We're so close to the end, Drag Race fans. Just one more round stands in the way of finding out who will join the Drag Race Hall of Fame.
The Final 5 put up a strong fight during RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 6 Episode 11, and while it was a dull round, the queens made one of the biggest moves in the competition. This gameplay might've changed everything, even if they didn't realize it then.
It's anyone's race after this lipstick vote.
Eureka! winning the game-within-a-game wasn't surprising in the least. As we chatted about in the review for RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 6 Episode 10, Eureka had a stronger lip-sync against Silky Nutmeg Ganache.
Silky got too messy with the outfit when it stuck to her leg. Plus, Eureka's lip-sync delivered stronger energy right out of the gate.
It's a shame Silky got the chop after winning six lip-syncs in a row, but the tower model was a sudden elimination style. There was no more room to play since it was the last round in the smackdown; someone had to win and move back into the competition.
Based on Eureka's performance, she used the second chance to her advantage and made it count. At least the smackdown made a difference in the competition.
Mini Challenges, on the other hand, don't have much of an impact on the game. The only times they change things up are when the winners get to decide the groups for the Maxi Challenge.
The Levi's Pride photo challenge leaned more on the fun and silly side. No one needed to put a lot of energy into this game; the queens were just having a good time.
RuPaul: Do you like Bears?
Ginger Minj: Oh yes, I’d eat one but that’d be cannibalism.
All five of the photos were hilarious and met the rules of the challenge. Eureka's outfit had the most outrageous updates with the chaps and color pattern. She created an outfit that could've been at Pride.
Kylie had my favorite outfit and photo since it balanced both comedy and style. She easily won the challenge, but any of the five queens could've won this game.
The monologues Maxi Challenge didn't have the same flair or energy as other more exciting challenges. This round felt like another game for the queens to talk directly to the judges, like on RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 6 Episode 9 with the Drag Tots.
If it didn't have the returning queen or it wasn't the penultimate episode of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 6, this would be a filler round that could be skipped.
The majority of judging hinged on how well a queen could tell a story and if the judges liked their tale. Focus is placed on the "tell" aspect instead of "show."
We've made it this far into the competition to know these queens like to talk and spill the tea with their drag sisters. The outcome rested on whether the judges connected to their stories and runways.
From the Final 5, Eureka, Kylie Sonique Love, and Ginger Minj told their stories the best. All three were well-rounded, funny, and the queens landed their punchlines to make the stories heartwarming and exciting.
Eureka won because her story delivered the most laughs in the most conversational way.
I tend to agree; she knows how to tell a story and land the jokes, especially in her confessionals. Though, why was her poop story fine with the judges now, but when Rock M. Sakura included it in a song, it was too crass and silly?
Somewhere the RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 queen is shaking her head.
Ginger had a great overall performance with her story, right down to the red ruby slippers she showed. She has a great way of adding emotion to her words and "performing" on stage.
The judges were right that it felt too polished and prepared. At times, Ginger seemed like she was reciting a script from memory and performing it instead of expressing it through the words.
RuPaul: You thirsty?
Ra’Jah O’Hara: It ain’t Pride without a drink.
Kylie paid off her risk by sitting down on stage instead of walking around. Her story seemed inspiring and she needed to get the words out to land the emotional beat at the end. Moving around would've distracted everyone and came across as acting.
She probably could've won had she gone a bit bigger with her energy and voice. Kylie had the second-place spot above Ginger this round.
Trinity K. Bonet and Ra'Jah O'Hara, on the other hand, fumbled in an otherwise strong week for all five queens.
Ra'Jah's story had humor, but it felt incomplete at times. She stumbled in the beginning and you could tell she was trying to find her finds. And, she abruptly ended her performance without tying the story together of why it was important to her.
Trinity's story had the full structure, but she kept rushing through her words. You could tell she was so focused on getting through her punchlines and reaching the end twist that she didn't allow the judges to bask in the journey of the story.
Both queens had what the other needed to bring their performances to the top. If this were a pair's challenge, they could've balanced each other.
The "Oops ... I Did It Again" runway looked ridiculous and fun. Does anyone else love the overly comedic runways?
Sometimes it's great to have the queens drop all the high-fashion to poke fun at themselves. This runway channeled outrageous cartoon comedy mixed in with fashionable style.
Eureka had the best overall story with her runway look; she was the epitome of the hot mess express. The blown-out hair, the ripped wig, the toilet paper on the heel, the sweat stains, and the dress tucked into the underwear created a look that was too much in all the right places. She had a stronger version of what Ginger's ensemble tried to achieve.
I know that this should not be the end for me because my track record has been extremely strong. And there really is nothing else that I could possibly have done except shit myself today.Ginger Minj
Ra'Jah's runway look had a clever idea that won me over. From the initial look, the outfit was simply a piece of fabric, but the way she pulled on it and acted on the runway, she tied the changing room story together to make the fabric look chic and funny.
She had a good surprise that made up for the bumpy monologue.
Trinity self-sabotaged herself with her defeatist attitude. It's a shame she couldn't see and explain why she was deserving of being in the Final 4.
The worst thing you can do in a voting-style show is to give your competitors a reason to vote you out.
Trinity K. Bonet: I was so close.
Kylie Sonique Love: Girl, we know how it feels.
Ginger Minj: We’re all here with you.
Trinity K. Bonet: I was so close. So close.
Kylie Sonique Love: Well baby, you’re still on this couch.
Trinity telling the others that she had the worst track record after Eureka was a glass-shattering moment. Why would she openly call that out?
She should've followed Ginger's approach by subtly pointing out flaws in other queens and creating a narrative for herself. If she had tugged on their heartstrings, she possibly could've convinced Eureka to vote another way. A double lipstick vote is a terrible way to go.
Last Thoughts From The Werk Room:
- The "Good Golly Miss Molly" by Little Richard lip-sync had a few upbeat and fun moments. I thought Eureka could've won it on her own instead of it being a tie with Jaida Essence Hall. Still, they had the same result, so it didn't matter who won.
- There's no way Eureka and Trinity will flirt now that they've voted each other out two times in a row.
- How many hot dogs did Kylie tape under her skirt?
Now, over to you, Drag Race fans!
What did you think of "The Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent Monologues"?
Would you have voted Trinity out of the competition? Which monologue was your favorite? Who would you have brought to the Final 4?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.
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