RuPaul’s Drag Race 7 – The DESPY Awards

Worth a little bit less than an Emmy, and a little bit more than a Grammy.

1. As is becoming somewhat of a habit with the B(r)east From The East, the episode began with Katya spewing invective in her talking heads about how last week’s results were a FUCKING TRAVESTY and there’s NO WAY that Trixie should have gone home and RuPaul must be out of her SHITTING MIND, all whilst in person in the workroom

just kind of blandly staring off into space. Katya’s basically this series’ equivalent of that guy in the corner cubicle who is super polite and uses his lunch break to read classic literature and only comes out once a year to the Christmas Party and then you accidentally stumble onto his blog on the Internet one time and it’s all about piss-sex and nights at the Torture Garden. *This* though is the season of PUNK and RuVolt and RuBellion and openly backchatting the judges, so I don’t know how much longer she’s going to be able to cut it. Speaking of which Lieutenant Nose-Ring declared himself at the start of the episode to be so over the judges, because back home everyone is obsessed with him and thinks he’s sickening and here…not so much (have you met the editors, Pearl?) and he can’t handle it. Truly punk was born of people who got a little too many hugs as a child. Thankfully, as the voice of the proud late 70s suburban complacent bourgeoisie and boxed wine spritzers, Mrs Kasha Davis appeared after 4 episodes of no edit at all to be offended by this attitude, telling Pearl to “buck up buttercup” and that if she couldn’t take criticism about personality from Michelle Visage (who, lest we forget, is now friends with Katie Hopkins so is about as good a judge of character as Mrs John Christie), then she should just go home. And so the scene was set…


And there was I thinking Ginger was a bottom.

3. This week’s mini-challenge was, in a show of this programme’s ever-increasing interaction with the fan-base (and then immediately blocking it on twitter when it expressed the wrong opinions), inspired by fan-art. No Pearl and Max weren’t tasked with acting out RPF slashfiction, instead the queens had to create notorious red carpet looks using only paper, in homage to an instagram fan account that recently paid tribute to some of the show’s most iconic looks, and also something Bianca wore, in the same way. Queens were paired up based on how they were stood to receive Ru and then

RUSHED to the crafting trolley (except, as you can see Max, who thought better of such declasse vulgarities and let Pearl fly in with his elbows instead) to begin Pritt-Stick’ing their pre-assigned designs together. Designs such as

Lady Gaga’s Meat Dress,

Chad Michaels,

The Legend Of Zelda : Collagen Princess and

that time Violet Beauregarde ate the blueberry chewing gum. The winners though were Katya and Mrs Kasha Davis, who recreated Bjork’s swan dress

although they apparently won as much for Mrs K’s terrible Joan Rivers impersonation talking it down the runway as the design itself. (This show was filmed last summer. Joan died in September. I’m just saying it might not have been the botched surgery alone that carried her off…). Their prize? To host the DESPY Awards, a role that it was agreed during judging was the most difficult and least desired one. It’s a wonder people don’t try harder at these mini-challenges isn’t it?

4. If you were looking for early signs of the #RuVoltLution against the show’s tyrannical RuLer, or whatever the hashtags currently are, then you could do worse than a brief scan of the faces of both

Pearl and Kennedy as Ru deemed the Mini Challenge to be “FROCK, Paper, Scissors!!!!!!!”. RuNegades in training, right there.

5. So, the DESPY Awards? According to Katya, standing for “Desperate Egotistical Sluts Prancing in the Yard” (…needs work) the DESPY Awards are a series of awards invented for this series, which formed the basis of the Main Challenge. With Katya and Mrs K serving as hosts, the other queens would remain in their pairs and give out awards to one another, determined by secret ballot, for Sexiest Queen (presented by Kennedy & Jaidynn), Bitchiest Queen (presented by Ginger and Kandy), Most Busted Drag (presented by Pearl and Max) and Biggest Penis (presented by Violet and Miss Fame). If you’re looking for ways to improve ratings for the Oscars ABC, I would recommend adding that last one in particular to the roster, incidentally. Looking at the pairs and the awards they were tasked with presenting, it was clear that sadly those classic awards moments where the presenter of the award has to give it to themselves and act mock-mock-abashed had been carefully avoided (no offence Miss Fame but…we’ve all seen the pictures), so the queens would have to rely on their comedic chops to provide memorable moments. And in some cases (for example Violet, who’s not NOT a comedy queen, but also not a comedy queen) (“comedy queen” being used in its “at all intentionally funny, in or out of drag, ever” sense here) this was going to be harder than others. Fortunately, Kathy Griffin was on hand during the rehearsal process to offer such helpful advice as “BE MORE GAY!”, “GAY IT UP A BIT!” and “DO MORE JOKES ABOUT COCKSUCKERS!”. God bless our straight allies.

6. But enough about Kathy Griffin acting like 17 different hen parties worth of clod-hopping squashed down into one person (in fairness, she did seem also to do a good job of pruning some of the hackiest material out of the queens sets…it’s just slightly unfortunate that this left most of them with nothing left), the most exciting pre-challenge moment this week was CLEARLY RuPaul’s epic throwdown with Pearl. Michelle’s exhortion to Pearl to come out of her shell following the debacle of MacBitch having resulted in nothing more than…whatever she did last week, nobody can remember, drastic measures were needed. Drastic measures like Ru personally arriving in the workroom to tell Pearl that she had very little personality and was underdelivering and then

staring at her like bitch had just stolen the last parking space at Gala Bingo. Pearl responded by snottily asking if she had something on her face (<3), storming out the workroom (<3) and being

HOTTER THAN EVER BEFORE, YES LAWD. Pearl (backed up by Max, who in true Max style spent the whole confrontation sat mute, looking awkward, only occasionally interrupting to seductively stroke Pearl with the eraser end of a pencil) (Max <3) has since said this whole exchange was edited to make Ru look much better than reality which…duh, it’s her show. Pearl should maybe relax and reflect that very little at this point could have been better for her than this, in terms of her narrative arc on the show AND IN LIFE.

7. In further entirely transparently mechanical happenings, Miss Fame’s bubbling under long-running arc of poultry-love finally boiled over this week, as the show produced a massive infodump on the topic that couldn’t have been more obviously and awkwardly designed to curry fan-favour, and which I loved all the more for it. In it, Miss Fame introduced us to the arcane world of

CHICKEN PAGEANTS, of which she was apparently the Abby Lee Miller. Blow-dying the chickens, singing them songs, using Vitamin E on their feet, bringing out the white in their feathers with liquid-blue ink, and finally turning them upside down and presenting their arsehole to the judges. How much this differs from the world of human pageants…I don’t know. In both cases I would imagine it involves the bird getting eaten. Miss Fame’s chicken-related reminiscences didn’t just win the audience over though – it also cracked the icy purple exterior of Violet, who now considers her to be a friend. (SPOILERS : Snatch Game seems like the sort of point where Violet and Miss Fame might face off in a lip-sync right?) (I am now reacting to people making friends on this show like I would people having sex in an 80s slasher film, yes).

8. So who won? After a fairly flat opening enlivened mostly by

Mrs K’s Butch Queen faces (if not her material), the first award was given out by Kennedy and Jaidynn, who made well-delivered jokes about Jaidynn being fat, Kandy being a whore, and references to black culture that landed

like so. (One of my favourite things about the episode is Kennedy suddenly being convinced that she is a LEGEND OF COMEDY because Ru gave her a pity win for “I Got Paid” last week. I’d say she’s created a monster but, let’s face it, God did that). They gave the award to sexiest queen to Miss Fame, who gave a genuinely funny speech about botox and tapeworm. Jaidynn’s speech upon winning Most Busted Queen was less succcesful (the funniest part was

the height the microphone had been left at) but it did have to follow a pitch-perfect impersonation of Ginger from Max and Pearl.

The first time ever there that Pearl has had light behind his eyes. Just a shame it’s someone else’s. Violet’s “even more obvious than Julianne Moore and J.K Simmons wins combined” victory in the category of Bitchiest Queen, with an acceptance speech that echoed Sally Field’s 1984 “YOU LIKE ME!” gusher, was preceded by Ginger stomping Kandy into a fine comedy powder in the intro section. Seriously, even when Kandy was (rarely) allowed a punchline Ginger just pulled

faces over the top to pull focus. Bitchiest Queen indeed. Finally, and most importantly, Katya took home the prize for being the most well-endowed, which is ironic given that Miss Fame and in particular Violet’s introduction of the category had less meat on it than Alaska Thunderfuck’s torso.

And that was the DESPYs 2015. Remember this in 10 years time, when Miss Fame becomes the first person to win one and then become an EGOT. Or a GODET if you will.

9. And now for the best part of any awards show.

The faces of the bitches who didn’t win.

10. Presiding over this week’s deliberations as Guest Judge was Isaac Mizrahi, because what more sensible choice could there be in a week without a significant runway segment? On the other hand, his presence did bring out a playful side of Ru, as she mock-death-dropped for him whilst squawking Laganja style. And if mocking Laganja Estranja is wrong, then every second of this show that’s aired since Jinkx’s victory hasn’t wanted to be right. Max and Pearl and Pearl’s Redemption Arc were declared the winners, and Kennedy & Jaidynn’s pairing declared safe, but the rest of the judging happened individually, presumably because Mrs Kasha and Kandy were clearly the two weakest but partnered with two stronger performances, both Miss Fame and Violet having been saved by the opportunity to make cute acceptance speeches more than anything else. I do wonder if the queens thought about the strategic element of giving someone that sort of platform when they were voting. And also, if I’m honest, if Mrs K would have been nominated for anything at all if Most Busted Drag hadn’t been expanded out to four nominees (possibly for that exact reason). HAH LACK OF IMPACT! The lip-sync between Mrs Kasha and Kandy was if anything even more closely fought than last week’s, with Mrs Kasha giving a very high-energy performance right out the gate, albeit one that lost tightness towards the end, and Kandy taking time to get going but taking it to SlamTown right at the very end, but was met with less rabid discussion, because it involved two of the most under-edited queens rather than two of the most over-edited. Also because it was to Teena Marie (no offence Teena). Personally, I will miss Mrs K, but there’s only so much I can swim against in terms of her actually appearing on this tv show in any meaningful way. Sail on Mrs K. Sail on. Oh and for those of you keeping track of the insuRugency, Violet snotted back to RuPaul about the Internet existing now granddad when taken to task over spending too much time on her own in life reading fashion magazines and even more damningly…


Meanwhile, on Untucked :

      • And none for Jaidynn Diore Fierce
      • Max was prepared to “make it a solo challenge” when Pearl walked out. Saucy.
      • Pearl is very grateful that Ru spent half an hour yelling at her that she’s a piece of shit with no personality yes sir may I have another
      • Ginger always talks about Gatorland. I’m guessing that’s a Southern thing.
      • Pearl couldn’t remember if Jaidynn won a DESPY award or not. Jaidynn, who won the category Pearl presented.
      • Kennedy will NEVER work with Violet ever unless RuPaul forces them together.
      • Max thinks that Mrs Davis is lovely and classy and kind and is the best Latin & Greek mistress she’s ever had the honour of being taught by.
      • Max was surprised that Ginger’s dress cost $5000 when it looks like it came off the clearance rack at Cache.
      • Max shades people so rarely that when she does, it’s extra-cutting.
      • Max got his outfit for $15. Pearl’s was $4 a yard.  Jaidynn’s outfit was just some material his aunt gave him for freee, which he shredded and sewed onto a bra. All of them looked better than what Ginger was wearing.

    • Something something Sugababes something
    • Mrs Kasha Davis is REALLY PISSED OFF that she was told that she wasn’t trying as hard as she could, when Pearl stormed out the workroom for an hour to go have a cry and a toke in the bathrooms.
    • Mrs Kasha Davis’ ENTIRE AS-AIRED FIVE EPISODES WORTH OF NARRATIVE was just a function of Pearl’s Redemption apparently, what a waste.
    • Katya’s not been nearly as funny as she hoped she was going to be.
    • Amen.
    • Violet just wants people to know that when she’s being bitchy it either comes from a place of humour or a place of truth, SHE’S NOT HATEFUL, SHE’S JUST BEING HONEST orbeingrudebecauseshethinksitsfunny.
    • Violet has not felt any friendly vibes from anyone this entire season apart from Miss Fame right now during this challenge and Pearl doesn’t think that’s fair of her to say because they’ve had some fun times together and Violet thinks that that might be true but that doesn’t mean they’re friends because Pearl doesn’t really know her you know and Miss Fame would like Pearl to leave her new friend alone and I remember Trixie said something once about these queens behaving like they’re in public school still which seems appropriate at this moment more than any other.

  • Oh yeah and they’re doing the Videos From Home thing again because they’re realising maybe now that NuUntucked is kind of boring. Next week : THE PINK FURRY BOX RETURNETH!

3 thoughts on “RuPaul’s Drag Race 7 – The DESPY Awards

  1. Sue Howarth

    Damn you Monkseal, I have tarted watching this now. Missing Jasmine. I do not really understand why Pearl was Miss Centre of Attention. Violet’s vacuum of negativity seems overdue investigation. It’s all to do with height I guess


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