Who will win RuPaul's Drag Race season 13 finale?
Is your blood sugar low after one of the longest seasons in RuPaul's Drag Race herstory? Of course it's not, because the dolls of season 13 have kept us fed — and fanning ourselves — throughout every day of 2021 so far.
But, like all fantasies (except the perennial Mariah Carey hit, that is eternal), season 13 must come to an end. Ahead of the April 23 finale, we must turn our attention away from lamenting the loss of Olivia Lux's tiny purses, Tina Burner's McDonald's condiment eleganza, and Loni Love's future-Emmy-winning mini roast of Utica to get down to business: Who will win RuPaul's Drag Race season 13?
Below, EW gauges the race as the season comes to a close. Find out which queen we think will be crowned the RuPaul's Drag Race season 13 winner below.
The season 13 queens in the running for the win
Statistically, the final four's report cards haven't been this diverse since season 9:
The case for Kandy Muse to win RuPaul's Drag Race season 13
Gauging track record alone, there's a narrow path toward the crown for Kandy Muse, but it's a path nonetheless. The only other winner to enter the finale with a single maxi win is season 11 champ Yvie Oddly, who, judging by the critiques she received, also would've won the final music video challenge if that installment featured a regular callout from Mama Ru.
With three bottom two appearances the interesting thing about Kandy is that her lip-sync performances actually feel like they help her — if the finale is the typical lip-sync smackdown we've had since 2017. Kandy is a superstar and has been one of the most consistently entertaining, charismatic individuals we've seen on Drag Race in ages, and she comes alive onstage (did you see the way she went from on-set medic patient to Cher lip-sync legend in record time last week!?), so it'll be tough to justify a Kandy elimination in the traditional finale format. (Also, please give Kandy a boat, no matter what happens. Please. Like, PLEASE).
The case for Gottmik to win RuPaul's Drag Race season 13
Gottmik, the trailblazing contender whose skillset Gagatrondized fans throughout the season in almost polar-opposite fashion. With major victories under her belt (winning Snatch Game and the Ball is no joke) and consistently stunning fashion (and makeup) creations on the runway, the show's first transgender man to compete escaped the bottom two the entire season.
But, judging by the first episode and the most recent pre-finale edition of the show, Gottmik's lip-sync skills are, perhaps, the most unrefined of the remaining competitors. And that's ok: Gottmik has proven she doesn't need to conform to any mold to succeed as a RuGirl or an artist in general, but if the finale takes shape with head-to-head lip-sync battles, it might be difficult for her to hold her own against Symone, Kandy, or Rosé.
As many fans have pointed out, Gottmik's "edit" was extremely flattering last week (not that she needs it, she's doing fine all on her own), and it's clear RuPaul is enamored with her undeniable talents, quick wit, and singular approach to the craft, so it'd be fitting for Gottmik to crash the cis-tem, defy statistics, and take the crown on her own terms.
The case for Rosé to win RuPaul's Drag Race season 13
Now, where to start with Miss Rosé? Early on, this New York City legend quickly earned a reputation as a perfectionist, and her narrative (losing the first lip-sync, missing key challenge wins she thought she had in the bag) lulled us into believing a face crack moment (Hello, Jan! Who absolutely supports her Stephanie's Child sister despite fans pitting them against each other) was imminent. But such an expectation is an insult to Rosé's artistry: She isn't a perfectionist as much as she's simply, effortlessly excellent.
While her runways have ranged from questionable to jaw-dropping, Rosé never let the pressure get to her — even when it meant breaking perceptions many (unfairly) had. But that same stoic, graceful journey through the chaos of the season has also been to Rosé's detriment, as she's, at times, come off perhaps a bit more rigid on the main stage in a way that does a disservice to the clever, whip-smart, charismatic personality she flashes in candid moments in the Werk Room.
But Rosé's commitment to "perfection" (it's an unrealistic ask of anyone) has benefitted her in musical-based challenges in the past, and the finale seems built for someone like Rosé's tried-and-true polish to really shine.
Projected RuPaul's Drag Race season 13 winner: Symone
Symone just gets it. All of it. All the time. She is the moment — she has been since she first strutted onto the runway in her glam-boxer couture, letting us know that she came here to knock us out with excellence right from the start.
Sure, there's no statistical precedent quite like Symone's report card. Four wins hasn't translated to a victory for past queens, like Symone's drag bestie Gigi Goode on season 12 and season 9's Shea Couleé, and no American Drag Race winner has ever taken the crown with two bottom-two appearances (Priyanka from Canada's Drag Race remains the only major winner to overcome a similar stat). But, like Kandy, where Symone's "shortcomings" on the show might work against her on paper, there's no denying the next-level star quality she's brought to this competition.
From the runway (virtually every look has been a slam-dunk, unflinching celebration of Black artistry, from her stunning beads lewk to her massively important Black Lives Matter-inspired gown) to her theatricality on the main stage (Seriously? Doing a Whitney Houston lip-sync after pulling out a Whitney Houston handkerchief as a prop?), her superiority knows no bounds.
Some might say that a star was born in Symone across season 13, but it feels less like the show made her and more like it simply found a glistening gem that was merely waiting for her Hollywood vessel. Symone is a queen reacting to and reflecting the moment, and we need her to carry the torch of this franchise now more than ever.
Find out who will be crowned the RuPaul's Drag Race season 13 winner when the finale airs Friday, April 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on VH1.
Subscribe to EW's BINGE podcast for a full recaps of all 12 seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race, featuring exclusive interviews with Trixie Mattel, Katya, Peppermint, Bianca Del Rio, Bob the Drag Queen, Sasha Velour, and more.
RuPaul — as host, mentor, and creative inspiration — decides who's in and who's out.