Nicki Minaj to guest-judge RuPaul's Drag Race season 12 premiere
The rap superstar will guest-judge the 90-minute season 12 premiere episode on Friday, Feb. 28, marking her first appearance on the Emmy-winning reality competition series’ runway panel.
“Welcome to the Main Stage of RuPaul’s Drag Race! I’m Nicki Minaj, and I pledge allegiance to the drag!” Minaj said in a promotional video on Instagram, which also shows her praising various contestants — including one for looking “like a Barbie out of the box.”
Though Minaj has never appeared on Drag Race’s panel before, she has played a vital part in the show’s history, as season 10 competitor (and eventual All-Stars 4 champion) Monét X Change gave an epic lip-sync performance to her 2012 single “Pound the Alarm,” while Trinity K. Bonet previously portrayed the rapper during the season 6 Snatch Game celebrity impersonation challenge. Minaj has also judged several reality shows in the past, including a one-season gig on American Idol (alongside Mariah Carey, Randy Jackson, and Keith Urban) and a guest spot on America’s Next Top Model‘s cycle 17 All-Stars edition.
More season 12 guest judges are expected to be announced in the weeks ahead.
“The best word to describe season 12 is ‘OVANESS!'” RuPaul exclusively told EW of the upcoming season during the first round of interviews with the season 12 cast. “Our producers have come up with twisted, outrageous challenges that raise the bar for all competition of reality,” RuPaul adds. “Our celebrity guest judges are truly legendary. And this cast of queens is, dare I say, the most talented we’ve ever had. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, a fresh crop of queens arrives and blows our minds all over again.”
RuPaul’s Drag Race season 12 premieres Friday, Feb. 28 at 8 p.m. ET. Read EW’s exclusive interviews with the new cast of queens here.
RuPaul — as host, mentor, and creative inspiration — decides who's in and who's out.