RuPaul's Drag Race Season 13, Episode 1: The Pork Chop Review

Okay, so there are spoilers, but come on – what did you expect when you clicked on this article? First things first, if you watch the Drag Race Pit Stop series on YouTube, the show where former Drag Race winners and contestants review the episode, you already know that Trixie Mattel has replaced Bob The Drag Queen as host and I have feelings about this. Yes, I love Trixie, but she's got enough stuff going on, mama. Give her time to sit at home and watch Netflix with Katya or bake more easy bake oven treats and bring back Bob The Drag Queen to host The Pit Stop.

Drag Race s13e1 The Pork Chop Review (Image: ViacomCBS)
RuPaul's Drag Race s13e1 The Pork Chop Review (Image: ViacomCBS)

Trixie just isn't the same – her discourse with the guest isn't natural, it feels very canned and scripted, which is something I never could say about Bob. Plus, Bob's looks are always amazing – Trixie's are great too, but it's never anything new and groundbreaking – it's all her signature 60s pastels. At least Bob keeps serving us something fresh.

But speaking of fresh, we have a fresh new season full of gags, twists, and of course sickening new looks from our 13 new contestants. Now, because of Covid and the fact they filmed this in the middle of the pandemic, things are a little different, but Ru makes them work. For example, the queens aren't all in the werkroom at the same time for their entrances; they enter two by two with each pair being called to the main stage to lip-sync battle against each other.

Now, first things first, let's talk first impressions. Denali is a professional ice skater, and she turned up in a blinged-out pair of ice skates. Now, let's chat about that – girl. Did production approve this? It's cute and cheeky and I love it…but skates, even at their most dull are still a little destructive to regular floors. RIP that stage – she's wearing legit skates with blades out, no guards. I get that you have a trashed pair of blades that you're not skating on anymore…but doing a cartwheel on the main stage on your toepicks? RIP main stage plexiglass, it has divots in it now. Thanks, resident ice queen.

Drag Race s13e1 The Pork Chop Review (Image: ViacomCBS)
RuPaul's Drag Race s13e1 The Pork Chop Review (Image: ViacomCBS)

More first impressions, Utica Queen's look is giving me hardcore Drag Race Holland vibes in the form of Ma'Ma Queen. She's the quirky queen this season, with hardcore midwest Minnesota vibes meet quirky clowny queen, like Thorgy Thor, or Ivy Winters. Speaking of clowns, GottMik's signature is a full face of clown white – I wonder if that's going to be their go-to makeup look for everything this competition because I can see the judges getting very bored with that quickly.

Symone's dress was cute – she linked polaroids of herself together to make a cute 60s inspired dress… but personally, I felt it needed more. Either some kind of breast padding (just a little to make it more feminine) or some jewelry….it just felt like it needed something else. But points for creativity. Speaking of creativity, Tina Burner serves classic NYC camp queen in a firefighter outfit that's a little much, but it's camp.

Matchups are Kandy Muse and Joey Jay, "Call Me Maybe" (by Carly Rae Jepson) with Kandy winning; Denali vs LaLa Ri to "When I Grow Up" (by the Pussycat Dolls); Symone vs Tamisha Iman to Janet Jackson's "The Pleasure Principle" (which Symone "officially" won and I have opinions about that). Gottmik beat Utica Queen performing "Rumors" by one Lindsay Lohan; Rosé and Olivia Lux duked it out to "Ex's and Oh's" by Elle King, and even though Olivia won, Rosé won my heart (even if she was salty that she lost; I mean, if I thought I was going home after all that, I would probably be too). The final lip sync of the night was a three-way between Tina Burner, Kahmora Hall, and Elliott with 2 Ts to "Lady Marmalade" by Christina, Pink, Lil Kim, and Mya. Tina one the last one, sending Kahmora and Elliott with 2 Ts to the … where do all the losing queens go, anyway?

The losing queens are sent to the "pork chop loading dock" to await their transportation…back into the competition! That would be really sh*tty if they were quarantined for two weeks, just to be sent home after .2 seconds of screen time and zero opportunity to show what they got. Rumor has it there will be different challenges for each group in the next episode, but we'll have to wait to find out for sure. Drag Race episode 2 "Condragulations" airs on VH1 on Friday, January 8. In the meantime, keep an eye here on Bleeding Cool for all things Drag Race.

About Eden Arnold

Having spent far too much time in front of the television growing up, Eden has lots of opinions about television (as well as movies and everything else). She puts this to good use along with her journalism degree and writing experience with by-lines over the years in many print publications, books, and online media outlets. You can find her on Twitter at @Edenhasopinions

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