Well, it got me warmed up.
2. After vamping and goosing the live crowd incessantly, RuPaul announced that he still HAD NOT YET MADE HIS FINAL DECISION. Despite the 21 challenges (counting the mini challenges, I know you do) and the 13 runways and the #hashtaghashtagteamdickpig fan votes, Ru hadn’t quite decided which of Pearl, Violet, and Ginger was worthy of carrying the crown for another year. What was apparently going to push her over the edge was…another lip-sync. I guess having watched the previous 13 episodes and realising what a weak season it’s been for them, it couldn’t hurt to try to cram in at least one more that didn’t totally suck. Ginger (high energy gospel), Pearl (nu-waveish electropop), and Violet (squealingly pastiche burlesque) all got to perform one last time to fill up airt…I mean to help Ru finally decide who he was going to push the button on. To be honest though, if this was going to be a FINALE, rather than just a reunion with the winner announcement tacked on, it was nice to see the final three queens (…well, Violet and Ginger, Pearl mostly just sumbled around doing Pearl Face and accidentally turning her back on the audience) (Pearl <3) blow out one last time. Less so it giving an excuse for Carson to roll out “I LOVE THE MINJ!!!” one last time, which is all anybody will remember of his time as a judge on this show. Hopefully.
3. As well as final lip-syncs the contestants also sat down for one last interview with Ru herself to finish off their story arcs. Ginger’s focused on her upbringing in a “practical” family (I am learning new euphemisms for “homophobic” every day) and a tearful reunion (via video, duh, he’s not going to actually turn up there, he might get cooties) with his father. It also covered Ginger’s reputation as the “villain” of the series (apparently it all comes from a place of love, which was clearly the wrong answer, because this season we were looking for someone whose bitchiness came from a place of humour and/or a place of truth, bad Ginger, no win for you) and whether it’s time or not for a big queen to win (I saw a lot of people spit tacks over Ginger saying “it was time” for a big girl to win because PEOPLE SHOULD WIN ON MERIT, NOT SIZE, and then the same people say they were glad Violet won because it was time we had a “high fashion” winner again, like there’s any way someone could be a “high fashion” winner and not be the size of a McDonald French Fry, I mean it’s not a *perfect* irony, but still). Pearl’s mostly focused on the clearly not quite resolved tension/raw seething hatred between her and RuPaul, on the so called CURSE OF PEARL where anyone who criticised Pearl got eliminated in the same episode (sadly Mrs Kasha Davis’ role in the legacy of the Curse Of Pearl was edited out, at which point all of us Mrs K stans nodded our heads sadly because wasn’t that just this entire season really?), on her praising of her TUNC (it’s where Ralph Wiggum but the tickets to the Krusty Live Show after all) and also on how everyone wants to fuck him, as well as a blousey tearful message from his mother. Violet of course doesn’t have a tearful family background to touch on, so her interview was all business, talking about her inspirations, when she started sewing, and what advice she’d give to other young drag queens. This lack of emotion helped play into Violet’s end-game storyline of being unflappable and un-self-conscious in a way that the other more anxious and neurotic end-gamers Ginger, Pearl, Katya and Kennedy weren’t. Well played Violet, well played.
I presume the other two Hello Kitty! sidekicks are out the back making friends.
5. Those of us who remember the glory days of when this season ended with a bitter, hte-filled reunion, with contestants spewing bile over one another and Ru-Paul, before half-heartedly apologising and, like, giving fatty a necklace how sweet, this year had to make do with Tempest and Kandy “making up” for that one time Kandy called Tempest old, Mrs Kasha Davis throwing some mild shade at Trixie, Pearl and Violet for being over-painted,young, entitled, inexperienced and skinny, and RuPaul chiding everyone on social media for being meaner to the queens on this season than they ever have been before. And yeah, I think we’ve all abandoned the facebook comments to the sea at this point at the very least, if not twitter (I don’t know about tumblr or instagram, I presume it’s all just pictures of Pearl Face with FUCCK GINGER AND KENNEDY!!! written underneath). Sadly even this last patented RuRant was tame by her standards. I wanted her to fully go off on all of us awful fans, telling us all that we ALLOWED OUR INNER SABOTEURS TO BECOME OUTER SABOTEURS…OF OTHERS! and that we’d lost ourselves and should be ashamed and in SEVEN SEASONS she’s never seen bullshit like this. If he’d done that I think I might have learnt my lesson but as it is, I’m off to tweet Michelle Visage that I hope she dies in a fire for saying that Pearl “deserved to make the final” rather “deserved to win” ZOMG SO BIAZED WHAT A CLOSED-MINDED WITCH (also Latrice and RuPaul double-teamed Max over his accent. That was funny).
6. In the lighter side of the reunion portion of the evening, Tempest told a ute anecodte about her kids, Jaidynn’s mother told her that she loved her, Kandy revealed that she’s really from Conncticut, we all pondered the inherent sadness of “Sasha Belle’s Drag Race” – a club night she runs in Iowa, Trixie did her RuPaul impersonation, Trixie did not do her Anne Frank impersonation, Max told us all that she was really only a prude for a very shrot moment, and then followed this up by saying “honest to goodness”, immediately proving herself wrong, and we all met Kennedy’s mother, very very very briefly, Miss Fame presented a chicken’s asss-hole to us all for inspection, and
PATTI LABELLE DROPPED IN ON HER PRIVATE MOTHERFUCKIN’ JET. THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT!
7. Let’s talk for a moment though about the REAL star of the finale, and let’s face it, the REAL WINNER of RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 7.
SHE’S JUST BEING MILEY! Yes, she was there, all evening, being used as the reaction shot to more or less everything that happened. Manila must have been so pissed off that she wore those giant titty-tusks for nothing. Hopefully next season we see two queens lip-syncing for their life to “Wrecking Ball”, complete with ride-on consctruction set balls swinging freely the entire time. I’m thinking a cross between Drag Race, the Eliminator from Gladiators, Bob The Builder, and the firey obstacle course from Katya’s dreams. NOW BRING ON THOSE LATEX FROG COSTUMES!
8. Oh of course not, the ACTUAL star of the finale, if not the real winner of the season, because the real winner of the season IS THE PERSON WHO WINS (neva 4get) was Katya. Winning Miss Congeniality (duh) getting to be a next level fake-out for the winner reveal
getting by far the loudest audience reaction at all times, getting to be the mooted choice of the season for a theoretical All Stars 2 (…wait…is that really much of a prize?) AND getting to tell RuPaul that she could piss on her any time she liked? Really, it’s all you could ever want from your Drag Race live finale experience without actually getting to walk children in nature with Tammie Brown. You can look at this two ways – either it was Ru getting told off for getting it wrong and eliminating Katya too soon, then relenting and telling the audience that really Katya should have won, or it’s the ultimate vindication for the show’s tactic of building up a star from its mid-rankers. Either way, I have to think your 5th placer getting a much stronger reaction than your winner probably isn’t they should be aiming for next series. Just a suggestion.
9. But no, really now, the REAL WINNER of RuPaul’s Drag Race 7 was
this bitch. As predicted by 54% of you (vs 32% for Ginger and 14% for Pearl) and wanted by 45% of (vs 28% for Pearl and 27% for Ginger) Violet Chachki became the second member of Team Look to be crowned the queen. A winner for the kids here I think, to bring Drag Race to a whole new generation after the olde-timey vaudeville acts of Bianca and Jinkx, and also according to Violet herself, a win for the genderfluid (girl, we all done already saw you spraying your gender fluid everywhere in that video you did, calm down). Really any of the queens could have had their victory invalidated with a sweep of the hand (“ALL SHE DID WAS WEAR NICE CLOTHES THAT SHE BOUGHT OR HAD SOMEONE ELSE MAKE FOR HER, WHAT TALENT!”, “PEOPLE ONLY LIKED HER BECAUSE SHE’S HOT OUT OF DRAG, SHE WAS SHIT IN CHALLENGES AND HER RUNWAY WAS BORING!”, “SHE WAS A BITCH AND NOT! COUTURE!”) so I’m not going to do the same here, because that’s what my twitter account is for. Condragulations to Violet until we learn who the REAL WINNER of Series 7 is (ie whoever it is they invite back next year to do talking heads for the Clips Show episode, that’s the real prize on offer here)
10. So yeah. This season. It’s over and it wasn’t the best. In fact, all things considered…it may well have been the worst. So let’s close on a note of negativity and say exactly what went wrong with this season, and how it could be fixed, because Lord knows the Internet needs more of those posts. WITH LETTERS!
A) I’m putting this first because it’s the most unforgiveable. THE RETURNING QUEEN TWIST DOES NOT WORK. This time the drama around the return of Trixie Mattell stole the spotlight from Jaidynn, Miss Fame, and arguably even Trixie herself as everyone turned on her for not delivering upon her comeback. This of course is unforgiveable because they tried this nonsense twice before, and it didn’t work either time then. Time has not lent this twist purpose, and they definitely shouldn’t do it again. Having the returning queens come back for a challenge was cute but…have them compete for cash or diamonds or a custom-designed breastplate from boobsforqueens.com (that’s boobsforqueens.com) not a chance to boil the life out of my beloved mid-tablers.
B) Make the editing less cookie-cutter. I’m watching Season 4 currently as it airs on TruTV and it’s really showing up how rote this entire season is. Almost every episode now goes :
Returning queens bitch about who just left, a feud is also deepened via SHADE NOISES and OUT OF CONTEXT FACES
Ru appears, does a mini challenge, which decides who the teams are for the main challenge
Every team is shown in turn having an internal difficulty which ultimately has no effect on the end result
Ru walks around the workroom, the teams explain their idea to him, Ru goes “HMMMMMMM” then the shade noise plays
Everyone goes on set with Ru/Michelle/Carson/Ross to film the skit of the week. Someone forgets their lines.
Everyone gets made up for the runway, one queen reveals her tragic backtory, everybody says LOVE.
The queens walk the runway in a carnival float costume.
Everyone stands around awkwardly watching the filmed skits, they aren’t very good.
The judges say some stuff that serves no ultimate purpose other than for everyone on twitter to complain that they’re NOT BEING FURR.
Some queens lip-sync, one goes home, yelling an attempt at a catchphrase that has never been heard before and never will again.
MIX IT UP A BIT FOR GOD’S SAKE. Move the workroom drama around, play with the structure, have fun with it, because the last thing this show needs to feel is cookie-cutter.
C) I’ve said it many times this season, but if the show is intended to show off the queen’s personalities and make them stars, you need to give them greater autonomy to make things. Whether those things are scripts, songs, stand-up routines, outfits, perfume brands or boats with their own face on them, the show really should only be making the queens material for them when it’s a guaranteed smash (or written by Lucian, so he turns up, CALL ME LUCIAN!). By all means Glamazonian Airways, but not ShakesQueer. Divine! The Musical! not Ru Hollywood Stories. I know this didn’t seem like the show’s most verbally dextrous crop of queens ever (don’t mention the Reading Challenge, don’t mention the Reading Challenge) but let them fly or fall on their own merits, not on who ended up having to play RuPaul in a skit and therefore get the driest script, just because they’re black.
D) Bring back the old Untucked. This one sucks out loud. It used to be the perfect place to stick all the show’s most overblown and blousy elements (screaming fights, tragic meltdowns, drink throwin’, clique-forming) into one place and kept the episodes free to allow the challenges themselves to build the contestants characters up. Now it feels like watching a bunch of people stuck in an airport lounge because their flight got delayed being passive-aggressive over who gets to read that copy of Glamour magazine for the fourth time. Untucked used to be essential to truly understand the main show. Now it’s only essential if you really really like watching people pack suitcases.
E) Ditch Carson, keep Ross, stop having the lip-syncs be to crap songs just because the singer is a guest judge, cast people who give better confessionals and if they can’t, coach them, stop having the queens hark back to and quote past seasons so much it looks desperate, make Bianca Del Rio an executive producer or something that bitch can clearly craft better storylines than you all can any more, make RuPaul louder and angrier and give her access to a time machine, have a PROPER BALL not this “one-and-a-half looks” BULLSHIT, BRING BACK LEAH REMINI, and the music video challenge is an embarassment at this point, remove it, I think that covers everything?