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‘Canada’s Drag Race’ star Kiki Coe on serving lewks & fearing fan backlash

‘Canada’s Drag Race’ star Kiki Coe on serving lewks & fearing fan backlash

Kiki Coe
Courtesy of World of Wonder

Plus, what she learned by being on the show and why she deserves a producer credit for that infamous Untucked moment.

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If there’s one thing you’ll never forget about Canada’s Drag Race season four star Kiki Coe, it’s that she served flawless lewks. Week after week, the eleganza she served ate the competition and left zero — and we mean zero — crumbs. But best of all, they were from her very own mind and hands. Pure drag art.

Not only did she excel in her runways, but Kiki’s friendship and artistry inspired her sisters to save her not once but twice with the Golden Beaver, which meant we got to see even more of her incredible design skill, to which we say thank you.

Sadly, Kiki’s time on our screen came to an end following the Rusical, which sent her and Denim to the bottom two where the two lip-synched for their lives and ultimately Kiki was asked to sashay away. While we were robbed of more looks from her, Kiki’s legacy as one of the greatest designers on the show — and her role in one of this season’s most iconic moments — remains.

PRIDE caught up with Kiki to talk about her time on Drag Race, how inspired she was to create and wear her looks, and how the Drag Race fandom is making the kind of TV they crave so hard to make these days.

Congratulations on Canada’s Drag Race! You brought so much to this season with all your incredible looks, but also your kindness. As you reflect on this season, how do you feel about it and how you were portrayed?

I feel amazing. Live your life with no regrets and you know what, I have no regrets of what I did on Drag Race. The only thing is, watching this season, I could have spiced it up a little bit.

I was too scared to be hated online. Also, nobody came for me. I was just waiting for that, for me to clap back. I never started the drama. But if you start the drama with me, it’ll fucking end right then. And bitch, you gonna fucking have it. I wish that I had that moment because I was like, ‘Oh my God, you were too nice.’ And I’m like, ‘No, I’m not. I can be spicy when I’m needed to.’ But nobody came for me.

They knew better.

Next time let’s just throw a tantrum once in a while. We go there to make TV, I need to keep that in mind. So, let’s make TV. I would definitely do it all over again, if I had a chance, again, to have this platform.

You’re in your producer era!

I was gonna say that. Yeah.

Watch PRIDE's full interview with ‘Canada’s Drag Race’ star Kiki Coe below. 

That’s interesting you say that because you were a part of one of the most dramatic moments this season. I’m talking about Melinda Verga melting down in Untucked, of course.

I was basically like, orchestrating it a little bit. You know, putting a little bit of gasoline on the fire, so it just kinda blew up. [I was] like, ‘How about you? Amiee? What do you think about that? Oh, what about you? What do you think about what you said about your outfit?’ I’m like instigating it but in a low-key moment there.

At the end of the day, I don’t like myself when I’m bad because I went there for the competition. And I didn’t want I don’t want to put my attention on making drama. But in the next one, if I’m going back, you’re definitely gonna see some drama from me.

That scene was so intense, how was it being there witnessing it from the front row?

It was wild. They actually didn’t show everything. It was to the point that it felt so uncomfortable. I don’t know if you see that moment...that when Melinda was going at it for the second time, I was just opening my eyes wide and looking at the floor and I’m like, ‘Oh, my God, what I’ve done? Did I make a wrong decision?’ Because it keeps going, it’s just a snowball, it just gets bigger and bigger and it’s like, ‘holy shit. This is really happening.’

Me and Melinda were so worried about how the fans were gonna take it. Because we’re like, this can be really good or really bad. We worried for nothing because the fans love it and Melinda is gold on television.

That’s so interesting. You bring up something that I think about a lot. Does the fandom’s behavior force queens to self-censor and shoot them in the foot because it means we miss out on real moments like that?

They should be more kind, honestly, because I’m one of them. I’m one of them that I’m not 100% authentic on the show. I’m so scared to be bashed online because I don’t know if I can take it. Well, I can take things ... [Laughs]. But I don’t know if I can take that because sometimes I’m very tough on myself. And I beat myself up for nothing sometimes.

So yes, they need to be more kind. And if you’re not a drag queen, if you don’t know anything about drag, shut the fuck up. Shut the fuck up, keep it to yourself. You’re not helping. You are making the situation worse. We want to be us on TV, but because of your nonsense comments online, we’re hindering ourselves from being ourselves.

At the end of the day, I’m not blaming them because it’s my decision to be me and to be how I am on TV.

We’re not asking for everybody to be nice but you don’t have to use words that will hurt other people. There’s always a line. And don’t accuse people of [being] racist because Nearah is getting a lot of hate because of her fighting with Amiee. Aimee did a post one day and was like, ‘Stop hating on Nearah because Nearah is not racist.’ Let’s not do that. Let’s gather our facts first before we point fingers.

That’s what’s wrong [with the fandom] now. It’s just like one thing you said, one thing you do, people fucking define you as a whole person. You don’t even know me. So let’s reflect a little bit and then use those fingers for some productive reason.

I love that. Let’s end on a happier note, let’s talk about your lewks! Do you have a favorite?

Can I pick four? [Laughs]

Of course!

I like my Gemstone. But I like my Sunglasses At Night. Ohh I like my Me, Myself and I, too! But my promo look really defined who Kiki is as a drag artist. So those are the looks that I’m really, really proud of.

It’s really fulfilling coming up with a look and then bringing it into reality. That promo look, oh my god ... I wore it all together for the first time when we shot the promo look. The first time that I have it all, oh my god, I have goosebumps. I have good vibes everywhere. It feels really good to wear something that you created with a new design. I’m so grateful for having that gift that I can imagine things and make it a reality.

Well, your looks were incredible and I can’t even imagine how you would amp them up for an All Stars season! They are not ready! They would have to get a bigger building!

They're not ready for what's coming! You're gonna see more of me. Just wait and keep Kiki-Coe-ing!

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Rachel Shatto

EIC of PRIDE.com

Rachel Shatto, Editor in Chief of PRIDE.com, is an SF Bay Area-based writer, podcaster, and former editor of Curve magazine, where she honed her passion for writing about social justice and sex (and their frequent intersection). Her work has appeared on Dread Central, Elite Daily, Tecca, and Joystiq, and she podcasts regularly about horror on the Zombie Grrlz Horror Podcast Network. She can’t live without cats, vintage style, video games, drag queens, or the Oxford comma.

Rachel Shatto, Editor in Chief of PRIDE.com, is an SF Bay Area-based writer, podcaster, and former editor of Curve magazine, where she honed her passion for writing about social justice and sex (and their frequent intersection). Her work has appeared on Dread Central, Elite Daily, Tecca, and Joystiq, and she podcasts regularly about horror on the Zombie Grrlz Horror Podcast Network. She can’t live without cats, vintage style, video games, drag queens, or the Oxford comma.