Videotaped at VH1 studios, New York. Executive producers, Lauren Zalaznick. Randy Barbato, Fenton Bailey; producer, Simon Breen; directors, Joe Palagreco, Mike Simon; segment producer, Kelly McKiernan; coordinating producers, Kristin Lindsey-Walter, Emily Schindel-Schmalholz; writer, Eve Claxton; RuPaul makes his debut as talkshow host in a lemony slip of a thing, and he wants lots of reassurance from the audience at VH1's New York studio -- as well as from First Guest, hoop star Dennis Rodman, a bad boy who shares his host's predilection for going girl-style -- that he's looking good.

Videotaped at VH1 studios, New York. Executive producers, Lauren Zalaznick. Randy Barbato, Fenton Bailey; producer, Simon Breen; directors, Joe Palagreco, Mike Simon; segment producer, Kelly McKiernan; coordinating producers, Kristin Lindsey-Walter, Emily Schindel-Schmalholz; writer, Eve Claxton; RuPaul makes his debut as talkshow host in a lemony slip of a thing, and he wants lots of reassurance from the audience at VH1’s New York studio — as well as from First Guest, hoop star Dennis Rodman, a bad boy who shares his host’s predilection for going girl-style — that he’s looking good.

“The RuPaul Show” isn’t the first camp gabfest featuring a cross-dressing queen of the night, but it’s probably the first since Uncle Miltie with a national audience. It’s unquestionably the tackiest, with production values barely a cut above cable access.

Rodman doesn’t disappoint, despite the absence of his preferred tube-top-and-hip-huggers ensemble. He appears in leather vest (nothing but tattoos underneath), a red cockscomb of a hat and regular guy-type pants. “You look great!” Ru coos. (It’s not insignificant that Rodman stars in his own new show for sister station MTV.)

RuPaul’s not what you’d mistake for an incisiveinterviewer. He does get to give Rodman a peck on the cheek, and Rodman comes across as someone unafraid of the conventional (this may not be news): “I tell my daughter it’s make believe,” he says of his various public personae. “It’s like, Dad is a cartoon.” Big cheer. And unlike many of his colleagues, he makes it clear that his sense of who he is isn’t the least bit compromised by the fact that he has many gay friends.

Future guests in the initial 10-week run include John Waters, Deborah Harry, Whoopi Goldberg and — can’t wait! — Captain and Tennille.

The Rupaul Show

Production

VH1, SAT. OCT. 12, 11 P.M.

Crew

Editor, Paul Dinatale. 30 MIN.
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