Ranking Elektra's 20 best reads on Pose
Even though the show has concluded, the library remains open.
The pen may be mightier than the sword, as they say, but Elektra's quick wit and sharp tongue can strip that pen of its last vestiges of self-respect.
Thanks to all that caviar, which Ms. Elektra says is for keeping the mind sharp "to read a b----," Pose's three-season run has proven that Dominique Jackson's Mother of the House of Abundance is not one to be messed with. One may try to mess, but this fur-coat-clad, Chanel-bedazzled beauty will have one running home to mamma and papa with their ego trailing behind them.
As the show came to an emotional yet satisfying conclusion, we immortalize all of Elektra's piercing reads from least best to best, because there is no worst when it comes to Elektra. A tip of the hat to series writers Steven Canals, Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Janet Mock, and Our Lady J.
20. "It's time you paid that kindness back to your mother in her greatest time of need rather than lying to her, going behind her back after she rescued you from the gutter, and showed you the ways of this world. So, no. No, b----! I do not give you my blessing. I give you what every mother gives a baby bird who has feasted off the scraps of her sisters and gotten too fat: a push out of the nest. You are not on my level… I have a right to show my colors, and you show yours. You're not ready. You're second banana. I give you that but no more. Look at me. Look at you. I can pass. I can strut down Fifth Avenue when the sun is sitting high as my cheekbones and be waited on at Bergdorf's, same as any white woman, while you hide away in the shadows. You're way ahead of yourself in the game, beast." - (Season 1, Episode 1) Elektra lambasting Blanca (Mj Rodriguez) for wanting to leave House of Abundance to start her own house.
19. "Your face looks like a wet weekend." - (Season 1, Episode 8) Sorry, Blanca. Mother is going to speak her mind.
18. "You're not a captain of industry either or a partner at the law firm of Cash & Money, not in those bargain-basement Hush Puppies." - (Season 3, Episode 3) A flashback to Elektra negotiating with a John at the pier.
17. "Have you looked at your complexion? Think of your skincare routine if nothing else. Gray is not a skin tone. You have hit epidermal rock bottom." - (Season 3, Episode 2) Even when Elektra's trying to help Pray Tell (Billy Porter) go to rehab, she can't help but slip in a read.
16. "A crab in heels would have better poise." - (Season 2, Episode 10) Elektra comments on the all-male council walking in heels to see what it feels like.
15. "I didn't join ballroom for a row of flaming homos with no style to look down on me." - (Season 2, Episode 10) When Elektra is faced with an all-male ballroom council.
14. "You've become too familiar, hot chocolate. I don't pay you to leave cracker crumbs in my bed. Your hard body may have been fun for a while, but I have a better chance of having a stimulating conversation with the goose that supplied that liver than with you." - (Season 3, Episode 5) Elektra kicks out her hookup as he's eating room service on her bed.
13. "The category is not 'dictator realness.'" - (Season 3, Episode 2) Elektra can't hold in the truth as she gets the House of Evangelista ready for a ball.
12. "You're the last person I expected to see here. Isn't there a sale going on down at the Payless you should be attending?" - (Season 1, Episode 8) Even when she's on a hospital bed, there's no stopping a slip of the tongue.
11. "Now, run home, Wonder Bread! And take your ugly dog, too! This ain't the yellow brick road, b----!" - (Season 2, Episode 7) Elektra to Frederica's nosy neighbor.
10. "This is not a brainstorming session. I have a vision and it does not include you lip syncing in a bad wig to a sad song, sweating profusely like a washer woman… Who do you think you're fooling, Chunkarella. You don't think I know you've been seduced by the pipe. You look like you're deficient in vitamin D and shea butter." - (Season 3, Episode 2) Some hard critiques for Lulu (Hailie Sahar) after she's been smoking crack.
9. "That win was pure luck. The judges were merely showing sympathy for your virgin legendary walk, or perhaps the fix was in. I know it was Pray Tell who helped you make that ill-fitting potato sack you had draped over your bones tonight. Who's to say he didn't tell the judges to adjust my score so you and he could share a moment of glory? ... You are the Cracker Barrel to my Gucci and Saint Laurent." - (Season 1, Episode 2) Elektra does not take losing a ball well, especially not to her newly ousted daughter, Blanca.
8. "I don't owe you any answers, I don't owe you any manners, and I most certainly don't owe you a goddamn apology for being late to a 99-cent meal made from canned meat and prison-grade toilet wine!" - (Season 2, Episode 1) Elektra right before flipping a table at Friday night dinner.
7. "I've come prepared to gut you like the fish you'll never be!" - (Season 2, Episode 2) Elektra, threatening Candy (Angelica Ross) with a knife.
6. "You're all as useless as nuns in a whorehouse, except maybe you, Blanca dear. Though, next to these two cinderblocks and sew-ins, even a traffic cone would look like Einstein." - (Season 3, Episode 3) Flashing back to the beginning of House of Abundance the two "cinderblocks" causing trouble.
5. "I know you have two faces, but three chins is remarkable!" - (Season 2, Episode 10) You best bring it, all-male council, when Elektra serves as the emcee to the ball of your nightmares.
4. "Now, Kish, who you calling a boy? Your real hair's so short you could roll it with rice. And what is that on your lips, Leesa? Oh, it's your favorite lip gloss. Sperm. Why don't you low-rent, bad-handjob-giving hookers run back to the pier where you belong with the rest of the city vermin." - (Season 1, Episode 5) A flashback to the time Elektra saved Blanca from some mean girls proves she's always had a way with words.
3. "I can see from your sad little wedding band that you are married, but that doesn't mean you've had any real contact with a woman for quite some time. Even a loving wife would avoid her impotent husband if his testicles hung so low that they grew filthy from dragging along the dirty floor once he took off his tighty-whities. And I doubt - no! Excuse me. I know that no other women have paid you any mind because women aren't attracted to men who aren't tall enough to ride the Cyclone at Coney Island. If not for pity, your closest proximity to a vagina would have been at your birth. So, we can excuse the fact that you cannot see the royalty gracing your store. I have seen my share of real men and I can assure you I am not looking at one right now. Ladies, let's go. My coin is too good for this place. But you. You haven't heard the last from me. [Claps his cheek] Watch your neck." - (Season 3, Episode 5) Elektra has no patience for transphobes, especially ones that deny her daughter Angel (Indya Moore) the wedding dress of her dreams.
2. "Look at the fruits of my labor: a foolhardy chunk who makes her living on the pole and a brainless wonder who thinks the way to get curves is to stick Charmin in her drawers or to inject cement into her derriere. House of Ferocity? You two are about as fierce as my morning cornflakes. You may have left my home, but you can't leave me. I'm in your mind, that voice saying, 'You're not good enough, little girl. You're not smart enough or tough enough or glamorous enough to make it in this world.' And that little voice is going to eat away at you like termites until your whole pathetic house comes crashing down. You think you're on the road to being legends, but you couldn't make it from here to the door without me pointing the way. You're nothing but bags of rancid, rotting meat… Well, take a long last look at this filet mignon. I doubt we'll be conversing ever again, unless I take a sudden interest in dying of boredom." - (Season 1, Episode 8) If you decide to leave mother's house, prepare to face mother's wrath. We're looking at you, Candy and Lulu.
1. "God may have blessed you with Barbies, a backyard with a pony in it, a boyfriend named Jake, and an unwanted pregnancy that your father paid to terminate so that you could go to college and major in being a basic b---- - none of these things make you a woman! [Pauses to sip from her water glass as she holds a finger up.] Your uniform of ill-fitting J. Crew culottes, fake pearls, and 50-cent scrunchies cannot conceal the fact that you do not know who you are. I know our presence threatens you. We fought for our place at this table, and that has made us stronger than you'll ever be. Now, pick your jaw up off the floor and go back to your clam chowder and shallow conversations. My girlfriends and I aren't going anywhere. Y'all heard that?" - (Season 2, Episode 9) In her most iconic read, Elektra leaves nothing behind but dust and bone after reading a transphobe to filth.
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