Well, life got in the way of my RuPaul’s Drag Race obsession this week. Unfortunately, it’s not because I’m at DragCon. Nope. While the rest of my friends are knee deep in drag, I’m stuck at home being an adult. I’m not happy about it. At all. I guess I’ll just have to satisfy my cravings via TV. Last week’s Kardashian rock opera brought some fun back to what has been a pretty uneven season so I’m hopeful for tonight. Snatch Game is usually my favorite episode of the year. When the queens bring it, it’s like lightening in a bottle. And when they don’t, well, it’s downright awkward. It’s also when we separate the true contenders from the filler queens. So let’s see who survives the Hunger Games of Drag and whose days are numbered.
In the workroom, the queens are reeling from Eureka’s surprise departure. Farrah Moan and Cynthia Lee Fontaine sob. They know it was their time to leave. Being saved by someone else’s injury never feels right. Challenge winner Shea Couleé reads Eureka’s farewell message (“Well… Biggie is out but this is NOT the last of Me!! I need all of you to ALWAYS (lol) #beyourselftofreeyourself ♡ Eureka H!! :p”). Alexis Michelle plants a big smile on her face but inside she’s fuming. This was her challenge to win. It’s true she killed as Kris Jenner. If only her competitors had warned her that her runway outfit was trash! What ever happened to the sisterhood?
The girls start laughing and kiki-ing too soon for Farrah’s comfort. Girl is hurting because her bestie left. In a rare bitchy outburst, she pokes Nina Bo’nina Brown’s sore spot, asking if she truly wants to be there. Nina, her face stained with black mascara tracks from crying on the runway, bristles. She might question her own talent but that doesn’t mean anyone else can. Farrah finally admits she’s jealous of RuPaul’s obvious admiration of Nina’s gift. She only wishes RuPaul looked at her the way she looks at Nina. It’s hard being filler, especially when you’re used to being the star.
The next day, RuPaul tells the girls it’s time for Snatch Game and I realize they’ve cut the She Done Already Done Had Herses messages. Eh. I don;t miss it. Needless to say, the girls are super excited about Snatch Game. It’s iconic. They’re in the big leagues now. They better not fuck it up!
They get to work on their costumes, giddily sharing who they’re going to be. Trinity Taylor, lover of all things plastic, is doing Amanda Lepore. She proved her comedy chops in the Fairy Tale challenge so she might actually pull this off. Peppermint is doing Nene Leakes. Nene is quite the character so she has a lot to work with. But Peppermint is such a sweet, gentle soul it could be a challenge.
RuPaul does his rounds, breaking hearts and spirits alike. He almost loses his shit when he finds out Nina is doing Jasmine Masters. If anyone can pull this off, it’s Nina. And I’m living for it. Mama Ru isn’t quite as impressed with Sasha Velour’s choice of Marlene Dietrich. As she points out, Germans aren’t really known for being funny. But Sasha’s only other option is feminist philosopher Judith Butler, so Dietrich it is! Not for nothing but I think Sasha’s Judith Butler is hysterical. Hopefully she’ll revive it for the Battle of the Seasons Snatch Games. RuPaul almost orgasms when he sees Alexis’ Liza wig. It is kind of shocking no one has done her yet. The problem with doing someone so iconic is she’s been done to death. You don’t want to hear the judges say, “You’ve seen one Liza, you’ve seen ‘em all.” Alexis needs to bring something new to the table. Cynthia does her Sofia Vergara for Ru and he’s confused. It’s simply Cynthia in a Sofia wig. Uh oh. Cute won’t save you this time, Cynthia.
Before he leaves, RuPaul drops another bomb. The runway theme is Night of 1,000 Madonnas, part deux. The queens squeal. There’s nothing better than slaying a look someone else biffed. Their cockiness worries me. You know, foreshadowing and all. RuPaul has one bit of advice: Kimono she better don’t!
The Snatch Game contestants are Denis O’Hare (that’s Elizabeth Taylor to you AHS fans) and Candis Cayne. The celebrities are Amanda Lepore (Trinity Taylor), Marlene Dietrich (Sasha Velour), Alyssa Edwards (Aja), Jasmine Masters (Nina Bo’nina Brown), Gigi Gorgeous (Farrah Moan), Liza Minelli (Alexis Michelle), Nene Leakes (Pappermint), Miss
Universe Colombia (Valentina), Naomi Campbell (Shea Couleé) and Sofia Vergara (Cynthia Lee Fontaine.
The highlights of the challenge are Sasha, Nina, Valentina and Alexis. Sasha manages to make Marlene Dietrich funny. Her German lesbian shtick works. RuPaul loses it when she propositions Candis Cayne. Nina’s Jasmine Masters is everything I want it to be except it’s too short. But that’s not Nina’s fault (I’m looking at you, VH1). Valentina takes a one note joke and carries it through the whole game without getting stale. She cowers at the sight of RuPaul (thinking he’s Steve Harvey) and her mascara tear stains rival Nina’s. Alexis’ Liza is your standard Liza impersonation but she so fully commits it works. You can tell Ru loves it.
Trinity manages a few jokes but her Amanda Lepore characterization never equals the brilliance of her look. Shea does a decent Naomi Campbell and gets some good jokes in but it’s not enough to be in the top. The big stinkers of night are Cynthia, Farrah, Peppermint and Aja. Cynthia’s Sofia is Cynthia sans the Sofia. ‘Nuff said. Aja vaguely looks like Alyssa but no matter how many tongue pops she does, she’s just not funny. Don’t do another queen unless you can really pull it off. It’s a waste of a character and I consider it a bigger crime than sucking as a regular celebrity. Peppermint completely blows it. She falters under the weight of Nene’s personality and can’t complete a joke, even with RuPaul’s help. Farrah makes the fatal mistake of choosing someone she looks like without creating a character for them. She’s flat and boring. A total disappointment. But at least she’s pretty!
While the girls beat their faces for the runway, Peppermint comes out as transgender. I’m a little surprised because I thought it was well known in the drag community. Maybe they all knew but gave her the space to tell them when she was ready. Because, as we know, coming out is a right that belongs to the person in question and no one should ever take that away from them. Everyone loves her up. She gets choked up. I get choked up. It’s a feel good moment for sure. And it’s not even ruined by the neon yellow ramen noodle wig she wears in her Trans awareness PSA with Bob the Drag Queen. Too soon? Sorry but wearing that two weeks after Nina and Eureka had a skit about using soup noodles as a wig was asking for it.
RuPaul looks gorgeous in silver fringe and pink hair but I’m not a fan of her new padding. It looks awkward on her slim frame. RuPaul, you of all people don’t need to fall into the Kardashian trap. It cheapens you. Anyway, Ross Matthews and Michelle Visage (in her best Desperately Seeking Susan geish) are joined by Snatch Game contestants Denis O’Hare and Candis Cayne.
Aja does Madonna in her Who’s That Girl World Tour Flamenco dress except her version looks super cheap. Alexis is Breathless Mahoney, Madonna’s Dick Tracy character. Her dress is poured on her like liquid sequins. Peppermint is in the Marilyn Monroe Gentlemen Prefer Blondes look from Madonna’s Material Girl video. She’s selling it. And then we get a kimono moment. Shea is doing the same look. Oops! Shea’s wig is amazing but Peppermint’s dress and jewelry are better. Trinity does Madonna’s Givenchy Met Gala look from 2013. I wasn’t a fan when Madonna did it. And then it happens again. Nina is wearing a knockoff version of Trinity’s look. The judges look annoyed.
Sasha is in fetish gear from the Erotica video. She even has the grill. I may be biased but I think Sasha is a genius on the runway. I wish she wasn’t always overlooked. Farrah does Madonna’s Egyptian/Roman look from the 2012 Superbowl. She might have just worked her way out of the bottom two. Cynthia is Madonna at the 2016 Brit Awards. She falls on the runway and I’m horrified until I realize she’s mocking Madonna’s cape fiasco. Nice work, my dear. Valentina blows me away once again with her naked hitchhiking Madonna from the Sex book. She includes her own black bars (but we get to see her tiny heiny).
Top queens: Alexis Michelle, Sasha Velour and Nina Bo’nina Brown
Bottom queens: Peppermint, Farrah Moan and Cynthia Lee Fontaine
The judges love Alexis’ Liza and her Madonna look. She’s feeling pretty happy with herself. Peppermint looks great as Madonna (although Michelle carps that she keeps wearing pink) but her Nene was a big bust. Denis O’Hare recognizes Sasha’s talent. When he calls her Marlene Dietrich “Jessica Lange in AHS Freak Show meets Touch of Evil,” she gets choked up. Alexis isn’t pleased with the competition. Farrah gets great reviews for her runway look but obviously gets planned for her Snatch Game performance. Ross tells Nina he would have loved her runway if he hadn’t seen Trinity’s version. Her Jasmine Masters gets great feedback. Cynthia’s Madonna look gets praise but Michelle points out her makeup is creating mustache. And she gets dinged for her Sofia-less Sofia Vergara.
Winner: Alexis Michelle
Alexis was good but I think she actually won for her work last week (you know, like when Denzel Washington won an Oscar for Training Day). And Sasha was robbed, once again. Grrr.
The two queens up for elimination are Peppermint and Cynthia Lee Fontaine. They perform Music by Madonna.
They start out as two performers on the same stage but as soon as Peppermint does the robot, she’s all we see. She pulls out all of the 90’s dance moves, she eats a diamond earing like it’s a live goldfish, she holds the judges in the palm of her hand. They can’t take their eyes off of her. Cynthia is doing her Cynthia thing, which is good but pointless. She could set herself on fire and no one would notice. The other girls should be scared. This is Peppermint’s stage and she is pissing all over it. Needless to say, Peppermint, shantay you stay. Cynthia, sashay away.
Next week: The queens act in 9021-HO, directed by Kelly Taylor and Donna Martin.
And don’t forget to watch Untucked, right here at TamaraTattles.com!