Toronto Diary
6 min

The Drag Race RuCap: suck my caucus

It’s Tuesday, so you know what that means: it’s time for another RuCap of everyone’s favourite ball-tucking television show, RuPaul’s Drag Race! This week, the girls were tasked to create Absolut cocktail–inspired shoes and get political by running for candidacy of the Wig Party. Let’s take a look at the shit that worked and the shat that Santorumed.

After last week’s ESCANDALO, wherein the lovably self-promoting Willam was given the Lucite, high-heeled boot for reasons as yet unknown, the girls return to the workroom to find Willam’s lipstick-smeared ass-print on the mirror. The final five seem only too glad to have her gone when they sing “Goodbye Shady Bearded Lady” as Sharon Needles and That Bitch Phi Phi reenact the dismissal. Sharon’s Ru impression is pitch-perfect, and That Bitch Phi Phi’s Willam impression boils down to her throwing on a wig and barfing glitter on the floor. It’s still weird to see the two of them acting this chummy, but worry not, because That Bitch Phi Phi will completely ruin your opinion of her soon enough.

Here it comes: oooooh, girl! You got SheMail! Ru drops a bunch of political/sexual double entendres before boy Ru walks out with Absolut’s “Image Czar” (read: spokesman) Jeffrey Moran. The mini-challenge this week is to design platform heels based on cocktails. Dida Ritz designs a gorgeous, golden aristocratic shoe; Latrice Royal crafts some dazzling, diamond shoes; Sharon creates Indian-inspired shoes with nightmare-catchers; Chad Michaels fills hers with grapefruit juice; and That Bitch Phi Phi just glues a bunch of fruit garnishes to her shoes and calls it a day. So of course, That Bitch Phi Phi wins. Yeah, I’m not sure why either. I can’t for the life of me remember what she wins, but it’s undeserved, and it doesn’t really do her any good in the main challenge, so who cares.

For the main challenges, the girls have to create a different kind of platform: a political platform. The girls will be running to be nominated as the candidate of the fictional Wig Party and become the first-ever drag-queen president. And Dan Savage is here to help the girls shape their issues! Off the bat, Dida and Chad are nervous because neither one of them wants to be political: it’s too personal and is a sensitive topic that can cause tension among people. In order to duck any real political discussions, Chad decides to create a character to send up various crazy third-party candidates. Dida, on the other hand, ducks it by basically not even trying.

That Bitch Phi Phi decides to create a character, too, styling herself as a moronic Sarah Palin type. Timely it isn’t. Latrice and Sharon decide to go the more serious route, using the opportunity to talk about real issues affecting the gay community. Latrice wants to give money to HIV/AIDS patients on disability, and Sharon wants to put an end to bullying. Basically, we have queens on both ends of the spectrum, and That Bitch Phi Phi, who’s just sort of drifting in the middle with no real substance.

And now, on to the debate! The girls are dressed in their best executive realness and have to answer debate questions from the panel of Ru, Dan Savage and Michelle Visage’s jugs. Chad, dressed in a cat suit with her head sandwiched between pink afros, is hilarious and trashy, but she doesn’t really go that far politically. Dida is completely flustered by the challenge and just sort of sputters through the debate, mumbling about Ralph Lauren and drag queen–on–dog marriage. Latrice Royal tries to maintain dignity and poise, but her answers are short and scant on details. 

But none of them are anywhere near as bad as That Bitch Phi Phi. Oh lord . . . where to begin? Her Sarah Palin–esque character isn’t funny. The jokes are stale, and coupled with her screeching need to be the centre of attention, she’s bombing and bombing hard. But then she says something so jaw-droppingly stupid, I’m surprised she doesn’t get immediately disqualified: she refers to Dida and Latrice as “the help."


Thankfully, Sharon steps over the whole mess, strong-willed and authoritative. She’s funny, passionate and smart, and she clearly knows and cares about what she talks about. It’s the Sharon Needles Show all the way, while the other queens are tripping over themselves.

Anyway, on to the main stage: the category is inaugural-ball realness. The judges this week are Michelle Visage, Santino Rice, Jeffrey Moran, Dan Savage and Towelie the Towel. Oh, wait, sorry: that’s just RuPaul in an ill-fitting, rainbow-sherbet caftan. Never mind.

Chad Michaels comes out in an absolutely fabulous Grace Kelly ensemble, and the judges love her character. However, Michelle Visage says that she wants Chad to stop playing characters and reveal who she is. It’s a bit vague, but I can see what she means: Chad needs to open up about what she believes in, what she thinks and how she feels about things.

Dida walks the runway in a black mermaid dress, unfortunately paired with dirty Kesha hair. The judges say that she wasn’t really committed to the task, and her flip-flopping answers were unclear and confusing.

Latrice Royale’s dress looks a little like her sparkly corset last year, and the judges read her over an exposed bra strap. And like she said she would a couple weeks back, she bites back at Santino for getting too personal with his critiques of her. If this were anyone else, he would have shut her up, but this is Latrice mothafuckin’ Royal, so he’s instantly humbled, drawing back the bitchy comments with his tail between his legs.

Sharon Needles comes out in a nude dress, a gothic-Lolita bob and a black corset, since she feels there won’t be a drag-queen president for another 100 years. The judges love it, and they love her more demure, conservative look. Jeffrey makes a remark about how he doesn’t want a queen who’s all shock value, but considering Sharon’s been able to play pretty just as well as she’s been able to play spooky, he’s kind of talking out of his ass.

And finally, we have That Bitch Phi Phi. TBPP comes out in a beautiful white gown, but instead of coming out with a beat face, she comes out in makeup that literally looks like someone beat her face with a baseball bat. Ru immediately goes in on her over “the help” joke she made, and she looks absolutely livid. It takes a lot for Ru to go in for the kill, and she and Michelle read her for filth over it. Dan Savage, for the record, went on Twitter to voice his distaste for the joke, too. Santino Rice seems to be the only judge who liked TBPP’s act, which really doesn’t speak too highly of him when it comes to his judgment. Santino consistently read Pandora Boxx back in Season 2, and his embrace of TBPP on this season doesn’t speak highly of his taste in fashion or humour.

Naturally, Sharon wins the challenge, with Chad close behind her, and the bottom two are Dida and . . . Latrice Royal. Wait, what? I have no clue why, either, but if I had to guess, it had something to do with the fact that That Bitch Phi Phi is good for stirring up cat fights, and as the weakest queen and the worst lip-syncher of the bunch, she would have gone home, depriving the girls of the one source of constant tension. 

Dida and Latrice lip-sync to Gladys Knight’s “I’ve Got To Use My Imagination.” Dida strips off her gown so she can dance like she did the last time she lip-synched, but she’s no match for Latrice, who connects to both the song and the judges. It’s a powerful performance, and Dida is told to sashay away. In all fairness to Dida, she was a fierce competitor, but it was her time to go. Hopefully, she’ll someday learn that when you volumize your wig, you’re supposed to do so vertically, not horizontally. Bye, girl, bye.

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