Words: Alastair James; pictures: WOW and Instagram/@maddymorphosis
The first-ever straight, cisgendered drag queen on RuPaul’s Drag Race, Maddy Morphosis, has responded following a backlash over her casting on the show's 14th season.
When she sashays into the werkroom, Morphosis will be making herstory but her casting has evoked some negative reactions from Drag Race fans with some questioning why a place was given to a straight-cis man.
Morphosis, from Arkansas, who uses she/her pronouns in drag, wrote on Instagram on Sunday (5 December) that she entered drag after high school because it was a "safe space for me to explore my gender identity."
"I’m just a drag queen who happens to be straight"
She says drag has also helped her understand others, as well as her own identity. Continuing, she says: "I'm not here to show the world that 'staight guys can do drag'. For anyone saying that I'm representing an underrepresented group, I appreciate you, but straight men are not a persecuted and excluded group within the drag community."
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Recognising that POC, AFAB and trans performers often face discrimination Maddy says, "I think one of the best things to come out of my casting is that it's kicking up a lot more talk about representation in the drag scene. And I hope that it helps lead to more marginalized groups being showcased and represented."
In her 'Meet the Queens' segment in a video posted to the official RuPaul's Drag Race YouTube account, Maddy explains her name comes from a play on the word Metamorphosis, which she says is the "epitome of what drag is".
On her casting, jokingly, she says: "I really broke that glass ceiling. It’s finally time for a straight white man to have their piece of the pie, right?"
"While I am straight, I don’t consider myself a straight drag queen. I’m just a drag queen who happens to be straight. My sexuality doesn’t define the drag I do. It doesn’t impact that. It’s just a facet of who I am outside of drag."
Later on she says: "Hopefully the random cisgendered straight guys watching Drag Race with their girlfriends can realise that it’s ok to be yourself, embrace your femininity, it doesn’t change who you are, it doesn’t define who you are.
"All the guys out there that are dressing up super masculine – they’re doing drag too without even realising it. Just live your life, be you."
Maddy does reveal she has had "sideways glances" for being a straight drag queen but on the whole people have been welcoming.
Being on the show is the most amazing opportunity I could ever ask for," she adds finally. "I feel very privileged and very lucky to be here. This is a chance for me to experience so much more in life and see more of the world and hopefully take home the crown and pay off my college loans."
RuPaul's Drag Race season 14 will debut exclusively on WOW Presents Plus in the Uk on 8 January 2022.