I never thought RuPaul’s Drag Race could get old… but it has finally done it! There is only so much selling out you can do before you tire out a mainstream audience. You can have the music career, you can have All Stars, you can have the iconic Drag Race – but you CAN NOT HAVE it all. The show is a gimmick if nothing else.
I think what is missing from RuPaul’s Secret Celebrity Drag Race (apart from celebrities) was authenticity. If you are unaware of this new mini-series, it features a strange string of D listers or has-beens trying to get into drag as a novelty. Only two or three contestants are part of the LBGT+ community and it seems almost unfair that they are well-versed in what is expected to do drag – and then not be chosen as a winner despite being the best by a country mile. One contestant has even done drag before. A bit rigged if you ask me! While it is for charity, even the Drag Race Alumni didn’t seem invested.
It debuted sandwiched between an hour and a half long Season 12 episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, and a 30 minute Untucked from the Season 12 episode. At this point, you are exhausted and have had enough of sashaying and terrible lip syncing.
Past winners and Drag Race alumni superstars like Bob The Drag Queen, Kimchi, Trixie Matel, and Monet were just a few of those recruited for the mini series as mentors to guide the clueless contestants. The horrendous cast of celebrities left me asking “WHO?” every single time. The mentors also lacked any deeper advice other than walk this way, twerk this way. If you did a vibe check, they would’ve failed.
Ironically, some of the main challenge performances were actually better than most seen in the normal Drag Race cast. It is also ironic that the “celebrities” they featured on the show were less known than the mentors training them. It is extremely frustrating to see a hollow sell-out mini series of what used to be my favourite show.
The mini series seemingly shoved a bunch of (mostly) cis-gendered straight white people onto the show and said here’s some tape and high heels. There has been a huge lack of representation of non-binary and transgender people on the original show, and now the mini series only existence is to almost laugh at straight white people for being incapable or unknowledgeable. Then shoving some lipstick on it by them then saying “OH I GET IT NOW!” It’s not wholesome – it’s obvious, it’s cliché, it’s boring. Time to get woke RuPaul, people need to be featured for just having good character and stop using people for their labels. There will be no way forward if we keep point fingers and laughing at each other. People want good old wholesome content, look at the reboot of Queer Eye! Extremely successful because it featured a crew of caring and kind humans.
I’m all for more Drag Race, but we must continue to promote drag queens who are trying to make a living and be the very best. Let’s not drag this show through the mud for a gimmick. It’s a bit of a slap in the face to the Drag Race mentors who had to sit there and babysit “celebrities” on this “journey”.
Also RuPaul is fracking. Let’s not forget that.