Watch RuPaul play the grinch in this 1997 high camp Christmas special

It’s been four years since her first Christmas special VH1, and RuPaul has become a real bitch. Network forced to record another gala show to pay mortgage on her house in Malibu, young Miss Ru rushes around the studio complaining about everything: where is her poodle TF? Why is this camera in her face? Why can’t Michelle Visage show her the respect she deserves?

When she’s done complaining – albeit briefly – the Queen pours a smile on her face to host her classic show segment. First, she prepares a Christmas cake with Debbie Mazar, who had been behind the scenes just moments before because she stole her look. Following is a weight loss conversation with Suzanne Somers – on the couch to discuss her new book on the diet “Eat great, lose weight”, an incredible relic from the 90’s. Later, En Vogue stepped up: in the studio to sing “Silent Night” and talk about Christmas in Texas, the group briefly confused Ru by replacing them with the Spice Girls.

But behind the scenes, four VH1 performers are watching – “I can’t know who a man or a woman is anymore” and “It’s all a bit homosexual” – entering the main show. It’s a clever move from Rue of the 1990s: using its online space for provocation, of course with humor, the way queens, queers and people of color squeeze themselves on TV and parade. Ru, quite obviously, brings it back – stepping behind the scenes of the soundtrack “Mr. Grinch”. Michelle Visage is her co-host, and she swells up – making calls to her agent, complaining that she can’t handle RuPau’s attitude.

Only at the end when Ru hits the camera in the face – the wig flies, the heels fly – he wakes up discovering that the complete diva is everything he dreamed of. “And you were there, and you were there, and Aunt Em and Uncle Remus,” she declares, entering the festive spirit in the finale of the chorus of the very nineties, which is really a very, very camper since Christmas. See for yourself below.

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