‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ season 13 set to premiere January 1 on VH1 with 13 all new queens

‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ announced on Instagram and Twitter the queens set to compete on the 13th season of the Emmy winning reality competition series premiering January 1, 2021 on VH1. In the special “RuVeal,” 13 all new queens were introduced to the public by season 12 champion Jaida Essence Hall via unique video posts and a group shot showing off their individual sense of glamour in pastel realness. Watch the season’s official first look clip above!

Although there’s no rumors (so far) of any disqualifications, there is much to talk about with the stunning new cast. We were treated to a video introduction from each of the queens on the show’s official Twitter page, giving us a glimpse into their personalities and all the things that make them tick as stage performers and pop culture entertainers.

Among the 13 is a usual gaggle of girls from New York City that boast a handful of connections to former contestants. Kandy Muse‘s drag mother is season 9’s Aja and she’s a sister to season 12’s Dahlia Sin while Rosé is in a girl group (Stephanie’s Child) with season 12’s Jan. Then there’s Olivia Lux who is admittedly gobsmacked to be competing among the other three “legends” from NYC, but proud to shadily say that she only auditioned once for the show. Legend Tina Burner also only auditioned once and says she was cast on season 13 because it’s unlucky and as one of the season’s older queens is “the ladder you gotta walk under.”

The oldest queen this season (at a young 46 years old) is Tamisha Iman from Atlanta, as is 30 year old LaLa Ri, Tamisha’s own drag daughter. Tamisha says she creates all her looks from scratch without taking inspiration from well known performers while with only three years of drag under belt, LaLa is worried about sewing challenges because she calls herself a “leotard girl” that focuses on dancing.

There is also two queens from Chicago, Denali and Kahmora Hall, and two from Los Angeles, Gottmik and Symone. What makes Denali unique is that she is the first queen from Alaska and the second whose “many years of performance experience” come from her status as a trained figure skater (the first was season 6’s Milk). Though she isn’t a figure skater, Kahmora describes her style as all about glitz, glamour and sparkly things and even if her drag family (including Jaida Essence Hall) is engrossed in the pageant world, she is not an official pageant queen.

Gottmik is the youngest queen competing this season (at 23 years old), but has an established career as a makeup artist for other queens. Gottmik hopes to be the first trans winner of the show and is already the first trans man to ever compete. Symone (second youngest at 25 years old) can also claim her own first as the first queen from Arkansas, despite residing in LA now, and says she is hugely inspired by “strong, powerful Black women” in her drag.

We will also see what queens from other drag meccas bring to the stage this season. There’s Elliott With 2 Ts from Las Vegas, Joey Jay from Phoenix and Utica Queen from Minneapolis. Elliott is in her 12th year of doing drag even at the ripe age of 26, meaning she started at 14 years old, and like season 11’s Brooke Lynn Hytes is a ballet dancer. Joey says she’s the “lipstick lesbian of Phoenix” and is proudly masculine in her drag aesthetic, including not wearing wigs. The main thing Utica wants us to know is that she’s both “kooky” and “spooky” and based on the way she describes her drag as inspired by art and architecture, she reminds us of season 9’s winner Sasha Velour.

Which of the queens is your favorite based on first impressions and will they be your pick as the eventual winner? Be sure to tune in for the season premiere at 8 pm ET on VH1 January 1st to see how all the tricks, turns, and tantrums of season 13 kick off.

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