Here's How RuPaul Drag Race's Gottmik Is Making History

RuPaul's Drag Race is back after what's felt like an interminably long break, and the beloved show has brought with it another crop of fabulous drag queens for us all to obsess over. Season 13 was shot during the pandemic, with the requisite restrictions in place, so it feels like something new and different purely by virtue of the fact all of the contestants can't technically be in the "Werk Room" together (via Vulture). 

The first episode kicked off with six lip-syncs, sending half the cast to the Porkchop Loading Dock, named after iconic Drag Race alum Victoria "Porkchop" Parker, who went home first but became a fan favorite. There are plenty of great queens to fall in love with this season, from the acerbic Kandy Muse to the stunning LaLa Ri. Gottmik instantly stood out among the group, however, to the extent this particular queen changed Drag Race forever.

Gottmik's casting is a major first for RuPaul's Drag Race

As Today reports, Gottmik is the first ever trans male contestant on the show. Transgender women have competed previously, including Peppermint, Gia Gunn and Jiggly Caliente. However, host RuPaul Charles has been criticized in the past for seemingly favoring gay men. As Gottmik explained, people are generally confused about why a trans man would opt to do drag in the first place. "But to me, it's so weird that a lot of people can't wrap their heads around it because at the end of the day, I'm literally just a man in a every single other guy that's there," the Arizona native argued. 

Describing himself as feeling as though he was "trapped in the wrong body" growing up, Gottmik's transgender identity clicked after he moved to L.A. to pursue a career in fashion. After plenty of soul-searching, and support from his LGBTQ friends, the drag queen and in-demand makeup artist — who counts the likes of Paris Hilton, Heidi Klum and trans pop star Kim Petras as clients — ultimately realized "just because you were born a girl once upon a time're still allowed to be a feminine guy, too." 

Gottmik's casting marks a major moment in Drag Race's "herstory," which RuPaul made clear by changing his iconic line "may the best woman win" to "may the best drag queen win," to the delight of fans. Regardless of how far he gets on the show, Gottmik's legacy will be keenly felt.