RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 9, Episode 10 Recap: Making the Bunny Cry

Previously on Drag Race: Sasha Velour and Shea Couleé won yet another challenge together and the fanfiction intensified. Alexis Michelle threw her teammates under the bus, all the while saying it was not her intention to do so (but she did it anyway). And Valentina tried to get away with lip-syncing with a mask on… and sashayed away instead.

The queens return to the werk room trying to figure out what the heck just happened. Everyone cheers for Nina Bo’nina Brown‘s great lip-syncing job against Valentina, but of course, Nina is trapped her own special blend of negativity and anxiety and can only see the sadness in all this – which, to be fair, you can’t blame her for this time.

But the other queens have HAD it with her attitude. Officially. Sasha Velour and Peppermint go on this synchronized fed-up rant saying almost exactly the same thing at the same time, and it’s kind of magical.

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“Can we stop talking about this actually can we not this is too much I’m sorry this is not I’m not having this conversation anymore I’m not having this in here”

And just in case it wasn’t quite clear enough, Trinity Taylor announces in her confessional that she’s “over it.”

Trinity
Four times.

The next morning, RuPaul comes in and starts introducing the makeover challenge. Rather than beam with excitement the way the queens usually do, there’s a certain sense of awkward foreboding there instead.

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“Ooooo girl”
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“Oh boy, here it is”
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“Aw, fuck”

The annual makeover challenge is almost always the most difficult, unpredictable, and cringe-worthy exercise the queens have to go through. Insert horrifying flashback to Joslyn Fox‘s ashy, nauseous straight-guy bride here.

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Oop, there it is.

But just as the queens and viewers are all mentally strapping themselves in for a nasty ol’ time, Ru announces this year’s twist: the queens have to give the crew members makeovers!

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“Ummm this wasn’t in my contract”

Now, this should be interesting – and since the crew members all work there, there shouldn’t be any of that extreme “but really I’m a straight guy” awkwardness that this challenge is usually full of.

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Ladies, meet your victims.

Having won last week’s challenge, Sasha Velour and Shea Couleé get to decide who gives whom a makeover. (Yes I said whom, get over it.)

Shea picks Josh, the P.A. (second from the right), for fairly obvious skin-tone-related reasons. Sasha chooses Duncan, the serious-looking assistant director (far right). Nina gets Aaron, the artsy one (second from left). Peppermint is paired with Sarge, the sassy camera operator (far left). Trinity is handed Rizzo, P.A. and resident cutie (third from left). And Alexis is left with the sound guy, Brady (third from right).

The queens begin to get their crew members initiated to the art of drag, some by trying to get the runway walk down first, others by going straight for the choice of outfit. Nina Bo’nina Brown decides to sew outfits from scratch for herself and her partner.

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And Nina can’t sew for shit, so that should be promising.

Shea Couleé tells Josh the P.A. that one of her inspirations for drag is Naomi Campbell, and asks him what kind of female celebrity he’d like to model his style and attitude after. His response: Natalie Portman.

Shea2
“Natalie Portman?!”

And of course Josh walks like a total dude, so Shea’s got her work cut out for her.

Trinity Taylor’s nickname is “The Tuck,” so she wants to make sure her new sister’s junk is nonexistent – at all costs.

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Rizzo sure looks happy about that.

Meanwhile, Sasha’s partner Duncan is already feeling the fantasy.

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It’s like Violet Chachki born again.

Side note: Sasha’s necklace says “Magical Bitch.”

Sasha1
Can I, like, have that?

Everyone is starting to get their outfits ready and Nina is still trying to get the sewing machine to work for her. She asks Shea for help, which is super awkward, and everyone around her (including her partner Aaron) is basically waiting for her to realize this isn’t gonna work.

Aaron1
Aaron looks W.O.R.R.I.E.D.

Meanwhile, on the happier side of the room, Sarge and Duncan are having a walk-off in heels, complete with Sasha and Trinity throwing shady quips around, and it’s fabulous.

Sarge-Duncan
Yaaaaas. Sissy that walk!

At long last, Nina realizes (with some not-so-subtle hinting from Aaron) that sewing two whole outfits in one day when she doesn’t know how to sew is just impossible. They retreat to her station to look for backup outfits.

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I’m just glad she finally unpacked.

It’s elimination day, and as the queens are starting with their makeup, Aaron asks Nina about her inner struggles. He gives her a little bit of tough love, telling her she always lets her pride or negativity get in the way of people trying to push her upward. In a rare moment of truthfulness, Nina admits she is her own worst enemy and that other people telling her how great she is won’t do a thing until she starts to believe it too.

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It’s a little hard to take this conversation seriously when she’s gluing Play-Doh to her face, though.

The moment that Rizzo’s been dreading has finally come – it’s time for him to go change, and that involves tucking his junk. While we can’t see much of what’s going on, we can hear Rizzo going “fuck” and “ouch” while Trinity stands right next to the partition, basically heckling him like a football coach.

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“It’s not a wrestling match!”

When he can’t seem to make it work on his own, Trinity takes out a HUGE strip of tape and goes to work on the poor guy. He’s having a terrible time but it’s fun as hell for everyone else involved – including us.

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Strap it down, Trinity!

Runway time! One of the guest judges is fashion designer Zaldy, who has created every dress Ru has worn, including this Japanese number.

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Subarashii!

The other guest judge this week is Kesha, the fierce pop singer. That outfit!

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Ross has probably worn that chest strap before.

The runway is on, ladies! Let’s have a look at each pair.

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First up, Trinity Taylor and Glitaffa Dayze. First of all, the tuck is fierce. Second, she looks amazing. Third, that drag name is killer. Toot! Trinity is flawless as well.

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Eek. Shea Couleé and Bae Couleé are having some trouble. Bae looks pretty sloppy, is having a major wig emergency, and those heels… are a bit minimal. Oh, Shea…

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Alexis Michelle and Rye Anne Stardust look pretty good, if a little on the basic side. This is the outfit Alexis came into the werk room in, so that’s not ideal, but her makeup and hair are on point and so are her sister’s, so, not bad.

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Nina Bo’nina Brown and Ariana Bo’nina Brown (IS “ARIANA” SOME KIND OF SECRET SHADE AT VALENTINA?!) are pretty quirky-looking. The rabbit makeup looks a lot better on Nina than it does on Ariana, and has very little to do with the leathery outfits they’re wearing. Ariana just looks really miserable, but it might just be the way her makeup is done.

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It’s almost hard to tell Sasha Velour and Dunatella Velour apart, and that’s pretty damn great. They look like fierce 1920s hotel attendants. They’ve got the letters “L.O.V.E.” glued to the backs of their outfits, and when they switch places…

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Artistry.

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Peppermint and Winter Green‘s outfits don’t match very well and Winter Green’s isn’t super flattering, but the girl is FEELING. HERSELF. Her attitude is extra fierce. She’s totally overshadowing Peppermint.

Next up, the pairs need to do a lip-sync to RuPaul’s song, Click Clack. The performances range from amusing to “YAS BITCH” levels of awesomeness.

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Trinity’s number is fully choreographed. She whipped Rizzo’s pussy into shape for sure.

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Sasha and Dunatella look like they’re having tons of fun.

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And let’s not forget Winter Green twerking under falling dollar bills. I mean, damn.

The judges critique the queens, and Kesha tries to talk to Winter Green but is murdered by the new queen’s hilarious facial expressions.

Back in the Untucked lounge, Nina Bo’nina Brown considers not lip-syncing and giving up in case she falls in the bottom, and the girls give her a pep talk for the umpteenth time.

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“Why does this have to be the subject every single time we are in a group,” Pepper mutters to Sasha.

Back on the main stage, Trinity wins the challenge! She’s awarded two David Meister gowns. Isn’t it kinda awkward that the gowns being given as prizes tonight are made by a different fashion designer than Zaldy?

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Well, I’m sure Trinity doesn’t give a tuck.

The crew members watch from backstage as Alexis Michelle is declared safe, and Nina Bo’nina Brown and Shea Couleé (GASP) fall in the bottom two.

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That is the saddest-looking bunny I have ever seen.

Nina seems like she’s about to pull a Charlie Hides in the lip-sync, but she finally ends up putting up a fight. That said, I think it was fairly obvious from the get-go that Nina, with her record, didn’t stand a chance against Shea, who wins the lip-sync.

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As RuPaul bids adieu to Nina, she ends her habit of adding extra names to the queen’s moniker by calling her “Nina Bo’nina Brown André Charles,” and concluding with “Baby, you are part of my family now.”

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TISSUES. SOMEBODY GET ME TISSUES.

Nina, you were an incredibly talented gal with some really groundbreaking, inspirational ideas. I hope you can take some time to really learn to love yourself as much as everyone else loves you. You may not be ready in time for All Stars 3, but I think by the time All Stars 4 rolls around, you’ll be taking the world by storm, bitch.

Did someone say “run-down?”

Trinity Taylor – With three wins all to herself, rather than shared with another competitor, Trinity may now have taken the lead in the race to the crown. And I am completely okay with that. She’s proven time and again that she’s insanely talented and versatile, and has a great personality to go with that.

Shea Couleé – Finally, Shea failed at something this week. Not that I’m happy about it, but at least it makes it a little less obvious who’s going to win when all is said and done. She’s still a total frontrunner, though.

Alexis Michelle – I hate to say this, but I think besides maybe Peppermint, there’s no one else Alexis can make it past in this competition now. She’s good, but she’s just not quite on everyone else’s level.

Sasha Velour – Sasha is now the only queen who hasn’t had to lip-sync for her life (and I went to her show this weekend, so I know she could kill it if she had to!). Though she has fewer wins than Shea or Trinity, I think the fact that she’s been consistently good or great (or at least never bad enough to lip-sync) may still allow her to snatch that crown. Or maybe I’m just in denial.

Peppermint – Pepper is a talented gal, but I don’t really think she can beat Shea, Trinity, or Sasha to the top 3. Top 4, though? Absolutely. Though I guess we’ll know next week.

That’s it for now, ladies and gents! Tune in next week when we find out whether Alexis Michelle can beat out Peppermint and last another episode!

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