RPDR S4,E1: RuPocalypse Now!-Top and Bottom

The Queen’s good friend (whom for the purposes of our discussions, I shall refer to by his former Drag Name, Bianca) and I did something we haven’t done in decades: talked on the telephone until the wee hours of the morning. We kee kee’d about RuPaul’s Drag Race till we ran out of biting, bitchy things to say. It was wonderful.

Throughout our four-hour-plus conversation (I will get NO WORK done today), a running theme emerged. To use Bianca’s own words:

“I can create from nothing. That is what a good Drag(Queen)does. Create your world and make that fierce–and by doing so, inspire others to create from nothing. How powerful the world would be if more people created than tried to steal or cheat…”

She’s such a fierce, cerebral bitch.

Or, as he broke it down later, a Drag Queen’s job is to: Be somebody. Be about something. Then Prance. So that’s how I’m evaluating the show in general, and the contestants in particular. Who emerges as a “somebody” who was about “something”, and who knows how to prance?

Before we get started, I have to say something about Shangela Laquifa Wadley.

Either D.J. has some serious dirt on RuPaul Charles, or boyfriend gives the best fellatio in Hollywood. That bitch was featured in almost as many segments as the Supermodel himself–INCLUDING the Absolut commercial! Don’t get me wrong, Ms. Wadley is talented. But I think the producers highly over-estimate the child’s audience appeal. She doesn’t have the love/hate factor of a Raven; or the America’s Sweetheart quotient of a Manila. But honey, if she can continue to capitalize on this fifteen minutes and strengthen her Brand, then–say it with me–HALLEIGH-LOO!

Okay. Now.

The Queen loves that even in Season 4, the show is staying true to it’s over the top, campy aesthetic. The production values and choice of challenges and segments remains true to their Drag core. I thought the schtick with Shangela was cute, and the Romero-esque style in which they shot the main challenge free-for-all was pretty inspired. I just hope they don’t go crazy with that stuff. Like Project Runway, I think RPDR works better if you stick close to the original game purpose and objectives. Give us the kinds of challenges dolls in Drag would actually face and let us watch the creativity and sparks that fly. But I had fun with it.

I’ll get into my take on all these divas in later posts this week, but first let’s say ConDragulations to Sharon Needles for her Runway Win. No surprise to me here. She has introduced herself as a somebody, who has something to say and knows how to Prance. Not only was she clearly getting the winner’s edit; but I feel she absolutely deserved it. She pulled off a most delicious hybrid of macabre and couture–and she managed to make the most of every second of her screen time. Her patter during the zombie challenge was inspired. Bianca–who was not a fan–was blown away by the attention to detail in her runway drag. She wants to see if Ms. Needles can do standard drag as brilliantly. If she can, she may just be the first of the “specialty queens” to take the win.

And it’s “Sashay Away” to Miss Alisa Summers. Sweet girl, but she apparently graduated from the Carmen Carrera School of Drag. I really don’t get these queens who think that becoming an entertainer on the level of RuPaul is simply about body and looking good. I have to believe that during the LSFYL, she honestly thought that playing with her fake titties and slowly strutting around the stage would give her the win. I’d rather see a little chunky queen working it for all it’s worth, than simply a pretty man in makeup ANY day.

So what do y’all think? Who peaked your curiosity? Who are you already tired of? Will you continue to watch this season? What about “Untucked”? Inquiring Queens want to know.

Advertisements

RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 4: FBQ Countdown-Final Fems

Another season of bitchery, back-stabbing and fake fabulousness is about to begin. No, I’m not talking about the next joint session of Congress. Auntie Ru is back. Let’s finish evaluating the contestants:

Madame LaQueer

Another bravado-swinging big diva. Not a good sign when the Queen is more interested in what a contestant looks like OUT of drag than in. For a person who earns their living doing other people’s makeup, I am not particularly impressed with her own maquillage. While I applaud anyone who has the chutzpah to get up in front of people and perform, that doesn’t in-and-of-itself make the performer or the performance good.I’ll be very interested to see if this Big Beautiful Bee-otch can do more than widen her eyes and posture.


Chad Michaels

The Queen is of two mindsets when it comes to introducing someone like Chad Michaels into this draggy mix. Chad Michaels is a known quantity. He has a successful career and a strong following. While each of these girls is supposed to be a “professional”, there is a big difference between doing a few shows on the weekends and performing with Elton John. On the other hand, as Michaels himself says “…I’ve seen girls who have just started pull something right out of their butt, and send a senior girl right on home…” Seniority is by no means the arbiter of Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent. There is no denying that Ms. Michaels has professionalism and the plastic surgery bills and poise to spare. It’ll be fun to see how she comports herself with the “lesser” divas on the show.

Willam

This bitch BRINGS IT: beautiful, funny, down-to-earth, media savvy and professional. It pisses me off: she’s a fiercer black queen than the REAL black queens on the show! I am genuinely excited about seeing her in all of the challenges and ESPECIALLY on the runway. I definitely think that contestants who understand the art of Acting have an advantage. Being able to appear natural allows your personality to shine through. Whether we like you or not, we get to know you. Knowing how to play to the camera without letting it dominate you is a real skill. This bitch has it in spades. Not my favorite queen yet, but I have a feeling she could quickly become so if her actual presence is as engaging as it appears to be.


The Princess

The Princess scares The Queen. This is definitely a boy in a dress. I’m getting a very strong Morgan McMichaels vibe from this one–which isn’t necessarily a good thing. Talk about an abundance of testosterone! I see a lot of in-your-face interactions with the other contestants. Very sleek and sexy, it will be fun to see Mr. Princess walk the runway. I have a feeling he will be stomping it.

On a side note: why do these bitches think that having an eclectic drag style is unique? Do they not watch the interviews of the other contestants? EVERYONE thinks that having an eclectic style makes them unique. Sorry dolls, just because you change clothes and lip sync to Cher as opposed to Madonna, doesn’t make you unique.

Speaking of unique…

Sharon Needles

LOVE HER!!!

Not my style of drag at all. But who the hell cares? She got me to click on her image just because it was so different. And then she spoke…BRILLIANT. She was the very definition of Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent. An entertainer with a strong point of view, biting wit and presence to spare–The Queen is excited to see her on the runway AND in the work room. When you can create such buzz simply through a one minute, fifty-two second video, you know you got something. I don’t think she had a chance in hell of winning–given Rupaul’s penchant for style vs. substance. But what a ride it promises to be with THIS queen in the mix!

Okay. There you have it. The Queen’s take on the contestants. He would LOVE to hear more about yours over the coming weeks. The Interior Illusions Lounge will be opening shortly. Can’t wait to grab a cock…errr…cocktail with you and enjoy this season of the Race!

For luck…

Are we all here?

Good! Let’s begin.

Well…

Why aren’t you SAYING anything?

Oh crap. You’re expecting ME to start, aren’t you?

Oh…okay.

Growing up middle class in Northeast Washington DC during the late sixties/early seventies was about as bucolic as you could get in the city. To this day, the tree-lined street on which I lived for so many years is far from the stereotypes of the DC ‘hood that you see on the local and national news. Large, unique houses with inviting lawns and wrap around porches were my playgrounds. We were the first black family to move into my neighborhood, and it pains me to say that I have no stories of racial hatred and ethnic violence. All of the white folks on our block embraced and welcomed us into their extended families. Sorry.

What I DO have are memories of late summer barbecues and clan gatherings during the holidays—fraught with rituals and traditions, which at the time I loathed for being too “black.” Now, heading into the latter chapters of my life, I see them as what they are: the “roots” that Alex Haley talked about which ground me deeply as a Black Man.

So, as a homage to those roots, I’m going to start this shindig with a tradition in my home, and just about every home I know in the African-American Community: the New Year’s Day Meal. We’ll start with Greens for Prosperity, Black-Eyed Peas for Good Luck and Cornbread….’cause it tastes FABULOUS.

Now that THAT is out of the way…where to go next?

See–that’s kind of the problem. It’s not that I’ve nothing to share. Hell, I’ve got opinions on everything. Shutting me up is harder to do than getting a Kardashian sister to give up black men. It’s just that…well… Do we REALLY NEED one more damned Blog?

by Randall Munroe

I’m new to this web logging thing. I started my first as a dynamic way to bring clarity to the next stage of my life. While my entries are sporadic, it is actually starting to accomplish the stated goal. And while it is really nice to be able to put my thoughts out there from time to time, I don’t see that particular enterprise as a forum or subject matter that has broad appeal. It’s basically verbal masturbation. Nothing wrong with a little bit of that from time to time, but the internet is chock full of literary jism–if you’ll pardon the term. No need to add my word count to that stream.

Yet something keeps tapping on my cyber shoulder in regards to an additional presence on the Web.

About a year or so ago, I found the fashion blog Tom & Lorenzo (TLo):a fun, frothy and often insightful place with two fabulous and opinionated queens at the helm. It was a heady experience being a part of their lively “commentariat.” I was completely humbled by the response that many people had to my posts. I began to define myself as a Special Guest Star–trying to entrench myself as Paul Lynde in the TLo Center Square. Once again, I found myself actively playing a supporting role in someone else’s life. I don’t want to do that any more.

Being a part of the TLo blog (and subsequently being dissed by them–a long story) made me recognize that I had been settling for commenting on stuff that may or may not have had any relevance in my life. And some content that, quite frankly, pissed me off.

But that wasn’t THEIR fault. No one held a gun to my skin taper with a #1 blade haircut head, to be a part of something that I didn’t always believe in. I did that myself. I enjoyed the attention, and I told myself that I was adding value.

But I realized I’m much more interested in finding other ways to add value on the Web. Value that, in my opinion, is sorely missing on this newfangled Internet-thingy. The value that only a Middle Aged Gay Black Queen can add.

So, like it or not, there is yet another Blog in Cyberspace. *SNAP*

What does that look like? Well…I’m not sure. I can tell you what it DOESN’T look like: it doesn’t look like a blog full of judging. There are enough places out there among the blips and bleeps where folks spend their time breaking others down. Most of us get enough of that in our lives in daily doses. I’d rather spend our time together building our shit up, rather than breaking it down.

It also doesn’t look like every stereotype you may have of a Black Queen. I like Barbie AND Football. I can be effeminate one minute and, unfortunately, entirely too chauvinistic the next. I have less interest in telling you what looks good on you, than I do in telling you how FIERCE I think you are (Oh, by the way, I’m taking that word back from Christian Siriano–no offense to him–the boy is BRILLIANT. But too many people think he invented Fierce as a gay expletive. It was around long before he was even a gay twinkle in his parents’ eye).

And I really would like to have your input. Let’s kee kee. Tell me what you’re looking to talk about. I’m game for just about anything. Remember, I grew up in the 70’s. So TELL ME? What’s missing in your Internet Life that a Husky Homosexual of Color might be able to offer? I’ll be setting up for a while, so you can tell me what pictures to hang in the Living Room (I do NOT do poker playing dogs or Elvis on velvet), and what libations you’d like in the bar. I got some collards on(try a little fresh thyme in the water along with the turkey neck bones); some black-eyed peas(bay leaf, cumin and a little cayenne pepper) and slammin’ cornbread (dollop of sour cream in the batter…oooooh chile).

Kick off them pumps and loafers gals and guys, grab a glass of Sweet Tea (I got some Jack Daniels somewhere if you need a kick) and come hang out with a Fierce Black Queen.