Gay Men Think ‘Drag Race’ Airing on Fridays Hurts The Local Bar Scene

Credit: VH1 YouTube

RuPaul’s Drag Race is coming back to our television screens in six days on Friday, February 28. The re-emergence of one of the most popular reality television competition series over the past decade has also brought up a conversation that centers on the night that it airs and how it allegedly hurts local gay bars in the process. 

Comments about this have been lit up on social media recently with many in agreement about how problematic it is for the show to air on Friday night’s on VH1 compared to when it was on Monday’s during its years on LOGO. 

“Many people miss the point on why Drag Race on a Friday night is a bad thing,” one person wrote. “So let me break it down for you. It hurts your local gay bar. People are already out at the bars on Friday night. Monday- Wednesday’s are the toughest nights for bars. When it was on Monday’s the bar made money on what would be a slow night, the bar staff made money, a drag queen gets a hosting gig on a night that’s not so popular.” 

Some think the struggle will be even bigger due to the fact that the upcoming season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars is making the move to Showtime in June. “And now it’s also gonna be on Showtime in the summer? What gay bar has Showtime? People are still obviously gonna come out to watch it at gay bars on a Friday night. I’m just saying Drag Race or not the bar was gonna be busy anyways.”

Others on social media spoke in a similar way about their feelings regarding this heated topic. “It actually gets in the way of events because the damn shows run so late that parties and events have to wait for the show to be over before they can begin,” one chimed in with. 

Some went all devil’s advocate with this. “It provides the opportunity for queens to take programming to other venues that aren’t just the same gay bars that already book the same talent all week,” someone wrote. “Also, it is early enough to coordinate with a happy hour but late enough to not have a show already existing there due to Fridays and Saturdays typically being dance party nights that don’t book talent usually and instead go for DJ’s, etc.”

What are your thoughts on this? Do you think RuPaul’s Drag Race airing on Friday night’s hurts the local gay bar scene? Let us know in the comments below.

3 thoughts on “Gay Men Think ‘Drag Race’ Airing on Fridays Hurts The Local Bar Scene”

  1. This is the most absurd story to make the leap that there this obligation when when determining the day and hour programming that it should be coordinated when bars have less traffic in order to promote liquor sales. Then, by not doing so you are harming the gay community and in the same breath inferring bars can’t afford or somehow can’t get Showtime? I guess no one watched Queer as Folk on Showtime, oh wait…they did.
    The success of the show is not measured by the number occupants or the number of sets of eyes watching the same television, but the number of television sets watching the programming, which like most people is in their own homes.

  2. Shantay- You need to stay on a weekday!

    Part of the long-standing traditions that made the show so popular was the opportunity for venues to create a night devoted to drag- during an off night. Gay bars in every major city transformed themselves into the Interior Illusions Lounge/Gold Bar.

    As the shows popularity grew- it provided an opportunity for past show contestants to host and emcee the watching parties for the shows- introducing a whole new generation of people to the show and art of drag.

    The decision makers should take a cue from The Queen of All Queens- Chad Michaels- and pay tribute and homage to the fans that have supported them — long before they became famous and who have continued to support them.

    Keep the show during an off night and support those that helped made the show a success.


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