Manila Luzon has revealed some behind-the-scenes tea on her epic lip-sync smackdown with Kylie Sonique Love.
The legendary RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant, who rose to fame on the third season before making further appearances on All Stars 1 and 4, made her comeback on the franchise earlier this year as a lip-sync assassin for All Stars 6.
Manila, who’s slain viewers with some of the most sickening lip-syncs in the show’s herstory (not a joke! just a fact!), competed against Kylie to the beat of Christina Aguilera’s chart-topping anthem Dirrrty.
Ultimately, Kylie triumphed over Manila thanks to her kicks, flips, splits and various other gymnastic-heavy tricks. The performance received widespread praise from fans and critics, going viral on all of the social medias.
Speaking with GAY TIMES about the showdown, Manila said it was an “honour” to be asked back as a lip-sync assassin, although Xtina’s iconic anthem wasn’t… in her wheelhouse.
“I’m not a huge dancer, as you saw, in that lip-sync, but I do like the storytelling aspect of performing a song,” said the Karaoke Club: Drag Edition star. “I was very honoured to come back and perform it. Christina’s Dirrty is one of my favourite songs. I love it, but I don’t perform it because I am a… classy queen.”
When we asked Manila if she knew Kylie was going to be her opponent beforehand, the star explained: “They don’t tell me anything. They only tell you the song that you’re gonna lip-sync and that’s only a day before you go and film it.
“So, I was scrambling to find an outfit to wear because I didn’t have any new clothes. It was a pandemic, so I had halted all my production of costumes! I was like, ‘What costume has not been seen or doesn’t have a hole in it?'”
Manila said she wanted to “get all skanky” to the track, presumably to match the racy lyrics and iconic video to the song. Because she had nothing to fit the occasion, one of her close friends – who happens to be a former Drag Race alum – came to her rescue. The sisterhood is real!
“I had to scramble and find an outfit,” continued Manila.
“Luckily, my friend Willam had some really skanky outfits for me to wear! But yeah, I had no idea who I was performing against.”
Following 12 weeks of challenges, lip-syncs and runway presentations – let’s not forget the “game within a game” twist – Kylie was crowned the winner of All Stars 6, defeating Eureka, Ginger Minj and Ra’Jah O’Hara in the process.
With her win, Kylie made herstory as the first trans contestant to conquer a season of Drag Race hosted by RuPaul.
Watch our reigning queen battle it out against Manila to Dirrty here or below.
If you’re in desperate need of some more Manila on your screens, then you can catch her now on the drag edition of ITV’s Karaoke Club.
She stars alongside fellow Drag Race alum such as Crystal, Trinity the Tuck, Vinegar Strokes and The Vivienne, as well as Cara Melle, Danny Beard, Freida Slaves, Gingzilla, Lil Test Ease, Mahatma Khandi and Tete Bang,
On why she decided to participate in the series, Manila told GAY TIMES: “Well, I love to sing, even if I can’t sing that well… I mean, I do have a lot of songs that I’ve recorded over the years – with the help of some autotune, for sure!
“But it was a nice challenge just to go out there and do it live.”
She added: “It was fun to just go out there and have a good time, get up in drag with a bunch of drag queens. Especially because I hadn’t seen another drag queen in months because we were in the middle of a pandemic. It was fun to see all the queens and have our own private club to hang out in everyday!”
Karaoke Club: Drag Edition premiered 26 September on ITV2 and airs daily. Episodes will also be available to stream on ITV Hub.