For those of you still catching-up on Season 7 of RuPaul’s Drag Race then I’m sorry but this entire article is a huge spoiler alert . This season has showcased a plethora of Queens in all shapes, sizes, and spirits, and from various cultures, for our viewing pleasure, along with highlighting many important issues that the Drag community still has to face today (such as familial acceptance, substance abuse, and intersectional issues of racism).
However, this season also highlighted for me a big problem that is actually not being addressed as much: Fat Phobia and Fat Shaming – presented in confusing ways that make it unclear whether fat bodies are actually acceptable in the Drag community (beyond their comedic value). After watching each week, I would venture to say that fat bodies are more acceptable when they are acting humorously or being associated with food – and much of this is actually perpetuated by the Fat Queens themselves, especially finalist Ginger Minj (again, something I’m torn on since a fat bodied person loving food should not be viewed negatively). However, Ginger also does a lot of positive representation of what a fat body can do – sing, dance, and perform the fuck out of everything all while looking super sexy (thus, my resulting mixed feelings). At the other end of the body spectrum lies finalist Violet Chachki – who was idolized and praised all season for her nearly death-defying forms of waist cinching. This left me wondering about the perpetuation of socially normed beauty ideals within the Drag community, as it certainly felt like this body shape was not only more acceptable, but coveted (whereas I personally felt pain when looking at how squeezed-in tight all of Violet’s organs must have been)! While these ponderings of mine are certain valid points, they speak to a larger discussion about the structure of the Drag world as a whole, which I shall leave for another time. This article, however, serves to remind us of the Queens who were competing for the crown, and to discuss the revelation of who won…
(photos sourced from: @rupaulsdragrace Instagram or are screenshots)
Were you Team Ginger, Pearl, or Violet? I had somewhat of a hard time choosing as I had qualms about each of them, although I think I ultimately was hoping that a plus size queen like Ms. Minj could finally take the damn crown! (Apparently I’m not the only one according to this article, 5 reasons Ginger Minj should have won the ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ crown, in USA Today!
I do have to say that watching Ms. Pearl’s character unfold and open-up throughout the Drag Race process was a beautiful thing, and at the end of the day her unique honor and style definitely made her a favorite of mine – not to mention my new favorite word she created: #FLASAYDAH!
This young and spunky queen had no shortage of opinions, and no shortage of creativity or charisma either, although she has only been doing drag for 3 years!
In case you’re needing to do a bit of catching up but can’t peel away from this article to do so…here’s a little clip of the Finale extravaganza:
Top 3 Queens anxiously awaiting the big finale reveal…
RuPaul says, “And the winner is…”
…None other than: Violet Chachki!
Violet’s really not that excited if you couldn’t tell – also I love how it kind of looks like Ginger Minj is trying to steal the crown on the left, but it may just be my hopeful imagination…
A little re-cap for your viewing and laughing pleasure…
I just happened upon this last behind-the-scenes gem featuring one of my all-time favorite Drag Queens: Latrice Royale, and was thrilled to see how beyond fucking fabulous she was looking! However, I quickly again became conflicted and wondered if this is at all a confusing perpetuation of Fat Phobia, as the song focuses both on the association between fat and food (*sidenote: it is ok to be fat and love food, I’m not trying to go against that, however look now to the second focal point of the song…) as well as explicitly repeating “and I can lose weight.” Latrice is stating powerfully “I’m fat and I’m sickening,” while striking an amazing pose, which ultimately is an amazing fat activist point, as is her pride in her love of food. Not to mention the fact that she eventually breaks out into an amazing dance, which ends in a crazy split (which then breaks Fat Phobic stereotypes in the process). For now I can really only leave the question open to this one, because at the end of the day, I’m a full-supporter of self-expression and wearing one’s voice…as long as it’s authentic!
A taste of the lyrics: “I said weight! Come over here and pile some more food on to this plate. I ain’t gonna jump and lifting no weights. Look at me I am sickening. Yeah yeah yeah. I might be fat but your ugly and I can lose weight! Hold up wait a minute let me stick my fork in it. Is it fried oh my is it apple pie. I want it now gotta have it make it supersize. Mesmerize mesmerize with your supersize. Baby I am special there ain’t nobody else I will make them eat it then I’ll eat it myself B%^ please my name is Latrice.”
At the end of the day now all I really craving is some damn apple pie, and some honest conversation on your feelings about the portrayal of fat bodies in drag as a whole as well as Drag Race Season 7 specifically. Feel free to comment below, and until next season have fun marathoning clips on Logo – there can never be enough RuPaul for this lifetime!