5 Fun Facts We Learned From the Judges of 'Drag Race' at RuPaul's DragCon NYC
The true unsung heroes of RuPaul’s Drag Race are the panel of judges. Michelle Visage, Carson Kressley, Ross Mathews and frequent guest judge Todrick Hall not only speak their minds, but frequently say exactly what the fans are thinking. The job of judging is absolutely necessary, and oftentimes underappreciated.
So, the four personas took to RuPaul’s DragCon NYC on Saturday (Sept. 29) to set the record straight on what judging is actually like. During an hour-long panel, where the four judges let fans ask them just about anything they wanted, the group talked about their favorite celebrity guest stars, interesting behind-the-scenes moments, their favorite queens from the show and more.
1. Todrick Hall gets panicked when on the set of Drag Race.
It’s strange to imagine a person as confident and commanding as Todrick Hall being easily intimidated. But during the panel, Hall said that there is one particular moment in every episode where he suddenly freezes. “Whenever Ru comes out, he asks each judge a question,” Todrick said. He admitted that for him, he always wants to be funny, but loses his nerve. “Every time Ru is like ‘Todrick, my nephew from another … zephew, what’s the tea today?" I always grab her leg and go, "'Michelle, what do I say? What do I say?’”
2. Michelle is not excited about the idea of an all-winners season.
It has long been contested within the Drag Race community whether or not a season full of winners could ever happen. Not to burst fans’ bubbles, but Michelle is not interested in seeing all the winning queens come back. “I think you’re trying to kill me. That’s a fate worse than death,” she said. “Putting all of those egos under one roof on one stage? No way.” But the head of the judges’ panel went on to say that if they ever did have a winners season, she would have her eyes out for Jinkx Monsoon and Sharon Needles as the best potential winners.
3. In between takes, RuPaul still does not look at his fellow judges.
It is a well-understood fact that when RuPaul is on-camera for Drag Race, she uses every single inch of it. The queen hardly ever glances over at her fellow judges when on the show, keeping her face toward the camera. But Ross Mathews added that when directors call cut, Ru still rarely turns her head to speak to them. “If she’s going to turn and talk to you, she has to turn her whole body, and she’s not interested in that,” he said. Carson Kressley added that he still finds it hard to understand when Ru doesn’t look at the judges when introducing them. “I’ll be like, ‘I’m over here! Hello?’”
4. Michelle revealed her true feelings about BenDeLaCreme’s shocking lipstick moment.
The world reeled when, in the middle of shooting All Stars 3, frontrunner BenDeLaCreme eliminated herself from the competition, leaving the head spot open for another queen to swoop in. Michelle said that while BenDeLaCreme was her “doppleganger,” she couldn’t relate. “I am a competitor, I am a Virgo, and for me, I would never quit anything,” she said. “For me, to wrap my head around it, I was like, ‘You’re kidding me!’” She added that she loved and respected her, but that she will never understand the mindset that she was in.
5. There may be more iterations of Drag Race on the way.
A loving mother asked the panel if and when Drag Race would ever create a version of the show specifically for kids to compete in. Michelle didn’t deny that she was a fan of this idea. “The world is our oyster, so anything can happen,” she said. She added that she wanted to create a version of the show for biological and trans women to specifically compete in, and added that if that’s the case, “Drag Race Junior can’t be too far off.”