FOF #2944 – Linda Simpson’s Drag Explosion

Mar 23, 2021 · 1985 views

Linda Simpson, photo: Dan Perez. — From The Drag Explosion (left to right): RuPaul at Wigstock at Union Square Park, 1991; Kabuki Starshine at the West Side Piers, 1994; Linda Simpson and Lady Bunny at LGBT Pride Parade, 1991; and Mona Foot as her alter-ego, Wonder Woman at Wigstock West 1996. Photos courtesy of Linda Simpson.

In the mid 80s, at the height of the AIDS crisis, New York City experienced a drag revolution. Cheap rent, fabulous clubs and a wide variety of people from all around the world living shoulder to shoulder, and girdle to girdle, created a drag explosion that released a mega ton of glitter and talent, leaving in its wake a culture that embraced drag like never before.

In the center of the action was drag queen Linda Simpson, who took pictures of all the kooky kids in the club scene with her portable camera. To Linda it was all casual fun but to the rest of the world now, it’s legendary.

Best known as a journalist for her indie magazine My Comrade, Linda Simpson gathered in-depth interviews with entertainers and nightclub personalities who would have otherwise been left forgotten in the dark corners of the club.

In her new book, The Drag Explosion, Linda Simpson reveals hundreds of full color photos of the New York Drag scene of the ‘80s and ’90s including many legends when they were just stepping out in high heels onto the world.

Today, Linda Simpson gives us a look into her new book The Drag Explosion, her queer underground magazine My Comrade and why we still feel all these years later the shockwaves of the Drag Explosion.

Plus, why did Fran Lebowitz call drag queens childish?

Linda Simpson – The Drag Explosion: The Drag Explosion


  1. Linda Simpson’s new book The Drag Explosion is fantastic! I received my copy in the mail yesterday and it was a trip down memory lane. Lots of photos of the fabulous Lady Bunny! And of course, of a very young RuPaul doing her thing.

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