03rd Sep2021

‘Ru Paul’s Drag Race All-Stars 6×12’ Review

by Rhys Payne

I am still not over the fact that two episodes ago Silky Nutmeg Gnache dominated the lip-sync showdown by winning six consecutive battles but fell down at the last hurdle which was Eureka. Because of this, Eureka won a chance to return to the main competition and came back with her fire under her ass as she won the episode and drew the final lip-sync against Jaida Essence Hall (who was the winner of season 12). However, I do think that Silky did what she needed to do and if she would have returned to All-Stars it may have diminished her incredible showcase in this episode and she redeemed herself from her original season and also left on a high note! Like I said Eureka returned to compete against the remaining queens in a monologue challenge and then lip-synced to “Good Golly Miss Molly” while dressed as a clown – which was very unusual! This lip-sync was a draw but despite the possibility of two different queens going home, both the group and Eureka voted to eliminate Trinity K Bonet which I personally think was devastating, as she has shown tremendous growth from her original season, showcased incredibly lip-sync talent and walked the runway in some of the most incredible outfits I have seen in a very long time.

This week’s main challenge had the final four queens write, record and perform an original verse (which is always a highlight for me and is something I look forward to every season), which is also another reason that I would have liked to see Trinity show off her performance skills one last time. The song that the queens had to work with was “This Is Our Country” which was described as a love letter to the USA. This song had a much more country feel to it, which is not normally the type of music I listen to and I have to admit that it probably won’t be a song I will be rushing to add to my Drag Race playlist but that’s just a matter of personal preference. What was great about this song choice was that all four of the remaining queens in the competition are from the South and so have a strong connection to country music. Additionally, the country icon Tanya Tucker made a virtual appearance in the workroom and also lended her voice to the actual song, which helped to make this song feel even more serious. I was a bit disappointed by the fact that the queens only got four bars to perform their original lyrics, as for me it was not long enough to fully engage the audience. However, before the queens could complete their performance they had to sit down and appear on the Inside All-Stars podcast. I don’t think it was ever addressed why the podcast moment was changed from “What’s The Tea” to this “inside” series but essentially it was another moment for the queens to be vulnerable and emotional – which marks the third time where this forced vulnerability has been encouraged which I still don’t agree with.

During the actual performance of “This Is Our Country” like previous discussed, I thought the performances were very short. However, I also thought that Eureka looked incredible in a massive regal reveal coat that blended perfectly with the lyrics she had written. She also rapped her lyrics which was amazing to witness as this is not something we have seen from her before! Ra’jah’s rap section was also incredible where she talked about the BLM movement and the police brutality that goes on in America, which is always an important issue that needs to be addressed. However, my favourite was Kylie who looked as if she could appear in a real country song in normal life. She looked incredibly comfortable doing the country-influenced choreography and also leaned heavily onto her southern twang which made the verse very relevant to the song.

The final runaway of this season was the classic Eleganza Extravaganza which is when the queens usually pull out their best looks and this season was no different! Eureka walked the runway in an incredibly sparkly purple Bob Mackie inspired outfit, which to me harked back to some of the iconic outfits Cher has worn over the years. She looked incredible and this was probably one of my favourite Eureka looks I have ever seen. Talking about favourite looks, Ginger Minj is not usually known for her fashion but this week she looked flawless! She wore a geometric ruffled dress that was unlike anything we have seen from this campy queen before. It was very fun but still incredibly glamorous which captured her personality perfectly. Ra’jah cleverly decided to wear a purple gown this episode as this was the colour she has been known for and was a wonderful full-circle moment from the dress she made in the first episode.

It was announced that the winner of this season would be decided by Ru Paul and also that each queen would lip-sync individually for the crown which I think is much better than the chaotic four-way lip-sync they have done in the past. I do think that we need to go back to the format where the queens are able to prepare spectacles for the finale lip-syncs; as while the four performances to “Stupid Love” by Lady Gaga were good I think the standard of lip-syncs was set so high throughout this season that it did fall flat a little bit. It was announced that the winner of Ru Paul’s Drag Race All-Stars 6 is Kylie (despite tripping during her performance but styling it out perfectly) but I know that there is going to be people who will say she simply won as she is trans… No! She won because she gave incredible performances in the challenges and showed off some phenomenal fashion but it is ALSO a very powerful statement about the evolution of drag!

Overall, I don’t think this episode met the standard of other finales due to how high the quality of fashion and lip-syncs were earlier in the season. I thought that yet another forced emotional moment was uncomfortable to watch and I didn’t think I particularly learnt anything that was discussed before.

*** 3/5


Comments are closed.