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Eight Thoughts About RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season Ten, Episode Seven

Now we’re in the downslope to the end of the season.

I’m mostly pleased with this season but I’m also getting a really restless leg, anxious for this season to just do something. By that I mean: there needs to be a massive explosion or a series of wow fashion moments or some sort of memorable something. That’s my critique with this season is that nothing is really wowing anymore. I’m not sure there were wows to begin with or if the show can really wow anymore. I am giving this season a standing ovation for offering challenges and shaping the episodes in a way that recalls that of the original, earlier seasons but I am not too enthused by the crop of characters. I’m just bored. The talent pool really is dwindling or, in a way, just doesn’t pop like they need to. There’s just whining everywhere and a complete lack of star power. Is the show now a creation to accompany our sipping a cocktail or talking to someone else or looking at our phones instead of giving an hour of television all of our attention? Unsure. Unsure! But it really does feel like this and I’m placing this on the talent pool because the show really, truly is trying to be its best self with the ingredients it has.

Anyway. Eight thoughts on this week’s episode, dedicated to the eight players who participated this week.

Spoilers, obviously. Proceed with caution.

8. The Long Con Of Vixen & Monique
Like last week, the start of the episode began with an interesting tension that stretched the entire episode: The Vixen needing to lose – or channel – her tude and Monique’s humble brags, that she deserves more credit because she has nothing. It was interesting to start this way because it put magnifying glasses over these two the entire episode. I didn’t think Monique would bottom – or go home – but looking at the episode from this angle lays it all out from the beginning: these two were the ones to watch.

7. Silent Library
The reading challenges have been so bad in recent years. I can’t remember the last good one, really. This year was no exception since it too was so fucking painful. Eureka had fun, Cracker was sharp, Vixen was totally shady, and Monet killed it – but even these were just okay. Then Eureka won? Okay, sure. The big plus of this scene was that they got a good dig in on Betsy Devos in. Thank you for that!

6. Bianca Brings The Bite
The producers, the show, did all it could to avoid the recent string of really shitty Snatch Games by bringing in Bianca Del Rio to slice and dice everyone for low lifting impersonations. She did not hold back! She and Ru told Asia that her ideas sucked, Monique that her impersonations were off, Eureka that she is not Divine (which did break my heart), questioned Cracker for going obscure, and validating someone like Aquaria, nudging her in the right direction. You would have thought this would have meant an overwhelmingly positive Snatch! Alas, though, because it was…

5. A Shaky Snatch
I kind of want to say the time of the Snatch Game is over. A staple in the show, yes, but the last great Snatch Game was maybe Season 6 or Season 7. Maybe this is because the bads weren’t as bad and the goods were just really fucking good? I’m unsure but the following Snatches were fun but just not really memorable as having the good people dominate the stage. At least regarding Seasons 8 and 9 and 10 (All Stars discluded), the bad were more memorable than the good because they were so bad. That’s what keeps happening which is not funny and more uncomfortable for the audience, making us embarrassed for both the queens and the show for bringing on celebrities to witness this schadenfreude, to validate that it was not imagined. It’s like watching your friend wear something questionable in public after you told them they probably shouldn’t. C’est la vie. Regardless, Eureka and Monet did very, very well while Aquaria brought a surprise wow. Not since Pearl have I been this surprised by a performance! Still, what was more surprising was Asia’s Beyoncé. We all knew it was going to be bad but that bad? She was a vortex that sucked in Vixen, ultimately killing her. I’d also like to give a special shout out to Kameron because her Chyna wasn’t as bad as it could have been.

4. What The Fuck Runway
The thing about this mermaid runway was that it was a fine idea plucked from such gay obscurity that just didn’t work. Had the divine Miss M been there herself? By all means! But this was some sort of reach to summon Bette that just bombed and bombed and bombed. Save for Aquaria, no one was good. It was awkward (The sitting! The wheelchairs!) and everyone looked bad. No one was creative, everyone opting for some stupid literalism that just sucked the air out of an otherwise wow-worthy part of the show. I do give props to Asia for that crazy mask. While ultimately dumb, I appreciated that she took a risk. For that, she was the second best looking this week. Everyone else? Eh. Eh.

3. Bus, Meet Vixen
What a smart move for the judges to ask who the queens felt should go home! This was how we get some healthy drama and, boy, did we get that. Not only was the Vixen read repeatedly but she also did the bad thing: she used her time to be really, really, really negative instead of offering a critique, trying to kill Eureka only to kill herself. It was sad! It also looped around the moment at the start of the episode where other queens tried to stress that her behavior, while charged, is less directional at a certain point and just mad to be mad. Vixen has the maturity (and smarts) to recognize this but is playing the fool – and looking like a fool, accordingly. This is a make or break moment for her: she’s either out next week or is going to have a major breakthrough, putting her rage aside to actually focus on the game. She came to fight, sure, but the fighting isn’t getting her anywhere as the mid-show whining about Eureka stealing attention proved: be a good drag queen and stop wasting time whining about others.

2. AquariHUH??
If you told me that fucking Aquaria was going to win Snatch Game at the start of the season, I would have told you to leave my house and never speak to me ever again because I do not stand for such blasphemy. Yet…here we are! She was fabulous and, thanks to her stellar runway, she deserved her win. This also illustrates the blatant “Eh.”-ness of the season if Aquaria won Snatch Game. Imagine if Monet or Eureka had brought better mermaid looks! We would have had different results. But nope.

1. Monique’s Fart
More shocking was that Monique was on the bottom and that she didn’t know the words. After Valentina’s failure last season, you would have thought that no queen would ever “not know” the words. I wish I had Untucked this week so that I could see what happened (and to see Vixen fallout) but, wow, this was bad. Vixen fought for her life and deservingly won the right to remain on the show but this was one of the most heartbreaking, embarrassing, sad lipsyncs ever. Not because of Monique’s failed cartwheels either: she just phoned it in. There is nothing worse than that. She had such a stellar record and did so much with so little…but then shrugged it all off, throwing her legacy off the main stage. What a shame.

I don’t remember what’s happening next week but I believe I recall drama. Bring it. Bring something! I need life in the way that gays say.

Once again, my ranking is all out of whack. Thanks for keeping this consistent, Season 10!

14. Vanessa Vanjie Mateo
13. Kalorie Karbdashian Williams
12. Yuhua Hamasaki
11. Dusty Ray Bottoms
10. Mayhem Miller
9. Blair St. Clair
8. Monique Heart (Down four – and out. What the fuck happened? This better be unpacked in the reunion.)
7. Kameron Micheals (Up one, as a formality. I swear to god if this mother fucker fails up, pulling a Sasha Velour top three and then takes it, I am never going to watch this show ever again.)
6. The Vixen (Maintained. Next week is make or break for her.)
5. Asia O’Hara (Down two. What the fuck was up with her this week? I hope this was her lone off week because she needs to be top three but I am just not getting that from her post-Beyoncégate.)
4. Aquaria (Up two. I almost put her in my top three but…)
3. & 2. Monet X Change & Miz Cracker (Up two / down one. Monet’s back! She’s so great! Cracker is just boring to me at this point. I’d swap her and Aquaria but Cracker seems like she could legitimately win. She just hasn’t “done” anything since the first two episodes.)
1. Eureka O’Hara (Maintained. If I had to put money down right now, it’s Eureka. Her brilliant Alana solidified this for me. She is the one to beat.)

Thoughts? I’m ready for 2018’s Drag Race to be put out of its misery.

Photo via.

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