Post Mortems

New UnMasked Singer on a 'Too Obvious' Costume Tweak and Why Miley Cyrus Was on Her Radar

We’d understand if you had a hard time recognizing The Masked Singer‘s T-Rex before her unmasking in Wednesday’s episode: The person inside her was so bouncy, so energetic, so constantly in motion that it was hard to pin her down — in any sense.

“The T-Rex, I wanted to make sure that her energy was crazy,” says the dino, aka YouTube star JoJo Siwa, when TVLine chats with her Wednesday. “When I got there, they said, ‘What’s your thing going to be?’ I said, ‘I want to be unstoppable. I want to have the most energy ever.'” (Read a recap of this week’s episode here.)

Mission accomplished. Read on for the Dance Moms alum/bow enthusiast/highly successful YouTuber’s thoughts on her prehistoric musical turn.

TVLINE | When you were singing Salt-n- Pepa’s “Push It” last week, I noticed you nailed the words.
Thank you!

TVLINE | You’re 16, correct?
I’m 16, yes.

TVLINE | I know the words because I was alive when it was on the radio. But you’re so young — did you know that song, or did you have to study up on it?
I did have to study up on it! Because everybody knows, “Ah, push it! Push it real good!” Then I knew the beginning of it, “Salt-n-Pepa’s here,” but I didn’t know what the real lyrics were? I was like, “Salt-n-Pepa’s here and we’re gettin’ back, it’s time to push it back” and then I learned that oh my God no, the lyrics are, “Salt-n-Pepa’s here and we’re in effect, want you to push it back.” [Continues to rap the song] All the different “Yo yo yo yo”s, how many there were. It took a lot of practice. [Laughs]

TVLINE | You got your start on Dance Moms. What was harder: Performing in that cumbersome T-Rex costume or getting dressed down by Abby Lee Miller when you did something wrong?
Oh, that’s a good one. I’m not going to say. You know Kendall [Vertes] from Dance Moms, she actually put it [well]. Someone asked her, if she could go back to Dance Moms, would she? Or did she regret it? She said “I don’t regret doing it. I wouldn’t do it again, but I just wish I could have one more day.” And that’s so true with Dance Moms, because we all — I mean, I didn’t, but I did at the same time — I remember having fun and loving it, but we really took it for granted. That’s something that I just learned. Now, with what’s going on in the world, obviously the coronavirus, we take a lot of things for granted. And that’s what happened on Dance Moms. Even though it was so hard, it was always so fun.

The same thing for Masked Singer. I took it for granted for a second in the beginning but then I was like, “Wait, JoJo. You need to enjoy every second of this, even though it’s hard. Even though you can’t breathe. It’s worth a minute-and-a-half of your life you can’t breathe for three weeks of amazing people. I was like, “Knock it off. You are having the time of your life right now. Just enjoy it.”

TVLINE | I’m kind of surprised you didn’t work any bows into your costume.
We were going to do something, because all of the JoJo bows have a tag on them, a little silver tag. We couldn’t put a bow on, because that would just be too obvious. I said to the costume designer, “We should put a little silver charm on it to represent the tag.” And then I think it just fell through.

TVLINE | You didn’t sing any Miley Cyrus songs.
My next song that I requested to do was either “Another One Bites the Dust” [by Queen] or “Can’t Be Tamed” [by Cyrus]. I thought T-Rex and “Can’t Be Tamed” would be so fun and so good. No, I didn’t do any Miley songs. But it’s OK. Miley knows I love her.