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Drag Race editor issues vehement denial after being accused of throwing queens ‘under the bus’ with villain edits

Nick Duffy September 2, 2020
Drag Race All Stars

Drag Race has been accused of giving queens a villain edit. (VH1)

A RuPaul’s Drag Race editor has spoken out to deny that the show intentionally manipulates viewers or seeks to edit some queens in a negative light.

Drag Race alum have long been known to take potshots at the show’s editing process, claiming that the production team often play favourites by depicting some queens as villains, while the chosen few are given a hero edit and their unsavoury moments covered up.

In an interview with Refinery29, the show’s Emmy-winning editor Jamie Martin insisted the reality show was not out to manipulate its viewers.

Martin, who has worked on the show since 2014, insisted: “On our show specifically, we really try to maintain the integrity of the queens’ stories.

“We’re not actively trying to manipulate. I think that’s the thing that [fans] online think we’re doing. We’re not manipulating what was said, it just might happen in a different amount of time because we can’t show eight hours of footage.”

She added: “It’s not that we’re trying to put someone under the bus. Everyone on this team deeply cares for all of the queens and we want to have their stories told, how they were told.”

RuPaul's Drag Race editor Jamie Martin defended the show
RuPaul’s Drag Race editor Jamie Martin defended the show.

Martin also suggested that Drag Race was much more faithful to the cast than other reality TV shows, explaining: “Sometimes when I watch shows that I don’t feel are as well-produced as our show, it feels not as real, not as truthful.

“I can see the production side of it more than the editing because we get what we get, what we got on set. But I feel like sometimes, some other shows have not been able to highlight their casts’ true personalities.”

She continued: “I worked on reality shows that were not as great as this one, and I know that there is a lot of what you’re talking about.

“But on our show, we’re trying to maintain the heart of these girls in every way we possibly can, because that’s what we all love about this.”

Drag Race judge Michelle Visage ‘doesn’t know what a villain edit is’.

Michelle Visage has also previously defended the show’s editing, making clear: “I don’t know what a ‘villain edit’ is.

“I could say the same thing, that they edit me to be a ‘villain’, but at the end of the day, I say what I say. Nobody puts words in my mouth. There’s been a lot of times I’ve sat on that panel and looked like a monster for the things that I’ve said. But I said it, I can’t blame Ru for it.”

The rare rebuttal from Martin  follows an uptick in negativity and criticism of the show on Reddit and Twitter.

Several of the show’s judges have quit Twitter due to negativity on the platform, with Canada’s Drag Race judge Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman recently following in the footsteps of RuPaul and Michelle Visage by wiping his account.

More: RuPaul's Drag Race, TV

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