RuPaul’s Drag Race has been a ground-breaking step towards inclusion in the entertainment industry. This particular show surpasses the more trendy form of reality television and pulls us into the world of drag culture. Its flamboyant personality and transparent outlook in a reality show are rare, if not non-existent. RuPaul’s Drag Race stands out in an otherwise over-saturated roster of reality TV and has been pivotal in creating awareness regarding the world of drag and the stigma around it.
After 10-long seasons and 23 Emmy nominations, the show is considered as one of the most significant steps in making queer and drag culture a more acceptable and familiar way of life. As an audience, we love our daily dose of gossip and drama, and daytime TV shows are never short of it. This show also has its fair share of drama and controversies that have fed the media consistently. So, let’s explore some of the lesser-known truths of this empowering reality show.
5. Transphobia allegations on the show
Being fully exposed on world-wide television, even the slightest hiccups can cause controversies. In one of the episodes, RuPaul was quoted saying ‘You’ve got she-mail’, which became an issue among the contestants as well the trans/drag community.
One of the tasks for the contestants was to identify from a cropped image, whether the photographed person was a former contestant or a cisgender woman. The breaking verdict would then be based on the catchline, ‘Female or She-male.' This controversial segment made headlines for days. However, RuPaul himself addressed the transphobic allegations and clarified that none of these were written into the script in order to cause outrage.
4. Self-elimination is Accepted
A rather unconventional aspect of reality shows is self-elimination, and this show very much allows and accepts that decision from contestants. In an episode of season 3, BenDeLaCreme left the showrunners and audiences stunned when she ousted herself with a replacement contestant.
As per BenDeLaCreme, her passion for drag and performance brought her to this show, but the drama and bickering were gradually becoming more significant than the central objective of the show, which led to her exit. Without a doubt, it came as a shocker for everyone, but after considering the reason she made this decision, it was later written into the rules.
3. The Freaky Car Accident
Nothing is wasted on RuPaul’s Drag Race and season 8 was no exception. It's had its share of outrageous gossip, one of which was the accident updates tweeted by contestant Robbie Turner. She took to Twitter to share her traumatic experience of a car accident in a lengthy tweet with her fans. With a little research, it was confirmed by a newspaper that an Uber had been involved in the hit and run case.
Uber hit back soon enough claiming it had no records of such an incident. Robbie later clarified her tweets, dubiously claiming that the entire incident might have been a dream.
2. Contradicting Statements
From addressing television entertainment as a bull to his eye-raising 2016 Emmy acceptance speech, RuPaul has a long history of giving conflicting opinions. Though he has previously spoken out about the victimization of gender individualism on talk shows, to date, he has appeared on them numerous times. Also, he claimed that he does not need an Emmy yet he graciously accepted them several times.
1. RuPaul and Michelle Visage’s Friendship
Believe it or not, but RuPaul and his fellow judge on the show, singer Michelle Visage go back decades. Their friendship blossomed from as early as 1988, which later paved the way for numerous work collaborations. The love and respect between them is sacred and inspirational, especially in the industry they belong to.
RuPaul’s Drag Race has been commended for its progressiveness. The show completed its tenth season in 2018 and an 11th season has already been green lit by the network. The cast of the new season was announced on a live stream on January 24, 2019.