This was an A+ episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race!
Last week’s episode ended with a bang what with the double elimination and Ru’s mysterious phone call, so we launch right in with the queens speculating about who might come back. Please note that they name drop Porkchop and Shangela, both of whom were options in my poll last week so basically I am a Drag Race genius. But we all have to wait a bit to find out the real answer, because the next day starts with a mini-challenge in which the queens have 30 minutes to glam up some judges’ robes and model them for Ru.
There’s not a whole lot you can do with a black robe, but a couple of notable things happened. First, Acid Betty came out looking like the unholy offspring of Alaska and Detox, at least in the head department:
Second, Supreme Court Justice Cynthia Lee Fontaine is apparently known for her landmark ruling: legalizing sex. This was funny, but what was funnier was seeing Bob the Drag Queen lose her shit after hearing it.
Finally, Naomi Smalls was named the challenge winner for basically no reason (continuing in the grand tradition of mini-challenge winners often being completely arbitrary).
Ru finally ends the suspense by welcoming the returning queen, and it’s pretty much the most anticlimactic and boring person it could possible be:
Not that I have anything against Naysha, but it’s not a very surprising surprise.
Anyhow! Ru announces that the main challenge this week is splitting into teams to film two episodes of RuCo’s Empire, which is like the show Empire but with drag queens, which is probably not that different than the show Empire I think. Naomi and Naysha are the team leaders, and they choose their queens as follows:
Bob the Drag Queen
Chi Chi DeVayne
Cynthia Lee Fontaine
Who else is shocked that Acid Betty was chosen last?
The queens break off into their groups to start rehearsing. Naysha begins by casting Derrick as a militant lesbian which seems like the worst idea since Kenya Michaels was cast as Marge the Guard in Hot in Tuckahoe. Kim declares that she wants to play Chocolate Chip Cookie, but Naysha’s is like “I’m absolutely going to be kicked off again for being the team captain that allows Kim to butcher the main role” and she forces her to switch with Thorgy.
Chi Chi has some thoughts about how things are going on Naysha’s team.
They get to set and immediately Kim struggles, even in her reduced role. I’m not sure exactly who her character is at this point but I kind of have to assume it’s Gia Gunn?
But after Ru and co-director Faith Evans teach her how to tongue pop, she does just fine. Meanwhile Thorgy is delivering a seriously kooky Cookie, but it completely works! What doesn’t work so well is Derrick’s militant lesbian, which isn’t entirely her fault because literally every time they do an acting challenge on this show that includes a butch or lesbian character the queen stuck with that role ends up in the bottom.
Speaking of which, Naomi’s team has a similar issue with Cynthia except while Derrick faded into the background, Cynthia is crazy and all over the place. Robbie also struggles while attempting to play a character with multiple personalities, possibly because she has only just perfected “Bitchy Reality TV Gay” and doesn’t have room for any more. The rest of the team does great, though. Especially Bob, who was born to play Chocolate Chip Cookie.
We have to wait to see the finished product until after the queens
walk ROLLER SKATE the runway. I’m surprised it took Drag Race this long to emulate America’s Next Top Model’s penchant for forcing contestants into a runway situation in which falling on your face is highly probable.
While they all prepare their outfits and say their prayers to the Xanadu gods, Thorgy tells the terribly sad story of how her mom died of cancer and she didn’t get to say goodbye because her parents hid how serious it was from her so as not to ruin her fun while she was away at college. LET ME HUG YOU THORGY!!!!
On this bummer note, we head to the runway where we see that Ru has not excluded herself from the roller skating challenge!
We get the usual judge introduction (Carson’s here this week, plus Faith Evans and Tasha Smith) but WHATEVER, who cares, let’s see these bitches try to skate! I may have gotten a little too excited at the prospect of seeing them fall.
And right off the bat, Naysha wipes out! Thanks, girl. Your outfit is cute, btw. A+
Thorgy’s look is campy and funny and on point but she is good at skating and doesn’t even wobble for a second, so F-.
This is a little weird, but pretty. No falls, but she is an awkward skater so she gets a C. Ru gets an A+ for calling her “Skatey Perry”
Kim looks amazing as usual (and drops another fashion name, saying this is a Galliano-inspired look). She is possibly slightly less awkward on skates than she is walking but that’s damning with faint praise, so B+.
I never thought I’d say a drag queen’s roller-skating runway outfit was “a bit much” but Acid Betty’s is a bit much. Between the stripey stockings and spiky kneepads and the weird eye brooch… I don’t know. Plus she is a good skater which sucks because of all the queens I would have like to see her fall the most. F triple minus
Naomi’s bra and panties look like they were made out of electrical tape. And despite having that piece of flowy fabric floating around near her feet she doesn’t get tangled up and fall. D
Bob the Drag Queen
Bob had some hare-brained idea about coming out like a Transformer and turning into a car which unfortunately we don’t get to see because she didn’t have time to finish it. But this is a good bodysuit. Even better, she doesn’t know how to skate and stumbles around the runway before almost wiping out at the very end and striking a pose to save herself. A-
Cynthia Lee Fontaine
Out of all of the things that are terrible about this outfit, the thing that offends me most is the fact that the shorts and the top are clashing shades of red. Also she doesn’t fall. F
Chi Chi DeVayne
This is terrible and tacky, but it works. And not that I want to see my darling Chi Chi fall, but… I want to see them all fall. C-
This is obviously not Robbie’s first time to the roller rink. Her outfit is good and she skates well but that wig kind of sucks and obviously she doesn’t fall. D
I’m very offended that only one queen fell, tbph. But life goes on, and it’s time to view the final RuCo’s Empire episodes. First is Team Naysha:
Nobody is a complete mess! Kim Chi survives by tongue popping a thousand times and striking over-the-top poses to distract from the fact that her accent and lisp make it hard to understand what she’s saying. Thorgy is hilarious as Cookie, Naysha acquits herself well, Acid Betty is believable as somebody with mental health issues, and even Derrick manages to make lesbian lemonade.
But the real highlight of the night is Team Naomi:
I mean, Robbie and Cynthia pretty much sucked (though not as hard as queens usually do in these acting challenges) and Naomi was a little stilted. My dear sweet Chi Chi delivered some solid rapping and dance moves, but even she couldn’t come close to the wonder that was Bob’s performance. Pretty sure she improvised a lot (like pouring a drink on Naomi’s head and stealing her shoe on her way out the door), and I love her forever for including the hideous curtain handbag she made in the first episode in her costume.
After the screenings Naomi, Naysha, Kim and Chi Chi are sent to safety. This leaves a bottom three of Robbie, Cynthia and Derrick, and a top three of Bob, Thorgy and… Acid Betty?
Deserved praise is heaped upon Thorgy and Bob. Don’t really understand why Acid Betty was invited to this party but the judges do at least agree that her outfit isn’t the best. They give Derrick credit for looking less like Britney this week, but her performance was a little too quiet and laidback for their taste. Cynthia’s outfit gets ripped to shreds (sadly not literally), as does her performance. But when they ask her how she thinks she did, she says she loved it and thinks she did great which makes Michelle Visage short circuit from too much laughter. Stay crazy, Cynthia! Faith Evans tells Robbie that she didn’t deliver two distinct personalities and she immediately spouts a litany of excuses. Girl, that is not the way to endear yourself to RuPaul!
The judges deliberate and at least pretend that they have to think about who should win the challenge. But obviously it’s Bob, with Thorgy as a solid second (for the second week in a row). Acid Betty and Derrick Barry are sent to safety, leaving Robbie and Cynthia to lipsync. They’re given the option to keep on their skates or change into heels, and I think Cynthia was doomed the moment she unlaced because she’s a good dancer, but you can’t really compete against a bitch doing skating tricks up and down the stage.
So it’s goodbye to Cynthia and her cuckoo, but there’s one shocking twist before she goes!
Apparently it was supposed to be spelled “cucu” the whole time! My bad. But get the eff out of here, bitch, because I can now no longer listen to the climax of one of my favorite songs without breaking out in hives because of you!