Entertainment

The Queens Of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Have Kept Latino Strong Alive In The World Of Drag For 10 Years

Ever since the beginning of the show a decade ago (yes, it has been ten years since this groundbreaking television program made its debut on February 2009), RuPaul’s Drag Race has celebrated Latin American and Hispanic-American music, dance, aesthetics, and culture. In fact, some of the best and more daring queens have had Latino heritage

The program has a huge following the world over, and Latin America is no exception. It is not only popular within queer communities, but also among anyone who thrives on seeing others feeling empowered by being themselves, le guste a quien le guste.

Here are some key moments in which Latina queens have celebrated their heritage or non-Latino reinas preciosas have kindly paid an homage to the rich visual mosaic that is the Americas (by the way, gringos, America is a continent, the United States is a country, so don’t call it “America”, porfavorcito). Let’s not forget that RuPaul’s Drag Race is all about being spectacularly fabulous, so some of these examples are borderline pasados de lanza, but we are sure that the queens had the best of intentions. 

Bianca del Rio tots gave love to Nuyoricans.

Credit: RuPaulsDragRace / Giphy

Bianca del Rio, who is Cuban and Honduran, is probably the most beloved queen of all time (we said “probably” before you start setting the house on fire!). Here, she is paying her respects to New York Puerto Rican culture. OK, it seems like she is mocking it but remember the show is all about fun. Serving cake like a boss! 

Bianca also did her own version of Dora la Explora!

Credit: RuPaulsDragRace / Giphy

Like it or not, Dora The Explorer was a groundbreaking TV show, as it brought Latino culture and Spanish to mainstream popular culture. Sure, it was a bit washed down, but at the time it was quite revolutionary. Our queen Bianca del Rio knows it and gives us her own Dora interpretation. 

Oops… it was a bit NSFW!

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But do you know? It actually means the verb “arrebatar” which means “to take”. 

Oops, I did it again!

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No comments. Sorry, not sorry! What else do you expect from one of the funniest and raunchiest queens to ever grace the stage of RuPaul’s Drag Race?

Adore Delano gave us her best virgencita version

Credit: Internet Movie Database

Virgin Mary is one of the most important religious figures for Latin American culture. Although some might see this as blasphemous (we can’t see why, honestly, if you keep an open mind), Adore communicated her spirituality by wearing this elaborate outfit that is literally divine.

Talking about virgencitas look at this treat that Shuga Cain served us recently. We are drooling.

Credit: @RuPaulsDragRace /Twitter

Hang this heavenly image in any wall and people will worship. Enter this outfit on the Dragulator’s hard disk now. We were devastated to see her leave the show but so grateful that we got to experience her genius.

Is it us or is Delano channeling the Colombian superstar Shakira?

Credit: adoredelano / Instagram
Credit: Shakira-Pies_Descalzos-Frontal. Digital image. Coveralia

OMG. She totally looks like a young Shakira, when our dear Colombian looked like a Latina version of Joan Baez meets Tori Amos. Shakira is a true icon of Latin culture worldwide, so Adore’s homage is welcome. It is full of C.U.N.T, Drag Race for Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and, of course, Talent.

Jinkx Monsoon is a great plañidera.

Credit: RuPauls Drag Race / VH1

plañidera is a woman who is actually hired to cry during a funeral. It is a staple of Latin cultures, not only Latin American but also Italian and Greek. Here, Jinkx Monsoon totally looks like an abuelita crying at a funeral, all pious with that black veil. Her performance is worthy of an Academy Award, truly for the gods! 

Valentina is a charrita like no other.

Credit: RuPauls Drag Race / VH1

Valentina got her Mexican up with this amazing mariachi or charro outfit. OK, it might not be that authentic (we don’t know where she got the idea that those shoulder pads are something that Pedro Infante or Jorge Negrete would wear), but el esfuerzo es lo que cuenta. Those Chicken Cutlets are on the wrong place, sweetheart!

Manila Luzon served us some Gloria Stefan realness

Credit:RuPauls Drag Race / VH1

This hot queen totally gave us a 1980s Miami vibe. Her attitude is totally reminiscent of Gloria Stefan and the Cuban-American scene. That swagger though! And a Body-Ody-Ody to die for.

Then she was possessed by the spirit of Carmen Miranda.

Credit: RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars /VH1
Credit: Giphy

We can’t think of a more stereotypically Latin American look than the one made famous by classic Hollywood starlet Carmen Miranda. Our chica Manila Luzon gave it a twist wearing a wrapped fruit basket! The homenaje is as funny as it is sort of classy.

In that same season, Valentina was Miss Venezuela.

Credit: RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars /VH1

Venezuela has been fertile ground for beauty queens, women who do physical features of indigenous, Black and European beauty, all mixed together. Valentina tried to do them right with this fierce look. 

A few years ago, Serena ChaCha took us all the way to a Panamanian carnival.

Credit: RuPauls Drag Race / VH1

This chiquita pero picosa lady wore those feathers in a killer look that is reminiscent of carnival cultures in the continent, from Panama to Brazil. We can almost smell the salty sea breeze and feel the balmy sweat on our faces looking at this pocket rocket. BAM! BAM! BAM!

Mercedes Iman gave us a dose of Old Havana charm.

Credit: @RuPaulsDragRace / Twitter

Imagine the setting: an outdoor bar in La Habana Vieja, with couples lasciviously dancing to the rhythm of the ocean tides, the smell of cigars lingering in the air, the taste of rum, sugar and mint (mojitos!) in your mouth, and a delicious son cubano (Simoneeeeey) setting the mood… Mercedes Iman (from the latest season of RuPaul’s Drag Race) walks in, stunning in her sexy yet elegant dress. She would fit right in, like a knife on butter. Fierce! Fierce! Fierce!

She could very well be accompanied by this stunning lady.

Credit: @RuPaulsDragRace / Twitter

Can they get their sh*t together and launch a double act already? We would pay to see them. Perhaps they could do an awesome Celia Cruz and Omara Portuondo lip sync battle! Take our money and run, ladies. 

Mariah Balenciaga got all J.Lo on us during DragCon.

Credit: Pinterest

The hairdo, the dress that goes up to the point where it ceases to be decent and the attitude… it all screams Jenny from the block. We love this homage to one of our Latino icons. Jennifer Lopez is powerful, a true boricua warrior, and Mariah Balenciaga certainly channeled that. She looks so hot she flooded our basements! (yes, that is a thing… if you disagree please click here and get your RuPaul lingo together, ignorante de la vida). 

OK, you tried… Happy Cinco de Mayo, we guess!

Credit: @Bhytes1 / Twitter

Season 11 queen Brooke Lynn Hytes (Brooklyn Heights, get it?) uploaded this picture of her man celebrating Cinco de Mayo. Cultural appropriation much? That’s OK, this date is all about celebrating all things Hispanic anyway, so we will give her a pass.

READ: 27 Moments When Latina Queens Ruled In RuPaul’s Drag Race

Here’s What My White Husband Has Learned About The Latino Culture One Day At A Time

relationships

Here’s What My White Husband Has Learned About The Latino Culture One Day At A Time

My husband and I have been married for a little over three years now and he is still learning so much about myself and what it means to be Latino. I’m not talking about me having a big Cuban family all stationed in Miami (3-0-5 🙌🏽) or the fact that the best jokes in Netflix’s “One Day At A Time” are in Spanish. I’m talking about the little things that to me have always been a normal part of life. This is what has continuously caught him off guard…

If you ask him, I’m already turning into my abuela because of the things he is finding out, which to me is a compliment. Here are just a few of the things that he is starting to understand about our future together.

1. Seasoning your beans is hard AF but abuela makes it look easy.

CREDIT: gifnik.com

No matter how many times I try or how many techniques I use, my bean always turn out bland AF. This wouldn’t have been a problem if he didn’t have my abuela’s frijoles negro because now he has a reference point as to what beans are supposed to taste like. Though, he doesn’t cook so my bland beans will have to do.

2. That whole personal space thing is a white construct.

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I missed my hot mess buddy!

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One of the first things he realized about being married to a Latino is that all that personal space he once had is gone. I even go into the bathroom to talk to him when he’s in the shower because that’s 👏🏾 how 👏🏾 I 👏🏾 was 👏🏾 raised. 👏🏾

3. Family obligations cannot and will not be avoided.

Even if it means that you have to spend $800 to travel 3,000 miles back home for a weekend for your nephew’s first birthday, there is no getting out of family events. #BasedOnTrueEvents

4. My family raised me to be super eco-friendly (and very frugal).

The first time my husband saw me washing a Ziploc bag he asked if we had run out and that he could get some from the store. My response: “But, like, why do you want to waste money like that?”

5. Selena was and will always be La Reina.

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I know. I know. How did he not know this before is what you’re thinking, right? But you can’t hold it against him. I don’t think Selena had a very big following in West Virginia. There was no way he could have known that she is more relevant now than ever. Not to mention that she still wins Latin Billboard awards and I play her music nonstop.

6. My abuela’s obsession with reusing containers has been passed down.

After he came down from the initial shock of thinking that I left the sour cream in the Tupperware cabinet overnight, he made a joke about me becoming my abuela. I’ve never been so proud.

7. Calling a loved one “gordo” is not offensive.

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@f_uanteik #migordo #iloveyou #happiness #happynights

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Because, you know, someone calling you “my little fatty” is not okay. Imagine his shock when he heard a family member call me “gordito” in front of him. He was shook.

8. Every chore I do is just an excuse to put on Celia Cruz and dance.

CREDIT: mitú

Sure, I can cook in silence but nothing makes my time in the kitchen more enjoyable than some “La Negra Tiene Tumbao” or “La Vida Es Un Carnaval” blaring in the background. Plus, he is starting to learn some of her greatest hits.

9. Seventy-five percent of Latino cooking is just making that sabor.

To quote my husband: “Oh. So ropa vieja is like making pot roast then you make the flavor (sofrito). Yeah. White people are too lazy to make all that flavor.”

10. Being extra and loud is just in our blood.

I still have that trophy on our desk in the living room and he has mentioned moving it a couple times. Then I stubbed my toe, fall to the floor in tears, and he remembers why it is so prominently displayed.

11. Hot Cheetos are life.

He didn’t know they were so versatile but he’s not upset that we get to eat them all the time.

READ: 14 Things That Happen When A Gringo Marries Into A Latino Family

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The Best And Worst National Anthem Performances Of All Time

Entertainment

The Best And Worst National Anthem Performances Of All Time

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Belting out any song in your best voice can be tough stuffings. But when it comes to performing the “Star-Spangled Banner” only singers in a completely different league of their own can actually do the national anthem justice. The songs poetic lyrics are notoriously difficult because of its wide range. So of course, naturally, in the decades of performances in which “Star-Spangled Banner” has been song at sporting events and the like, there have been some mishaps. 

This year, both Shakira and J.Lo are set to perform at the Super Bowl’s halftime show while Demi Lovato will make a career come back by singing the national anthem for millions of viewers. Here’s a look at all of the times singers have rocked and flubbed the national anthem.

That time the Dixie Chicks did a beautiful country rendition of the song.

Fans of the Dixie Chicks fell further in love with the country music stars when they stuck to the original lyrics and sentiment of the song when they performed at Super Bowl XXXVII in 2003. 

When Whitney Houston gave a GOAT performance back in the 90s.

The queen of pop reigned supreme back in the 90s and thanks to her outstanding vocal range she had the full anthem in the bag. During the 1991 Super Bowl XXV,  Houston sang and hit each and every note. Not only that, she recorded the song and released it as a single and when 9/11 happened she re-released the single and gave all of her earnings to charity. 

In 1983, when Marvin Gaye gave the national anthem a whirl and blew our minds.

Twenty years ago, the beloved “Aint No Mountain High Enough” singer took the anthem to the next level. The singer’s  1983 NBA All-Star performance had a traditional MoTown feel and to this day is celebrated. In fact, his rendition was used in a 2008 Nike commercial featuring the 2008 U.S. Olympic basketball team.

When Chloe and Halle gave the classic ballad a twist of their own.

Back in 2017, the sister duo stole breaths at the NFL Draft Kick Off when the two sang “America the Beautiful”.  Beyonce did us a solid by discovering them.

That time Lady Gaga sang the National Anthem in a fire pantsuit. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oU_UEVp2ynU

Lady Gaga rocked Stadiums at the 2016 Super Bowl. During her performance, the Lady of ladies hit all of her notes and reinvigorated both sides of the crowd. 

That time Fergie went for an eye-popping performance. 

Beloved singer Fergie did a rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner’ in 2018 that was one for the books. The strange performance went haywire when the singer attempted to go for a sultry version of the national anthem that just… did not slay. During her perfroamce, camera panned to find audience members stifling giggles and soon enough an internet meme was born. Poor Fergie.

When Roseanne Barr gave us a peek into just how problematic she was.

Back in 1990, Barr made an appearance at a Padres game and sang the national anthem. (Still no word on who booked her for this.) Barr’s cringeworthy performance, which was off-key and oddly high pitched, was made worse when fans realized she was attempting to make the patriotic song into a joke. The racist comedian dared to even spit on the pitcher’s mound as she was leaving the field. Yikes. 

When Christina Aguilera forgot the lyrics.

In 2011, Aguilera came out to sing the lyrics to our countries beloved anthem and pretty much bombed. The famous singer had been celebrated for nailing the song hundreds of times. Even when she was kid. Video of the singer proves that she started out of the gate spectacularly but ultimately, things took a turn for the worse when she skipped over lyrics and even began the song again. According to an interview with Aguilera on Elleh, the singer let her get the mood get to her so bad that she forgot most of the lyrics and tried to improve.