Season 13 of RuPaul’s Drag Race has hit VH1 and it is here to save the world from 2020 and, evidently, 2021! We are already three episodes in and there is drama, beautiful makeup, and an unusually high number of lip syncs.
If you are not as in tune with the niche gay culture that is RuPaul’s Drag Race, it is a show where drag queens from all across the country compete in random challenges involving acting, dancing, comedy, and fashion win the title “America’s Drag Superstar.” This season is the 13th American season, but there are also five all-star and scattered seasons from different countries including Canada, the United Kingdom, Holland, and Thailand. Season 13 started with 13 queens and a very interesting concept for the first few episodes. This was particularly interesting because there have been 13 seasons and most of them start the same way.
The 13 queens of season 13 are fairly diverse in background, age, race, and the city that they perform in, but as is usual on every season of Drag Race, there are more white queens than BIPOC queens and more queens from New York City than from anywhere else. One thing that sets this season apart in the diversity department is that there is a trans man in the cast: Gotmik, who uses him/him pronouns out of drag but she/her pronouns in drag. This concept hasn’t been explicitly stated by every single queen on the season but it is usually the case with drag.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for Season 13 Episode 1
The first episode of the season usually sees each of the queens walk in, say an entrance line, meet their competitors, and do some kind of runway challenge. This season, the queens each only met one or two of their competitors were immediately ushered to the main stage ( where all of the big challenges usually happen), and were told it was time for them to lip-sync. One by one, half of the queens, the winners of each of the six lip syncs, were allowed to go back to the workroom while the other half who were scared they would be out of the competition on the very day they arrived, were ushered to a losers lounge. By the end of the episode, all six lip-sync winners met the other winners and all seven losers met each other too. RuPaul Charles, the show’s namesake and the main judge who gets the final say in all decisions decided not to send any of the losing queens home and, instead, keep the two groups separate for a few challenges.
Instead of going into the details of episodes two and three, I recommend you watch them for yourself and continue watching season 13 as the talent is unleashed and the drama ensues. I am, however, going to tell you a little about my favorite queens. So far this season, I am obsessed with Simone, a beautiful girl who is pure energy and that alone will take her most likely to the top four at the end of the season. Next is Rosé, a queen from NYC who is pure talent with the determination to not let it go to her head. A lot of people are judging her for her best friend, Jan of season 12 because she didn’t do as well as was projected of her, but I think Rosé will do much better. My second two that would be in my dream top four are Tamisha Iman, who represents the best of drag and has for over ten years. She is from Atlanta and is old enough to be most of the other girl’s actual biological parent, but she knows fashion, she knows funny, and she has an incredible story to be told and I can’t wait for her to tell it. Finally, Gotmik is a favorite of mine to win. She was a professional makeup artist before she started drag so her face will always look stunning and she is an LA queen, so high fashion is a prerequisite of her drag. I can’t wait to see what these four girls and everyone else pulls out next.
If you are looking for a new show with a bunch of seasons, a bunch of beauty, and a bunch of reality show-level drama with a super gay twist, I hope you consider checking out the crazy world that is RuPaul’s drag race and from the mouth of RuPual to our ears, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?”