“We switch it up all the time on the show,” RuPaul says from the set of RuPaul’s Drag Race, where he is currently filming season nine of the Logo reality competition. “We’ve got lots and lots of tricks.”
On the second season of All-Stars, which premieres Thursday at 8 p.m. ET/PT, the host is pitting the returning queens against each other. Ready to let the wigs fly, RuPaul will no longer be eliminating any of the contestants. She’s left that task up to the queen who wins the lip-sync battle between that week’s top two.
“I was very happy to give that power up because these kids have already proven themselves,” RuPaul says of giving the contestants “the power to chop a girl… They've made it through the hard yards.”
And the power will be put in the hands of Adore Delano, Alaska, Alyssa Edwards, Coco Montrese, Detox (watch her dish on All-Stars season two here), Ginger Minj, Katya, Phi Phi O’Hara, Roxxxy Andrews and Tatianna as they “lip-sync for their legacy.”
“They are true superstars,” RuPaul says of this season’s contestants. “They are so much fun and such professionals -- and they know how to compete and win. That’s why they were asked to come back.”
With more than 100 queens having competed on the show, there’s no question RuPaul would love to have them all walk the set’s “hallowed halls” again. “I always want to do a check-up on them and see what they are like,” he says, “and how they would play they game given a second chance.”
Of course, fans will get to see just how each queen’s second attempt unfolds -- from the very moment they step into the workroom. In the premiere, RuPaul puts them to the shadiest of tests by having them read each other just after reuniting.
Now that RuPaul has changed the rules for All-Stars, the question is: are the rules different on season nine of RuPaul’s Drag Race? “We are watching everything that's happening in the world and we incorporative everything into the show,” he says. “That's the beauty of drag, is that we get to sample bits and pieces from everything and put it into our machine.”
“So, there will be lots of surprises,” RuPaul promises.
But one thing that’ll never change is the host and judge, who is up for his first Emmy for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program. And RuPaul makes no apologies about that.
“You should have your eye on me,” he says, “because I’m the queen to watch.”