Now, ladies. I know that we have an entire new cycle of ANTM to ridicule, and that Ms. Spontaniouse needs to get crackin'! (Rumor has it that the elusive Wholahay might even be contributing to the Weave again during this new rotation of crazies, sob stories and smiling with your eyes.) I would include "epileptics" in that list, but sadly, our token "disordered" model has already been sent on her way to the great photo shoot in the sky, a place where there is only soft glow and no strobe lights.
But before we get to any of that, fierce readers, you must first learn about a show that I believe has actually superseded Top Model in gayness, fierceness and sparkles. I am serious. Spontaniouse has finally taken another lover, and that lover is RuPaul's Drag Race.
I had kind of heard of the show and was kind of skeptical, but last weekend changed all that. I went to Philadelphia for the weekend to celebrate my fierce friend Patria's birthday, and after a night of bar dancing and a day of historical sightseeing nerdery, by the time dinner time rolled around, we needed a break to rest before hitting the town again. The friend we were staying with recommended Miss Ru's show, and from the second it began we were hooked like crack whores. We watched four episodes in a row and moaned when none were left.
Let me try to explain: This is the perfect storm of a reality show. It's like a delicious swirly combination of America's Next Top Model, Project Runway, and So You Think You Can Dance. (Which are my all-time top three reality shows, just so you know). Each week, the ladies have different challenges: photo shoots, making their own outfits, dance performances, etc. While they're working on their various projects, RuPaul will come in to see how they're doing, much like the esteemed and beloved Miss Tim Gunn. Ru even dresses a bit like La Gunn in these segments, in a fab suit & glasses. He chats with each of the girls, asks them some questions and gives a little bit of advice (but not as explicitly as Tim Gunn) and then gives them a little group pep talk, ending with the inspirational command--no, not "Make it work!"--but "Don't fuck it up!" I give Miss Ru triple snaps for being to the point!
Then we take it to the judges' panel. Our panel is headed up by Miss Ru (in full drag regalia now, of course--girl has to make a serious entrance) and some random fashion people I don't really care about, except for the occasional appearance of Bob Mackie AND permanent judge...Santino, of Project Runway (and Tim Gunn impression) fame! Santino is TOTALLY weird and supposedly bisexual according to his crazy website, but I heart the P.Way and it's funny to have him there. He actually has some pretty sound opinions. Anyway! We get the magical pleasure of a full-on drag runway show, and then the ladies are judged on their challenges. One winner is announced, and then Ru informs the bottom two that the time has come for them to "LIP SYNC FOR YOUR LIFE!!"
Oh yes. Then a dueling lip sync battle ensues, to various fabulous gay anthems, including (of course) "Supermodel (You Better Work)" by Miss Ru herself, and joy of joys, "The Greatest Love of All" by Miss Whitney "Hell to the no!" Houston. RuPaul then decides who will "Chantey...you stay" and who will "Sashay...away." (I am spelling those words the way they're spelled in the lyrics to Supermodel, but I'm sure there's some proper French dance term spelling with accent aigus that I am unable to accomplish because I am still unfamiliar with this Mac).
As my fabulous friend Mike said last night after witnessing his first lip sync battle: "I could watch an hour of just that." ME TOO.
Every single person I have watched this show with in the last week has gotten completely addicted to it, including my straight boy roommate Aniss. Loves it.
Now, I must confess--for all the crazy fabulous campiness of this show, I think the real reason that I am TRULY in love with RuPaul's Drag Race is because for the first time in a while I have developed a celebrity crush that might only rival the days when I was singing "Happy Birthday" to my New Kids on the Block poster on the appropriate five days a year. Yes. I did. Anyway!
I am in love, and I am in love with Nina Flowers. If Nina doesn't win this whole thing, it will be a bigger pile of bullshit than Saleisha winning Top Model just because she was all up in Tyra's T-Zone.
Nina Flowers is so fucking fierce. She's got this crazy androgynous punk rock glam look going on, but she can also turn around and be totally vintage or retro looking. She is from Puerto Rico and has an adorable accent, and is totally sassy but not a bitch. She's a makeup artist in real life, and it shows.
The other thing that I love about her is that I am totally endeared to her when she ISN'T in drag too. And this is where it gets crazy--and proves her talent as a queen, I think--because in person and out of drag, Miss Nina is a dude with a shaved head and tattoo sleeves. He looks like someone who would punch you at a German rave, and he is totally hot. Then he turns into the most glittering bird of fierceness on stage! I am totally sexually attracted to both sides of Nina, and it is causing me lesbian confusion. And I kind of love it.
Best of all, I totally friended Miss Nina on myspace, and wrote her a long gushy message about how fabulous she is, and she totally wrote back to me the next day! She is such a darling and I love her. She's also blogging about each of the episodes on her myspace blog, and her inside scoop is totally cute and sweet!
Seriously, watch the show. You won't believe it.