The floodgates were definitely opened earlier this week, when season 7 RuPaul’s Drag Race star Pearl opened up about an incident that allegedly happened between her and the show’s titular host.
Pearl, who became a runner-up for the crown in 2015, spoke out about Ru during a segment on the web series Hey Qween!, which is hosted by Johnny McGovern.
The alleged situation happened while Pearl and the rest of the queens were recording covers of Ru’s songs. The Emmy-winning host surprised them by showing up, and Pearl took the opportunity to thank him for being such a hero for the young queen.
“I felt like the only way for me to get any way on the show was to build some kind of relationship with the judges,” she said. “We were filming a segment, just kind of chatting, banter whatever together, and then the camera went down for a moment and I turned to RuPaul and I said ‘Oh my god. I just want to thank you so much. It is such an honor to be here, such a pleasure to meet you. You have no idea, like what this…’, just giving her that whole everything I wanted to say to her.”
“And she turned to me, and she said, ‘nothing you say matters unless that camera is rolling.’,
Pearl claimed. “And that broke my spirit. And that is the reason why I had one foot in, one foot out the entire time on that show. And maybe that’s me being petty, and maybe that’s me thinking that it should have been something that I never should’ve expected it to be. But in that moment, it was so heartbreaking because I idolized her, worshipped her, and I just felt that it was so disrespectful. I had never even been to LA before: it was so Hollywood, rotted, like how could you say that to somebody that is just obsessed with you?”
The alleged situation is one that has sparked a ton of comments on social media, both Pro-Pearl and Pro-RuPaul. “That is sad that she said that. People look up to her to be a role model, so she should check herself,” and “Get a life Geez. Everyone is a victim lately,” are just two of the many thoughts that RPDR fans have shared since word got out about Pearl’s claims.
Two other RPDR queens have now spoken out about the situation and their thoughts on the matter. Laganja Estranja and Gia Gunn, both from season 6 who had memorable showing in arguably the greatest season of Drag Race ever, shared what they think about the whole ordeal.
"I think what happened to Pearl has happened to several of the other girls,” claims Laganja. “I have no personal experience with this, as any time I have approached Ru with realism, I have received the same back. That being said, I’ve heard similar stories about her teaching the girls the ways of Hollywood. In my eyes, as insensitive as it may have been, it was her way of passing the knowledge she has fought to learn down to the next generation. I myself hope that I am able to be more cognizant of others' emotions and intentions as my success rises, but it’s really hard to say what RuPaul feels. I sympathize with Pearl as my spirit would have been broken, too. It was so hard for me when I got kicked off the show and did not receive any acknowledgment from RuPaul. But after I talked to him about the situation and my feeling on his podcast, ‘What’s the Tea?,’ he’s always been sure to give me a hug when he sees me. We must remember that man fought so long and hard to get where he is and synthesize with him, too!! No one is perfect, not even our Mutha!!"
"As contestants from RPDR we all have a different story and experience to tell,” says Gia. “I have also concluded that the RPDR experience also means something totally different to one another. Some will retire from drag, therefore will never open their mouths or "bite the hand that feeds you." However, for me personally I couldn't agree more with Pearl, as I can relate and also validate my sister's point of view. I never worshipped RuPaul or her show, matter of fact, although I was a fan I never wanted to be on her show. Somehow or another I was blessed and have made the best of this blessing that did indeed change my life. Moving to LA to build a stronger relationship with the entertainment business, I never realized how actually cruel and cut throat it is. I now understand why some celebrities do indeed commit suicide or harm themselves due to feeling "alone" because it's clear that feelings don't exist in this industry. Everybody has a pay check to collect and its dollar amount certainly has nothing to do with how you feel. RuPaul has created a movement, yes, but is she the only person to be thankful for? Absolutely not. We as a community don't give ourselves enough credit for creating all of what we have, after all if it weren't for us alumni who travel the world spreading this message of "everybody say LOVE”, I really don't think there would be much love to be had. With that being said, at the end of the day it really depends on how bad you want "it." Whatever it may be. Some will do what it takes to rise to the top, including being cold and harsh to those who support you. But what I am discovering is that there is a way to still "make it" and feel good while doing what you're doing. At the end of the day I believe in the traditional saying that my parent's instilled in me since a young age: ‘treat others the way you would like to be treated.’ However, with experience from my transition I have learned it's impossible to live by that saying if you don't treat yourself with love and kindness. At the end of the day, none of us owes RuPaul anything, just like she doesn't owe us a simple ‘hello.’ Nobody ever said the truth is fair and we as people cannot run from the truth either. Therefore, stay tuned for my book where my real truth will be ruvealed…pardon me, REVEALED!"