Raja’s win on “RuPaul’s Drag Race” marks a sophisticated change in the world of drag queens. Paul Hiebert has the story on bending the rules of gender-bending.
START YOUR ENGINES: So much to say about the 3rd Season of RuPaul's Drag Race! Most people would say the Raja shouldn't have won, and I might agree on a number of points...but...standardizing drag is plain boring. And niceties aside, she spiced it up quite a bit. The rants between Raja and the hysterically comic Shangela were sorta priceless on 'Untucked'.The queens that seemed a bit not-ready-for-prime-time this year were most definitely: Delta Work, Phoenix, India Ferrah, Stacy Layne Matthews and Venus D-Lite. For me, if I was a preliminary judge they would have been ruled out before the show got on the road. The others were all advanced and interesting, with talent and nerve galore. I found Mariah to be the most ravishing, Shangela the most talented...but of the final three most consistent was definitely Manila. I was rooting for Alexis, however. Mainly because she seemed most "above it all" and the most effectively personable. Yara Sophia was really interesting and added the strange factor and Mimi Imfurst, a bit sloppy, brought an excellent amount of kitch factor. Raja, in the end, walked the walk and talked the talk (albeit in a very bass voice). Drag is like a wild spindly tree that has many branches. It was hardest for me to watch the depth of cat-calling backstabbing bitches in the Interior Illusions Lounge - especially Delta Work (who'd be much better suited for John Waters type territory). Carmen Carrera was an interesting wild card - she brought a sexy Jersey girl thang, it was well suited for this.SUGGESTIONS FOR SEASON 4:- Bring back some of the previous contestants as either regular or guest judges;- Maybe a few less refreshing Absolut bevvies while the judges are deliberating;- Should be rules that would disqualify a contestant (like when Mimi physically lifted India up);- Don't put 'plus size girls' on the show unless they are polished - and there are aplenty;- The demographics are covered (asian, black, white, asian, latino), but don't be too obvious;- Bring is some powerhouse judges (Cyndi Lauper, Lady Gaga, John Waters, Greg Louganis, Kylie Minogue, Vera Wang, so many...) and spend a lil more time on their comments...if they are there chatting for an hour - give us some of their feedback so we know what determinations they are making (Santino and Billy B are blah, and though Mike Ruiz is hot - not a good judge, Michelle Visage gives real criticism - a keeper!);- Add a 'den mother' element to this. Sometimes it seems the contestants (most are young enough to wander) could use a lil more coaching, more scenes of Ru as 'Mama'.That's all gyrlz.;) TJ