Drag Queens Do Jolene

Above Image and Cover Story Image: screenshots from Drag Queen Jolene Video

BY: Andy Shoulders

“Ru Paul’s Drag Race” fans rejoice! We’ve just been given an early Christmas present in the form of a new video featuring several of the show’s stars doing an epic cover of Dolly Parton’s mega-hit “Jolene.”

For the new Netflix movie “Dumplin’” – about Willowdean (Danielle Macdonald), a spunky & curvy teen girl obsessed with Dolly Parton who gets help entering a beauty pageant from a group of drag queens despite reservations from her mother (Jennifer Aniston)– several “Drag Race” alumni have banded together for their own version of “Jolene” to pay homage to the national treasure that is Parton. Season 1 winner Bebe Zahara Benet, Season 3 runner-up Manila Luzon, Season 5 finalist and All Stars 2 winner Alaska Thunderfuck, Season 6’s Ben Delacreme, and Season 7’s Ginger Minj and Katya all come together in this hilarious tribute to recreate Dolly Parton’s 1974 hit.

The clear Dolly Parton connection to “Dumplin’” (which also stars Ginger Minj herself as one of Willowdean’s mentors) has given us all sorts of amazing additions to the film. During the press rounds, Dolly Parton roasted her husband on national television and casually sipped tequila with Jennifer Aniston and Sandra Bullock. For the film itself, Parton wrote new music for the soundtrack and released a mesmerizing, stripped-down version of “Jolene” that will give you chills.

For the phenomenon that is “Jolene” itself, Netflix did us one better: a slightly more uptempo version of the song featuring a few of our favorite “Drag Race” stars. The video opens with Ginger Minj wandering through Parton’s hometown of Sevierville, Tenn. as she attempts to discover where “all the bears” are at. She then stumbles upon a statue of Parton and recites her famous quote: “Find out who you are, and do it on purpose.” Then the track begins to play, and each queen gets her moment to shine. Katya goes ham on a tire swing and gives us a full split in a barn, Manila lives her best life in the back of a pickup truck with a sexy country boy, Bebe hangs her slinky drag garments from a clothesline, Alaska fittingly does her business in an outhouse, Ben Delacreme gets a little too personal with her apple pie, and Ginger goes fly fishing. You know, all things Dolly herself would do. Near the end, all of the queens come together for one of the most epic hoedowns in herstory and showcase all of their dance moves on a wooden stage. It’s pretty much all par for the course, though, considering there was actually a Dolly Parton drag queen at the film’s premiere.

So, if you need me, I’ll be getting my ENTIRE life watching this video on repeat for the foreseeable future. Someone please call the VMA’s because THIS needs to be Video of the Year.

 

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