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'RuPaul's Drag Race' recap: 'Ru Hollywood Stories'

The queens reenact a legendary (and mostly imaginary) ‘Drag Race’ scandal.

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RuPaul's Drag Race

TV Show
Reality TV
Current Status:
In Season

First things first, we need to talk about Violet Chachki’s cinch job. Holy Ornacia! Violet would be a negative-60 waist if she ever shopped at Old Navy. In real life, I’m not in favor of anyone slimming down to that level, but in a drag competition, her 16-inch midsection is giving me more lives than a Super Mario mushroom, even as it drains all the life from Violet’s lower extremities. (A gamer gay just informed me that the Mario analogy doesn’t make sense, but I’m keeping it).

I just had to get that off my flabby-in-comparison chest. Back at the beginning of the episode, the kweens discussed Violet’s shady-ass attitude, which Violet explained away as, “Everything I’ve done here comes from a place of humor or a place of truth.” I love that “I’m not being bitchy, I’m being honest” reality-villain logic. It just shows that Violet is on her way to becoming exactly like my favorite drag queen of all time: Jade from America’s Next Top Model Cycle 6.

What an odd creature Max is. While the other ladies engage in some salty Werk Room talk, Max flips her hair and intones, “These girls are all so vulgar.” Is Max the Countess Luann of Drag Race? Max isn’t as tall, and her voice isn’t as deep, but she’s definitely high-class enough. There’s no way she wasn’t going to be prudish about what happened next…

Ru dropped by to play Monster in Your Pants, the most nonsensical Mini Challenge of the season, which is saying something. It was a combination of Deal or No Deal, Wheel of Fortune, and sexual harassment. Basically, a supersize (in more ways than one) Pit Crew lined up, each dude hiding a ball in the crotch of his Justin Case briefs. The balls either had a number on them or a green monster, and if a kween chose the green monster, she would be out of the game. Only Ginger Minj understood the rules, so she won pretty much by default. Katya, who was dressed like Billy Elliot, was too distracted by the bulges to play the game right.

The Maxi Challenge was yet another team performance challenge. Like Violet, I’m sort of over these team acting/singing challenges for now, and this one was especially basic. As the Mini winner, Ginger got to choose three teams of three to act in a trilogy of Ru Hollywood Stories chronicling the shady events that led to Michelle Visage replacing Merle Ginsberg on the judging panel. Honestly, I never cared about Merle, so I didn’t care about these three skits. Sorry if you’re a Merle fan, but I can’t wait for more titillating challenges. We need some Snatch Game, quick.

Ginger did some devilish strategic work picking the teams, nabbing Katya and Kennedy for herself, saddling Max with underperformers Violet and Kandy Ho, and pairing enemies Miss Fame and Pearl together. Ginger should be twirling the long, fire-red chin hair that her tweezers have missed.

The teams performed in front of Ross Matthews, who was directing the videos. Some highlights: Kennedy gave a bizarre performance as Ru. Actually, the Rus were the weakest links in all three videos—it’s not easy projecting that much scorching fierceness. Ginger was serving up some Ursula from The Little Mermaid with her Michelle, which is a totally valid interpretation. Violet’s Michelle looked like a more feminine J-Woww, or actually, exactly like Krazy from Flavor of Love. (I’m incredibly ashamed of that reference.) Pearl’s Michelle was trashy but scene-stealing, and Jaidynn once again had trouble remembering lines.

The funniest moment of filming, however, happened when Miss Fame drove the production to a grinding halt in order to break into a soliloquy on the struggles she was having. She might not be able to remember lines, but she can deliver a tragic monologue like no other. For your reading pleasure, I have transcribed the entire thing:

“I’m so struggling right now. This is honestly the toughest day I’ve had in this competition, and I like to be professional, and this is just embarrassing for me. I wanna do better than this, and I’m hitting a wall. I wanna talk real, and I’m in a room full of people, and this is a chance of a lifetime, and I’m finding myself having a conversation with … myself. I’ve never been to this place before so I’m just trying to be funny. I don’t know what’s better. Should I not talk about my feelings? Should we just keep moving on?”

I have to agree with what Pearl said next: “JUST SAY THE F—ING LINE!!!” After taking a minute to take it all in, Ross said, “Oh my God, I feel like I’m dating you!” Weirdly, I find Miss Fame’s drama kind of charming, albeit totally self-unaware. What kind of diva doesn’t have these breakdowns on a daily basis?

NEXT: A grand(e) jury sends a kween packing