Bette Midler

In her 1978 world tour, award-winning actress and singer Bette Midler debuted Delores De Lago, the Toast of Chicago, AKA the mermaid in a wheelchair. The schtick was beloved by audiences everywhere for its kitschy and hilarious take on disability.

Reductive Version

In May 2011 during a one-off show in Sydney, Australia, the germ performed dressed as a mermaid… in… a… wheelchair.

BetteVsGagaMermaid

After being called out by the Divine Miss M herself on social media, the germ responded by saying she wasn’t aware of Midler’s mermaid in a wheelchair routine. Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it?