Did the right queen go? No.
This episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race had me shocked, confused and hurt, it was a fantastic episode after the mess of last weeks, however it saw a shocking elimination that truly feels undeserved and we need answers, RuPaul! Apart from the injustice of this week’s show we saw the queens begin the episode dressing up as bees for the mini challenge titled ‘beehive’, obviously this has links to the Queen B – Beyoncé. However, RuPaul used this moment to promote awareness of the bee population slowly diminishing and how important their existence is to keeping this planet and us alive. We also saw the bees ‘get down’ and start ‘booging’ which really makes me think the produces are now just coming up with ideas down at their local pub – it was hilarious but confusing, just like every mini challenge. In this episode we also got to see the goofy side of Nicky Doll, who only last week was lip-syncing for her life. I mentioned in the review her lack of personality; however, it is slowly coming out and I am living for it.
The maxi challenge for this week was titled The Ball Ball – no I did not type ball twice it was literally all about balls (sports), the queens were to showcase three looks on the runway: Lady Baller, Basketball Wife Realness and Balls to the Wall Eleganza, the last look being made completely from scratch. The fashion challenges are usually the best as we get loads of workroom drama, but also see queens that are all about the performance crack under the pressure of having to design a complete look and concept (looking at you Brita). The Lady Baller look saw many queens take on a different perspective some took on literal interpretations of sports looks i.e. Jaida Essence Hall, Gigi Goode, Nicky and Crystal Methyd. Though these queens took on literal sports looks they were all done in a high-class fashion way – Crystal made a bowling outfit high glam! Whilst other queens took on a different vision dressed as the sport – Jan, Brita and Rock M Sakura. Rock had her hair styalised as a boule and she flung her hair across the stage, though this was incredibly entertaining the rest of her outfit was incredibly basic. Aidan Zhane was also a let-down who though was praised by the judges for her retro baseballer look, it was relatively basic, and the dress didn’t properly fit either. Stand outs for this challenge were Gigi and Jaida, who always serve amazing looks
The next runway look was Basketball Wife Realness, many queens were not daring with their looks and ended up looking like the ladies from ‘The Real Housewives…’. For example, Brita and Heidi who though looked great it wasn’t enough considering the amount of amazing talent in this year’s season. Aidan gave us another basic look and sadly this can be said for nearly every look Aidan presents on the runway, Rock also was a let down for this challenge as she gave a great look but from behind the padding was noticeable and made the whole outfit look disjointed. Though there were a few more busts for this runway theme other queens truly exiled, a favourite of mine was Jan’s rhinestone tracksuit which gave true Sue Slyvester (from Glee) vibes, it was a completely different concept from the other queens and truly stood out. The final runway look was Balls to the Wall Eleganza which saw the queens make their own outfits, this challenge is usually a hit or a miss for most queens as it shows off their creativity and sewing skills. To start with the highlights Jaida looked like an absolute goddess with her white ball themed looked, she was truly stunning and was serving Greek God eleganza. Gigi was also another highlight as she made a short white dress with puffy sleeves – giving Princess Diana realness – and put loads of little colourful balls across the outfit. It was truly a look to die for. Now for the runway fails; Aidan finished her look first in the workroom and was able to have time for a nap. This is never a good sign when looking at RuPaul herstory. Aidan’s look was a corset, which for those who are Drag Race fans know that is truly blasphemous and is technically illegal, which was just covered in black and white pom poms with little dangly bits. The other queens pulled Aidan up on this basic look and instead of working with the critiques she started rambling about how her drag is minimal and has a less is more kind of vibe and yes that is okay but not when you are serving a swimsuit which isn’t even executed properly. Then onto Rock who made the body shape for the outfit with masking tape which she wrapped around her body then made a cut. She then became covering the outfit with poms poms and it looked like a nursey school art project, unlike Aidan however she did put tons of effort into the outfit so deserves points for that. Next is Brita who looked like a pineapple with no ball reference, her whole concept was based around a pineapple which makes the look even more confusing – because it was a choice.
The bottoms of the week were very predictable, Rock, Aidan and Brita. What was a shock was who was going to win this week’s challenge as the top three, Nicky, Gigi and Jaida all deserved to win. This was definitely a high for Nicky who had just been in the bottom only a week ago, Jaida hit a home run as the judges complimented every single look whilst Gigi scored the touchdown and won the episode. Now, this is where the heartbreak begins, Aidan was saved. This felt unjust as Brita had served one good look out of three compared to Aidan’s zero, everyone is shocked and confused as to why Aidan was saved this week and it is starting to look as if Aidan could be getting the Pearl (season 7 reference) edit. Brita and Rock were to lip-sync to the iconic song S&M by Rihanna, it was a clear win from the beginning as Rock spent the beginning of the lip-sync ripping her dress instead of showing what she’s got. Brita kept blocking the judge’s view of Rock which made it even easier for RuPaul to save Brita over Rock. I felt bad for Rock as she was an incredibly sweet and lovely queen, however Brita did have the better performance, the lip-sync just felt unjust as it should have been Aidan in the bottom instead of Brita.
A special shout-out to the guest judge of the week, Leslie Jones, who was fangirling from the moment RuPaul walked onto the stage, she laughed, she cried, she shared all the excitement a fan would whilst making some of the best jokes from previous Drag Race phrases i.e. “she already had done HORSES”. She was a true highlight of the episode and we need to see more of her, can she please be a permanent fixture on the show?
RuPaul’s Drag Race Series 12 is available now on Netflix, with new episodes weekly.