Photo courtesy of BenDeLaCreme Presents

Jinkx Monsoon and BenDeLaCreme Holiday Show

You better watch out, you better not cry, because global drag icons and RuPaul’s Drag Race stars, BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon are coming back to town with the wildly successful, internationally acclaimed The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show (Produced by BenDeLaCreme Presents). The 22-city North American tour will run from November 23 - December 30 across the U.S. and Canada with a new show written by Jinkx & DeLa that proves why they’re still the reigning “queens of Christmas” (Entertainment Weekly).

General on-sale begins July 7 at 10am PT / 11am MT / 12pm CT / 1pm ET / 6pm BT.

Following the massive success of three previous holiday tours, fans can expect another year of fabulous spectacle, whip-smart comedy, brand new songs, and annual favorites. Join the sugary DeLa and spicy Jinkx for an evening The New York Times says is “sure to lift your spirits and make you howl with laughter.”

BenDeLaCreme says, “The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show is joyous, hilarious, surrealist, communal, and heartwarming. Nothing makes me feel more connected to the good in the world than the seas of people we get to celebrate the season with night after night--laughing, cheering, and being in our feelings together. I’m so lucky to get to experience that each year, and I hope you all will experience it with us.”

Jinkx Monsoon (who’s currently slaying the competition on All Stars 7) adds, “The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show will take everything you expect from a drag queen variety show, and spin it on its side. It will test the limits of stupidity while being unexpectedly deep and reflective. We strive for entertainment while always proving that the holidays are for you to celebrate however you want to.”

BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon are the sole writers of their holiday shows, a major achievement for two drag artists who tour at such a large scale each year. Jinkx says, “I think it is important that the show is created BY us, so it's decidedly FOR us, and those like us. So often, queer and drag stories are written by outsiders, and lack an authenticity that queer audiences crave. Creating the show ourselves, from the ground up, ensures that that authenticity is infused in every aspect of the production.”

DeLa adds, “Jinkx and I LOVE writing. We are passionate and have something to say. It comes from the heart. Writing AND performing as a combo is the best way for us to express what drives us as artists and as humans and fortunately, on top of that, people just happen to think we’re very funny.”

For the past four years, Jinkx and DeLa have owned the season with their sold-out holiday tours including To Jesus, Thanks for Everything in 2018, All I Want for Christmas Is Attention in 2019 and The Return of the Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show, LIVE! In 2021. In 2020, BenDeLaCreme produced her first-ever film under BenDeLaCreme Presents with The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Special (Hulu / PVOD), a 60-minute variety special made for the screen. The special debuted to critical acclaim and solidified itself as a global queer holiday must-watch for years to come.

The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show is co-written and co-created by BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon, directed by BenDeLaCreme, and produced by BenDeLaCreme Presents, a company comprised of producers BenDeLaCreme, Kevin Heard, and Gus Lanza. For more information, and to sign up for updates, visit jinkxanddela.com.

Additional dates across the UK will be announced shortly.

Tour Dates

November 23 - Buffalo, NY (Riviera Theatre)

November 25 - Toronto, ON (Queen Elizabeth Theatre)

November 26 - Ottawa, ON (Algonquin Commons Theatre)

November 27 - Montreal, QC (Olympia)

November 29 - Boston, MA (Chevalier Theatre)

November 30 - Philadelphia, PA (The Fillmore)

December 2 - New York, NY (Town Hall)

December 3 - New York, NY (Town Hall)

December 4 - Washington, DC (Lincoln Theatre)

December 6 - St. Paul, MN (The Fitzgerald Theater)

December 7 - Chicago, IL (Auditorium Theatre)

December 8 - Detroit, MI (Royal Oak Music Theatre)

December 9 - Indianapolis (Murat Theatre at Old National Centre)

December 11 - Austin, TX (Paramount Theatre)

December 12 - Dallas, TX (Majestic Theatre)

December 14 - Denver, CO (Paramount Theatre)

December 16 - San Diego, CA (Balboa Theatre)

December 17 - San Francisco, CA (The Warfield)

December 18 - Los Angeles, CA (Orpheum Theatre)

December 21 - Seattle, WA (Moore Theatre)

December 22 - Seattle, WA (Moore Theatre)

December 23 - Seattle, WA (Moore Theatre)

December 24 - Seattle, WA (Moore Theatre)

December 27 - Portland, OR (Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall)

December 29 - Calgary, AB (Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium)

December 30 - Vancouver, BC (Vogue Theatre)

About BenDeLaCreme

BenDeLaCreme posing for her new holiday show.

BenDeLaCreme

Photo courtesy of BenDeLaCreme Presents

Director, Producer, Co-Creator, Co-Writer, Starring as Herself

Sweet as pie and sharp as cheddar, the Terminally Delightful BenDeLaCreme is known for combining her background in performing and visual arts with a love of spectacle, glamor, and Saturday morning cartoons.

She has dazzled crowds throughout the Americas, Europe, and Australia, premiered four critically acclaimed solo shows Off-Broadway, as well as written, directed, and produced myriad narrative works and variety spectaculars that have played to sold-out audiences for over a decade. BenDeLaCreme’s live performances have received glowing reviews: “Keeping you entertained while making you think about your place in the world is all a part of the BenDeLaCreme experience,” said Forbes and Billboard raves that her work “...soars past entertainment and into the realm of theatrical art.”

BenDeLaCreme has appeared on two seasons of the Emmy Award-winning RuPaul's Drag Race, her first go-round securing her a spot among the show’s “15 Fan Favorites of All Time.” After being crowned “Miss Congeniality” on Season 6, she returned to compete on the third season of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars on VH1 where she garnered more challenge wins than any other competitor in the show’s history, among other series records.

Continuing to break new ground by, and for, drag artists, DeLa’s production company, BenDeLaCreme Presents, produced its first national tour in 2018 with, To Jesus, Thanks for Everything! -Jinkx and DeLa, co-created and co-written by BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon. In 2019, the queens hit the road again with a brand new holiday show titled All I Want for Christmas is Attention. That tour was a sold-out sensation and marked DeLa’s first producer credit for an international tour. In 2020, BenDeLaCreme self-produced, directed, and co-wrote her debut film under BenDeLaCreme Presents, The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Special which became a critical and commercial success, leading to an exclusive licensing deal with Hulu. Her 2021 holiday tour, The Return of the Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show, LIVE!, marked the queen’s highest-grossing tour under BenDeLaCreme Presents, further showcasing DeLa’s growing impact within the drag and theater industry as a producing powerhouse. In 2022, DeLa returned to her critically-hailed solo show, BenDeLaCreme is…Ready To Be Committed for her biggest international solo tour yet.

About Jinx Monsoon

Jinkx Monsoon posing for her new holiday show.

Jinkx Monsoon

Photo courtesy of BenDeLaCreme Presents

Co-Creator, Co-Writer, Starring as Herself

RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Jinkx Monsoon is the “internationally tolerated” cabaret icon who’s taken over the entertainment industry as an award-winning actress, acclaimed vocalist, and theatre sensation. She’s now competing on RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars Season 7 amongst a cast of all winning contestants.

Since gaining a massive international fan base, Jinkx has toured the world performing her original cabaret shows with music partner Major Scales, including highly-acclaimed shows like The Ginger Snapped, The Vaudevillians (which became a hit off-broadway sensation), and their most recent production, Together Again, Again (2022). In 2018, she partnered with best friend and fellow RuPaul’s Drag Race star, BenDeLaCreme for their first major holiday tour To Jesus, Thanks for Everything! - Jinkx and DeLa. Jinkx and DeLa’s co-written holiday productions have grown into a worldwide phenomenon, spawning the 2019 tour, All I Want for Christmas is Attention, a Hulu holiday hit, The Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Special (2020), and The Return of the Jinkx & DeLa Holiday Show, LIVE! (2021) which performed for sold-out audiences across the U.S., U.K., and Canada.

She is an award-winning stage actress, having won the Gregory Award for her portrayal of Hedwig in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and most recently, The MAC Award for her show The Ginger Snapped, co-written with Major Scales. No stranger to film and TV, Jinkx has appeared on the CBS cop drama Blue Bloods, the Netflix original AJ and the Queen, and has voiced characters for such animated shows as Steven Universe, Mighty Magiswords, Bravest Warriors, as well as a few surprises that are yet to come! Jinkx has been the subject of two documentaries: Drag Becomes Him and The Queens.

Jinkx is gearing up for the release of her new EP out summer 2022 and has dropped the lead single and music video for the project, “Know-It-All” written by Major Scales. Jinkx has released two albums featuring original music by Major Scales: The Inevitable Album and The Ginger Snapped.

Jinkx has been the subject of two documentaries: Drag Becomes Him and The Queens. She is an award-winning stage actress, having won the Gregory Award for her portrayal of Hedwig in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and most recently, The MAC Award for her show The Ginger Snapped.

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Mjolnir

Like many of the recent Marvel Cinematic Universe films, LGBTQ+ fans awaited the release of Thor: Love and Thunder in open anticipation of the inclusivity that both Marvel and Disney had promised. However, the fans were only setting themselves up for disappointment when the film was finally released.

Despite passionate assurances from studio heads to key actors, Thor: Love and Thunder was NOT spectacularly gay. It wasn’t even that good…

Premiere Night Promises

A bolt of lightning cuts across a rainbow on a dark and stormy night.

Lightning bold across the sky

Photo by Bill D.

Standing on the red carpet at the London Premiere of the film, director and actor Taika Waititi and fellow cast members Natalie Portman and Tessa Thompson were offered up the inevitable question: “How gay is the film?

Amidst some laughter from the crowds, Waititi gestured towards Portman to respond. The actress (who plays Thor’s love interest, Jane Foster, throughout the franchise) raised the microphone to her lips and thought for a moment, before delivering a quiet yet fateful: “So gay!

Barely a moment had passed before the gathered fans went wild and Taika Waititi gave his own verdict: “Super gay!”. Tessa Thompson made no statement on the ‘gayness’ of the film, instead opting to swing her microphone around suggestively. As more cheers erupted, a second round of “super gay” slipped out of Waititi’s mouth, before he urged the fans to enjoy the film.

Thor: Love and Thunder’s LGBTQ+ Potential

Thor’s movie-goers were definitely hyped up for a gay extravaganza and they had a specific character in mind. The fan-favorite Valkyrie, played by Tessa Thompson, stumbled her way into the MCU during Thor’s third film, Ragnarok. The Asgardian warrior won many people over with her wit, sarcasm, and pure badassery.

After the events of Avengers: Endgame *spoilers*, Thor Odinson gives up his claim to the throne of Asgard and names Valkyrie as king in his stead. This left many fans excited to see what would become of the character, especially after certain revelations were made at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con:

“As a new king, she has to find her queen. So that’ll be her first order of business.”

With these words, Tessa Thompson threw her LGBTQ+ fans into a frenzy, with heavy expectations for the then-upcoming fourth installment of the Thor films. Indeed, in an interview with the LA Times, shortly before the film's release, Tessa Thompson was asked to comment on the sexuality of her character. She responded with several promising remarks, including “there’s a lot of folks that are righteously very hungry for that representation to exist in these movies, as am I”.

*Warning: spoilers ahead!*

So, How Gay Was Thor 4?

To put it simply: not gay at all. Not only did Valkyrie end up without a fabulous new queen, her non-heteronormative sexuality only got the barest mention (a brief line about a previous, now dead, girlfriend). Valkyrie may have made bedroom eyes at some pretty ladies before an action scene spoils the moment, but that’s about as much as we get.

The film does get some credit for introducing a trans character in a minor yet significant role. Thor returns to his people (after a brief stint as a Guardian of the Galaxy) only to find out that the daughter of one of his closest (and deceased) friends is now a boy. The issue is, whether due to personal prejudice or some alien inability to grasp the concept of being transgender, it does take Thor a frustrating few moments to come to terms with the change. And to stop deadnaming.

In fact, the only concession to the queer community was Taika Waititi’s extraterrestrial character Korg finding a husband in one of the closing scenes. This heartfelt moment was somewhat underscored by the revelation that Korg’s entire species is male, meaning he had no other choice but to be ‘gay’.

This Is Not Marvel’s First Queerbaiting Attempt

Close up of an eye reflecting an unknown scene as a rainbow crosses the image.

Photo by Harry Q.

This is, by far, not the first time that LGBTQ+ fans have been sorely disappointed by the workings of Marvel and Disney. In fact, people across many social media platforms have been chiding expectant viewers for once again falling for classic queerbaiting tactics. “Being queerbaited by the MCU is like being a golden retriever with a human who always pretends to throw the ball”, one Tumblr user declared.

Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson, was the perfect moment for the MCU to introduce its first lesbian lead. Larson’s character seemed to have an intense relationship with another woman, going so far as to help raise her child (before Larson’s Carol Danvers disappeared from Earth for 6 years). Despite leaning into several romantic tropes, the status of their relationship was never fully fleshed out. However, it was also the franchise’s first female-led superhero movie, so maybe they thought that introducing her as a lesbian would make the film too awesome.

The heavily anticipated Avengers: Endgame was also slated to introduce the MCU’s ‘first gay character'. While many fans were excited, particularly as this would be the second of Larson’s appearances on screen, the big gay build-up was a massive letdown. The film’s director Joe Russo made a cameo as a blip survivor mourning the loss of his husband. A five-second throw-away scene that had no impact on the outcome of the film. Big whoop...

Even when we did see a film with a gay lead, The Eternals, there were also ten other straight leads. At that point, it just seemed more like basic probability than an attempt at pushing LGBT+ superheroes into the spotlight.

Why Can’t Disney Let Marvel Be Gay?

The big problem with allowing a few characters to be anything other than cishet is that there are still many countries in the world that outlaw homosexuality. As much as we like to think that the MCU is being made for comic book fans, we all know the purpose of the films is to make money for Disney. And without certain markets in Asia and the Middle East, Disney wouldn’t be raking in up to (and over) one billion dollars per theatrical release.

Is There Any Hope For LGBTQ+ Fans In The MCU’s Future?

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the second in the much-loved Black Panther arc, will be released in cinemas this November. The studio has confirmed that the film will contain a queer character. Actress Michaela Coel will play Aneka, a warrior, and trainer of the king’s guard. Whether or not her diversity will stand out in the film (let alone endure for more than a 10-second scene that can be easily cut) remains to be seen.


Next year’s The Marvels film, starring Brie Larson, Iman Vellani, and Lashana Lynch may offer the MCU a chance to redeem itself in the eyes of its LGBT+ fans. The studios may feel it’s finally time to offer us the heartwarming lesbian relationship between Larson’s Carol Danvers and Lynch’s Maria Rambeau that seemed to be teased in the first Captain Marvel. Don’t raise your hopes too high, though, as you may yet end up as a stubborn golden retriever waiting for a cinematic universe to finally throw that rainbow ball.