Ryan Shea's picture

Does it Matter That a Big Girl Hasn't Won 'Drag Race' Yet?

Season 10 of RuPaul's Drag Race concluded last Thursday with New York's very own Aquaria taking home the crown. 

Aquaria, as talented as she is, follows in a line of 10 seasons of queens who all have one major thing in common: they were in really good shape when they won (and continue to be to this day).

Over the course of almost ten years of Drag Race, many plus-size queens have entered the werk room with the goal of winning the $100,000 dollar grand prize and the title of America's Next Drag Superstar. Yet none of them have actually won it yet. Is this a glaring problem that the show is only exacerbating? Is it a societal issue regarding people with size? Or does size really not matter in a competition like this?

Several plus size queens have gone the distance on RPDR, with many coming close to winning. Let's break down each season and how far they got:

Victoria "Porkchop" Parker (Season 1): 9th Place

Mystique Summers Madison (Season 2): 10th Place

Mimi Imfurst (Season 3): 11th Place

Stacy Layne Matthews (Season 3): 8th Place

Delta Work (Season 3): 7th Place

Madame LaQueer (Season 4): 10th Place

Jiggy Caliente (Season 4): 8th Place

Latrice Royale (Season 4): 4th Place

Penny Tration (Season 5): 14th Place

Roxxxy Andrews (Season 5): Runner-Up

Darienne Lake (Season 6): 4th Place

Ginger Minj (Season 7): Runner-Up

Kim Chi (Season 8): Runner-Up

Eureka (Season 9): 11th Place (Taken out due to injury)

Kalorie Karbdashian Williams (Season 10): 13th Place

Eureka (Season 10): Runner-Up 

It's interesting when you look at the statistics of the big girls from RPDR. None of them made it far in the first three seasons, with many making very early exits. My theory was that they wanted Mimi to go the distance a bit, but she picked up India Ferrah and that was that.

Latrice became the first big girl to really give the others a run for their money, and would've been serious competition against Chad Michaels and Sharon Needles (sorry Phi Phi) had she made it into the top three. Roxxxy was never going to win season 5, as she was a huge villain  and it would've made the fan base of the show erupt in a really bad way. Darienne was lucky to have made it into the top 4, IMHO. That spot should've been for BenDeLaCreme

Season 7 was the first one to have a true big girl contender in the finale with Ginger. If Katya wasn't going to win, then Ginger should have. I think that season was really made for her, as she fit into so many categories that could've put her into the winners circle but her attitude made a lot of the audience shift to either Pearl or Violet Chachki with the latter coming out with the W. 

If Bob the Drag Queen wasn't on Season 8, then Kim would've won. Bob was just unstoppable. I always wonder how far Eureka would've gone on her original season, as she was doing great up until the whole injury thing. Just like Ginger, she really did an amazing job throughout her own season this past year but the pendulum swung towards the north again and crowned Aquaria the winner (4 out of the past 5 winners have been from NYC).

So will a big girl ever really win this game, or does weight have anything to do with this? I asked my friends their thoughts and this is what they said:

"They should win because they're fat?"

"Yeah, I mean, I would rather a big girl win because she deserves it. Not just because she's a big girl."

"Conversely big girls have done extremely well post #DragRace. I do see the point though."

"I'm waiting for that Big girl that is all about being talented instead of a fat joke to appease the audience."

"We already have a plus size winner of Drag Race! Jinkx (Monsoon) just took a few years to get there! (Her words not mine lol)."

"Eureka doesn’t deserve to win just because she’s a plus size girl. This takes away from Aquaria who worked her ass off and deserved to win just as much as any of the top queens. Just because Eureka didn’t win doesn’t mean you can shade Aquaria’s hard work."

"I think the bigger problem is that we choose to lean towards contestants based on size as opposed to talent. It’s like reverse size-ism."

What are your thoughts on this subject?

This was created by one of our Contributing Writers and does not reflect the opinion of Instinct Magazine or the other Contributing Writers when it comes to this subject. 

Comments

+1
0
-1
[-]

A large performer will never win as long as Ru pits more athletic queens against them in lipsynch battles set to high-energy songs. How can an obese performer with bodily proportions that limit his movement possibly compete when some 20-something is dancing circles around him? The visuals alone are enough to cause the heavy queen to lose. Unfairly. It essentially negates all other aspects of a queen's tenure on the show and reduces it to an athletics contest at the end. The current crop of pop songs currently being offered for lipsyncs in this Vh1 era are also problematic in that they lack that drag queen 'umph', where a performer can knock it out of the park without having to step an inch in any direction. 

+1
0
-1
[-]

Aquaria fits Ru's preferred type, the fashion-queen, ala Violet Chachki and Sasha Velour, which, sad to say, is just simply something that a big girl cannot pull off.   A big girl cannot exude "the future of drag" as Ru sees it.  Eureka tried her best, rarely ever wearing a dress or gown during season 10, which are traditional drag garments, wearing jumpsuits instead, going along with the future of drag that is "anything but a wig and a dress".   

+1
0
-1
[-]

Oh sorry *white*

+1
0
-1
[-]

They want skinny whit girls duh! 

Add new comment