The library is open! Local and foreign viewers of reality competition “Drag Race Philippines” alike took notice of drag queen Eva Le Queen after she read to filth—or, in simpler terms, thoroughly called attention to the flaws of—the outfits host and judge Paolo Ballesteros have worn in the show.
Eva commented about Paolo’s looks during her guest appearance in “The Stopover,” the “Drag Race Philippines” YouTube recap show hosted by fellow season one contestant Marina Summers.
In the recap show uploaded on YouTube on Tuesday, September 12, Eva and Marina discussed episode six of “Drag Race Philippines” season 2.
The said episode featured the remaining seven contestants of the show tackling an acting challenge with actress Maricel Soriano.
Asked by Marina what she thinks of the runway look of Paolo—called Mama Pao in the show—for the said episode, Eva said: “We haven’t seen a gag-worthy look from Mama Pao.”
Gag-worthy, of course, means something beautiful or fierce.
Eva then elaborated on this by commenting on Paolo’s outfit for the episode: a body-hugging red velvet dress with exaggerated shoulders and bustle train, with a golden serpent detailing cinched at the waist.
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“The silhouette was there, the fabric choice was a choice, the snake wasn’t hugging very well,” Eva said, adding that it pains her “to see a wig like that on national TV from a host of a franchise.”
Eva said that as the host of a “Drag Race” franchise, Paolo’s looks should be polished, noting that “Drag Race Philippines” has a worldwide following.
“You see, for such authority to sit on the other side of the table, dapat wala kang bahid dungis. Otherwise, whatever you say is not valid. So we have to establish authority,” she said.
Still, the drag queen gave credit to Paolo, saying he had many “unforgettable looks” in the previous season.
“They hit the mark in season one. What happened, season two?” Eva asked.
“They hit the ground,” Marina jokingly responded.
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Eva and Marina also noted that the blame should not be solely placed on Paolo even if his looks this season are, using today’s parlance, not giving.
In television, a styling and glam team is usually in charge of a television personality’s look, from their clothes to their makeup and accessories, when they appear on camera.
Nonetheless, Eva commented: “I love Mama Pao. Don’t take it personally. But we have a job to do.”
Local and international fans of the show were both gagged by Eva’s comments, some of them agreeing with the drag queen’s observations.
“Eva Le Queen didn’t even stutter when clocking Mama Pao’s looks this season,” Hiro Evangelista, a “Drag Race” online content creator, said on the X (formerly Twitter) platform.
Another viewer said: “Not Eva Le Queen roasting Mama Pao’s outfit. A fearless kween!!!
“Finallyyyy, someone freaking said it on camera,” yet another fan noted.
“Drag Race Philippines” is a reality competition series, a spin-off of the US series “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” The “Drag Race” franchise has spawned many international editions and has become a cultural phenomenon.
The local edition of the show premiered on Aug. 17, 2022, with Precious Paula Nicole as its winner. Paolo serves as the show’s main host and judge, with drag queen Jiggly Caliente and actress and impersonator Kaladkaren as co-judges.
It’s interesting to note that it seems the outfit that Paolo wore in episode six of “Drag Race Philippines” season two and the outfit Eva wore during her “The Stopover” guesting was made by the same designer.
In a Twitter post, designer Job Dacon explained “Gorgon realness” look she made for Paolo.
🐍 𝕸𝖊𝖉𝖚𝖘𝖆 🐍
On the main stage of @dragraceph, Mama @pochoy_29 is serving you Gorgon realness with this velvet get-up clad in 3d printed vipers in 12k gold leaf, and of course matching accessories: The first of its kind.
Had to do THREE revisions but its well worth it ❤️ pic.twitter.com/GbXQgycDti
— Job Dacon (@job_dacon) September 6, 2023
In a separate post, Dacon posted a photo of the outfit—which he described as a “faithful reproduction of the Schiaparelli 2022 gold taffeta dress”—he made for Eva.
👑 𝕲𝖔𝖑𝖉𝖊𝖓 𝕿𝖆𝖒𝖕𝖆𝖑𝖕𝖚𝖐𝖊 👑
— Job Dacon (@job_dacon) September 12, 2023
The comments Eva made, it should also be noted, are in the vein of a “read”—an insult or criticism that, in the context of drag culture, refers to criticizing or insulting someone in a witty and humorous manner. —Chuck Smith