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Do Not Call RuPaul a Drag Queen — This Will Happen to You

RuPaul and Jimmy Fallon in a diptych.

RuPaul Charles is on a press kick right now. He has his first ever hosting gig on Saturday Night Live coming up tonight, where it seems that he will appear in drag for at least some pre-recorded sketches — his appearance will be historic as the first drag performer to ever host the show. But ahead of that, the longtime celebrity appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon to talk up the appearance. And during the episode, Ru takes it upon himself to correct Fallon who calls him a drag queen.

“This was gigantic,” Fallon says holding up Ru’s cover of Vanity Fair, which kicked off the new decade. “This was the first time ever that a drag queen had been put on the cover of—”

“A ‘drag queen?!’” Ru interrupts incredulously. All of the color immediately drains from Fallon’s face. “A drag ... queen?”

It is in this moment  that, if you look closely, you can watch Fallon’s entire career flash before his very eyes. He can see the tweets and the headlines now: "Jimmy Fallon Canceled for Mislabeling RuPaul." He has, in fact, already leapt steps ahead and has begun writing an apology that will air with the episode, as well as will be tweeted as a screenshot from his Notes app. Fallon is done for.

“I am the queen of draaaaaaaaaag,” RuPaul finishes, explaining the error. Fallon immediately breaks into a halfhearted chuckle, and takes a deep breath as there are a few cheers in the audience. It’s truly one of Ru’s best bits in years. 

“I apologize,” Fallon laughs, his career still in tact. “I apologize; I’m embarrassed.” It’s truly quality television!

Elsewhere in the episode, Ru admits to being a “music freak” who is currently in love with The Weeknd, and gives a few of his tried and true lines about his early years in New York City nightlife and going by the name Cupcake after 2AM or Bianca Dinkins after 4AM who was the” illegitimate daughter of New York Mayor David Dinkins” (“this is a young crowd” Ru remarks when there’s not as much laughter as he hoped.) He also talked about all of his current projects: the SNL gig, his recently released album You’re a Winner, Baby, the Vegas residency RuPaul’s Drag Race: Live, Aj and the Queen, and the upcoming season of RuPaul’s Drag Race

Yeah, the busiest “queen of drag” we’ve ever had.

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