Los Angeles, CA (Variety) — On March 12, Biqtch Puddin was backstage at Downtown L.A.’s Precinct club with fellow drag queens Willam and Alaska Thunderfuck, half-joking that their upcoming deranged country singer act might be their last in front of a crowd for a while. The next day, she says, “I got my ass to the grocery store and grabbed what I could.” Nightlife, as far as she could see it, was about to go dark for a very long time due to the coronavirus.
As the winner of Season 2 of “The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula,” a fun-house-mirror version of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” that brings together drag “monsters” of every kind, Biqtch was in a better position than most nightlife entertainers. But once COVID-19 hit, her future revenue stream abruptly disappeared. “I was out of work for the foreseeable future, and I knew all my [drag] brothers and sisters were too,” she says. “Regardless of if you’re on an international platform like ‘Dragula’ or ‘Drag Race,’ or if you’re Suzie Q hosting bingo down the street every Tuesday, everybody was out of work.” As statewide lockdowns keep bars and venues shuttered, the world of drag, which has depended on physically intimate gatherings and interactive … — Caroline Framke/@Variety