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This week, Vimeo debuted Bianca Del Rio’s Rolodex of Hate, her hour-long comedy special of trademark tell-it-like-it-is musings on topics that range from incest to straight girls in gay clubs to bottom preparedness. And, as usual, the brassy comic doesn’t hold back. We recently caught up with Bianca (and her alterego Roy Haylock) to find out more about Rolodex of Hate and what the RuPaul’s Drag Race season six winner has lined up next:
When did you first discover the Bianca within?
"Bianca wasn’t exactly a different character, just a heightened version of myself. So its always been there. You know, I’ve always made the joke that when I’m not wearing a wig, I’m called a nasty fag but when I am wearing a wig, I’m called hysterical.
I was always that loud-mouthed, talk back, sarcastic person. I didn’t really think of it as a character because at the beginning, when doing drag in general, usually you start out with lip synching and dancing. And, then I realized, when someone needed to be replaced as a host for a show, that I preferred to talk. And, you know, with drag [shows] you have to stall. You always have 20 minutes to kill because someone ain’t ready. And, I just started to test my skills and realized that this is what I like to do.
And, I found that the more honest I was, not because I was in a wig, but the more honest I was as a person, the more I got laughs. I think there is so much comedy in truth."
At the beginning of the video, you address the current climate of political correctness…
"I don’t think people nowadays have more of an opinion, I think we hear more of their opinions because of social media. Ninety-nine percent of these people would never say it to your face or meet with you and have this discussion. I truly can’t concern myself with what someone types up on a fucking comment board. I could give two fucks. Not because I think that I’m a better person or because I’m grand. But, because, in general, I don’t care what you think. I can say whatever I want to say. I’m a grown-ass man and a joke is a fucking joke. I’m a joke. I’m a man in a fucking wig. You don’t like me? You find me offensive? Then just fucking change the channel.
Look, this is my world, my observations, what happened to me. I stand by it. And if you don’t like it? Fuck you. Which is why I was so grateful to Vimeo for taking this chance and putting me up there. Virtually a nobody to the world outside of gay people that watch Drag Race - and letting me do what I wanted to do without any censorship which is so kind because it hasn’t happened anywhere else."
Have you ever told a joke where you thought, “maybe I went too far on that one?”
"Nope. No, because in the end, even if it may not be a joke to everyone else it made me fucking laugh. It may not be what everyone agrees is funny. But I don’t think you have to agree with everything that I say or do. The people that I don’t agree with are the people that I don’t care to watch. So don't watch."
You’re sort of know as an “insult comic”; do you find that people go out of their way to be insulted by you?
"Well I think that's the label I get. I call it honest. Some people say, "oh, you are an insult comic". But when you hear that, there is some self-deprecation involved and you have to make fun of yourself, which I always do. And I know what I am. There’s nothing you can say about me that would offend me. You can call me a faggot. You can call me ugly. Or a man in a wig that has to put it on for attention. Say whatever the fuck is going to make you feel better. It isn’t anything I haven’t heard before. I’ve been called worse by better."
Who has been especially inspiring to you?
"Of course, there are so many that are working still and are genius. Jackie Beat, Varla Jean Merman, Coco Peru and Sherry Vine. All of them are brilliant performers and have careers. You know, they didn’t have Drag Race and they’re so good. Jim Bailey, who was a brilliant illusionist for many years. He did Judy Garland and Barbra Streisand. Charles Pierce. Who was amazing and did full on shows in San Francisco with orchestras as Bette Davis. And, this was in the sixties and seventies. I don’t think people know that. I think they watch Drag Race and they watch a bitch who’s “Fierce!” and “Turning it”, but there’s so much more to drag than just that.
Also, Don Rickles and Joan Rivers are genius. And, fucking Chris Rock is a smart son-of-a-bitch. Wanda Sykes makes me piss myself. Margaret Cho is really, really fucking funny.
I do have a problem with that Cabbage Patch face - what’s her name - Amy Schumer. She’s funny. But, she’s made some jokes lately and then backed down and apologized. Her jokes were genuinely smart and funny, but bitch, stand by what you fucking say."
We know who’s in your Rolodex of Hate, who’s in your Filofax of Love?
"My Jew accountant, my manager, Vimeo. I have a great gaggle of people around me, that keep me sane. Many have been from before Drag Race. And, the few that I’ve picked up since have been good and trustworthy. They’re not just looking to borrow a dress."
What’s the message you hope viewers will take away from watching Rolodex of Hate?
"That nothing’s that fucking serious. See humor in everything there is. It helps you get through it. I’m not up there curing cancer. If i can make you laugh for an hour then that’s great."
What’s up next for Bianca?
"I have a movie coming out, Hurricane Bianca, with Willem, Rachel Dratch, Alan Cumming. By next May I’ll be starting a new stand-up show that will premier in Australia and be in the States by September."
And if you don’t like it? Fuck you, as Bianca would say. Here's the Rolodex of Hate trailer: