Why The C*ck Destroyers’ “Slag Wars” Is the Next “Cultural Reset”

Host and narrator ChaseIcon weighs in.

ChaseIcon is living up to her name. The Wowie-nominated comedian and musician is probably best known for her viral voiceover videos where she pokes fun at celebrities like Kylie Jenner and Lady Gaga. Others discovered her work by way of her rapid-fire verses on tracks with hyper-pop heavy hitters, including Kyunchi, Nattalie Blake, and Only Fire.

And the cultural provocateur is just getting started. Beginning November 27, you can catch Icon as the host and narrator of Slag Wars: The Next Destroyer, a new “safe for work” digital reality series produced by Men.com. The show follows internet legends The Cock Destroyers (Rebecca More and Sophie Anderson) on their quest to discover the next queer sex symbol, and features Icon rattling off pithy one-liners as reality TV madness ensues.

NewNowNext caught up with Miss Icon over Zoom about what launched her career, her handling of online transphobia, and how Slag Wars is bringing old-fashioned camp to a new generation of queer viewers. (Full disclosure: I worked with Icon on Slag Wars as a writer-producer and was excited to connect with her about her background and personal experience.)

Courtesy of ChaseIcon
ChaseIcon.

Hi Chase! How are things in California? The election was crazy, quarantine is crazy, being iconic is crazy.

All true, all true. Things are really good. I don’t really go out much, so things are great in my little apartment. As far as the rest of the world? I hope they’re okay!

Speaking of life inside your apartment, that’s where the ChaseIcon story begins. You started going viral because of your voiceover videos and social media presence. What was the catalyst for you to start producing content?

It was definitely sparked from boredom. Just wanting to put something out there. Everyone in my life has always said—ugh, oh my gosh, this sounds annoying—but people were always saying I was “so unique” and “so funny,” and I was “going places.” But then I realized that I can’t go places if I never put anything into the world. So I started making random videos and tweeting stupid shit and just, you know, getting weird. Then it blew up!

It did blow up! You have very public friendships with a ton of celebrities, but you’re also really candid about the “normal” parts of your life, like the fact that you work at Starbucks. Is that duality part of your persona on purpose?

It is, in a way. It’s partly circumstantial. You know, if I could be living in a mansion in Beverly Hills, never have to work a day in my life, and be iconic in that way, that’d be great. But all that glitz and glam isn’t what makes someone a legend. You don’t have to be a part of the upper class. I’m just chilling, doing my thing, getting where I want to go, and I think that’s iconic in its own way.

Do you think that’s why you resonate so much with Gen Z?

Oh yeah. A lot of folks like me because I make myself a caricature of them in a way. I think people love the idea that I’m kind of a bridge between their own idols and the real world.
 

Speaking of idols, who are some of yours?

Oh my gosh, so many. I would say my biggest influence is, of course, Lady Gaga. Just the way she interacts with people and represents her own art, it’s what I try to model myself after in a lot of ways.

I’m inspired by a lot of the OG Twitter trolls. For example, BibleGirl. I love people who know how to give the audience shock value and really play the game but also keep people coming back for their star-quality. Also, Deven Green! She’s inspired so much of my comedy and my work, but also just my day-to-day life. She’s been so kind to me. I love her.

You’re a role model for a lot of young trans people, but being trans isn’t really the focal point of your work. Is that by design?

Totally. In a lot of ways, being trans feels like a huge part of who I am and a really small part of who I am. It influences a lot of my life, but I don’t make it the focal point. In my “normal” life, I almost never talk about being trans. It just doesn’t usually come up. But with the internet, I like to keep it super transparent and say, “This is who I am. So fuck you.”

Have you faced a lot of transphobia online?

For sure. You can go online and say anything about, like, wearing makeup or something, and you’ll get TERFs [trans exclusionary radical feminists] in your comments saying, “Oh, you think because you wear a miniskirt that you can perform femininity,” and, “You think you’re a woman.” But that doesn’t bother me because I just see it as someone else’s insecurity. If you have a problem with me being happy and living as myself, then that’s not my problem, it’s yours. In real life, I’ve dealt with plenty of transphobia as well. At one point, I was actually denied a job that I applied to because I was trans and they were a “Christian company.” So… it’s been fun! [Laughs] It is what it is. The amount of opportunities that have come from me living as my true self outweighs anything negative I’ve had to deal with.

You have had a bunch of opportunities lately. You’re the host and narrator for Slag Wars. How would you describe your role on the show?

I think the show in general really taps into a sense of camp and wit that we’ve been missing out on in reality TV. I’m definitely channeling the narrator from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. I’m sort of the voice of the audience watching at home. I think my sense of humor and weirdness really complements The Cock Destroyers.

You were a huge fan of Rebecca and Sophie before Slag Wars. What was it like getting to work on their first reality show?

They mean a lot to me. Rebecca has been the lock screen on my phone for years. She’s just everything. Sophie too. They’re both so beautiful, and their type of beauty is so special and unique. They’re like goddesses to me. To me, Slag Wars feels like their big moment. The fact that I get to be a part of it is so, so important to me. It’s a full-circle moment in a lot of ways.

The show follows Sophie and Rebecca’s hunt for the next queer sex symbol. So, what advice would you give an aspiring queer icon?

It’s about having a clear understanding of how people perceive you but at the same time not giving a fuck.

The show is safe for work, so there’s no sex or nudity, but it does star a group of sex workers and adult models. Do you think the world is ready to see sex workers in a new light?

I don’t think it matters if we’re ready for this conversation. We’re just gonna have it! Sex work is so common, and it’s how a lot of people in the LGBTQIA+ community make their money. It’s not something to be ashamed of or silenced [for]. There’s a massive overlap with people saying, “We shouldn’t be talking about sex work” who on the other side of the coin are the consumers of porn. So, we’re gonna tackle the conversation about sex work and OnlyFans from a really cool angle. I mean, Slag Wars is literally gonna be a cultural reset. Twitter will never be the same.

Any last words for your fans or haters?

If you’re a fan of me, I love you! If you’re a hater, why are you even reading this? You’re obsessed!

Slag Wars premieres November 27 on SlagWars.com.

Topher Cusumano is a full-time writer and part-time teen witch from Brooklyn. His work has been seen in SplitSider, Point in Case, Hornet Stories, and Marriott Traveler, and more.
@tophcus