RuPaul’s Drag Race has been a favorite of many members of the LGBT community for nine seasons now. The show has won several awards in years past, including those from The Television Critics Association Awards, NewNowNext Awards, MTV Movie + TV Awards, Gold Derby Award, GLAAD Media Award, and a PRimetime Emmy. The Emmy win last year was for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program. Now, it has the chance to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Reality Competition Program, which in years past has gone to The Amazing Race (10), Top Chef (1), and The Voice (3). This year, it goes up against The Amazing Race, American Ninja Warrior, Project Runway, Top Chef, and The Voice.
But, this is not just a typical Emmy nomination. This marks the first time ever that a nominee in this category has been geared specifically toward the LGBT community. In today’s society, diversity and recognition in popular media is much needed. This nomination shows that the LGBT community is not only recognized in the American media, but that it is highly appreciated by its critics. Many Emmy viewers and adoring RuPaul’s Drag Race fans finally get to see a glimpse into equality, which the LGBT community has yet to wholly earn in today’s society.
Not only does the Emmy nomination mean a lot to the LGBT community, but the show, itself, has been an important and educational stable in the culture. Billboard calls it a “cultural force”, and it is not difficult to see why. RuPaul’s Drag Race, aside from being a fun and fabulous television show watch, has brought to light many important issues that have affected the LGBT community over the years. These include the Checnyan anti-gay concentration camps, the Pulse massacre, the AIDS epidemic, the Stonewall Riots, and the discrimination against the LGBT community in general.
RuPaul’s Drag Race also highlights important topics about femininity and gender identify. In a day and age when men are still expected to be overly masculine for fear of being labeled as gay or too feminine, viewers struggling with this can find comfort in knowing that there is a community that supports the notion that it is okay to be a man and be feminine, and that it does not make you any less of a man. Carmen Carrera, previously known as Christopher Roman, made waves when she came out as transgender on the third season of RuPaul’s Drag Race. She has now become an avid supporter and symbol of hope for the transgender community and this may have not been possible if it had not been for RuPaul’s Drag Race. Peppermint, of season nine, also came out as transgender during an episode, furthering the impact that the show and its contestants have had on the acceptance of the community.
So again, this is not just any Emmy nomination. It is a symbol of diversity, love, and hope for the LGBT community. We celebrate RuPaul’s Drag Race and all it has done for the community. Hopefully this will be the year when the LGBT community gets to join the other big names in this category and make a statement that the community will not be silenced, that we are strong, and that we are just as deserving of recognition as anyone or anything else in this world.