Someone Finally Wins This Season Of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars
But after an epic rap number, they pretty much ALL win.
Oh hell YES, mamaaaaaa! The finale takes me there, leaves me there, and helps me get a low-interest mortgage so that I can stay there and raise a family. The top four girls serve sensational performances and runway looks, and while I understand there can only be one winner, everyone in this quartet should be strutting with pride.
Wipe That Mirror, Gurl
Refreshingly, Detox owns up to the fact that she sent Alyssa home because she didn't want to eliminate her good friend. No one seems shocked or pissed about it, and I'm relieved that, without Phi Phi around, this particular rule hasn't led to any kind of theatrics. I would've liked to see Alyssa in the final, of course, but it's not worth getting mad about.
Plus, Detox's decision lets us flash back to RuPaul's own surprise that Alyssa went home:
There's also some blah blah blahhhhh about Alaska's "tantrum" last week, and while it's clear that she's having a meltdown because she so badly wants to win, I don't find that especially off-putting. Strong women are allowed to waver! Or occasionally get sick! It doesn't meant they're unfit to lead, you hateful misogynist scumbag!
Ahem. Pardon me.
Shortly after this kiki ends, Michelle arrives with the final challenge. The ladies will form a girl group, and they will all write and perform a rap verse for RuPaul's "bitch track" called "Read You, Wrote You." (I'm not entirely sure what a bitch track is, and Google is proving inconclusive. I think the term refers to this absolutely flawless song. After all, Ru's single certainly sounds like this one, but if you have better intel, please let me know!)
Anyway, there will also be a choreographed number AND a runway walk AND an appearance on What's The Tee, Michelle and Ru's podcast. Mother is makin' them queens work for that crown!
Whistle While You Work It
I'm living for this lengthy montage of the girls recording their raps and appearing on the podcast.
Alaska's rap is clever (of course) and utilizes her breathy-sexy-stupid voice. There's also a Porkchop reference. Porkchop gets more play on this show than some of the girls who actually won. I hope it raises her booking fees.
The podcast interview ends up being about Alaska's "meltdown" and the apparent reemergence of RoLaskaTox. This quite obvious shakes Alaska and leads to another panic attack later in the episode. She's worried that all her hard work will land her exactly where she was in Season 5, watching a lovable weirdo take home the prize while she and her two friends stand by and watch. Again: it's all blown out of proportion, and happily, this entire narrative is dropped around the middle of the episode.
So why don't WE forget it as well? Let's focus instead on how RuPaul and Michelle really know how to pose for a post-podcast selfie.
You could take my picture a thousand times, and I would never look as poised as the people in this image do.
The podcast interviews with Detox and Katya are charming, and then comes the chat with Roxxxy. Ru notes that Roxxxy's attitude has changed, and Roxxxy, as she's been doing all season, accepts responsibility for her previous bad behavior. At this, RuPaul mentions that SOME girls want to blame editing for making them look bad. "No, bitch," she says. "You said it. You did it. That's how it was." OHHHHHHHH SHIIIIIIIT. Bye Phi Phi!
The other recording sessions go pretty smoothly, though Katya and Roxxxy both stumble a bit with the scansion of their lyrics.
Detox, however, throws it down like Foxy Brown.
Hit Those Splits, Bitch! h3>
The choreography rehearsal is the familiar mixture of missed steps and anxious asides. But this time, we also learn that Katya is incredibly flexible. Whenever choreographer Travis Wall needs her to get lowered into a split or get, like, turned upside down and twirled around like a helicopter blade, Katya's just like, "Cool."
The other girls watch this and get nervous they'll be upstaged.
Are They Drag Queens...Or Queen Latifah?
Once they perform their girl group number, though, nobody is upstaged. It's yet another performance challenge where everybody does a good job! Also, I've just realized that there's no fighting or backbiting or name-calling during this entire episode. Even at the end, when RuPaul asks each of them why they should win and the others should go home, nobody throws anybody else under the proverbial bus. Maybe that mutual affection and maturity helps them all do well!
As for the rap performace: I'm especially loving Alaska's blue body paint...
...and Detox's combination of schoolgirl realness and Shirley Manson.
Detox also gets triple points for slaying her rap verse. There's a part where she spells her name but waits an extra beat before she says "X." That pause is delicious.
I also appreciate that Katya's entire rap is done in a Russian accent (even if I don't always understand what she says). And while Roxxxy's rap is the weakest, she does some amazing choreography involving a long wig and a wind machine.
Stomp The Runway
The final runway is judged by Ru, Michelle, Todrick, Carson, and Ross.
Let's give special praise to Todrick and Michelle, who look great this week.
The queens give us red carpet realness, with Alaska proving she can do old Hollywood just as well as high-concept comedy.
Detox also shows a more feminine side to contrast her season-long parade of mind-bending, high-fashion ensembles.
Roxxxy's hair and make up are glorious.
And Katya's look is both glamorous and appropriately tacky for her character.
The judges give all the girls some nice compliments, and RuPaul even cries from pride. Which is, again, why this show is the greatest. He really wants them to do well!
After the judges confer, RuPaul decides that Roxxxy will be eliminated, leaving the other three girls to lip sync.
Lip Sync For Your Legacy
The final lip sync is "If I Were Your Woman" by Gladys Knight And The Pips, which is a shrewd choice. Because they're lip syncing to a slow jam, the girls really have to sell the story of the song. They can't hide behind wild dance moves or manic energy. Everyone does a great job, and Alaska goes the extra mile by adding a storyline about her decaying makeup:
And then Alaska wins the crown! Well done, hunty! You were fantastic all season, and you deserve it. It's a fitting end to a great season.
Most Watchable Moment
I'm going to watch the girl group rap performance at least twice a week until we reconvene to meet the queens of Season 9. See you then, my queens!