In "The X Change Rate," award-winning drag queen, entertainer and TV personality Monét X Change brings her signature wit, heart and style to BUILD Series. The fabulous host sat down to chat with actor Garrett Clayton and UK drag queen The Vivienne.
MONET X CHANGE: Hey, y'all, it's your girl Monét, and welcome back to "The X Change Rate," the talk show where we film in London. Bitch, I made it. I made it. We have a very, very, very good show for you all today, because I am here in London, I couldn't think of a better way to kick off my London series episodes than with an actual queen, The Vivian is here. And later, the very dancingly, singingly, charmingly-- those words don't even make sense together, well kind of. Garrett Clayton is also here.
But first, let's get into the gig, mama. [TONGUE POP] OK, y'all, full disclosure, I'm doing the show by myself today. I'm running all the lights, all of the computers, all the sounds, all the things, it's a lot, so I don't want to hear no snappy comments about you all telling me nothing about nothing. And I have this new camera, apparently she only films for five minutes at a time. So I'm confident, this is going to be a Franken-episode if-- Who knocked on my door?
Well I just got my first noise complaint. Great, I'm not even that loud. Am I? I'm in a big ass apart-- I guess this is gonna be an ASMR episode. So, yeah, so I arrived right here in the UK, and it was all seemingly pretty easy. No, I can't do this, this is nuts. Was I being loud y'all? Well I just rubbed off my lipstick on my mic. Yes, so I arrived in the-- OK, got all the calls, all the things. I'm going crazy.
OK. Yeah, the flight was-- honestly, traveling in the airport and flying during COVID is honestly way easier than normal. The airports are super empty, super quiet, there's not a whole bunch going on. They did feed you on this flight though, because I took a flight during COVID, I flew to LA, first class, and girl, they literally give you a bottle of Dasani water and a bag of Cheez-its, and they're like enjoy, have fun. But this was really simple, really cute.
And the meal I had on the plane, I popped out my Invisalign, y'all know how I do. Put it down, and I ate whatever, and I left it in the little napkin, because I didn't feel like going to brush my teeth, whatever, to go put the Invisalign back in. I doze off a little bit. Bitch, I wake up, and my flight attendant has taken my napkin that had my Invisalign and all my food, and threw it out.
So he's been so nice, and so great, I'm like, I don't want to like, you know, make him feel like I'm being whatever. So I didn't say anything, and I call the other flight attendant, and I'm like, hey, your homeboy Zachary, let's call him Zachary, threw my Invisalign away. But don't tell him, he's been very sweet, I don't want to stress him out. Can you and I look through the garbage together and try to find it?
So now it's me and this other a fight attendant, Ricky, we're, picking out garbage, trying to find my fucking Invisalign, no luck. It was all very interesting. So I guess this has not been a sweet and easy transition, this has been very stressful. I'm loud everywhere, apparently. So let's just get into the stories. And I have no prosecco, I have no Crystal Light, what do I have? (SINGING) I have nothing, nothing, nothing oh-- ooh.
OK, stories. Y'all, as you know, the election has been very, very-- the election was very crazy, but we came out victorious, in a very big way. As we know, Biden won the presidency. President Biden has reigned supreme, and that orange turd-like Cheeto is out of the office, praise the lord, Amen, amen, amen.
But this is not an easy battle, this was an uphill battle, and the cold hard truth is that 71 million Americans still voted for Trump, so that's a very disconcerting. However, some amazing and major things have happened. There was this huge rainbow wave for this election cycle, because there have been many LGBTQ plus candidates that won on election night.
Here are the big ones that happened. Todd Gloria from San Diego. He's the first elected openly gay mayor. Sarah McBride from Delaware, she's the first out trans person ever in the history of the Senate elected to the Senate, that is major. Tiara Mack is the first black LGBTQ plus Senator elected, she is from Rhode Island. And Reggie Torres from New York City, he is the first gay Afro-Latinx member of Congress.
So this is major, major, major stuff. Out of the 500 plus LGBTQ candidates who are on the ballot election night, 160 of them secured victory. So this is a beautiful, guys. This is progress. Now again, it could be better, but things always can be better. Because out of the 535 members of Congress, only 11 of them now identify as LGBTQ plus, as part of that community. Now that's not to say that maybe there are more, you don't-- no one has to be out. It is no one's obligation, you don't have to be out if you don't want to, but we know out of the 535, 11 of them are open and out. So that's good.
In my heart of hearts, I really want Kamala and Joe Biden to extend the Supreme Court, you know, add more seats, and I would love there to be an LGBTQ person on the Supreme Court. I feel like since we're always talking about gay rights, and queer and transgender rights, there should be someone from the community as a Supreme Court justice. I feel like that should be, like, one of the seats should be that. You know what I mean?
Maybe that's really wishful thinking, but Kamala and Joe are not fucking around. They have Karine, who has been a guest on the show, was going to be part of the cabinet. They have queer and LGBT, queer and Black, and people of color actively involved in our government. And that's what government should look like, to reflect the people of the nation. Amen? Woo, woo, woo!
I can't believe I'm whispering, I have to to fucking whisper. This is crazy.
Now I want to talk about some of the major things that happened, funny things that happened with this election, because I think, honestly some of this shit, you can't eve make up. Trump, the Trump campaign, Trump team, whatever you want to call them, they have a big press conference at the Four Seasons Total Landscaping. This story, I don't even understand how this is the reality of these stupid fuckers.
Less than an hour before Biden was projected as the winner, Donald Trump announced his legal team was going to have a press conference at the Four Seasons in Philadelphia. So naturally, of course, everyone's like, oh yeah, the big Four Seasons downtown, that makes sense. And then-- No, girl. Like an hour before, Trump went on and tweeted, he's like, actually-- well, he deleted that tweet [INAUDIBLE] Four Seasons, and he went on saying, it's going to be at the Four Seasons Total Landscaping Company, located in Philadelphia, on an industrial street, between an adult bookstore and a crematorium.
Like, what? This picture looks insane. Like, this looks like a scene from Veep. This looks like a sketch scene from Veep. Like this does not look real. And of course, The Four Seasons promptly, they're like, uh uh, no, this is not at our hotel. Just be very clear, this is not The Four Seasons downtown Philadelphia. (SINGING) No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.
So yeah, like, what are they doing-- and of course, so Rudy Giuliani was there, Trump and all his lawyers are there, but you know he wasn't there? Donald fucking Trump, because he was what? Playing golf. Let's not waste any more energy and neurons on those people. Next story.
Van Jones. Now I don't know if it's an age thing, I'm going to chalk it up to age, let's chalk it up to age. Kamala Harris and Joe Biden, they did their victory speeches. And Kamala walked out to that really, really, really dope Mary J Blige song, but Van Jones mistakenly thought that it was a Beyoncé song. First of all, I don't even know what song he even thought it was. Sonically, I don't hear a resemblance to any Beyoncé song, but maybe-- you know, I can't even chalk it up to age. Mary J Blige is-- she known. She is multi-generational. She's been around for a minute. He knows where Mary J Blige is.
Well this is what he said. First, after CNN was recounting the thing, he goes, first of all, she walked out to Beyoncé, drop mic. The fact that somebody that's going to be in the White House can walk out authentically to Beyoncé was amazing. So you know Twitter, Twitter will not let you breathe. Bitch, have you ever you tweeted and had a typo? Bitch, people screenshot it. They will sign your name on it. They will post it under the thing 19 times, like, ha ha, look what you did. You made a mistake, you dumb bitch. Twitter does not let you breathe, so of course, Twitter was like, oh we're not going to let this go.
These are what the tweets was saying. "Van Jones not knowing the difference between Beyoncé and Mary J Blige let's me know everything I want to know about him." Someone said, "Get this man out of here, this is embarrassing to our people." Someone said-- oh this one gets interesting. Someone goes, "Van Jones has always had issues. He's always been problematic. He always tried to two-sides his way into respectability politics."
This I cannot agree with more, because we all know he went viral the day, maybe the morning of, or maybe the following morning Joe Biden got announced. And his little speech, like he was tearing up, and yadda ya, getting really emotional, saying that this was a vindication for a lot of people. And that it's easier to breathe. Some people were really touched, you know, the Lebrons and everything, but the real ones, like Soledad O'Brien and Don Winslow was like, no, no, no, no, no we don't buy it.
I don't if y'all know a lot about Van Jones. Van Jones, I used to be a big fan of Van Jones, but then after the Trump presidency, he would say that-- like speak of all these quote, unquote "positive things" Trump was doing. And he garnered a big rep for playing both sides of the fence. And I think he said that-- what's his name? Was is his son's name? Donald Trump Jr. He went to record saying that Donald Trump Jr was a nice guy, or some cockamamie, hootenanny, gibbetybop bullshit.
Ooh, and then this Twitter dude, @sisu_sanity did an itemized list, bitch, about all the crazy problematic things Van Jones has done and said. And it is so good. One of the things, on May 29, 2020, Van Jones says, "A white liberal Hillary Clinton supporter can pose a greater threat to Black Americans than the KKK." Nigga, what? Like, are you joking? He's just a mess.
Van Jones, on October 23, 2020, he said, "Trump doesn't get enough credit for the good stuff he has done for the Black community." Nigga, get the fuck out of here. I'm not an Van Jones train. I don't prescribe to that. If y'all do, good for you, but y'all need to go to this Twitter and read up on all the crazy problematic ass shit he's done. I'm not saying he is cancel-able, but he's definitely not someone I gonna be like, oh he's crying. Oh. That's so-- No, you don't get that from me. Boo, blop. Next.
One of my favorite moments, bitch, the Anderson Cooper moment, took me out of here. So we know Trump, the night of the election, he came out with some crazy speech. The Thursday after the election, he came out with some other crazy speech, claiming voter fraud, and how they're finding secret ballots, yadda yadda yadda ya. And we all know what Anderson Cooper said. Can we just, please, play the video? Play this video, here we go.
- That is the President of the United States. That is the most powerful person in the world, and we see him like an obese turtle on his back, flailing in the hot sun, realizing his time is over. But he just hasn't accepted it, and he wants to take everybody down with him, including this country.
- Can we just? Can we just? I want to say it one more time. And that is the President of the United States. That is the most powerful person in the world. We see him like an obese turtle on his back, flailing in the hot sun, realizing his time is over, bitch. This motherfucking allegory. I see it. I see the visual. It's so clear. It's so fierce. He need to get it together.
And of course, some of these people who made these amazing murals, this Australian graffiti artist, Scottie Marsh, did this mural of Trump as a turtle, which is so good. I mean, you can't-- the internet will not let you breathe, girl. I live. And you know what? I'm sorry, I'm not here for the people that say, like Trump suppor-- no.
You know, again, I don't think every Trump supporter is racist, is transphobic, is homophobic. But if you voted for this man, with all the things that he's done about veterans, people of color, queer people, women, then you are complicit. You're saying that that behavior is OK, because his tax plan is going to help me feed my-- you know what I'm saying? Like, so it is just, I get that it's a nuance thing, but voting for someone like that, you're saying that this behavior is OK.
So Trump deserves it. My tweets I've said about his supporters, I said what I said, and I meant what I said, get into it. And Anderson Cooper, I fucking stan. Anderson Cooper was like, oh y'all forgot I was gay? Let me read you for the back row, mama. Love it.
And those are the stories. Amen, gal.
Hear ye, hear ye, do not adjust your mothertucking television or iPhone or iPad. If you have a Galaxy, just throw that shit away. Y'all, royalty, real royalty is up in the house. I love this queen so much. She's fierce, she's fabulous, and today she looks a little interesting. Please welcome The Vivienne!
THE VIVIENNE: Thank you, Monét. It's great to be here, yeah it's been a terrible week. It's been a terrible week. The most loved president in the history of the United States has been unlawfully voted out. I mean, I counted those vote myself. The ballots with huge. It's all rigged, it's all rigged.
I'm so sorry I'm dressed-- I'm so sorry, girl. I'm dressed like this horrible, horrible bastard. But you know, times call for taking the piss out of this horrible, horrible man. And I mean, he's out, yes!
MONET X CHANGE: He is finally fucking out. I honestly, Vivienne, I am not just saying this because you're here, that is across the UK, Canada, I've never seen Thailand or Holland, so I can't just those, but America, your Donald Trump is one of the best Snatch Games of all Snatch Games times, I feel.
THE VIVIENNE: Aw.
MONET X CHANGE: So good.
THE VIVIENNE: Thank you, It is tremendous, it is tremendous. No, if I'm--
MONET X CHANGE: So, I noticed you can't say exactly what it is that you're doing, or can you? I don't know. Can you tell us or will it be a surprise later on?
THE VIVIENNE: Well maybe a little surprise coming. Yeah, maybe something me and Mother Ru may be working on together.
MONET X CHANGE: Word. That is further proof that Ru likes the UK girls way better than he likes the-- bitch, we can not get Ru Paul to even look our way. But UK girls, he's like, oh, I'll come over. I'll do anything you guys want. He loves you. That's fine. It's fine. It's fine. It's totally fine.
THE VIVIENNE: He love you. He loves you. He loves you. He definitely does.
MONET X CHANGE: So Viv, how are you doing here? You're in here Liverpool, yeah?
THE VIVIENNE: I'm in Liverpool, you're currently in London.
MONET X CHANGE: I finally made it here. I supposed to be here last week. But then you guys wanted into lock down, so we were figuring that all out. But I am here--
THE VIVIENNE: I know, it's such a shame. If we weren't in lockdown right now, you could have literally jumped on a train, in two hours you could have been sat right here in my living room.
MONET X CHANGE: Girl, girl, girl, girl, girl. Honestly, when I found out I was coming to the UK, I was like, oh great, then I can like do stuff in person with people instead of this digital-- And don't get me wrong, I love this digital stuff too, but I just miss--
THE VIVIENNE: Well--
MONET X CHANGE: --sitting and drinking, and telling fucking stupid jokes and stories with someone next to me, you know what I mean? But you know.
THE VIVIENNE: The last time we met was, well the first time we met and the last time we met was--
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, first and last.
THE VIVIENNE: Drag Con. Drag Con UK. And I think it was the end of the day, we were all-- can we swear on the--
MONET X CHANGE: Make up melted, beard growing in. Bob had his beard the whole time, so he didn't really give a fuck. But yeah--
THE VIVIENNE: Because Bob-- like before that before we start anything, I absolutely adore you and Bob. I got to do the comedy tour with Bob before our season of the UK "Drag Race" even started. And yeah, I just fell in love with Bob. I think he's just such an amazing, interesting character, and so eloquent and educated. And he has something to say.
MONET X CHANGE: Pains me to say, you're right. Yeah.
THE VIVIENNE: I listen to is Sibling Rivalry in the bath. I love it.
MONET X CHANGE: Yass. Well you know what? I remember he did that tour, it was like, what, like November-ish, I think, with you. And I remember him coming back, he was like, Monet, I just worked with The Vivienne. I was like, and? He was like, I really like her. I was like, work, because I never met her. He was like-- because Bob and I have very honest and candid conversations about queens very often. He was like, I really like her. I was like, yeah she's-- I hadn't met you yet, but you seem really dope. And I met you once at a Drag Con, and you're really great. We're e-meeting each other, and it's all good in the hood.
I have to say, dude, here in lockdown in the UK looks a little different than in the states, like, I feel like there are like a lot of people outside. I'm looking out my window like Rapunzel, and people are walking around.
THE VIVIENNE: It's yeah, it's kind of like lock down, but who knows? You know. You've just got rid of a crazy guy in your politics, we've still got one in that kind of does these speeches once a week, and he's supposed to tell you the rules. But he just kind of babbles on, and he just goes, well, well, well, you can go outside, but you can't go outside. You can't-- you can't leave the house, but you need to go to work, you can't leave the house. And you're just like, what? What are you saying?
So I think the rules are kind of, nobody knows them, you know? Essential shops are open. You can't go to work unless you need to go to work. It's just crazy. It's like, I don't know the solution. I don't like to complain about things that I don't have the solution to.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
THE VIVIENNE: You know, if that makes sense? Because then I think, well where's your shit to back it up? So you know, I know that I don't have a solution, but I know that it's crazy.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah, but we've had hope on the horizon with a vaccine maybe this week.
MONET X CHANGE: I know, I saw the news about that. I'm like, ooh, this vaccine cannot come soon enough for a night life workers, for people who work in our industry to get like-- Broadway folk, whatever, to get back to your thing.
THE VIVIENNE: Do you have friends that have been-- because I know I've got friends like this. They've been complaining and complaining and complaining that they can't work, they can't work. I want-- end the lockdown, end the lockdown. And then a vaccine gets announced, and they say, oh, I'm not taking that. The government is going to try and kill us with the vaccine.
MONET X CHANGE: Girl!
THE VIVIENNE: I'm like--
MONET X CHANGE: Girl!
THE VIVIENNE: Oh, what do you want? What do you-- hello! Do you want to work? Or do you want to-- it's just like, oh, all these conspiracy theories. I'm just like, I've just had enough of it. I've had enough.
MONET X CHANGE: Well, you have been you've been quarantining and in lockdown with your new husband. How is married life? How is being in isolation with your husband immediately-- well almost immediately after getting married, a few months? How has it been?
THE VIVIENNE: I mean, it was quite the fucking honeymoon. He said, where are you taking me on holiday? I said, COVID. We're staying in the living room for seven months while I'm getting in drag sometimes, and you're setting up lights. This is going to be our honeymoon. You're going to be setting up lights and cameras, and figuring out how to make sound work and stuff like right. It's going to be the best honeymoon ever. But it's been great. We were always together anyway, you know. When you come off "Drag Race," you-- And if you've got a partner, when you're on "Drag Race," and you come off it, it's either you employ them, or you never see them.
MONET X CHANGE: Girl.
THE VIVIENNE: So you've got two choices. Employ them, or never see them. So they become your personal assistant and your husband in one. So lock down was fine, because you know, it could have been make or break, I suppose, but it was fine, because we were basically glued together at the hip anyway. So it was--
MONET X CHANGE: I love that.
THE VIVIENNE: It's just it's been really lovely, yeah. We
MONET X CHANGE: Well maybe I'll find a husband here in the UK to be glued to my hip, and be quarantined with me.
THE VIVIENNE: Maybe. Are you single?
MONET X CHANGE: Oh gurl, single as fu---
THE VIVIENNE: How long have you been single?
MONET X CHANGE: It's been-- this Thanksgiving, 2020, would make it two years.
THE VIVIENNE: Two years.
MONET X CHANGE: I mean like, little three month bibbidy bops, and a little like four month, little things here and there, but not, like, something that I call it a relationship. If you want to say that.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah. Are you ready?
MONET X CHANGE: Honestly, gurl, the older I get, the older I get, the longer I stay by myself, I'm like, I don't need nobody. I just need-- I got back and forth. Because I like my space, I like my things how I like my things. I don't know. I'm a mess. I am a complicated order, as the kids say.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah, I went from one extreme to the other. I went from being single for like seven years, on my own, in an apartment, and then I was just like, bam, bam, bam, bam, bam, work, work, work, work, work. I don't need that. I love this, I'm single. And then straight-- I moved to Grand Canary, met David, within nine months I was engaged, married, boom. And now it just flipped completely.
MONET X CHANGE: I love it.
THE VIVIENNE: Crazy.
MONET X CHANGE: But it's so beautiful. And you guys had your wedding at like a JY, and it was a beautiful ceremony. You looked-- I mean, it was just honestly, it looked super romantic. And it looked very, very, very cute.
THE VIVIENNE: It was. A what's a gay wedding without Chad Michaels?
MONET X CHANGE: I know, I love that.
I have never really gotten that chance to chit chat with you after your season, and obviously, everyone's blown away by what an amazing job you did on "Drag Race." Going in, when you walked into that work room and you saw the rest of them girls, were you like, oh, I'm going to win. Oh, I'm top two. Ooh, I might go home first. Like where was your mind? I always want to know where the winners minds are at when they see the rest of the competition laid out in front of them.
THE VIVIENNE: All right, here's what happened. Well first of all, you know, you've been in drag for probably six hours before you've even walked in the work room, just waiting and waiting. And I knew they were going to put me in last. I had a feeling they were going to put me in the work room last. I just knew it, because of the whole ambassador thing, and all of that. So I walked in the work room, you're kind of numb at first. You say your line, you forget what you've said, then you turn around and just go, oh! You see all these gorgeous queens. I saw Gothy.
MONET X CHANGE: Gorgeous.
THE VIVIENNE: I saw Gothy--
MONET X CHANGE: Wait a minute.
THE VIVIENNE: Oh, I was just like, whoa. Because you know, I'd just turned 27, I'd put a few pounds on, she is like stick thin. And then I saw Baga, which I knew, so a friendly face, that was great.
MONET X CHANGE: And you thought Baga was gorgeous?
THE VIVIENNE: Well, I didn't say that, love, I didn't say that. I said Baga was a friendly face, to put it kindly. Yes, so, I was still confident when I walked in, yeah. I think I knew I was going to do well.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
THE VIVIENNE: But that's kind of how I lived my life, though. I kind of always try, and want to be positive, and you know, thoughts become things, and shit like that. And there's no point in walking in that workroom and thinking, oh well, I'll come third.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
THE VIVIENNE: Maybe I'll go home fourth.
MONET X CHANGE: Well, and then, you were the only person your season to lip sync twice and stay. So you are the unofficial, not unofficial, the official lip sync assassin of the UK franchise. Let's see if someone's going to top that season 2, but maybe not.
THE VIVIENNE: Well, I lip synced once, and then once for the crown.
MONET X CHANGE: Right, right.
THE VIVIENNE: So, yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: No one else was that lucky.
THE VIVIENNE: But I'm also now, because of COVID, which is a blessing. The one thing to come out of COVID, I think I am the longest reigning queen of a non-all-stars season in "Drag Race" history.
MONET X CHANGE: Really.
THE VIVIENNE: I think.
MONET X CHANGE: How long have you been reigning? You've been reigning--
THE VIVIENNE: Since November last year.
MONET X CHANGE: Oh yeah, that's a year. Yeah, I think before you, the longest was like 10 months, I believe, or something like that. Work, bitch.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: Now, as the current reigning, are they consulting you for this next season coming up, that they dropped the ball, since it's coming out in January? I mean, they dropped the mic, well, whatever the saying is. The new season is coming out in January, and I hope the you're involved, doing all the things, and giving you some motherfucking money. That's what I want for you.
THE VIVIENNE: Girl, don't even talk to me about money. Honest to god. Somebody posted something, I think it was Raja posted something yesterday on Twitter, saying something about "Canada Drag Race" got $100,000, call my lawyers. And I think I just put a sipping tea emoji or something. I was just like, don't even talk to me about that.
But it's fine. You know, you don't go in there for the prize money. You go in there for the experience and everything like that. So that was always amazing. But yeah, I am slightly involved in season two, and I can't say anything about it, but not as much as it was supposed to be, because of COVID. I might pop up.
MONET X CHANGE: I'm very excited. I am almost as excited as I am about your new single. Talk to us about the new single, and is there a full album coming out soon, Viv?
THE VIVIENNE: Ooh, well the new single, "You Spin Me 'Round." (SINGING) You spin me right round, baby, right round.
MONET X CHANGE: That is a classic, you know, a classic, classic, classic song. And a lot of the "Drag Race" fans hate Trinity, because of that song, because she wore that old lady outfit, and did that titty thing. And they're like, how dare you disgrace that song, ugh, I can't believe you did that. But you are reclaiming it from Trinity, and putting some moves on it.
THE VIVIENNE: Yes, I'm giving it justice for Pete Burns. He's just such an icon, an inspiration of mine, and being able to bring that song in to, you know, a '90s house vibe, I think I really love that. Because Liverpool loves house music, and Pete Burns is from Liverpool, and just being able to have fun with the song, and kind of stay true to it, and then just put a little bit of glitter on it, and then have a ball with it. I love it. And it's the one song that I've released that I really listened to and loved. You know, when you can just listen to it by the pool?
MONET X CHANGE: Oh girl, I know that feeling. You record songs and you're like, uh, I don't know. I hate that. I got you 100%, yes.
THE VIVIENNE: I've got-- I'm looking for a queen. I'm looking for-- we've literally got-- and you are in the UK, oh my god. I have got a Christmas single that I need a queen for.
MONET X CHANGE: Ooh, Christmas single.
THE VIVIENNE: We should talk, girl.
MONET X CHANGE: I'm here, girl, let's fucking do it. Well you know, I'm very excited about being in the UK for Christmas. I know that the UK, you guys love the holiday season. Y'all have-- y'all love it so much, you'll have Christmas and the day afterwards, you have Boxing Day for even more time off of work. I'm excited to experience all the British traditions, and do all that stuff. So I'm so down.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah but, we were watching on YouTube yesterday, Christmas in America is like Christmas on fucking steroids.
MONET X CHANGE: Is it?
THE VIVIENNE: Are you joking? Like full streets of just lights and decorations and-- we put a Christmas tree up, maybe garland on the fireplace, and call it a day. You guys are like, it looks like a Macy's parade or something in everyone's garden. It's crazy.
MONET X CHANGE: You see, but I've heard that it's even crazier in the UK. I guess someone lied to me.
THE VIVIENNE: No.
MONET X CHANGE: I heard it's even more bonkers here.
THE VIVIENNE: No, not at all. No way. It's gorgeous, we decorate, it's cute, but it's-- I'm dying. I need a Christmas in America. That's what I need.
MONET X CHANGE: Well this year, I'll do Christmas here, and next year you're going to do Christmas in New York. So I think that's a fair trade.
THE VIVIENNE: Yes.
MONET X CHANGE: And also, Viv, one thing I want to do when I'm here is I want to perfect an authentic British accent. Now I've heard that yours is a hard one, because y'all do the girl thing, and I can't say "gael" right. So which is the easiest route to go by for an authentic accent by the time I leave here in January?
THE VIVIENNE: Well, it depends what accent you want, because my accent changes constantly. My accent is-- because I'm from North Wales originally, and then I moved to Liverpool. So that's where I picked up my Liverpool twang. So if you want a scouse accent, see if you can say this. OK, pretend you're in a takeaway, like a chicken shop. And ask for a piece of "chi-h-en" and a can of "Co-h."
MONET X CHANGE: A piece of "chi-h-en" and a can of "Co-h."
THE VIVIENNE: Nearly. That was all right, it was a good start.
MONET X CHANGE: No, you hated it. You hated it. Oh my god.
THE VIVIENNE: No I didn't. Now, get to the back of the throat on "chi-h-en" and then "Co-h."
MONET X CHANGE: Chicken.
THE VIVIENNE: Yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: Coke, Coke, Coke.
THE VIVIENNE: No, that's got you going quite posh there, you're going Coke. Do you want some Coke? Whereas it's more, I want a can of "Co-h."
MONET X CHANGE: I want a can of Coke.
THE VIVIENNE: Get it, chh. Can of "Co-ch."
MONET X CHANGE: Can of "Co-h," can of "Co-h."
THE VIVIENNE: That'll do, that'll do.
MONET X CHANGE: You know what?
THE VIVIENNE: Can you do like Julie Andrews?
MONET X CHANGE: Well yeah, when I think of a British accent, because one of my favorite movies growing up was "Spice World," I just think of Victoria, Posh, that's where my mind goes when I think of a British accent, like instantly.
THE VIVIENNE: Oh Geri, where's my dress?
MONET X CHANGE: Yes! What a great movie. They need to like-- I guess you can't remake it, because whatever. But honestly, I'm going to buy it on iTunes tonight and watch it. I fucking love "Spice World," it's one of the best films of the '90s period, period.
THE VIVIENNE: I think I watched it-- now here's a fun little bit of information. When we got a pass on "Drag Race" season one, we got told, because the acting challenge, we got told to watch "Spice World," "Downton Abbey," and "Gimme, Gimme Gimme," so obviously the acting challenge was going to be something to do with that. And I watched the first five minutes of "Spice Girls" and I turned it off. Yeah, I know.
MONET X CHANGE: Excuse me, the blasphemy!
THE VIVIENNE: I know, I was never Spice Girls gay. I mean, I like it, I'll dance to the music. When it comes on, it's like woo! But I was never, no I'm quite an old queen in my head. I'm very Bette Midler and Cher and--
MONET X CHANGE: I got you, I got you, I got you. Viv, I am so happy that we got to chat today. Listen, the lockdown is over on December 2nd. As soon as it's down, and it's OK, I want to come and visit you in Liverpool. I'm doing this vlogging thing while I'm here, it's going to called an American in London. So I want to come to Liverpool, and just have fun, and kiki, and do like all the Liverpoolian things.
THE VIVIENNE: Definitely. Well you're definitely invited. We'll make you a nice big dinner, and you can come meet David and the dog.
MONET X CHANGE: Yes, I love that. I would love, love, love, love, love that. Thank you so much, my dear. Stay healthy, Stay safe.
THE VIVIENNE: You too, love you loads. Mwah.
MONET X CHANGE: Love you, babe. I'll see you soon.
THE VIVIENNE: Bye.
MONET X CHANGE: You know, when I was a little something, I always had dreams and aspirations of being a Disney kid, but when they are as cute and as talented as our next guest, I knew I did not stand a snowball's chance in hell. Y'all, please welcome the very charismatic Garrett Clayton. Hey, girl.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Hi, thank you for having me.
MONET X CHANGE: Of course, thank you for being here. How are you doing?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I'm good, you know, just dancing away as usual.
MONET X CHANGE: Were you a dancer in high school?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I actually started learning how to dance late for a-- when I was in "Fame," which was one of my first musicals.
MONET X CHANGE: Oh my god, "Fame."
GARRETT CLAYTON: And I found out I could dance, right?
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, OK, wait. So you weren't the kid, like 9, 10 years old, doing like recitals then like tapping and all that shit. That wasn't you.
GARRETT CLAYTON: So it was really interesting, because I feel like when I found out I could dance, then I applied for a dual enrollment program in high school, so I could go to the college nearby and auditioned for the dance teacher. And she trained Sonia, who is one of the choreographers from "So You Think You Can Dance?" And so, she's an incredible dance teacher, and she saw me and said, well, how long have you been training? And I was like, I haven't, I just really like doing this.
And she said, so you've never had a teacher? And I was like, well no. And she told me I had a lot of natural ability, but it had to be honed. And then she put me into her dance company with all of these college dancers, and made me-- Basically, it was like, you have to take ballet, you have to take Jazz, you have to take-- in this company, you're going to learn how to tap, you're going to learn how to do Broadway style. She literally forced to crash course into my brain, and I'll never forget it.
MONET X CHANGE: Work, work, work, work, girl. I can barely walk and chew gum, so kudos to you. I know what my strengths are, and it's not doing any of the things you just said. But besides that, how does it feel to be from a state that fucking ended this regime Trump bullshit? Michigan came through.
GARRETT CLAYTON: I was so grateful to my home for pulling through in one-- I, when I found out, I cried. I literally escaped this weekend, because I was like, I've already done my part, I tried to warn people about the horror that comes into play in this world, especially if Trump is re-elected, and I can't-- It was very self-destructive, so I literally hid away in a little cabin this weekend with no cell service. And when we went to get food, I found out Biden won, and just started sobbing. And then found out Michigan was one of the places that helped make it happen.
MONET X CHANGE: Yes, child, Michigan really was like, uh uh. We're not standing, we're going get it together. And they helped to crumble the Trump regime, among Pennsylvania and Wisconsin and Nevada all those places. But Michigan was one of those key states, girl. Do you absentee or do you vote in LA?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I vote in LA.
MONET X CHANGE: OK, yeah. If I came like a really crazy state, I would like-- but I know that now that's like voter fraud if you like don't do that. I mean, I think committing a little voter fraud in order for the greater good is OK. I'm kidding. I'm kidding. Don't. That is a joke. Don't send any emails or tweets, that was a joke. Jesus Christ.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Honestly, if I could still vote in Michigan, I would. I've just been in LA, it was 10 years this year, so at this point, there's no hiding.
MONET X CHANGE: What? How old are you, girl? What have you lived in LA since you were a toddler?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I moved here and I was 19.
MONET X CHANGE: Word. You don't-- I mean, if you told me right now that you were 19 years old, I would be like yeah, that makes sense. That's some good moisturizer.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Stop it, stop it, stop it.
MONET X CHANGE: I tell the people that watch the show all the time, moisturizing is the key. Do you moisturize?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Mm-hmm.
MONET X CHANGE: See?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I do so much skincare.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, me too. I just recently got into skincare though. Like for the first like 23, 24 years of my life, I didn't do any skin care. And now it literally is like the thing that I feel like I wake up every day excited to skin care.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Oh yeah. That's a part of-- I was raised on it. My mom always told me, you have one body, you know. Your skin, if you don't take care your skin now, you're going to regret it for the rest of your life.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah 100%. How was your Halloween? I feel like everyone had very interesting COVID Halloweens. I'm very intrigued by what's your Halloween as a young Hollywood-er was.
GARRETT CLAYTON: My friend actually had a socially distant "Hocus Pocus" themed dinner.
MONET X CHANGE: Oh my god, I saw that on your IG, and you were Winifred.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yeah which is-- so, you know what? I wish I would have waited to do the video, because that was when I just was testing out the costume, but when I actually did it for that night, I did so many little extra things that made it way better. But I'm still grateful that it turned out as good as it did, so whatever.
MONET X CHANGE: Now did you do your own makeup?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Oh yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: Did you really?
GARRETT CLAYTON: On my life.
MONET X CHANGE: All right, bitch, I see you. I see you. I know celebrities want to look really, really, really good. When I see celebrities that don't do their own make up, to me that's part of the journey. Like, being like, I'm gonna watch these janky assed materials, and figure it out, instead of having like the perfect beat, or whatever. You know what I mean?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Totally. I actually I thank all of my theater experience for knowing how to do make up.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah. True. Which honestly is fully drag, and is all like-- that's literally what you learn how to do in the theater program. You learn how to paint drag, literally.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Mm-hmm.
MONET X CHANGE: Now you famously danced into our hearts as Link Larkin. You know, I think that was the last live TV musical, was it?
GARRETT CLAYTON: I think they did "Rent" right after, and then they canceled all the ones after "Rent."
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, yeah. How was it working with Ariana and all you guys who are from Nickelodeon and Disney? Like, you guys are now, the it kids. How was the "Hairspray" experience for you?
GARRETT CLAYTON: It was unbelievable. It was--
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
GARRETT CLAYTON: It's one of those times, like a check mark, that I could have never dreamed of. Because I was a kid when the "Hairspray" movie came out, and I was a kid when I was listening to the Broadway album of "Hairspray," and I'd always dreamed of doing the show. And I always was like, oh if they do a revival, or if they do it in London.
MONET X CHANGE: Right.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But then I never imagined that I could-- I mean it was a dream when I got to audition, but for it to come to fruition. And they built a whole new sound stage. We had a third of the Universal lot. There was everything.
MONET X CHANGE: That's so nuts.
GARRETT CLAYTON: The glamour of it, and-- Martin Short stopped me during the show actually. And right before the finale, and he was like, I don't know if I'm going to see you before this is over, because there's so many people here, but I have to tell you-- mind you, I'm like about to go on stage, and he's like, I think you're brilliant, I think you're funny, you have talent, you're going to go so far in this world. And I was like, oh my god, and I'm like Martin, you're incredible, you're amazing, and yes, I'm already a fan, but I'm going to start crying, and I have to go on stage and I can't start sobbing. I can't stop the beat right now.
MONET X CHANGE: Can you imagine? (SINGING) You can't stop the motion of the ocean--
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: Always got to be fierce. But yeah, I love Martin Short. I've never met him, but Martin Short was one of my biggest-- as a kid, I used to be obsessed with him. I have three very weird obsessions. I was obsessed with the dad from "Matilda," Danny DeVito, Martin Short, and I was also obsessed with Arnold Schwarzenegger because of "Kindergarten Cop." So now that you said that Martin Short was so nice, now I feel like my love for him is even more vindicated, so thank you for that.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Oh yeah. Oh yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: But "Hairspray" wasn't your big break. Disney, you were a Disney kid. I did not know that you were from Disney. Watching you do "Hairspray," I had no idea. How was it being a Disney kid with the intersectionality of being a queer kid, because I could only imagine the pressure, because you're playing these straight roles, and you're also trying to figure yourself out. Like, how is that for your brain for you as a kid?
GARRETT CLAYTON: It was, honestly it was crazy. I moved here, like I said, when I was 19. And I was a waiter at a 24 hour restaurant first. For two years, I worked 5 PM to 5 AM, like five, six days a week. And it was outside of that, just auditions and working and trying to find my break. And you know, growing up loving-- I loved watching Disney Channel and Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, all of these iconic stations that have really molded our generation, and to be a part of something that's still-- I'm still getting tagged on TikTok and Instagram, and all these people who do costumes for Halloween. And they'll create new sounds to dance to, and it's--
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But that pressure of trying to be the straight man or the heartthrob, it was really interesting, because I had a team of people, not from Disney Channel, because they didn't really say anything about my sexuality. It was the people that represented me that told me I had to be in the closet. And that they had to figure out how to handle me being gay. And so, I would get called after-- you know, my managers would check in with casting to see how gay I came across, and what we could do to fix it, or what we could do about it, or the way my posture was.
MONET X CHANGE: Yo, that's so crazy.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But it was everything. It was photo shoots, the way I would pose. Or it would be the way I spoke, I would have to use a lot more of a deep tone, and then slow down my cadence, and change my body language and the way I interacted with people. And I felt like a duality, and it was a real life crash course in how to be a completely different person. But it was detrimental for a few years. And I ended up going to therapy for two years after that, because it really messed with my head and my self-worth, an identity crisis, really.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah. I could imagine you're just trying to be your fucking self, trying to be you in posing for this thing or whatever, and then they're like, yeah it's too gay. Yeah, can you like pull the wrist up a little bit, and can you not tilt your head so much that way. I can only imagine, that sounds like literal torture.
GARRETT CLAYTON: It was crazy, especially going through that, not being able-- I couldn't talk to anyone. And I've been in a relationship for almost 10 years this coming February, and he was with me before any of this hit. We started dating when I was a waiter. And when they told me I had to be something else, and then I was-- because my actual name's Gary. I changed it to Garrett.
And I made Garrett a whole-- I literally, with my fiance now, we created who Garrett was going to be, the way he walked, the way he spoke, the way he acted, the way he interacted, the way he-- I had to meticulously create another person, so that I could protect the identity and-- Because the thing I always trying to make sure people hear is that I was never ashamed of who I was. I was ashamed of what I had to do to get into a position to help other people.
MONET X CHANGE: Wow.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But I wouldn't be in this position if I didn't do those things, because even since I've come out-- it's been two years, and for the last two-- like literally, if you look at my career up until the point I came out, I haven't done any film or TV since. And it's proof in the pudding, when you come out in this town, they shun you.
MONET X CHANGE: That is-- and you would think in 2020, you know, 2019 to 2018, I feel like these have been such informative-- and obviously, there's always more work to do, I'm not saying there isn't more work to do, but that there would be this awakening, and people realize that that is-- Sis, that's not in the mood. That's not how it all works. That's wow. That is so fucking shady. I hate that.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But you know what's great? And I've really come to terms with it, there's a lot of power and your truth. And I, whatever level of fame I've been put into this world currently, was as something else. And I think a lot of people, whether it's fans or young teens or whatever it is, some people love me for the truth, some people are like oh god, what happened? But there's a lot of power in that. And I get so many messages of love and thank you for expressing this. I'm not alone anymore. Or you know, your journey has helped me, kind of messages. And the beautiful part is, whenever that second wave of success, comes because a lot of us as actors realize success comes in waves. No matter who you are, Meryl Streep didn't work for 10, 15 years and she's an icon.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
GARRETT CLAYTON: And so, I know that this next phase of my life, when I do have that next hump of the projects that I start doing, it's going to be organic and authentic. And there's nothing to discover-- there's a lot to discover, myself, but there's nothing detrimental that people go, wait, you're what? That's just not going to be a thing. So I will have that second wave of success in my authenticity.
MONET X CHANGE: Do you regret coming out when you did? Like if you could, having the foresight that you do now, would you go back and change it, or maybe come out later, or change the way that you did things?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Not at all. I believe in my path. And I think it's the right time, and I've been grateful that it's helped a lot of young people, and it just-- You know, a good portion of the reason is, when I told my fiance I was ready to come out publicly, and come out about our relationship, and he was like, well what makes you want to do this now? And I said, because honestly, I'm just so happy that whatever the consequences are don't really matter. By this point, I have enough of a, resume I've proven I can do the job, and I'm qualified. So anybody that doesn't want to hire me because I'm gay can-- can I swear on this?
MONET X CHANGE: Girl, they can suck a bag of fucking dicks.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Great, anybody that doesn't want to hire me because I'm gay, can fuck off.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah. 100%.
GARRETT CLAYTON: And that's the attitude we have to have going forward as a community.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, and anybody who doesn't want to date me because I'm trans, anyone who doesn't want to hire me because I'm gay, anyone that doesn't want to sit next to me because I'm a lesbian, they can fuck off. It is literally none of my business that they do that. It is literally, that is them, that is their own issue, that's all their own shit, has nothing to do with me. I love, love, love that. Yeah.
Which has now brought you to this is new YouTube journey. Now, I watched your coming out story. You guys are, first of all, you guys are fiances, correct?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Mm-hmm.
MONET X CHANGE: You and Blake?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yeah.
MONET X CHANGE: Why were you in separate rooms? I was so confused. I'm like why don't they sleep next to each other?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Oh, you know what's funny, we weren't in separate rooms. That's our bedroom, and we just changed the angle. We just wanted something to cut to.
MONET X CHANGE: Got it, got it, got it, got it. I was like, why are they not-- I was like, are they in a fight? Is Garrett in the doghouse, girl? What is going on here?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Well for us, it was more we wanted things to cut to, back and forth. And if it was the same shot over and over, it felt a little stagnant.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, yeah. So talk to us about the series, and what is your goal with this series, and why were you inspired to do it?
GARRETT CLAYTON: So we created "A Gay in the Life," because American media is really insular. I've always said I wanted to use my platform to help people, and a lot of people say things like that, but they don't put it into action. And I believe I've always said, I want to get to a place where I have a voice that can be heard, a position that people see, and I can use it to put something good into the world. I don't know the repercussions of putting something good into the world, but I know that I'm doing my part. And that that's on top of-- you know, being a part of the queer community, I am also, just because I'm a piece of it, it means I need to learn about the other parts of it as much as possible, on how to be the best ally that I can be.
And so my fiance and I, this was, a good deal of his idea was, we thought American media is really insular. We hear about ourselves a lot. And while we have a lot of work to do here, there's still 20-something countries where you can die just for existing, just for being a part of our community. And so we thought, well, we don't know what the laws are everywhere. And also, what places can we get married? Where can we adopt? Where can we have a future? Where are we safe?
There's so many questions and so many parts of the world. We really wanted to open the door and have a safe space, because not only are we a part of the community and want to be good allies, but we know that we feel comfortable asking the questions. And so, whether I ask it in the wrong way or the right way, I'm going to be learning. And if I do ask it in the wrong way, I'll learn how to ask it the right way. And if I do ask it the right way, regardless of that, I can get the answer.
Because so many people want to learn how to be positive, reinforcing allies to every community, and it's just like when we were interviewing someone from the Native American community who identifies as two spirit, and that's having both masculine and feminine energy. And the person we talking to, John Sneezy, which best name ever.
MONET X CHANGE: Achoo, excuse me.
GARRETT CLAYTON: But was saying, that is something specific to the Native American community, and that they would appreciate if people didn't try and take it on into other--
MONET X CHANGE: I don't know that was specific to Native American folk. I didn't know that. You guys air episodes once a week?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yes.
MONET X CHANGE: What is your upload schedule? And what day, and what time, so we can tune in?
GARRETT CLAYTON: Our goal is Thursdays at 11:00, but you can see, we have episodes from all over the world, from a trans woman from the Philippines, a man who sought asylum from Russia. We have an episode coming up with the first lesbian couple who legally got married in San Paolo, and they've never done an interview before, so we'll be the first ones. And we have a translator so they can speak in their native tongue as well.
MONET X CHANGE: Love that, love that. Garrett, you seem really honest and really genuine, and I just love your energy, I'm very, very into it.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Thank you so much.
MONET X CHANGE: Good vibes, positive vibes, loving vibes.
GARRETT CLAYTON: I think when you have to spend too long pretending to be something you're not, when you finally can open your chest and your heart and be who you are, there's no more apologies. It's just, if you don't want this, that's OK, because I only want to be in places and with people that love and accept me for exactly who I am.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, we should definitely try to get some of that energy to Bianca Del Rio, she could use some of that. Garrett, thank you so much for chatting with me. I look forward to watching these episodes. Your series sounds really dope, and really, something that honestly, the world fucking needs right now, more queer stories, and more queer voices, and letting their stories be told out loud for more than just the people in their city or in their town, whatever, to know. I love that.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Oh well, thank you. And just to tie up the answer to your question. Our goal is to create an interweb of people so we can start figuring out-- obviously we're not martyrs. We realize we're not going to be the only source for this. There will be other things in the world, but in our way, to do our part, we want to figure out how we as a community can come together and start having base global rights for everyone.
We need to get rid of flogging and jungle law that demonizes, and thinks of us as satanic or demonic just because we exist. I'm gay, and I'm not making anyone go to bed that doesn't want to go with me to bed, or marry me that wants to marry me. If you don't like what I have, then go somewhere else. We don't need to push our narrative.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, it's literally, I'm with you, I don't understand how these laws exist in places. But again, I don't want to shade the religious community, but a lot of it is because of organized religion, and how it all works. But that's a whole other topic for a whole other episode.
GARRETT CLAYTON: It is.
MONET X CHANGE: It's so gross, and it drives me insane. I literally stay up at night sometimes, just thinking about how fucked up it is that that is some people's existence, like that is their life.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Hate is some people's existence.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yeah. That's the only way some people get ahead is by demonizing other people, and preying on other people's insecurities. And that, to be frank, those are weak-minded individuals. And it would stand a little bit better for their mentality to start embracing other people and other cultures, from different walks of life, and I think they would see we're not very different.
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah, agreed. Thank you so much, Garrett. And listen, be safe, stay healthy, and hopefully LA opens up soon. Before we started, he was telling me how the gyms aren't even open in LA, which I find to be so crazy because LA is such a gym town. So hopefully you guys get it together and you can go back to the gym soon.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Well I think there are private gyms open, but I-- at this point, I've just canceled my membership, and because of the pandemic, we have an at home gym at this point. Why am I going to waste money on what I got?
MONET X CHANGE: Yeah absolutely.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Have an amazing time doing your show. Congratulations.
MONET X CHANGE: Thank you, thank you, thank you, and we'll chat soon.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Yes, please.
MONET X CHANGE: Bye, my dear.
GARRETT CLAYTON: Goodbye.
MONET X CHANGE: Guys, that's all for this week, my first London episode, and I've already been getting in trouble for being too loud. I think I just speak with too much resonance. I just, I speak with too much resonance, I need to fix that. So, I'm going to maybe-- ASMR it up for these next couple episodes. I don't know.
Listen, thank you for tuning in, and watching me do this all of myself. I hope this episode makes sense. See? No nails, I feel disgusting. Don't look at me. Until next time, I love you guys. And remember to always keep your currency in check. Mwah. Ew. That's that Bob shit. OK. Bye.