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Alaska: I Won Drag Race All Stars, Now Go Vote

Alaska: I Won Drag Race All Stars, Now Go Vote


The champion of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars spoke with The Advocate about her meltdown, politics, and why Drag Race fans must fight against Donald Trump.


It's been a nail-biting season of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars. New rules from RuPaul allowed the contestants to eliminate each other, creating a new landscape where even the strongest contenders for the crown might be at risk. Nothing was guaranteed.

In the beginning, the season was rocked by the voluntary departure of Adore Delano, who refused to stand for the judges' critiques. The drama continued with the elimination of contestant Phi Phi O'Hara, who alleged that she was edited by producers to be a villain. In the background, RuPaul made history by winning an Emmy. And surprisingly, even one of the show's guest judges, Lucian Piane, made headlines for saying Donald Trump is a more trustworthy presidential candidate than Hillary Clinton.

But after the dust settled, Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 emerged as the victor of the competition. She spoke with The Advocate about the win, her meltdown in the penultimate episode, her love of "anus" and "pussy," and why she is encouraging Drag Race fans to vote.

The Advocate: Condragulations. Today is a big day for you. But it's also National Dessert Day. So my first question is, if you had to compare the sweet taste of success to any dessert, what would it be?
Alaska: There's a family recipe we have called chocolate dope. I don't know who came up with that name. It was a frosting recipe, but my grandmother decided to put it on ice cream as chocolate syrup. It's literally the best thing ever.

Your reaction to the win seemed so genuine. Did you know at that moment, or were there other taped possibilities?
I didn't know. And of course, I was shocked. Toward the end there, I thought I had it in the bag. Then it was very questionable as to whether that was the case or not for a minute there. It's a huge honor and a huge surprise. I'm really excited about it.

Chad Michaels must be excited to have someone else in that Hall of Fame.
I know! Finally, we can keep each other company in that giant hallway.

What are your new responsibilities as an All Stars champion?
Now that I've become crowned, I feel very entitled, and I feel very demanding. I would like to decree to planet Earth that nails are now optional, flats are extremely sexy, and most importantly, black lives matter, women should be paid an equal wage, and don't elect Donald Trump.

That's perfect. I loved that lip-synch video you did with other drag performers encouraging fans to vote. Why was it important for you to participate in a project like that?
As queens, we reach a lot of young people. It's really important that we let young people know that it's important to vote. We get fired up about reality TV shows, but honestly, this is not a reality TV show. It's way more important than that. Let's get fired up about the right things. Let's make sure we register to vote, and vote the right way.

What do you think a Donald Trump presidency would mean for drag?
During really oppressive regimes, there tends to be a resurgence of underground, [subversive] art. I don't know, maybe that would happen? But I don't care. I don't want that to happen.

You're such an advocate of the word "anus," and I wonder what your are thoughts on "pussy" and how it's being discussed in the news and election coverage?
Well, I mean, I love vaginas. I think they're powerful. I think they're beautiful. They're amazing. Free the nipple. Free the pussy. Let's talk about it. Pussy power!

What issues do you hope the presidential candidates discuss in the final debate?
It's so difficult for Hillary Clinton to discuss real issues, because it's just Donald Trump trying to get memes and gifs made of himself. It's frustrating that the conversation is dumbed down, because I think this woman knows how to make the Earth not blow up. I don't think he is privy to that knowledge.

Are you hoping they talk more about social issues? Some people have been disappointed they haven't mentioned anything LGBT-related.
How can they? There's no time to. The thing is, I'm not a politician. I'm not a scientist. I'm a beautiful woman. But I'm glad that there are people where it's their bread and butter to know about politics and talk about it like Hillary Clinton. She knows what she's doing. She knows who to lie to, who to truth to, and how to not make the Earth blow up. I'm glad there are people who know the issues, because I'm not one of them.

Speaking of your own campaign, you've almost had a decade-long campaign for this crown. Are you happy it's played out the way that it has, as opposed to being cast on season 1?
Oh, I know! Roll back the tape. If I would have gotten on to season 1, 2, 3, or 4, it would have not been really cute. I think season 5, I had been in the cocoon long enough to go and have a good showing and do well. I had been doing drag long enough and come to appreciate the art form. I'm still learning. I'm still figuring it out.

I loved the speech you gave in the finale where you said why you deserved the crown, because you're the ultimate Drag Race fan. Why do you love the show so much?
I think the impact of the show is not even going to be seen until many years from now. I was watching one of these recent episodes, and it just struck me: This is a bunch of dudes in a pink room, and all of the dudes are calling each other "she." And nobody's batting an eyelash about it! That's extremely progressive, because I would like to see a world where gender is not such a strict "this or that." I think that it will be a more peaceful world, and I think it will be a more Star Trek-like future. I would like to get to that point. I think Drag Race is part of that, and I think what we're all doing is moving toward that. I think that's why people are responding to it.

Hollywood clearly loves the show too. They gave RuPaul an Emmy. What does that mean for drag, and for you personally?
I think he's extremely deserving of that Emmy Award. And if you've ever been to one of the live finale tapings ... he's in full drag, and drag fucking hurts. I said it. I meant it. It's terrible. But he's able to command that audience. Everybody shuts the fuck up when they're supposed to shut the fuck up. He does that every single episode. He knows all the camera operators' names. He knows what grade their kids are in. He's extremely masterful at what he does. I think he definitely deserves that award. And of course, I think it's great.

You were bombarded with snake emojis, after a series of events that included a bribe to avoid elimination. You made a wonderful parody video. But I'm wondering what your honest reaction was to the backlash, and if you have any regrets about anything you've done this season.
When I was there, I never made any decisions out of malice or trying to fuck anybody over. We were all put in a really difficult situation, and I think we were all trying to make the best decisions we could. Do I wish I could go back in time and give myself a joint and say, "Smoke this, and chill the fuck out?" Yes, I do wish I could do that. But I guess it turned out OK, because I won!

What would you have done if you had been eliminated?
[Laughs] I'm so glad that never happened. Because I don't know how I would have reacted! You saw how I responded when I was in the bottom one time. I was distraught, upset, distressed, besieged, and bewildered. So no, it wouldn't have been good. I'm not a kind and generous loser. I'm a very sore loser.

What's next for you?
We just put out the new album [Poundcake]. I think the kids are really excited about it. I'm really excited about it. I'm glad it's finally out there. I think the music is unapologetically drag music, so it's fun. It's exciting. You can get it on iTunes. You can get it on Amazon. You can get it wherever fine music is sold.

Perfect. And congratulations. It was such an awesome season, and we're so happy you won.
Thank you. Me too.

Watch Alaska's new music video, "The T," featuring Adore Delano below.

This interview was condensed in editing.

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Daniel Reynolds

Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.
Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.