On Friday the 9th of October, fresh off of the European drag cruise, the absolutely fabulous (see what I did there) Jinkx Monsoon stepped into Revenge Brighton’s “The Powder Room” to deliver a dazzling show to a crowd of eager cabaret fans. Hosting the show was the king of cabaret and long term friend of Monsoon herself, Joe Black, as well as supporting acts from Prudence Rae, Lydia L’Scabies, Rococo Chanel and Crystal Lubrikunt. From Disney Villain songs (god help the poor unfortunate souls who missed this one) to a live game of Truth or Dare (“Give Jinkx your underwear”), the night was certainly one to remember. I spoke to the busy lady after the show, and we discussed exploding Twitter, Steven Universe and taxidermy mice..
Emily: Hi Jinkx! You’ve literally just stepped off of the Drag Stars at Sea cruise, how was that?
Jinkx: The cruise was great! You know the best thing about the cruise this year was the fact that lots of the people who were on this cruise were on the cruise last year, so we all kinda started out already knowing each other, which made it a much more intimate and enjoyable experience!
Emily: You’ve visited the UK a number of times now, do you find these shows differ greatly from your shows back home in the US?
Jinkx: Mostly in the fact that, I hate to say this about Americans, but when I come to Europe, I find that people are so much more polite and well mannered. Maybe it’s just the British culture. I wouldn’t say the same about Scotland… But I just love the way people talk and behave here, it’s just rather cordial and nice.
Emily: Speaking of cordial and nice, how was Porn Idol? (A stripping competition at London’s G-A-Y).
Jinkx: Oh my gosh. I had a really, really good time at Porn Idol because I really like the idea of celebrating nudity, and I got to see a lot of that that night. *giggles*
Emily: Do you have any British icons, actresses or singers that have impacted upon your own style of drag?
Jinkx: Absolutely! Jennifer Saunders because I have been watching Absolutely Fabulous since I was about eight or nine years old, and it’s no coincidence that my last name is Monsoon! There’s too many to list!
Emily: You like Helena Bonham Carter right?
Jinkx: Yes! I’m absolutely obsessed with Helena Bonham Carter. I spent a lot of my early drag career lip-syncing homages to her, so I had a lot of Helena Bonham Carter cosplay in my closet.
Emily: In November you’ll be starring in Peaches Christ’s Addams Family Values, and you’ll be Debbie Jellinsky. Can you tell us about that?
Jinkx: Well if you’ve never seen the movie, basically Joan Cusack plays Debbie Jellinsky, who is a serial killing black widow who marries Uncle Fester with hopes of inheriting the Addams Family Fortune. It’s been like my favourite movie since I don’t know how long and Joan Cusack is such a gay icon to me. You can hear my song “What About Debbie” on my album “The Inevitable Album” which is of course an homage to that movie. So basically, I’m excited!
Emily: Your documentary “Drag Becomes Him” was really successful. Were you happy with the response it received?
Jinkx: Yeah! I just can’t believe that so many people just want to watch old home videos of me, but it’s really flattering.
Emily: I remember my Twitter exploded when you released it.
Jinkx: I’ve exploded Twitter like twice in my life, and I don’t feel sorry about it! Ha!
Emily: I thought Major (Scales) would be here at the show tonight! How did you two meet?
Jinkx: Major and I went to college together! We were in the same year and like two of only three gay guys in my graduating theatre class. We kinda just became friends because of that, then we started living together our junior year and that’s kind of how it all started snowballing. He’s only not here because he had to go home and sleep, the poor darling.
Emily: He went on the cruise as well, right?
Jinkx: Yeah, yeah he went back to Seattle to warm up the place for us.
Emily: What was your first ever drag performance like?
Jinkx: I was dressed as the Queen of Hearts, but I really just looked like Bette Midler and not at all like the Queen of Hearts, just like a really spot on Better Midler impersonator. I can’t really remember what song I performed, but it was really cheesy. Probably something from Annie at that point in my life.
Emily: I’ve recently started watching Steven Universe, which I know you’re obsessed with. Which of the characters do you relate to the most?
Jinkx: Definitely out of drag I relate to Amethyst the most, and then in drag I’d say I relate to Sardonyx.
Emily: I don’t think I’ve got that far in!
Jinkx: Oh shit, spoiler! It’s Pearl and Garnet fused together, and I tell you it was like a Jinkx Monsoon impersonation. She’s even wearing my glasses, which makes me think Rebecca Sugar already knows who I am, which would just make me die because she’s doing important work with that show.
Emily: I’ve got some fan questions from Twitter, @damnitwinnie asks: “With the release of your new EP, will there be any new music videos?”
Jinkx: Yes, there are two on the way! There is actually one to come out for the “Hold On” remix, and it’s going to come out the same day the album comes out. Then I have one for “A Song To Come Home To” which has been in the can a long time, we’ve been really mulling over the best way to do it, and we thought it would be perfect for the new EP.
Emily: So exciting! Funnily enough, @beardelacreme asked: “What is your favourite episode of Absolutely Fabulous?”
Jinkx: My favourite episode of Ab Fab… Oh my god, that’s so hard. Okay, it’s the special, so it was after they had finished for like the third time, and they had another special called the “The White Box”. It’s when Eddie had to redecorate the kitchen before Saffy got home, so there’s all these different versions of the kitchen, and for me it’s the perfect Edina Monsoon episode.
Emily: @mylittlefairy13 asks: “With your witch tattoos, does this mean you’re a proud pagan?”
Jinkx: No, I don’t subscribe to any organised religion, I just like the principles of witchcraft. I’ve always been obsessed with witches since I was a kid, and the more I’ve learned about witchcraft, the more I’ve felt like this is kind of, just as a philosophy or a way of life the thing I most agree with, y’know? So I got one that means “witch” and one that means “earth” because I’m a Virgo, so I’m an Earth Witch!
Emily: @shannenchelsea asks “What’s the strangest fan gift you’ve ever received?”
Jinkx: Oh my gosh, the strangest is also the most wonderful. I only got it two weeks ago in Ealing, when I was doing the Inevitable Concert, which is just my concert version of my album, and a fan gave me a taxidermy mouse dressed as Little Edie. It was one of the most strange but beautiful gifts I’ve ever gotten.
Emily: Did they taxidermy the mouse themselves?
Jinkx: I hope so. Ha!
Emily: Anything else you’d like to plug?
Jinkx: My EP comes out on October 13th and Peaches Christ’s Addams Family Values is Saturday November 21st in San Francisco. Then in Seattle, I will be in my home town doing “Holiday Hi-Jinkx” which is a new holiday show that Major and I wrote together which will be act the Seattle Repertory Theatre in late November, early January, then it’ll be in New York at the Laurie Beechman theatre between December 16th to the 20th and we’re really excited about that. Also, I’m very excited to be interviewing Michelle Visage for her new book that coming out called “The Diva Rules”. I’m really excited to read it and I’m going to be interviewing her in Seattle on November 11th, I can’t give you a time or a place. In my calender it just says all day so that’s apparently what I’m doing all day that day, ha!
Emily: Wonderful! Thank you so much!
Jinkx: Of course! No problem, thank you Emily!
Follow Jinkx on here social media accounts and buy her new Remix EP “ReAnimated” on iTunes!
Catch the next Powder Room show at Revenge Brighton, starring Sharon Needles and Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 on October 27th!