Coco Montrese is the stage name of Martin Cooper, an American drag queen, performer, pageant contestant, reality television personality, and Las Vegas entertainer. She rose to prominence with her appearance as a contestant on Season 5 of RuPaul's Drag Race. A focal point of her time on RuPaul's Drag Race often surrounded her feud with Alyssa Edwards that began before the show's run.
Coco also became known for her strong lip-syncing and performance skills which saved her from elimination numerous times and led her to be named the "lip sync assassin" of Season 5. Coco placed in the bottom two a record-breaking four times throughout her time in the competition. She was ultimately eliminated in Episode 10, losing in a lip sync against Detox, placing 5th in the competition. Coco is still considered today to be one of the best lip-syncers to be on the show.
Her strong personality, rivalry with Alyssa, internet meme status due to the fight with Alyssa Edwards about her orange make-up, status as a "lip-sync assassin" and a fan favorite led to her earning a spot on All Stars 2. By this point, she and Alyssa were no longer feuding and had restored their friendship and Coco was considered a favorite for the title. Unfortunately, she was eliminated in the first episode after a Talent Show Challenge by fellow Season 5 queen Roxxxy Andrews after the introduction of the new All Stars twist, the Lip Sync for Your Legacy. She had a chance to come back to the competition in episode 5, but was unsuccessful in doing so, thus finishing in 10th place.
RuPaul's Drag Race
In November 2012, Logo announced that Coco Montrese was among 14 drag queens who would be competing on the fifth season of RuPaul's Drag Race. During episode 1, "RuPaullywood or Bust", a rivalry between Montrese and fellow contestant Alyssa Edwards emerged. Both queens had previously competed in the 2010 Miss Gay America competition. The rivalry between both queens came from the fact that Alyssa was disqualified from the competition after being crowned, with Coco, the runner-up, taking her crown. The rivalry between the two is a major focal point during much of Season 5.
In Episode 4, "Black Swan: Why It Gotta Be Black?", Coco won her first mini-challenge, and was made a team captain. During the week, the queens were challenged to prove their elegance and dancing skills by starring in a ballet based on the life of RuPaul. Coco shocked everyone when she picked Alyssa as her first choice on her team. In an interview, she stated that she did this because of Alyssa's dancing abilities.
The main challenge of Episode 6, "Can I Get An Amen?" had the queens record a "We Are the World"-inspired charity single. Coco Montrese was paired up with Alyssa Edwards, much to Coco's frustration, and were assigned the first verse. Coco landed in the bottom two for the second time (the first being against Monica Beverly Hillz) for being too much in her head during the challenge, along with contestant Jade Jolie, but was ultimately saved from elimination.
Coco won her first and only main challenge on Episode 7, "RuPaul Roast" where she was praised by the judges for her entire performance and her look.
Alyssa and Coco had to lip-sync against each other in Episode 9 "Drama Queens", when they both landed in the bottom two. Alyssa was ultimately eliminated, with Coco getting to stay one more week, which did not settle well with fans. On Episode 10, "Super Troopers", the queens were challenged to give a gay veteran a drag makeover. After Coco's veteran's makeup received very negative feedback from the panel judges, Coco landed in the bottom two once again where she lip-synced against fellow contestant Detox. Coco was finally eliminated, after being in the bottom two a total of four times (A record only beaten by Roxxxy Andrews who placed in the bottom five times on All Stars 2), placing 5th in the competition.
All Stars 2
On episode 1, the queens were challenged to compete in RuPaul's All-Star Talent Show Extravaganza. Coco decided to do a dance routine, but the judges said her outfit was so long, they couldn't see the dance. The judges also thought the dance was "predictable", her makeup was terrible and noticed that she didn't have enough time to make her hands to same color as her face. After the lip-sync between Roxxxy Andrews and Tatianna, Roxxxy won and decided to send Coco home. During the credits, you see Coco talking to the camera when a video from RuPaul starts and she tells Coco that she has the chance to return for her revenge.
Before being invited to All Stars, she was in the hospital after her lungs collapsed while being on tour. She stated that she did not eat while she was traveling, which led to the collapse. She said that she originally didn't tell anyone so the voting process on All Stars 2 would be fair. As of today, she is healthy and eats normally.
RuPaul's Drag Race
|Season Competed||Season 5||All Stars 2|
|Ranking:||5th Place||10th Place|
|Mini-Challenges Won:||1 (Ep. 4)||0|
|Times as Team Captain:||1 (Ep. 4)||0|
|Times Placed High||1 (Ep. 2)||0|
|Main Challenges Won:||1 (Ep. 7)||0|
|Times Placed Low||1 (Ep. 8)||0|
|Times in Bottom:||4 (Eps. 3, 6, 9, 10)||1 (Ep. 1)|
|Episode Eliminated||Episode 10||Episode 1|
Drag Name Origin
Her drag mother Mokha Montrese named her Coco Montrese. Coco almost named herself Paris.
"Oh boys, the diva has arrived!"
All Stars 2
"Orange you girls happy to see me?"
- "I'M NOT JOKING, BITCH!" (To Alyssa Edwards)
- "I lost all hope today."
- "Serena ChaCha.... Better ChaCha your way outta here! Ole!"
- "Don't TRY it, 'lil boy!" (To Serena ChaCha in Episode 2's untucked)
- "No RuPaulogies."
- "I'm not no dummy y'all."
- "Get her, Jade!"
- "The only thing funny about Alyssa is her overbite."
- "You a shady bitch."
- "Yeah, thanks Detox."
- "Yes girl! Look how orange I look!'' (To Alyssa Edwards)
- "Oh I'm not holding shit back, oh at all." (After being told she can return for RuVenge in All Stars 2)
- "Fuck you, Alyssa!"
- "Someone forgot to tell them that black people don’t swim. Thank God I’m Dominican." (In Episode 1, during the confessionals of the photo shoot mini challenge)
Season 5 Looks
All Stars 2 Looks
- During season 5's "Snatch Game", Coco impersonated singer Janet Jackson, a celebrity she regularly impersonates during her Las Vegas show.
- She is the first queen to be eliminated with the "Lip Sync For Your Legacy" format.
- She is one of three queens, along with Season 11 contestant Ra'Jah O'Hara and Season 12 contestant Heidi N Closet, to lip-sync four times in one regular season before the finale of that season.
- Coco is one of the only queens to place in the bottom 2 in their season 3 times and not be eliminated for the third lip-sync. The others to do this are Jujubee of Season 2, Alexis Mateo of Season 3, Darienne Lake of Season 6, Kameron Michaels of Season 10, Ra'Jah O'Hara of Season 11, and Heidi N Closet of Season 12.
- She appeared on Toddlers and Tiaras as a judge of the Mr. and Ms. Nevada pageant along with Season 4's Chad Michaels and Season 8's Derrick Barry.
- She is the drag mother of Season 11 contestant Kahanna Montrese.
- Coco Montrese won Miss Gay America in 2010, replacing Alyssa Edwards. The pageant was also won by Asia O'Hara in 2016.
- Coco trained Alexis Mateo for her first pageant.
- Coco, alongside her Drag Daughter Kahanna Montrese, was a contestant on RuPaul's Drag Race: Live in Las Vegas. Other contestants include Derrick Barry, India Ferrah and Shannel.
- Coco is the second queen to place 5th on her original season to go home first in an All Stars season. She followed Pandora Boxx in All Stars 1 and she was followed by Derrick Barry in All Stars 5.
- Coco is the first queen ever to wear leopard print in her entrance look. This trend was followed by Joslyn Fox, Baga Chipz, Vinegar Strokes, Brita, Janey Jacké and Sederginne.
- In 2008, Coco won the inaugural Miss Gay Days pageant. Other RuGirls who have won the title include Alisa Summers (2010) and Alexis Mateo (2016)
- Coco is the first “first-out” that won a challenge in their original season, she was later followed by Morgan McMichaels on All Stars 3 and Derrick Barry on All Stars 5.
4th: Detox • 5th: Coco Montrese • 6th: Alyssa Edwards • 7th: Ivy Winters (Miss Congeniality) • 8th: Jade Jolie • 9th: Lineysha Sparx • 10th & 11th: Honey Mahogany & Vivienne Pinay • 12th: Monica Beverly Hillz • 13th: Serena ChaCha • 14th: Penny Tration
Jason Carter • Shawn Morales
Jason Carter • Miles Davis Moody • Bryce Eilenberg