Drag Race star Irene Dubois is standing behind her infamous talent show performance.

In the Ariana Grande-assisted premiere of season 15, the cast were tasked with flexing their charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent for the “One Night Only” talent show, with a majority of the contestants choosing to lip-sync – and walking that fucking duck! – to original songs. 

Irene, however, made a glass of ice-cold water. After receiving harsh critiques from the panel, Irene faced elimination, where she was defeated by Amethyst to the beat of Ariana’s number-one smasher 7 Rings. 

Although the routine ended Irene’s time on the series, it went viral and spawned meme after meme. She addressed the hilarity of the situation as she joked in a tweet: “I went on the biggest drag stage in the world and… made a glass of water. I’m sorry that’s so funny to me.” 

Speaking with GAY TIMES, Irene admits that she’s “actually very proud” of the performance and “its critical reception”. 

“Drag Race is both a reality TV show and a drag competition. Sometimes, the things that make great reality TV don’t necessarily make great drag, and vice versa,” she explains. 

“I knew the majority of my fellow competitors were most likely going to bring lip-syncs of original tracks, so I wanted to do something that really stood out from the pack. Like it or hate it, you remember that glass of water.” 

After investigating the true magnitude of Luxx Noir London’s “40-inch wig” and for throwing shade towards her competitors – the horror! – Irene emerged as one of the premiere’s biggest personalities. 

Some viewers even called Irene the “villain” of season 15, to which she responds: “Look, we’re all villains. I’ve yet to meet a person with a fully 100% perfect moral compass. I’m just upfront about the parts of myself that are less than ideal.” 

After Irene and Mistress Isabelle Brooks exchanged shady comments with one another during talent show rehearsal, they had to clarify that they’re not “enemies” to TikTok twin sisters Sugar and Spice.

In her confessional, Irene said: “Mistress and I are talking the way I talk to girls backstage at a drag show. You can really tell how young and inexperienced some of these girls are because they think that a little bit of light shade means that you’re enemies with someone.” 

When we ask Irene if the shady style of drag akin to earlier seasons of Drag Race is still present, or whether it’s fading with the arrival of the newer generation, she says: “I think that side to drag is still around, whether the fans realise it or not. 

“I’ve been doing drag professionally for nearly a decade, and I can promise you, the amount of shade being thrown in dressing rooms has not lessened or diminished in any significant way. 

“What’s getting lost is that side of drag being portrayed on Drag Race because the show’s fans are too young to see the difference between friendly shade and actual malice.” 

Following her exit, Irene returned to her Alma Mater, the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston, to talk with students, which she describes as “the most fulfilling, affirming and importing thing I’ve gotten to do so far.” 

As for the future, Irene “guarantees” us that she won’t be collaborating with water anytime soon. She says: “I’ll be on tour for a little bit, but I’m excited to return to my favourite place in the world, Seattle, and continue the life that I’ve spent so much time building for myself.” 

The 15th season of Drag Race has been a huge success thanks to the series’ move to MTV. The premiere marked the series’ highest-rated in six years and ranked as the number-one cable entertainment telecast of the day.

RuPaul’s Drag Race season 15 is available in the UK via the streamer of all things drag, WOW Presents Plus, from 2AM GMT every Saturday. Subscribe now via https://uk.wowpresentsplus.com/