Pearl Liaison, the notable RuPaul’s Drag Race runner-up from Season 7, recently made news following her interview with popular YouTube channel Hey Qween. The interview, which was posted August 13, gained attention when the past Drag Race contestant made claims against RuPaul Charles about an event that allegedly took place during filming.
“We were filming a segment, just kind of chatting, bantering together. Then the camera went down for a moment, and I turned to RuPaul and said, Oh my god, I just wanna say thank you so much, like, it’s such an honor to be here, such a pleasure to meet you,’ just giving her everything I ever wanted to say. She turned to me and said, ‘Nothing you say matters unless that camera is rolling.’ That broke my spirit, and that is the reason why I had one foot in, one foot out the entire time I was on that show.”
Fans and critics of the show were quick to jump on Pearl’s story and it quickly started trending in the Drag Race community. Pearl took to her own personal YouTube account to address the incident. Pearl stood by her story, claiming other contestants have also brought up concerns regarding the show’s host, but asked her fans to not attack RuPaul (whom she called a “wealth of knowledge”) over her own personal experience. Pearl also claimed in her follow-up video that she did not go into the interview prepared to talk about the incident.
She also went on to say that shortly after the initial interview was posted, she got a call from Drag Race producers who said she would never be invited back for an All Star season due to the controversial nature of her comments. This was upsetting to many fans as Pearl is fairly popular among viewers, amassing a total of one million Instagram followers.
Drag Race itself has become a pop culture phenomenon. The tenth and most recent season was the most watched in the show’s history and Alyssa Edwards, from Season 5, recently scored her own television show with Netflix. VH1 recently announced the show’s fourth All Star season which is set to air in January. The cast list is expected to be announced shortly.
RuPaul has not made any statements regarding Pearl or the Hey Qween interview. This is also not the first time this year that the host of the show has been caught in a controversy. RuPaul made comments back last March in a Guardian profile regarding transgender contestants and the validity of their identities in the competition. He has since apologized for these comments.