By Contributing Writer, Lady Cocotte
This week brings my favorite episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race: Snatch Game! It’s not an easy task. Stars have been made on Snatch Game but just as many have faltered. Let’s see who survives the ultimate gauntlet of drag!
But before we start the fun, we have to revisit the girls’ reactions to Naysha Lopez’s second elimination. Chi Chi Devayne starts things off by apologizing to Derrick Barry for not fully participating during their group project. Unfortunately, Derrick doesn’t take the apology gracefully. Really, bitch? Instead, she launches into another episode of the Derrick show. Me, me, me! Yawn. During a brief lull in the monologue, Naomi Smalls interjects that Derrick should have been lip-syncing for her life. Derrick glosses right over that and launches into fantastical tales about her burgeoning new career touring with Blondie. Girl is delusional. Finally Bob the Drag Queen can’t take any more of the verbal diarrhea and they get into a bit of back and forth. Bob accuses Derrick of making mean comments which Derrick vehemently denies. “I can’t wait til you do it again,” Bob quips. “It’ll be like five minutes…” Party over, the girls start the de-dragging process. Two minutes later, Derrick yells out, “Hey, Bob. If I want to do ratchet drag next week, can you give me any tips?” Everyone gasps. De-lu-sion-al. And with all this drama, no one even paid attention to Naysha’s sweet message on the mirror (“Dear Ladies, have a good time and push yourself. I got a 2nd chance, don’t blow your first and only! Xoxo Da Beauty! Naysha Lopez”).
RuPaul’s “she done already done had herses” message is a remake of Madonna’s Vogue starring memorable Snatch Game characters. Yes! It’s on. Or so we think. RuPaul introduces a maxi-challenge of picking up roadkill and turning it into evening gowns. #CritterCouture. The looks on the girls’ faces are priceless. But he’s just making a funny. It’s actually time for Snatch Game! At this point, everyone knows to come prepared with a Snatch Game character. Acid Betty is doing Nancy Grace. Brilliant! Robbie Turner is doing iconic Vogue editor Diana Vreeland. She’s a great combination of vintage and fashion. “Jinkx Monsoon and Ben De La Creme, my Seattle sister wives, won Snatch Game each year that they were on,” Robbie explains. “So there’s a lot of pressure on me to be great.” I don’t think that should be a problem! Naomi Smalls has been practising Whoopi Goldberg as Celie in The Color Purple ever since she was cast. She’s hoping to prove she’s a true performer and not just a runway queen. But there’s a fly in Naomi’s soup and that fly’s name is Bob the Drag Queen. Bob is expected to be one of the strongest competitors in Snatch Game and she’s thinking about doing Whoopi too. Going Whoopi to Whoopi against Bob would scare anyone so Naomi is all kinds of confused. The thing is, Bob is only considering Whoopi. She came prepared with three complete characters: Whoopi from Sister Act, Crazy Eyes from Orange is the New Black and Carol Channing. “I know some folks are gonna question why the 6’2” black man is doing Carol Channing,” Bob acknowledges. “But it’s because I feel a connection to Carol Channing. I really do.” Naturally, I hope he goes with Carol C but Naomi isn’t going to risk it and switches characters.
RuPaul checks in on the girls in the workroom. Chi Chi Devayne tells Ru that she’s going to do Eartha Kitt. Meow! RuPaul is concerned that Chi Chi won’t be able to make Eartha funny. “I know that she played Cat Woman,” Chi Chi explains. “And I have two cats at home…” RuPaul cracks up. He’s not entirely sold but he’s ready for the ride. Kim Chi is debating between season 7 contestant Pearl (“Is there something on my face?”) and Kimmy Jong Un (the drag version of the Supreme Leader of North Korea). RuPaul warns Kim Chi that she can do whatever she wants as long as she makes Ru laugh. It’s good life advice. I need a WWMRPL bracelet. RuPaul is excited to see Derrick Barry’s Britney but Derrick wants to prove he’s more than just a Britney impersonator. He’s decided to do Shocantelle, a character created by Broadway star Laura Bell Bundy. Um, ok. She’s a black girl trapped in a white girl’s body. Oh, no! Uh uh. Derrick, step away from the racism. But she doesn’t listen to me and gives Ru a small sampling. No! Stop it right now! Everyone in the workroom is horrified. RuPaul takes a gentle approach. “You know, sometimes the most obvious thing is the thing to do…” As much as I didn’t want Derrick to take the easy way out in Snatch Game, now I’m begging all the gods, please bring me Britney! On the lighter side of racism, Thorgy Thor is doing Michael Jackson. Now this I want to see. Thorgy has the sophistication to pull this off without making it a caricature. I hope.
And now it’s time for Snatch Game! They’re calling it supermodel Snatch Game because the contestants are Chanel Iman and Gigi Hadid. Yawn. Thorgy Thor looks exactly like latter days Michael Jackson. She does his cute little giggle and then pops and locks. Kim Chi has gone ahead with Kimmy Jong Un. She looks a mess but hopefully she’ll make us laugh. Acid Betty doesn’t look or sound like Nancy Grace. Come on! There’s so much potential with that character. Maybe she’ll pull it together. I have to say I’m not impressed with Robbie Turner’s Diana Vreeland. She doesn’t have the right hair and Diana’s look was built on that hair. I wish Naomi Smalls had stuck with Celie because her Tiffany “New York” Pollard is a big fail. Chi Chi Devayne’s Eartha Kitt, on the other hand, is everything. She has the look, the voice and the mannerisms. Go Chi Chi! Oh, thank god. Derrick Barry IS doing Britney. I never thought I’d type that but that’s how bad his Shocantelle was. The jury is out on whether she can bring the funny. And Bob the Drag Queen has decided to do Crazy Eyes. Damn, Naomi. You gave up a good character for nothing. But I get it. Bob is hella intimidating.
Gigi Hadid gets the first question and she’s trying to speak drag (trying being the operative word). Kim Chi is a mess but she’s also funny. I don’t know if anyone else could pull that combination off but work it, girl. Chi Chi Devayne is tearing it up playing Eartha Kitt as a cat. I’m dying. Acid Betty is downright boring. What a waste! RuPaul tries to help Naomi be funny but she really just needs to be benched. Chanel Iman is a model and she’s about as funny as you’d expect a model to be. But she’s pretty! Thorgy cracks me up. She’s really living as Michael without being unnecessarily cruel. Robbie’s Diana Vreeland is an affront. Even Chi Chi sees it. “Girl, this performance is poo. And you’re from the same town as Jinkx and De La?” Yeah, it’s pretty sad. Chi Chi’s guess is “lick” so she lifts her leg up and starts to groom herself. Acid Betty is disgusted but RuPaul is laughing. Derrick actually seems funny but I think it’s because there are so many lemons in the group. #sorrynotsorry. Instead of answering the question, Bob (as Crazy Eyes) writes Chanel a love poem. And suddenly Crazy Eyes is gone and Carol Channing has taken her place. Yes! Bob is just too, too much. She tells Eartha Kitt, “I couldn’t tell if you were Della Reese or Luther Vandross. These aren’t even my good glasses!” RuPaul is in hysterics. I think Bob has this thing all sewn up. RuPaul prepares to announce the winner. We’ve been here before and know the winner is always, “Who cares?” Except this time. Tonight’s winner is Charo! RuPaul always knows how to shake things up.
As the girls prepare for the runway, it’s time to spill the tea. Acid Betty expresses how isolated she is from other drag queens in New York. “It sucks that none of them ask me to be part of their community. So I don’t fit in anywhere.” She reacts by putting up a huge wall if bitchiness. Thorgy Thor shares her dream of combining her drag and music lives into Thorgy and the Thorchestra. She wants to conduct an orchestra in full drag. “I’ve played at Carnegie Hall many times. I feel like I’m the perfect medium to kind of appeal to the younger generation and make classic music cool.” Naomi Smalls talks about her life with eight brothers and three sisters. She was adopted by a white couple who literally raised a rainbow army. Naomi missed out on learning about black culture as a child but she’s really grateful that her extremely christian mother fully loves supports her even though she’s gay (not everyone is so lucky, unfortunately). She and Bob start talking about how often they hear “he’s kind of cute, for a black guy.” Seriously? This world is fucked up. Kim Chi decides to lighten the mood by throwing out, “I think you’re kind of cute for a black guy, Naomi. Kind of, though.”
Tonight RuPaul is joined by Michelle Visage (obviously), Carson Kressley, Chanel Iman and Gigi Hadid. The runway theme is Night of a Hundred Madonnas. I’m surprised RuPaul didn’t do a Madonna look. Michelle Visage did…
Thorgy Thor is wearing the red Kimono and sleek black hair from Madonna’s Nothing Really Matters. Uh oh. Kim Chi is also wearing a red Kimono but this one is from Madonna’s Paradise (Not For Me). Okay. That’s kind of embarrassing. Get ready for this: Derrick Barry is also wearing a Kimono from Nothing Really Matters. At least Derrick’s is white and it has his face handpainted on the wings. Why didn’t they separate these Kimonos? Production is being tricky. Oh, for Pete’s sake. This runway should be called Night of a Hundred Kimonos. Naomi Smalls is also wearing a red Kimono. It’s sheer and shows her undergarments so it’s basically a standard Naomi Smalls look forced to fit the challenge. She’s gorgeous but it’s getting old. “I didn’t think anybody else was going to choose Kimono Madonna. I’m trying to own this even though three other girls are in the exact same look.” What a nightmare. Finally they’re switching things up. Acid Betty is pregnant Madonna giving birth to doves from Bedtime Stories. Her pregnant belly is a little pillowy but it’s so nice to see something different. Robbie Turner brings us A League of Their Own in a cute baseball outfit. She’s living for herself. Chi Chi Devayne does what I think is one of the most iconic Madonna looks, the cone bra from the Blond Ambition tour. Her cones are huge! Bob the Drag Queen is my favorite in a sexy boy scout uniform similar to the one Madonna wore to the 2013 GLAAD Media Awards. “It is a huge political statement,” she reminds us. “And I’m not in a Kimono!”
Top queens: Thorgy Thor, Derrick Barry and Bob the Drag Queen. Bob wins! Thorgy is always the bridesmaid, never the bride. Wah wah.
Bottom queens: Acid Betty, Robbie Turner and Naomi Smalls.
LIP-SYNC FOR YOUR LIFE
The two queens up for elimination are Acid Betty and Naomi Smalls. They perform Causing a Commotion by Madonna.
Acid Betty goes into this at a disadvantage. She’s wearing a huge pregnant belly with birds on wires sticking out of it. A great look but not so practical. It’s also really strange to see Betty doing something so normal as a lip-sync. She’s not bad but it’s just weird. Naomi is giving face and legs. She loses her Kimono pretty quickly but she doesn’t look like other queens who have undressed on the runway. She’s still all woman. Betty is fighting valiantly but pop just isn’t her thing. Naomi is living the song. She’s using all of her body and moving around the stage. Girl has some skills. Betty tries to get the attention away from Naomi but it’s not working. She even starts to get contractions at the end but it just seems to annoy the judges. Oh, Betty. You deserve better than this. Naomi Smalls, shantay you stay. Acid Betty, sashay away.
You should definitely check out Untucked, right here at Tamara Tattles:
Next Week: Cast members of “Little Women: LA” receive drag makeovers in the style of “The Wizard of Oz.”
Next Monday is also the premiere of the Gay for Play Game Show Starring RuPaul. It’s kind of like Snatch Game but with real “celebrities.” Contestants answer pop culture questions that any self-respecting gay man should know to win cash and prizes. How bad can it be?