RuPaul’s Drag Race season 15 is a let-down


TOO STUNNED TO SPEAK: RuPaul, host of RuPaul’s Drag Race, reacts to a contestant

Sarah Woods, A&E Editor

RuPaul’s Drag Race season 15 brings a more modern feel to the show than previous seasons have. The episodes currently out are still filled with the same amount of hilarious and catty queens that older years of the show had, but this is one of the first seasons that viewers are seeing the difference between gen-z drag and older generations. For the first time in drag race her-story, TikTok famous queens like the young twins Sugar and Spice appear on the show next to their more seasoned drag co-stars. 

While I was excited to see what those my age would bring to the table, I ended up being disappointed. I found that those with online drag experiences are better at sitting and looking pretty while those with in-person experiences tend to have bigger personalities and humor to them. One of the twins ended up going home after a cringe-worthy performance in many competitions throughout the season, and I have no doubt that the other will join her in the next episodes. 

Though the more online queens have not been successful in proving they have what it takes to be “America’s next drag superstar”, this season has produced three contestants that stand above the rest. I could tell who had the strongest chances of winning within the first two episodes, and chose my personal favorite performer by the third. 

Luxx Noir London, a fishy queen with seamstress abilities from the gods, brings an elegant feel to the show that is unmatched this season. Her lip-syncs are beautiful and she is not afraid to stick up for herself when need be, though she often lacks the consistent comedy that RuPaul usually looks for in a winner. 

Sasha Colby drifts away from Luxx Noir London’s regal drag and instead has a powerful, sort of edgy aura to her. Her older age has given her time to build up both her confidence and reputation. Her presence and icon status speaks for itself, leaving her without the need to prove that she should be in the competition. It is clear through both her performances and runway looks that she knows what she is worth and is not afraid of her rival queens. 

While Luxx Noir London has the beauty and Sasha Colby has the reputation, Anetra stands out to me as the strongest contestant this season. She is funny, her looks are powerful, and she consistently makes bold choices that help her stand out. She solidified herself as a strong competitor when she won the talent show, a performance that I still find myself re-watching over and over again. Her strong and sharp makeup in that jaw-dropping show accompanied her fierce personality perfectly. She is confident but not argumentative, which is a distinction that lots of the other girls have not yet made in their heads.

The reason this competition is not as much of a close-call as previous ones is most likely due to the shortened run-time for this season. This time cut has forced production to make a choice between showing more of the challenges or the interactions between queens, and I am not sure that they chose correctly. I am sure that us viewers are missing out on key conversations between contestants. The drama that we do see is often overdone and missing way too much context to feel meaningful in any way. This season feels uninspired and rushed, leaving me both disappointed and scared for what the following ones will look like.