New York City became subject to the stay-at-home orders back in March, the character of God Complex was on the way to a chopping block.
“I got a job with some friends of mine launching a new cruise ship. I was dancing in this very queer show and that got shot down because of COVID. While I was onboard I realized just how burnt out I was from doing drag constantly. I had this moment where I questioned if I wanted to keep being God Complex at all. As I got back into the city and started doing little gigs here and there I realized that it wasn’t the drag itself that was hurting me—it was the lack of recovery time. There's such a short turn around when you work almost every night— there’s very little time to grow.”
Subsequently, God Complex was put on the backburner, while it seems that everyone else from nightlife has found a way to perform online.
“I had previously broadcasted that I didn’t want to do digital drag. I just didn’t know how to do it well, I was already feeling weird about drag. I was planning on taking a break until I figured out my next step.”
But then Aeon’s dear friend had a fundraiser for his top surgery.
“I love this person, and I wanted to be a part of that,”
“I was watching some live Depeche Mode performances and I watched the live in Berlin version of this song— ‘Should Be Higher’ and it was so spectacular. Dave Gahan is just vomiting out the words and everyone in the audience is just eating it up. It's so beautiful— it's a very giving performance, and I got a little obsessed with this version of the song. There is this lyric in this song, ‘I try to resist but succumb to the bliss of your kiss.’
It’s a powerful, painful idea that bliss and love are things that we resist."
“This kind of image of a very flat red rectangle came to me, with almost Jesus-like or anti-Jesus- like body. That’s where my concept for this video began.”
The 7-minute video is called Bliss and it’s quite apparent that it signifies the rebirth of both God Complex and Aeon as a drag artist. They say,
“I have spent most of my artistic life failing. Trying and failing, but I'm at a point now where I can see more clearly what it is I want.”
Watch God Complex succumb to the Bliss via the exclusive video premiere below.
Conception, direction, performance, design, and editing by God Complex.
Co-Direction and DP Sharkey Weinberg
Co-Shot / 2nd Camera Daniel Aros
Set + Prop Assistance + hands Juno Stardust, Frankie Placidi, Emily Malave
Thanks to Amy Pollock and Kaz Phillips.