To say that The Vixen was polarizing on this season of RuPaul’s Drag Race is putting it mildly. From her fighting stance during her workroom entrance to her battles with fellow competitors Eureka and Aquaria on the runway and in Untucked, The Vixen definitely gave everyone something to talk about this season and everyone had an opinion on this Chi-town standout. The Vixen was eliminated after last night’s Cher-themed challenge, and we caught up today for a chat. We talked about everything from her thoughts on the competition, her battles with fellow competitors, and her thoughts on racism in the drag community today.
It’s been a very eventful and exciting season for you, to say the least. Making both your city of Chicago and yourself proud was something that was very important to you, especially after you spoke about it in “Untucked’. Did you make yourself and your city proud from your perspective?
Oh yes, absolutely. For sure I made both Chicago and myself proud.
Was the experience of RuPaul’s Drag Race everything you thought it would be or was it an experience that you completely did not expect?
You definitely cannot predict what your Drag Race experience will be. My favorite thing to say is that you can reach your dream, but no one ever prepares you for the nightmare of the experience sometimes. That is not completely true for me though, it was definitely not a nightmare, but the experience was not all roses and sunshine either. It was great to reach the dream, but sometimes dreams go left.
Chicago is a mecca for drag, with some of the girls becoming legends on the Drag Race runway themselves, like Shea Coulee from Season Nine. Who do you think would be amazing to hit the workroom for Season Eleven?
You know, I think Lucy Stoole would be pretty amazing. on the show. She’d be the first bearded queen also. I think she is one of the most iconic bearded queens you will ever meet.
It's no secret that you had some pretty intense run-ins with both Aquaria and Eureka during this season. Are you good with the ladies now that some time has passed?
Yeah, I’m really good. Aquaria and I are great. She actually gave me the space that I needed to get over our argument and appreciate her from a distance. On the show I did not get to distance myself from Eureka; I mean, we sat next to each other the next day. What is great now is that we have had time now to take our distance. We both understand now that we work better professionally by keeping it short and sweet.
Your entrance into the workroom was both a tribute to Chicago but also had a sense of foreshadowing when, with clenched fists, you said “I’m Here To Fight” as your tagline. Some people, including your Season Nine sister Charlie Hides, felt that if you came in “ready to fight” you can’t claim during the competition that people are having so much conflict with you. How do you respond to that?
I call that woeful ignorance. What is undeniable is that I never started a fight on the show. When Episode 1, I was simply letting Miz Cracker know that Aquaria was lying to her face. That was not me looking for a fight. I had been talking into believing things about Miz Cracker, and then suddenly none of that is an issue. It was clear during the second episode that Aquaria felt a certain kind of way about me calling her out, and was poking the bear so to speak. It was not my action as much as it was my reaction. As for Eureka, she said outright during “untucked” that she wanted to test me because I did not respect her. That is not a good way to get respect from anyone really. In all of those instances, I was reacting, but I definitely think I got punished more for reacting than they did for initially acting.
From a viewer perspective, it was frustrating seeing that people were getting under your skin the way that you were. Asia O’Hara had a moment with you last night and really tried to get to the heart of some of your anger. She mentioned that some of your anger could have stemmed from Eureka possibly being symbolic of some of the race issues that you see as an African American drag queen, that truly do exist.
She was absolutely correct. Both Eureka and Aquaria represented privilege to me. Something that I have done in Chicago is to level the playing field in terms of privilege. It was definitely a culture shock for me to be back to square one where I was trying to dismantle the patriarchy.
Since you have come back from filming and gotten a chance to watch yourself on television, how do you think you have grown as both a performer and a person.
Well, as a performer I can now put on makeup faster than anyone in the world. I had to during filming, and now I don't know how to take my time doing my face anymore, it just kind of hops on (laughs). It is great though, she is stunning! I sit down with my makeup brushes and I am more than halfway done now; that is a really good superpower to come out of the competition with though. What I think is interesting is that there is an exception for me to leave the show and change or leave the show and learning something or taking a different approach. In reality though, the show is a very unique experience that is not the real world. You are in a bubble, on camera, in front of millions of people. You are in high-pressure situations with lack of sleep and intense stress; all of those things are unique to this experience. The way I react to things on the show are different from who I how I would react to them I real life. For example, if I do not like someone like Eureka in real life, I can just walk away. On the show, you are stuck together in the same building. I had to deal with it. I did not leave the show thinking that I needed to change anything. I left the show knowing that I had reacted honestly to the situations that I was in.
Girls that have had difficult seasons sometimes have come back for an All Stars season in an attempt to get their RuDemption. Do you think an All Stars season could potentially be in your future?
You know, time heals all wounds. I think I need a little more time right now before I say that I am ready to go back into the workroom. I would not rule it out though; I think my time on the show was important and some really cool things happened. I would not be afraid to make more important moments again.
You definitely helped start a conversation that was much needed in terms of race in the drag community. Where do you think we are as a community in terms of race still being an issue in the drag community and the drag race family?
I think the Drag Race fandom is a reflection of American culture and a reflection of race relations in the country. Until those get handled we are going to have an uphill battle in the drag race fandom without a doubt.