Naomi Smalls, also known as the legs of RuPaul’s Drag Race, is one of the most legendary (or LEGendary) stars to ever come from the long-running reality television franchise. However, if you’re expecting her to sashay back into the workroom ever again, don’t hold your breath. In an interview, Smalls explained why she isn’t interested in returning to a competition that she reached the finals in twice.
Who is Naomi Smalls?
The drag superstar, whose real name is Davis Heppenstall, was first a queen on the eighth season of the show. She won one main challenge and placed high in three other episodes. First known for being a fashion and “look” queen, she showed that she could do it all and was a well-rounded drag queen. Smalls ended up making it all the way to the season 8 finale, where she placed as one of the two runner-ups for the season along with Kim Chi, as Bob the Drag Queen ultimately won the whole thing.
A fan-favorite, Smalls returned to the franchise not too soon after her season 8 stint. She was one of the ten queens chosen for the fourth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars. On this season, she performed just as well in her initial one. She won one challenge and placed high in three challenges.
Smalls was also the unofficial lip-sync assassin of the season, winning multiple Lip Sync for Your Legacy match-ups. Her performance during the “Adrenaline” lip-sync versus Gia Gunn is considered one of the best lip-syncs in the series by many fans. This time, Smalls reached the finale once again, placing 3rd/4th place with Monique Heart. However, Trinity the Tuck and Monét X Change won the season overall, becoming the first dual winners.
Naomi Smalls is proud of her time on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race,’ but isn’t trying to come back to the show again
In an wide-ranging interview with Cosmopolitan, Smalls was asked about a number of topics, including if she would ever return to RuPaul’s Drag Race. Only one queens has been on the show three times: Shangela (season 2, season 3, All Stars 3), Latrice Royale (season 4, All Stars 1, All Stars 4), Manilla Luzon (season 3, All Stars 1, All Stars 4), Jujubee (season 2, All Stars 1, All Stars 5) and Alexis Mateo (season 3, All Stars 1, All Stars 5) A few more queens will be added to this tally when they appear on the new season of All Stars: Eureka O’Hara (season 9, season 10, All Stars 6), Ginger Minj (season 7, All Stars 2, All Stars 6), Yara Sofia (season 3, All Stars 1, All Stars 6) and Pandora Boxx (season 2, All Stars 1, All Stars 6).
Smalls, however, isn’t trying to come back for a third season. “I would absolutely not,” she said. “I am super proud of myself that I got to walk away without having to cry holding a trophy and doing a weird message. I’m really happy with the mark that I’ve left on the Drag Race phenomenon or legacy—whatever you want to call it. I wouldn’t change it for the world, and I would not ever try to put myself in a competition setting ever again.”
Smalls has performed well in all of her seasons, and in most cases of returning queens, they either need redemption from their earlier season…or they were on the universally panned All Stars 1. So even though Smalls says she’s not coming back, it is pretty. solidified that a comeback wouldn’t be in the cards anyway.
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