Welcome to Drag Race Power Rankings! Every Sunday, we’ll debrief the latest episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 5 to determine which queens are riding high, and which need she-mergency care. The final maxi-challenge of the season before the finale tasks the girls with doing stand-up comedy. Which queen had the audience in stitches, and which queen bombed?
4. Blair St. Clair (last week: 4) — ELIMINATED
Much as the show tried to convince us that anything could happen this week, in truth, there was only one thing that could happen. Even if Blair succeeded this week against the odds, I don’t think anyone would’ve been sent home; Ru pointedly said this challenge would be to determine who would be in the finale, not who would be in the top 3. As I said in my recap, I think that wording was left vague to allow the possibility of an everyone-moves-on result in the case that Blair won this week. Hey, they did it back in All Stars 1 with Raven and Jujubee.
But it feels more properly representative of this season that our finale will only have Jujubee, Shea Coulée, and Miz Cracker. Blair has grown since her season, but not so exponentially that she deserved to be considered for the crown. Her progress—and a finish a good five spots above hers in Season 10—is her victory.
3. Jujubee (last week: 3)
I’m writing this before the official fan votes start on Twitter and Instagram, but I will not be surprised in the slightest if Jujubee is leading them by the time you read this. She’s captured the audience’s affections most routinely this season, going viral for a couple of different jokes (the cat confessional while voting, her Eartha Kitt thermostat joke, saying “AMBER” in last week’s play cousin monologue). She has truly entertained us this season, not just in the challenges—but she was no slouch in those—but in her confessionals and workroom dialogue as well. If there were a Miss Congeniality prize in All Stars, she’d win it in a cakewalk.
I would be incredibly happy with a Jujubee win. It would feel like a true culmination of a decade-plus of Drag Race, and it would be nice to see a queen from the first three seasons—a notably crunchier-but-lovable era of the show—in the Hall of Fame. It would also be a reward for Juju really stepping up as a competitor this go-around. She’s got the performance record to back up her entertainment value. Jujubee would be a somewhat surprising winner, considering the editing this season, but I’ve learned at this point to not be surprised by what RuPaul’s Drag Race pulls out in its final act.
2. Shea Coulée (last week: 2)
Shea Coulée is the story of All Stars 5. She knocked several challenges out of the park and consistently impressed on the runway. She opened up about losing family members and trying to get over her loss in Season 9, and dazzled with her natural charisma and confidence. She played the game and entertained us with drama, but never made a decision that could be considered unfair. In my mind, Shea has already won All Stars 5. But I know that won’t mean much to her—she wants the crown. She wants it bad.
If I were in Ru’s shoes, Shea would be the winner of this season. She’s been so technically excellent throughout, succeeding in every portion of the competition. Sure, she may not have the most wins, but there were so few to go around this season (7 in total, compared to a staggering 16 in All Stars 4) that it feels unfair to judge by that metric. You have to really look at her work, week after week, and see just how consistent she has been. She has fought hard in two separate seasons, and in my eyes, she deserves that spot in the Drag Race Hall of Fame.
1. Miz Cracker (last week: 1)
If Juju’s argument for the win is her entertainment value, and Shea’s is her technical excellence, then Cracker’s is her momentum. She walks into the finale with three challenge wins, two of them in the last two weeks of the season, and she’s made the most on lip sync tips this season (with $40,000 total). She also has the track record, although I’d note that with the everyone-in-the-bottom twist this season, track records mean less than ever before. And really, they’ve been depreciating in value ever since Sasha Velour won Season 9. The only queens with the best track records of all the finalists to win since the show moved to VH1 were Aquaria and Trinity the Tuck. And Trinity’s win was a tie!
No, Cracker’s strength is much more in her late-season hot streak than in any kind of report card. If she impresses in a major way next week, I could see Ru being bowled over by her hat trick and giving her the crown. Because make no mistake, Cracker has been solid this season. She’ll never be my favourite queen, just because her comedy and drag styles aren’t what I’m naturally drawn to, but I believe she very much deserves her spot in the top 3. Does she deserve the win? Personally, I’d say no. And with Juu’s fan support and Shea’s edit this season, I think her cash tips and top 3 appearance will have to be her reward.