Welcome back to the INTO RuView, where we recap “RuPaul’s Drag Race” week by week. The eleventh episode of All Stars 6, “The Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent Monologues,” saw the queens welcome back an eliminated contestant before baring their souls in a storytelling challenge.
The episode picks up right where the last one left off: Eureka and Silky are standing on stage, waiting to hear who won the final redemption lip sync to return to the competition. It was close, but Ru announces that the winner is … Eureka! Her elimination was a revolving door: kicked out then pulled straight back in.
I agree that Eureka won the final lip sync, but damn, what an anticlimax. Watching Silky slaughter six consecutive lip syncs, beating all the odds, just to get defeated at the last second? Not a great payoff.
At least Ru pays her her dues before she leaves for good: “From this moment on, there is only one word to describe you: LEGENDARY!” It’s true: Silky is now the queen with the most lip sync wins in the show’s herstory. If that’s not icon status, I don’t know what is.
Regardless, Silky sashays away, and the next day in the werkroom, Eureka returns. All the queens begrudgingly welcome her back — aside from Trinity, who’s clearly not feeling it. I mean, I know it must feel unfair, but it’s reality TV. Nothing’s fair.
This episode has a mini-challenge! It’s to create a look with pieces from the Levi’s Pride collection, and ohmygod, this jacket. I SWEAR this thing was a meme on gay Twitter a few months ago. What does this mean?? I both hate it and am obsessed with it.
Not much to report from this challenge — it’s really just a dressed-up ad for Levi’s. I will say that Kylie’s wig was immaculate as always. Somehow, she made rainbows not tacky!
She wins the mini-challenge, but it doesn’t have any bearing on the maxi-challenge: the Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve, and Talent Monologues. Get it? Each queen has to tell a true story from her life as a drag queen that, per Ru, “gives us the feels and gives us LIFE.” This season looooves its emotional challenges, huh.
As the girls start brainstorming, Eureka and Trinity are feeling the pressure — as they should. Eureka knows that returning girls are almost always sent right back out the door, while Trinity knows if she lands in the bottom for a fourth time, she’s pretty much toast. Long story short: they both need this win, but only one can have it.
The queens get to workshop their stories with comedians Alec Mapa and Jermaine Fowler. Ra’Jah is up first, and though she oozes charisma, she also can’t pull herself away from her notepad, which is a KILLER in this kind of challenge.
Next is Kylie, who gets a mini redemption. Alec Mapa was one of the guests for Season 2’s Snatch Game, which sent Kylie home. But now, she gets to flex her natural storytelling skills, and frankly, she’s rocking it right out of the gate.
Trinity’s really impressive here! She’s off-book, and she’s serving some pretty good comedy. She does get warned to slow down a little bit, which I agree with — what good is a funny story if you can’t understand it?
Ginger should be a natural at this. The problem is, she knows that, and her confidence makes her come off as overproduced. Not impossible to fix, but definitely a challenge.
And last is Eureka, whose story is about … pooping her pants at a gig? Definitely a bizarre choice in a challenge where you’re supposed to “give us the feels.” The judges don’t have a great track record with bathroom humor — I’m looking at you, Rock M. Sakura. But Eureka sticks to her guns.
On the runway, Ru is wearing … pants!? Can it be true? But she looks DAMN good. Somehow, after, like, 20 seasons of this show, she still finds ways to surprise me.
It’s time for the actual monologues. Trinity is up first, and she looks correct. Her story is about getting catfished by a fan, and at first, her comedy seems to be falling a little flat. But the second half of the story is extremely touching: the catfish was someone with HIV, who happened to see Trinity sharing her status on “Drag Race” and was saved from the brink of suicide. She definitely pulled it around with the ending, though I will say calling Ru her “guardian angel” did seem a bit like kissing ass. Can’t blame her, though.
Kylie is next, and she’s, GASP, sitting down. But she’s literally so captivating, it just draws us in closer. Her story is about her first time in drag, and feeling celebrated for her femininity for the first time in her life. It’s simple, it’s beautiful, it feels authentic. Tens from me.
Ginger is third, and unfortunately, she hasn’t fixed her overproduction problem. It’s better than the workshop, but every word still feels entirely scripted. Still, the story is excellent — her mom validating her queerness by buying the doll her first pair of heels. And it’s Ginger, so of course it’s funny! It’s just not quite what the challenge was asking for.
Ra’Jah’s up, and right away, she loses her train of thought. Ra’Jah, I was rooting for you, we were all rooting for you! She manages to get back on track, telling the story of when her tuck popped out as a baby queen. There’s not much depth to it, sadly, which combined with her awkward pausing puts her at the bottom of the pack. But I’ll be damned if she’s not still my pick for the crown!
Eureka is last. It’s the moment of truth: if she can’t turn it out, she’s almost certainly going home. But, yeah, she turns it out! Her story may be about poop, but really, it’s about owning who you are, embarrassments and all. It’s hilarious, but still has a moral, and she remains perfectly conversational throughout. Not to mention, she looks stun. She did the damn thing!
The category is … Oops! I Did It Again
Best Look: Ra’Jah O’Hara
This is a bizarre category. Basically, the girls had to take a fashion fail and make it fabulous. Nobody did that better than Ra’Jah, who looks like she might make falling-off dresses the next big trend. Seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised to see that completely open side silhouette on some red carpets. And the makeup, as always, is on point.
Runner-Up: Kylie Sonique Love
As a former fast-food worker myself, this one spoke to me. She’s giving food stain eleganza, and looking damn good while doing it. Plus, I’m a sucker for surprises, so seeing her pull that corn dog from her skirt fully sold it for me.
Meh of the Week: Trinity K. Bonet
Trinity looks classically gorgeous, as always. Where this falls flat for me is that the fail—having to safety pin the gown—isn’t visible until she’s halfway down the runway. But it’s a great concept, and it’s well-executed.
Second Worst: Eureka!
I think Eureka bit off more than she could chew here. She’s tackling too many fails — windblown hair, sweat stains, toilet paper on the shoe — for there to be one coherent concept. But she does sell the hell out of it, and all things considered, she makes those stains look good!
Worst Look: Ginger Minj
Ginger nailed the fail here, burning her hair, her dress, and her body with a curling iron. The problem is that she never made it fashionable. The story gets an A+, but the look itself definitely does not.
The judges announce that after ten weeks of competition and getting sent home, Eureka has finally won a challenge! And just when she needs it, too. This win makes Eureka the first queen in “Drag Race” herstory to be eliminated, return on the same season and make it to the finale.
Everybody else is in the bottom, and from the moment they get to the werkroom, Trinity is resigned to her fate. She knows she has the worst track record, and she can’t help but feel robbed of the Top 4 spot she secured last week before Eureka came back. The other girls reassure her that she’s not necessarily going home, but, well … let’s look at the end of the episode.
The hard cut from dramatic voting to Eureka dressed in full clown drag was a jump scare, by the way. I gasped.
This week’s lip sync assassin is none other than Season 12’s winner, Jaida Essence Hall! Jaida is one of my personal favorite queens — Milwaukee represent! — so I was more than psyched to see her kill another lip sync.
And kill it she did, to “Good Golly, Miss Molly” by Little Richard. Fun choice! Eureka is also entertaining with a clown reveal and an absurd little barrel roll moment. I’m into it.
It’s a cute lip sync for sure, but is it double-win worthy? Personally, I would have just given it to Jaida, full stop. But Ru announces that they’re both winners, meaning we could have a double elimination going into the finale.
But it’s not: both lipsticks say Trinity. One of these days, an All-Stars season really will have a double elimination and we’ll all be gagged, but today is not that day.
Instead, Trinity takes her leave with grace and class. It’s kinda messed up that every single eliminated girl got a chance to battle for redemption, except for Trinity. She got the raw end of that deal for sure. But she had an amazing glow-up this season, and I’m sure this isn’t the last we’ll see of Miss TKB.
Next week is the finale! Like I said, I’m Team Ra’Jah, but any one of the Top 4 could easily snatch the crown. This is perhaps the tightest race in “Drag Race” herstory, and I can’t wait to see how this fantastic season wraps up.