By: Bryan O'Malley 10/20/2017 9:00AM
There was a time years ago that I was completely enamored with drag performers – their wit, nerve and gowns – I couldn’t image a world without them. Drag queens were impression court jesters of the scene. Gleefully catty and incisive entertainers who always got the party started. However, these days I’m afraid there are more drag queens performing per square foot than there are Walgreen’s and Chase Banks!
It seems that wherever you go guys are shaving, tucking, teasing, frosting and trying to be funny. You can find them just about everywhere; in bars, restaurants, the streets, social media, they’re just coming out everywhere. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad that shows such as RuPaul’s Drag Race has given many people the courage to sew, lip-synch, and throw their arms in the air. In effect a voice to the disenfranchised, and that great.
Since the evolution of social media bars have had to evolve therefore drag has become prevalent; thus, driving out other forms of entertainment. As large dance clubs started to wain thanks to Grindr (and other apps), it has made going out almost completely unnecessary to hook up. This has caused bars to ramp up their relevance and try to lure some people in for a drink and a giggle, and they did this by putting drags queens on stage, then more drag queens, and move drag queens, until you go home with the taste of Aqua Net in your mouth, and the permeating smell of perfume. For the bars this is a win-win situation. Drag queens come with their own wigs, music, costumes and their performances pat down – so you just put them on a stage and they keep the gays happy for a few minutes, and then they scream, “Go buy drinks! The drunker you are, the better I look!”
In New Orleans there are numerous gay bars, and almost all of them feature drag queens flouncing around trying to amuse the crowd so you won’t leave (It’s better than bolting the doors shut). Some of these bars feature drag queens at least three to four times a week. It’s a drag emporium – a virtual showcase of all things gender bending – I mean how many lip-sync performances does one have to see during the week? To be honest it gets old watching someone flapping his lips and doing some spins, and getting up in your face as if you want to watch lips move, but no sound. This appears to be happening at social events in and around the city. It seems that almost every event has a Drag queen performing numbers you haven’t experienced since a whole night ago, lol!
To be honest I’m not mad about this development. I do adore the drag aesthetic and I get a little excited when a new, and eager new comer comes along and gives us a surprise. I just wish they didn’t try so hard to be famous – or perform another Rihanna song. And I wish some of them didn’t follow a predetermined formula, while assuming that wearing a dress automatically make you brilliant and subversive. I would like to occasionally see a comedian without accessories. Is that so much to ask for?
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