Petals, Pizzazz and Politics—How the Season Finale of RuPaul’s Drag Race Sashayed to the Mainstream

A 29-year-old drag queen from Brooklyn, New York known as Sasha Velour is lip syncing to Whitney Houston’s So Emotional. She’s gliding across the stage; a graceful avant-garde, bald ballerina.

Arms clad in opera-length bronze gloves, Velour vogues alongside fellow queen Shea Couleé, sauntering her hips and moving her lips soundlessly. Then, she craned her neck and began tugging at her wig. Pantomiming a seizure, she grabbed each scarlet lock to unleash a cascade of rose petals—just as Houston’s ballad reached its dénouement.

Watch the performance:

It was the season 9 finale of VH1’s RuPaul’s Drag Race. Nearly 9 million people watched as Velour won the coveted title of America’s Next Drag Superstar, making Drag Race history for the most-watched finale. It was, in the eternal words of Whitney Houston, “So emotional.”

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The Loud House is Loud and Proud

Like many other kids growing up in the 90s, I loved watching Nickelodeon. No one ever offered such unfiltered and hilarious content for kids like Nick. And Nickelodeon gave us everything, just for us: Kids’ game shows with Double Dare and Figure It Out; Nickelodeon sketch comedy with All That; the news on Nick News; and our very own awards show, Kids’ Choice, where we actually got to vote for our favorite stars.

Nickelodeon’s commitment to diversity, to being for all kids, has been a major part of the brand since day one. And they took yet another step forward recently with the new animated series, The Loud House. The Loud House is about a 10-year-old boy, Lincoln Loud, who grows up in a house with 10 sisters (and only one bathroom). It’s a classic Nickelodeon setup: a chaotic nuclear family and a protagonist who only adds to the hijinks with help from his best friend, Clyde McBride.

TheLoudHouse

The Loud House is mixing things up on Nickelodeon. Photo courtesy of Nick.com.

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