The Mainstreeters are coy about the origin of the name S.S. Girls.
An inflammatory moniker devised to both shock and offer a retort to the seriousness of the art world, the girls often adopted blank looks and totalitarian gestures as part of their performative and public personae. A literal representation can be found in photographic documentation of the group's Drag Balls (1976 –1980), where Carol Hackett appears in a Nazi uniform. Another playful take on the S.S. moniker occurs on the set of Slow Scan (1978), where both Deborah Fong and Jeanette Reinhardt are seen with the double-sig rune insignia of the Nazi Schutzstaffel written in black felt pen on the undersides of their arms.
Overt political overtones gave way to more benign understandings, as Jeanette refers to her semi-regular "sewing and swimming" dates with Carol. Regardless of its origin, the S.S. Girls (which emerged after the passing of Kenneth Fletcher) reiterated a collective identity for Deborah Fong, Carol Hackett, Annastacia McDonald and Jeanette Reinhardt. Paul Wong, as the missing S.S. Girl, serves as both a foil and a director of the group. After their appearance in Slow Scan, and a stint on stage at the Living Arts Performance Festival, the S.S. Girls, with Paul, took part in tour de '4' (1980) and its video follow-up, '4' (1980).