'Legendary' on HBO Max: St Laurent's Champ reveals his struggle of being gay in the African American community
The legendary house of St. Laurent became a household name after being the focus of the documentary 'Paris is Burning' and is one of the competitors on 'Legendary'. The house comprises of Miss Shalae, the mother of the house, Champ, Pretty, Mikoko, and Christian. While they are all very strong and confident performers now, it wasn't always the case and the show highlights the struggles they faced while growing up.
One such story is of Champ. At a glance, he's this masculine and buffed up male that no one can dare mess with. He looks intimidating but he had to create that persona to protect himself after a not so pleasant childhood. In the pre-taped introductory video that played before the group took the stage, Shalae introduced her house and its members. Describing themselves as elite, definitely cut above the standard, the annihilation of the senses and dramatic as well as show-stopping - St. Laurent was ready to take on the show. However, they were not born this way, they worked towards being the greatest not only on stage but in their personal lives as well. In the same video, Champ told the camera, that they all come from different walks of life and were not born into excellency. Champ mentioned that he was born in the 'hood and all the men in his family were strong except for him, when he was a child. He mentioned that not a lot of people in the African-American community are gay or bisexual and he was not accepted. He concluded with "Now I am the one to beat and I am not getting beat".
Miss Shalae too had her set of hardships while growing up. She admitted that she was misunderstood because of her trans identity and had to endure a lot of emotional abuse too. However, the strength to finally transition physically and emotionally has molded her and made her what she is today. She also said this beautiful sentence, "through hurt and brokenness is born the flower that grew from concrete" highlighting that we create and are responsible for our own happiness.
Other members of the group are Mikoko who is the fashionista with the belief that no day is dress down day and to feel great one must dress great. Then there is Christian with the clear as crystal skin and defined cheekbones, that man is stunning! Also part of the group is Pretty who Shalae defined as her smart and intelligent right hand.