Toronto Diary
3 min

The Drag Race Ruview: The Great Jewel Robbery

Last night’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race brought us back to the ballroom with a challenge based on designing three glittering gowns. For the sake of encapsulating the episode, I’m skipping the script format and just jumping right into dress judging. Categories are: Banjee Girl, Millionaire Executive, Dripping in Jewels and QUEEN WHO FUCKING ROBBED REALNESS.

Adore Delano was the clear winner; no objections there. More than any other queen, Adore’s been able to change up her look, and her ability to create a character and a story for her ensembles is what pushed her into victory. It also helped that it gave the producers a chance to put together a “scrappy underdog triumphs!” story line, which RuPaul just loves.

The Banjee Girl was clearly in her wheelhouse, giving her an outlet to put her self-described “chola” personality to work. The Millionaire Executive was rather simple, but her attitude and gradually dissipating outfit put a BDSM-lite spin on it. And while her Dripping in Jewels dress was a little easy-peasy, the styling choices — from the hair matching the skirt to the chain connecting her wrists — really helped to sell it. This was a deserved win.

Bianca Del Rio was the runner-up this week, despite having the best sewing skills of the bunch. All three of her looks were polished to the gods, but there was an undeniable sameness to her Dripping in Jewels gown: it was the classic Bianca dress. Floor-length gown? Fabulous collar? Fun little headpiece? It’s all just a little on the nose.

Her other two looks were equally good, if not a little on the safe side. The Banjee Girl looked fabulous, but it was way too posh to be believable. Her Millionaire Executive was also very nice, but . . . just nice. Bianca’s technically skilled, but Adore’s ability to sell the garment edged her out by a hair.

How in the name of fuck was this the losing collection? I’m not sure who shit in the judges’ Cheerios that morning, but they decided to sashay away Miss BenDeLaCreme, despite the fact that her looks were polished, technically well made and suited DeLa’s personality to a T. 

I thought the Banjee girl was awesomely over the top in its execution of the big puffy sleeves, and while the Millionaire Executive wasn’t terribly executive, it was at least a stab at something new. And DeLa’s Dripping in Jewels look was gorgeous, well put together and adorable. Sashay away, my well-documented ass.

Darienne Lake was in the bottom alongside DeLa and, despite a much weaker showing, got to hold on for another week, thanks to a slightly stronger lip-sync. For some reason, people blamed Darienne, despite the fact that the judges deserve ALL of the blame for that peach of a decision. I’m looking at you, Michelle “Not Merle” Visage.

Now, let’s discuss these looks: they weren’t great. The Banjee Girl look was in no way Banjee, no matter how much voguing she did, and Darienne’s Millionaire Executive was more like Wynonna Judd realness. As for her Dripping in Jewels look, it was rough. The stoning was pretty haphazard, and the fabric of the dress made it look like she was wearing bedazzled burlap. All in all, this wasn’t her week.

If anything, Courtney Act would have been my pick to go. Sure, Darienne’s looks weren’t great, and DeLa was the unfortunate victim this week, but Courtney’s looks were just bland. Courtney’s been resting on pretty for weeks now, and a trio of just-okay dresses only served to underscore just how safe she’s been playing it.

Her Banjee Girl was a pale, assless imitation of Adore’s, the Millionaire Executive was a pale, assless imitation of Bianca’s, and the Dripping in Jewels was a pale, assless imitation of a Honey Mahogany caftan. But at least she didn’t wear a blonde wig for her last look. That was different, I guess.