Manila Luzon Wants to Win Drag Race


Leggy Manila Luzon is all lacquered and freshened and killing them on RuPaul’s Drag Race.

I recently chatted with the Twin Cities-born Manila about her choices and her chances.

Me: Hi, Manila. First of all, thank you for showing up! A couple of the other gals have gotten flaky on me. Is that the norm?

Manila: Probably not. I have no idea why anyone would flake out on an interview with the legendary Michael Musto! And I’m definitely not flaky! I use Head & Shoulders to wash all my wigs!

Me: Correct answer. What will you do to win on the show? Are you prepared to scratch eyes out?

Manila: To win, I just have to do me. If I just concentrate on doing my best, I’ll do fine. Eventually the judges will figure out that I really have everything it takes to be America’s Next Drag Superstar. I’ll just sit pretty, and my competition will eventually get themselves kicked off!!!

Me: Break a nail! You recently wrote on Facebook that you were distressed with the way the Comedy Challenge was edited to make you look like you bombed. Does that kind of thing happen a lot?

Manila: One episode takes two days to shoot, so obviously some footage has to hit the cutting room floor (like the audience laughing). I wished the viewers were able to see more of my jokes, like how I thought Big Bird was a tranny pumping home from the club with her pot-head lesbian fag hag, Snuffleupagus. Those got a laugh — the crickets in the audience were rolling on the floor!!!

Me: More seriously, you’re in a relationship with Sahara Davenport. What’s that like?

Manila: Sahara and I have been dating for nearly five years! We are just two gay men who share a passion for drag. Since we are both on RuPaul’s Drag Race (Sahara on season 2 and me on this current season), we cannot go anywhere together without getting spooked by random people! We’re always getting recognized, and it gets a little awkward taking photos with fans when standing in line at Popeye’s in Harlem!

Me: I know — it’s so horrible to be famous. What makes Manila Luzon tower above the other queens?

Manila: Well, I’m super-tall, especially for an Asian. I make sure I’m wearing no shorter than a six-inch pump, and that my wig is always jacked to the heavens! Or I’ll just stand next to Shangela! But seriously, I consider myself as a hybrid queen mixing different genres of drag together: glamour, club kid, pageant, and camp. I don’t take myself too seriously, either. I’m not some serious artiste who is playing a character in a costume on the stage; I’m just being fabulous me! And people live for it — or think I’m a total bitch!

Photo: Andrew Werner