Famed drag queen RuPaul Charles created one of the greatest reality shows in TV history. Looks like the Emmys finally took notice.
Yesterday, Charles was nominated for Best Reality Series host, earning his first-ever Emmy nod. His drag queen competition show, RuPaul’s Drag Race, also picked up its second-ever nomination, this time for Best Costumes.
Drag Race was recently renewed for a ninth season on Logo TV and is acclaimed by fans and critics, but the Emmys have largely ignored it. It’s a shame, because Drag Race is uniquely entertaining.
Most reality shows specialize in just one type of competition: Project Runway does fashion, the Voice does singing, the Bachelor/Bachelorette does petty drama. Drag Race does it all and then some. The episodes are packed with fashion, dance, singing, acting, comedy, celebrity impersonation, and world-class lip syncing as each season’s crop of queens fights to become America’s Next Drag Superstar.
There’s an emotional draw, too: “Each one of those [contestants] were little boys…who were alienated and ostracized,” Charles told Vulture earlier this year. “And even in the face of such adversity, they prevailed and shine today.”
On one hand, Drag Race’s Emmy nods are a huge win for diversity on TV. But on the other, they’re simply long-overdue recognition of a top-notch reality show.
Funnily enough, Charles also told Vulture that he had no interest in winning an Emmy:
“I made a pact with myself when I was 15 that if I was going to live this life, I’m only going to do it on my terms, and I’m only going to do it if I’m putting my middle finger up at society the whole time. So any time I’ve had yearnings to go, “Aw, gee, I wish I could be invited to the Emmys,” I say, Ru, Ru, remember the pact you made. You never wanted to be a part of that bullshit. In fact, I’d rather have an enema than have an Emmy.”
But he responded to his nomination gracefully all the same.
I dedicate this Emmy nomination to outsiders everywhere. Brave souls who stick to their dreams and make the world a more colourful place.
— RuPaul (@RuPaul) July 14, 2016
The Emmys will air September 18 on ABC.
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