We’re two months away from a new season of Rupaul’s Drag Race, which can only mean one thing: New, incredibly awkward, HIV protection puppet commercials! This time, Nerdy Professional Negative Gay Puppet and Burly Muscle Bear Positive Puppet are promising to get tested regularly and stay committed to each other. But where are the creepy, bareback loving Care Bears? Are they out in the world, whispering into impressionable, gay men’s ears that condoms are for squares? Or have they finally settled down, opening up a Bareback Bed & Breakfast in Vermont?
Oh, and the season six queens have released their promo interviews too. So let’s make first impressions and speculate wildly!
There’s something about Magnolia Crawford that seems a little played out. You can tell just by the way she was styled for the promo photo shoot that the producers think of her as sorta marginal. She’s got Crawford in her name, so give her Joan Crawford eyes. Although, points for name dropping Dame Edna.
Elimination Prediction: Last Place. Cannon fodder all over her face.
I would very much like to see a big, campy, funny queen win Drag Race. I do not think that Darienne Lake will be that queen. Maybe I’m wrong and Darienne will prove that she’s not just a retread of early eliminated big girls Penny Tration and Victoria Parker (“Hey, Porkchop!”) but I kinda doubt it. Although, she is the drag mother of Pandora Boxx, so she can’t be too bad. Also, her drag queen/mall santa analogy is pretty solid.
Elimination Prediction: Thirteenth Place. I think she’ll be able to sew her way out of the first challenge but might falter after that.
When the photos were first released of the season 6 queens, one of the two or three that instantly grabbed me was Milk the Dairy Queen, mostly because she’s a hardcore ginger but also because her name was MILK THE DAIRY QUEEN. For practical reasons, her name has been shortened to Milk, but she still seems pretty fascinating. There’s something about a queen who chooses to insert a flaw (in this case, a black tooth) while surrounded by polished glamour queens that takes a certain amount of confidence. Milk will definitely be one of the funnier queens this year, possibly clashing with the pageant girls, who never seem to learn their lesson.
Elimination Prediction: Twelfth Place. I know I just praised her but there are a lot of funny queens this year, and for the sake of symmetry, she might be a shock early elimination. But only after sending a less interesting, glamour girl home in a Barbara Streisand lip sync battle.
Trinity K Bonet
The most interesting fact revealed in Trinity’s interview is that her mother, on her death bed, told Trinity that she couldn’t die “because I haven’t seen you on Rupaul’s Drag Race yet lol.” Her mother wrote out lol on a piece of paper on her death bed. That’s about it.
Elimination Prediction: 11th Place. Neither interesting enough to go far, nor train wreck-y enough to go out too early. She will quietly shante away lip syncing poorly to a classic Donna Summers track.
Drag Race has a very uneven history when it comes to Puerto Rican girls. Nina Flowers was a goddess in season one, but every season after that has featured one or two girls who don’t speak great English, and don’t offer much more than crazy fashion. April seems like a queen somewhere between these two extremes. She’ll probably bring the high fashion and the Latina sass, but I don’t know if she has anything else to offer. At least they won’t have to subtitle anyone this year.
Elimination Prediction: 10th Place. She will do poorly in an acting challenge and go home lip syncing a drag queen classic she’s too young to understand.
There’s not much to work with in Joslyn’s video, mostly because she gives a bunch of generic, pageant appropriate answers. She may not have realized that these interviews are the first thing most fans see so she didn’t try too hard to present herself as an interesting contestant. But she seems a little air headed in a drunken Jessica Simpson way, which could be fun.
Elimination Prediction: Ninth Place. She’ll probably be the most charming of the unremarkable girls.
Courtney Act has a lot going for her, mainly that she’s by far the fishiest queen, but also she’s Australian, and who doesn’t love an Australian accent? There’s a lack of edge though that’s hurt similarly pretty and talented queens (see: Ivy Winters). I really hope we get to see Courtney grow and develop her talents over the course of the season instead of being overshadowed by the louder, more abrasive queens.
Elimination Prediction: Eighth Place. A tragic elimination in which she’s ironically enough, sent home doing a Kylie Minogue song.
“Hello, I’m Adore Delano. I’m two years old and I’m from the ocean,” might be the best opening line I’ve ever heard. Adore represents a new generation of drag queens, boys who never even considered putting on a pair of heels until they saw Drag Race for the first time. Her youth and loud (but not entirely unpleasant) persona might draw some side eyes from the more experienced queens, but I actually like her a lot. She seems smart and bitchy which is always a giant step up from just plain bitchy. Although it’s not mentioned in her video, Adore Delano is Danny Noriega, who appeared as a semi-finalist on American Idol at 18. I remember watching that season and wondering why they just couldn’t say that this incredibly flamboyant, flat-ironed haired teenager was gay, instead of having Simon Cowell criticize him for being unconvincing singing Elvis tunes. Drag Race seems like a much more natural fit for him.
Elimination Prediction: 7th Place. He’ll prove to be a more interesting baby queen than Jade Jolie, but will still falter because of her youth.
If you turned off the sound and just watched Laganja Estranja’s move around, you might mistake her for strange and funny. She’s a child of Alyssa Edwards, one of Drag Race’s most delightful weirdoes, but Laganja lacks her mother’s unintentional charm. In fact, everything about Laganja is extremely intentional. It seems like she’s doing an impression of a drag queen. Every answer that comes out of her mouth has the same cadence of sass but nothing she says is remotely interesting. Oddly enough, the queen that she most reminded me of was Stacy Lane Matthews, who wasn’t witty in the least but threw in a lot of “mm hmm honey” and “that’s right, bitch” to cover it up.
Elimination Prediction: 6th Place. She seems the most likely to cause drama, which will always keep a queen around longer than they deserve.
Ben De La Crème
I almost wish Ben De La Crème had waited a few more seasons to apply, because she has almost no chance of winning, despite the fact that she is utterly fucking delightful. Knowing Jinkx Monsoon and embodying a similar ascetic will be a huge disadvantage because it will be too easy for the other girls to paint her as a Jinkx knockoff (see: Alaska and Sharon Needles). Ben will go far because she’s funny and smart and clever and Rupaul knows talent when she sees it, but I have a feeling nepotism will screw her in the end. Either way, this season just jumped a few notches will her very presence. The look she gives the camera after claiming she stole Michelle Vasage’s face is priceless. Also, “If you don’t fertilize the tree of discontent with your bullshit, than the sapling can’t grow, and where there’s no tree, there’s no shade,” may be the longest and best catch phrase ever.
Elimination Prediction: Fifth Place. It will be the most depressing elimination of the season. But it’s okay, because her cabaret act with Jinkx, Sharon Needles and Alaska is imminent.
Bianca Del Rio
The first thing I thought when I saw Bianca Del Rio was that she looked like Phi Phi O’Hara, which filled me with a rage I can’t quite describe. But then she started speaking and everything was better. Bianca describes herself as a mix between Joan Crawford and Bozo the Clown which instantly makes her better than Magnolia Crawford, who is a mix between Joan Crawford and an uninteresting man. There are so many things I like about Bianca: her love of Dolly Parton, her insistence that she hates everyone, her use of the term “good time gal.” I can definitely see her affiliating with the cooler, funny girls, but might not make it all the way.
Elimination Predication: 4th Place. Another teary eyed elimination against the similarly fabulous Kelly Mantle.
Gia Gunn probably has the most impressive male to female transformation of any of the queens. She’s not the absolute fishiest (that would be Courtney Act) but looking at her male photo, it’s kinda shocking that she gives such good girl. She name drops Carmen Carrera as an inspiration, which makes sense, but also shows that she might not actually understand her strengths. Carmen was never the funniest or the cleverest girl on the show, but she’s turned into the face of Drag Race fishiness by exuding a quiet, confident sex appeal. Yes, she was half naked half the time, but she was subtle about it. She never yelled, “Hey! Look at my c**t!” which seems like something Gia might do. Although her background in her Kabuki and her “desire to understand different types of drag” might propel her farther than most would originally think.
Elimination Prediction: Third Place. Every finale needs a good villain and Gia might be it. Hopefully she’ll be a more enjoyable villain than Phi Phi or Roxxxy.
It took me three viewings of Kelly Mantle’s video to realize that she looks and speaks like Rita Rudner, which basically means she is a perfect human being. She might be my favorite out of all the queens. There’s a quiet confidence to Kelly’s shtick that makes her character seem fun and refreshing rather than grating like Laganja Enstranja. If Drag Race isn’t afraid of crowning a fourth funny girl in a row then I could absolutely see Kelly Mantle taking the prize. There’s a reason why the last three winners were all the funniest people on their seasons. Not only that, but Kelly seems polished and elegant and like a goddamn professional. “Don’t they know who I think I am?” sealed the deal for me.
Elimination Prediction: 2nd Place only because I have a feeling the producers might not actually want a funny girl to win again. Heavy sigh.
Six seasons in, it’s a little shocking that we’re just getting our first classic ‘90s New York queen now. Vivacious is the most instantly striking of all the queens, smothered in shark tooth, looking like she stepped right out of Paris is Burning. There’s a sass and an edge to her that is able to support itself without the crutch of irony that so many of the younger girls wield. It’ll be interesting to see how Vivacious melds with the younger girls, especially the ones lacking knowledge in drag history. Hopefully she goes more the Latrice Royale route, holding court as an elder statesman without ever feeling dated.
Elimination Prediction: Winner. Drag Race has always rewarded youth and innovation over seniority (Chad Michael’s All-Star win, notwithstanding) but her years of experience and absolute, undeniable fierceness might be enough to lock down the crown she deserves. Plus, her desire to bring straight clubs and gay clubs back together seems like a very Ru-approved message.
Watch all the new queen’s video’s at LOGOTV.COM!