Last time on Drag Race, the queens were split into two groups – last week the "winner" group got their challenge time and this week, the Pork Chop group of queens finally get their time on the main stage. For the mini-challenge, they have the same "lady and the vamp" look as did last week's queens- and for the main challenge, they're tasked with writing a verse each and performing to RuPaul's original song, Phenomenon. The main runway category is "We're here, we're sheer, get used to it" with special guest judge Nicole Byer! So let's jump right into it, shall we?
Denali's "forget me not" lady look was meh – the lace on her tights and the un-cinched waist paired with the yellow hair was just a full miss for me, but Michelle Visage loved it. Guess there's no accounting for taste. At least she cinched for her vamp look, tough her shapes are still a little off for me. Another miss is Utica – she's just not my style, especially not in her "straight from the McDonald's ball pit" dress. Too quirky, not enough polish. Her vamp look is a little more polished, but she still has the balls there with some surrealist Alice in Wonderland red queen vibes.
However, Joey Jay is serving P!nk rock mom realness and I am in LOVE with both looks – the second is very "let me dominate you" and OMG her ass! She is padded for the gods and I cannot get enough. Rosé's look is a cartoon comic fantasy and I think this is the best she's ever looked – I can see Kim Chi or Rock M Sakura in that look…though her vamp look is a little vexing – it looks more like she belongs in EPCOT's vision for the future with that cage on her hat.
Tamisha Iman owns this challenge serving Atlanta MILF paradise and I am straight up obsessed with both looks; for her vamp look she is serving inches, hunty, and this is my favorite hair look on Drag Race to date – and that's including all the hair challenges through the years. Kahmora Hall went for a classy interpretation for both – her lady look is pure white "tea at Buckingham Palace" sophistication and her vamp look is solid black velvet number that is to die for.
Now, on to the main challenge – a full-on song and dance number, on a pretty tight time table too. That seems like a tall order, but this is Drag Race, not "Drag Honey take your time". Speaking of time management, Kahmora is notorious for taking forever to get ready, and that follows her here to the runway where she was almost late. Hopefully, that is the wake-up call you needed, girl.
Denali, miss "I'm a professional choreographer" takes over the dance rehearsal, totally stepping on the toes of Joey Jay, a ballroom dance instructor, and Rosé, another dancer and girl group member. And joining these dancing queens are complete non-dancer Kahmora Hall, professional awkward lanky white kid Utica, and Tamisha Iman, who can move but is just trying to keep these kids from bickering all through practice time.
Denali? Baby? Stop with the shade and respect your elders. Tamisha has been doing this for 30 years and is a bonafide staple of the Atlanta drag community (and beyond) and bitch, she's and her children are all fabulous. So all you hot and bothered little 20-something baby queens best step off and respect. Yes, we absolutely stan Tamisha here and if you got a problem with it, there is the door. Joey Jay is also a personal favorite – she knows she can't rap or sing, but she's "gay AF" so she's just gonna go with that. The bitch may not be able to sing, but darling, she can dance the house down.
As for the performance, did Denali steal Rosé's look with the all pink? Because it's not working for her. What was working was Joey's swagger though – for real obsessed with this queen. Of course, we all know Tamisha brings it – her verse reminded me a lot of Shea Coulee's performances on Drag Race, and that just makes me love her even more. Utica is quirky and while her style may not be my cup of tea, she knows what she's about and works it.
The main runway looks were sheer – Kahmora served a Bob Mackie inspired number (when does she not); Joey went with sheer and stoned fringe; Rosé's look read more plastic and less sheer – she showed up with ruffled organza wrist sleeve things and it was just kind of a mess. Tamisha did a stoned sequined sheer number and I am LIVING. Utica seemed less sheer and more Hermes scarves, but I suppose it's not terrible. Denali had a short lavender sheer number and it was alright – that white zipper right down the back killed it for me though. But bonus points for using lavender on a category based on a historic gay slogan.
It came out on the runway that Tamisha makes all her garments and the gaggery is real – a lot of queens find out they're going on Drag Race and commission looks from the same handful of designers, but to have a queen who came to the competition with a whole closet full of original fashions? Everyone was floored (in a good way).
Denali and Rosé are the top queens this week and the rest are safe – another non-elimination episode thank goodness. Because if it had been, Kahmora would be packing and on that van back home. The lip sync for the winning song is If You Seek Amy by the absolute icon Britney Spears. Rosé and Denali have such different performance styles and they both brought it in their own ways, but in the end, Denali won the $5,000 tip (and lip-sync redemption now that she's not wearing figure skates).
RuPaul warns the queens that though she may have been playing nice these past few weeks, starting next week, heads will roll. Speaking of next week, the two groups finally come together and it will be D-R-A-M-A. Are you ready to tune in and see the queens' acting chops on the "RuPaulmark Channel"? Drag Race is all-new next Friday on VH1.