Trans influencer Nikita Dragun is no stranger to controversy. The longer she’s been in the spotlight, the longer her list of over-the-top stunts becomes. This includes accusations of culturally appropriating Black hair on multiple occasions, artificially darkening her skin color, and staying friends with influencers accused of abuse against minors, along with flouting public health guidelines during the height of the pandemic.
Dragun’s latest drama stems from a teaser video she dropped for a new song. Last week, the 25-year-old content creator posted a video preview of her new song, “DICK,” which amassed over 5 million views on Instagram and over 846,000 views on Twitter. Shortly after, her name began trending on Twitter along with rappers Tyga and Asian Doll.
She uploaded the video with a declaration that she is, “Nikita Dragun The First Trans Popstar,” which drew backlash from social media users who felt it was disrespectful to Kim Petras and Sophie. Dragun is hardly the first trans pop icon, and before Sophie’s death in January, both she and Petras had been producing music and carving out space for trans people within the entertainment industry.
To promote the video, Dragun posted influential transgender icons on her Instagram story but had the word, “DICK,” emblazoned across their eyes. Social media users called the move “disrespectful,” “disturbing,” and “fucking evil.”
“Can [you] stop trying to disrespectfully capitalize off of the memories of our dead sisters? Cuz I guarantee whatever drama arises from this won’t work out how [you] think it will," one person warned Dragun in a tweet.
The situation has highlighted the controversy that Dragun has actively courted in pursuit of fame, and how social media has helped create this sort of influencer career.
In the video itself, Dragun raps over a horn-filled beat with a thumping bass as she repeats the word, “dick,” over and over before getting into her first verse. “Hoes don’t like me but I still hear them talking,” she raps as screenshots of tweets summing up a couple of her latest controversies appear in the video. She continues to rap, “Come get your boyfriend because he’s on my page stalking/I blocked his number but somehow he’s still calling.”
As she raps this line, the video shows screenshots of her ex-boyfriend, Michael Yerger, with the word “DICK” written across his eyes. Yerger and Dragun have a complicated past. In a video Dragun posted in 2018, titled “I Hired a Boyfriend,” she claimed to have found the aspiring model on Craigslist and paid him to be her boyfriend, but later walked back those claims and said, “It was just a really great video title.” Dragun announced their breakup in a 2019 video and then Yerger was seen dating former Hype House member and co-founder, Daisy Keech.
According to Def Noodles, an influencer watchdog account on Twitter, Dragun posted a screenshot of an interaction Yerger had in the comments sections of the video, which she also posted on Instagram. “I honestly just feel bad for [you] at this point,” Yerger wrote. Dragun responded with, “But you [were] just telling Tana and Ari [you] wished your new girl could suck dick like me. [You] miss stroking my DICK huh.”
Dragun also included photos of other men in the video, presumably insinuating that they had either had sex with her or wanted to have sex with her. One photo included that of a half-dressed Harry Jowsey, the “Too Hot to Handle” star turned influencer, while another screenshot included an alleged Instagram direct message from rapper Tyga.
The rapper later responded to his inclusion of “likeness” in the video with a screenshot from the video that explained why he was in her DMs. “My company shot and directed a music video for her a while back that never dropped,” he clarified.
“Ladies and gentlemen, clout kills,” he concluded.
The infamous influencer continued with the line, “You be wearing shit that I already wore,” where she begins to include photos of women wearing outfits that she claimed are similar to things she’s already worn. A photo of the rapper Asian Doll on a red carpet was in the video and the Dallas native rapper swiftly responded to the accusation that she copied Dragun.
The rapper went on a transphobic rant on Twitter and misgendered Dragun multiple times, using the pronouns “he” and “him” for Dragun. According to a screenshot of Instagram comments she left on a post Asian Doll said, “Nikita will get dragged by that bald ass head of his… DON’T PLAY WITH ME.”
She continued by saying in a different comment that Dragun has tried to make herself look like a Black woman. Asian Doll brought up the accusations that she artificially darkens her skin, while also saying that Dragun has lace front wigs, got lip fillers, and a bigger butt to look like a Black woman.
Asian Doll continued to tweet, refusing to back down from her transphobic stance although multiple social media users explained that you could be upset with someone and still respect their gender identity.
In response to Asian Doll’s rant, Dragun posted a statement on her Instagram story that said, “Respectfully @asiandabrat___ this statement was to show that Trans women set the trends for cisgender females, yet never get the credit. This was not meant to be shady towards you, you just happened to be an example.”
It’s perhaps not a surprise that Dragun has been accused of using the fact she’s trans to avoid accountability for these various stunts. Following the upset she caused with her song, she posted another statement to her Instagram story saying that her song “sets Trans Women free.” She then goes on to state that the song will never be released, and that she made the song so she could “pussystunt in my DICK dress.”
@PabloTheDon, a popular music and culture critic on TikTok, made a video succinctly explaining Dragun’s problematic behavior. “I understand that controversy breeds streams and revenue and attention, but all this self-serving bullshit that she’s doing is literally so regressive and so reductive to all the actual work that trans activists and trans celebrities have been doing in order to become more of a power player in this society.”