Contributing writer for The Artifice.
Junior Contributor I
Has RuPaul's Drag Race Fucked Up Drag?
To quote drag queen, Jasmine Master’s infamous, "I have something to say, RuPaul’s Drag Race has fucked up drag,’ meme, this thought-provoking opinion is something that I find myself returning to every time a new drag queen expresses the validation they feel from being chosen to be on the show. Furthermore, when this validation seems only rewarded when winning, it becomes a rather toxic outlook towards drag in drag race. While I don’t look down upon queens who have this belief, I do believe to an extent that it is exhausting to watch a queen dilute their talent to only being validated through RuPaul’s ‘stamp of approval.’ Drag is a form of self-expression and the idea that for some drag queens, their admission to drag race and running time on drag race is validation saddens me, because I think drag is such a beautiful art form and the variety of nuances that it’s performed in is what makes it most interesting to me. I sometimes feel like RuPaul’s Drag Race, as a competition, tends to affect that with its challenges that are fine tuned to specific areas. Sure some queens are more well-versed in different areas, and the show is meant to show case the variety of talents that walk through that work room, but I notice the pressures of a competition like drag race affecting queens nevertheless. I’d like to hear other’s thought on this.