His post-Drag Race career has kept this New York City queen quite busy. He’s the host of the Drag Race recap series “The Pit Stop”, he and Monét X Change discuss current events and other topics on their podcast “Sibling Rivalry” and he brought families closer together through the magic of drag on “Drag My Dad.”
Bob, along with Shangela and Eureka O’Hara, visited small towns across the country and helped people discover their inner fabulousness on the HBO series We’re Here, which has recently been picked up for a second season. And, if that wasn’t enough, Bob’s latest comedy special Bob the Drag Queen: Live at Caroline’s is available to watch on Apple TV and it’s hysterical, filled with stories about her life in New York City and other hilarious musings.
Bob, whose birthday just happens to be today (Happy Birthday!) talks about his many projects and shares how he’s surviving life in quarantine in our exclusive interview.
Socialite Life: I was so glad to see that you’re still hosting “The Pit Stop”, and I just watched the episode with Violet Chachki, which was hilarious.
Bob the Drag Queen: Thank you. Violet was really good. Violet’s really not afraid to share her feelings and she’s a perfect guest.
I recall on the last “Pit Stop” for season 12, you said someone else would be hosting. What brought you back?
Well, I actually said that and I knew that I had already been hired to do [All-Stars 5] so I thought it would be a fun thing to be like, “Who knows?” (Laughs) It’s been really good for me during the quarantine and my creativity with all of this online content. I’m actually really enjoying it a lot.
I’m so glad, because I almost had a heart attack when you said you weren’t going to be hosting anymore.
But how exciting was it when you came back and saw me?
I was overwhelmed! So, congratulations on the second season of We’re Here. I don’t have HBO, but I did get to see the premiere on YouTube.
Thank you! You know, on HBO Max, they give you a free week to try it out, so you can binge-watch. You’ve got to have a friend who has HBO Max account, you can hang out at their house!
I will, and I will bring a mask! What was your reaction when you found out the show was renewed?
I mean it was really exciting, we got a Zoom call from the creators and producers of the show. The short answer was it was overwhelming. I’m a little queer kid from Columbus, Georgia and this was huge for me.
What are you hoping to achieve in season 2?
Well, with the first season, we were able to share so many stories and we wanted for a lot of people to be able to look at the show and see a reflection of themselves in one way or another and to also expand that to give more people a chance to be seen.
And will Shangela and Eureka also be back for season 2?
What was your favorite moment from the first season?
Hands down my favorite moment was definitely Nate’s performance in Farmington, the Sia number. It was just so good. I was so proud of Nate.
In addition to We’re Here, “Sibling Rivalry” and all of your online series, your comedy show from Caroline’s was recently released and it’s hilarious.
Thank you, I’m so proud of it.
What was it like to perform at such an iconic comedy club?
It’s the world’s most famous comedy club. I actually started doing Caroline’s a long time ago. Not “a long time ago,” that makes it sound like I’m 90 years old. It’s actually been about 12 years ago I performed at Caroline’s. And at the time, I was this baby queen and they thought I was really funny and I remember thinking to myself that I would like to do my second special here because my first special was in a nightclub they transformed into a theater. Caroline’s was the first club I performed in.
Where do you get your inspiration to do comedy?
Well, I’m really inspired by my Mom, as you saw in my special, a lot of my family and growing up. I’m also really inspired by Chris Rock and Wanda Sykes. They’re amazing.
Which came first, comedy or drag?
I started writing comedy when I was like 18 or 19 years old but I hadn’t actually gotten on stage and performed until my first time in drag. So, my first night in drag performing was my first stand up performance.
Do you enjoy doing comedy more than drag (or vice versa)?
It depends. There are some nights where my comedy is so funny and I’m so proud of myself and there are some nights when I do a lip-sync show and I’m thinking, this is great. But you can’t really say that when I’m doing comedy, I’m not doing drag. I am still doing drag. Drag isn’t a performance piece in and of itself.
What advice would you give people who want to do stand up themselves?
Try to get as much stage time as possible. Getting on stage and telling your jokes is the best way for people to understand your perspective.
And write what you know…
Yes. My first thing I ever wrote was a rant about everything I hated.
Is “Drag My Dad” coming back?
I’m hoping so. We had our second season shut down because of the coronavirus.
You’ve been involved in a lot of activism lately, including the Black Queer Town Hall this past weekend. What would you say to someone who has never participated in a protest or a march? How important is it to get involved?
Well, I think it’s important to be involved. Honestly, I don’t favor any form of activism over another. If your thing is being on the internet, that is powerful. The internet has a really strong presence. It’s part of what makes the protests and marches happen in the first place. They’re organized by people on the internet. They’re making sure it happens, making sure the word stays out there and being our eyes and ears the whole time.
There are people who work in legislation who are protesting that way. There are people who are protesting in their own homes, talking to their family and friends about racism. All of those things matter. If you can’t make it to a protest because you’ve got agoraphobia or for whatever reason, I’m not going to discredit any form of protest.
Moving on, who’s your favorite on All-Stars 5?
Shea Coulee is dominating the game. Period. Point blank, she’s really massacring it.
I know, it seems like she’s got this in the bag.
Baby, that’s when you make a mistake of watching RuPaul’s Drag Race, especially All-Stars. Everyone swears they know how it going to end, and then you watch and you realize that these queens are wild. All-Stars is not Drag Race. It’s a whole different ball game.
Is All-Stars something you’d be interested in doing?
I had a lot of fun doing RuPaul’s Drag Race and if the opportunity arose, I would strongly consider it.
Bob Answers the Socialite Seven: Quarantine Edition
How are you doing during lockdown?
I mean, I’ve been a lot of things. I’ve been everything from excited to inspired to defeated and sad as I’ve ever been and as happy as I’ve ever been. It’s been three months, so I’ve been feeling a lot of things.
What do you miss most?
Live shows. I miss performing in front of an audience, for sure.
Are you binging any shows?
I binged Watchmen, which was great. I’ve been watching Legendary on HBO Max. I am loving that show.
What’s keeping you sane?
Work. Being able to plan the Black Queer Town Hall keeps me sane. “The Pit Stop” keeps me sane.
Do you have a go-to quarantine snack?
Yes. My go-to quarantine snack is soy sauce noodles with a scoop of peanut butter and sriracha. It’s delicious.
Have you learned anything surprising about yourself while on lockdown?
Umm…no, not really. No.
What’s the first thing you’re going to do when this is all over?
I’m hoping the first thing I’ll do is travel to perform a show.
Catch up with Season one of We’re Here on HBO and check out Bob’s new special Bob the Drag Queen: Live at Caroline’s on Apple TV. “The Pit Stop” and “Sibling Rivalry” as well as Bob’s other web series can be found on YouTube. Follow Bob on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. You can also keep up with Bob (and grab some sweet swag) at Bob’s website.
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