Worst Netflix show for a face-blind viewer: Rupaul’s Drag Race

drawing of man, same man in drag, and bewildered old woman

Face-blind viewer bewildered by Rupaul’s Drag Race

Of course I enjoy Rupaul’s Drag Race in all its glory. But as a face-blind viewer I am continuously bewildered. Who is who?

The male characters in any movie or TV show have me flummoxed. For example, I’m a fan of House of Flowers but it stars three men with grey hair and facial hair, and they look identical to me. I guess it’s an economy measure, having one guy double, I mean treble, for three characters. But there are also at least four young handsome dark men, and they are also identical. That’s not economy, that’s parsimony. Luckily each actress plays only one  character. They may have similar faces (what would I know?) but they have other qualities that are individual, namely their voices and hairstyles and ages and shapes. All the characters say each other’s names frequently. Paulina! Elena! Diego! If not for that, I would have no idea of the plot.

However, for a face-blind viewer, Rupaul’s Drag Race is an impossible challenge. I’m watching Season 3 and as far as I can see there are 26 contestants: 13 men and 13 women. I don’t even try to match them up. Megastar Rupaul is the only one I recognise in both her forms.

But never mind the real live characters. My fellow prosopagnasians and I just watch it for the frocks.

7 thoughts on “Worst Netflix show for a face-blind viewer: Rupaul’s Drag Race

  1. Elizabeth says:

    Are you actually face blind?

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Yes I am. It’s a nuisance sometimes

      1. Elizabeth says:

        Wow. Have you written about that on the blog?

      2. Rachel McAlpine says:

        Maybe! Search for prosopagnosia on the blog…

      3. Elizabeth says:


  2. I’ve had moments of face blindness when I couldn’t distinguish between two students in a class. I hated being caught out calling them by the wrong name, but they would usually tell me it happens with other teachers too; they simply looked alike. The same with TV shows where diversity seems not to be considered in casting. Drag artists dress similarly too. Which isn’t to say that you aren’t face blind.

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Yeah, when you fail to recignise your own son or husband, that’s s clue 🙂

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