RuPaul’s Drag Race 9 – Good Morning Bitches

In retrospect, the episode title was kind of a spoiler as to who won wasn’t it?

1. For the second week in a row, active mourning of last week’s losing queen was mostly sidelined this week in favour of building up a storyline. Still, at least Kimora had at least one sincere mourner in Farrah, who poured one out for her Vegas sister, as she slowly detached the 1000 plastic starfish she’d hotglue’d to herbra and hair last week in lieu of an actual costume. The storyline being developed? Aja vs Valentina, as Aja continued the hot tear she began last week on Untucked by persisting in ragging on the judges love-boner for all things Val. I think my favourite part was where she complained that she hadn’t personally got enough recognition for going out wearing FOUR PIECES where Valentina had only worn a leotard. Personally I would have gone further, and demanded recognition for the additional two pieces visible on the runway beyond those four – the grimy white bra poking out, and Aja’s boy hair. They both were as aesthetically pleasing as those pointy neon orange pleatherette chaps at least. I can appreciate Aja’s frustration, but whether the judges are unnaturally in love with Valentina or not, she might want to consider that regardless, she’s brought by far the least to the show so far, and should therefore be keeping her eyes on her own paper at least for now. Unless she steps it up she’s competing with the Peppermints and the Alexiseseses, not the top tier, regardless of who’s in it. As Valentina herself was happy to tell her, in a not at all passive-aggressive way. Meanwhile, Cynthia was having a quiet (for Cynthia) celebration at getting through three episodes. Girl, your shoes click-clacking on the runway for five seconds at the end of the Gaga Pageant does not count as an episode, reset your counter. Although at this point that past experience is really starting to show itself.

Just look at how much faster she is at reacting to Ru’s arrival in the workroom. Lightning fast reflexes.

2. This week’s challenge? (Yes, still no mini challenges, although the preview for next week suggests one may be incoming). The queens were to split into two teams and produce a morning show, with a celebrity guest interview. So basically QNN from Season 3 with a little bit of the “Babysit Chas Bono” challenge from Season 6, with a soupcon of the “Diagnose Tori Spelling with AIDS” game from Season 1. And mercifully, because this show is kind, we got ANOTHER PLAYGROUND TEAM PICK. The gods truly are bountiful. Captains were Aja and Trinity, and the picks went thusly : Aja picked Valentina to show there were no hard feelings (lol), Trinity then chose Peppermint because they’re best friends (apparently), Aja then picked Shea because Shea gives good talking head, Trinity chose Charlie because she’s “seasoned”, Aja chose Sasha because NEW YORK, Trinity chose Cynthia (as Cynthia yelled her head off about WOOPIE WERLWORLG) (my subtitles said “Whoopi Goldberg but…noep), Aja chose Alexis because NEW YORK, Trinity chose Eureka also to show no hard feelings, although that means a lot less when there’s only three people left, Aja chose Farrah because she wanted a pretty face, and Nina got left til last because apparently what she’s been doing for the last three episode instead of speaking was constantly pulling this face.

I love that Nina apparently is a Debbie Downer. It’s not been shown so much so far, but the image of her at the end of this episode, bursting into tears on the runway for no reason in full goth skeleton make-up, was enough for a full season of character establishment as far as I’m concerned.

3. Here is Alexis blow-drying her face in the background.

This was the entirity of Team Aja’s workroom airtime I wonder if they win?

4. Yes, all the drama was on Team Trinity this week, but which I mean Eureka was on Team Trinity this week. Wanting to show her strength and purpose as a leader, Trinity decided to institute the “I decide everything” rule, implemented via the “raise your hand if you want to say something about it” system. And anybody who’s watched the nonstop stream of consciousness that’s been coming out of Eureka’s mouth since she walked into the workroom on day 1, like the second she stops talking she’ll be eliminated (or worse, BE EDITED OUT), could guess how she’d react to being asked to shut up for a second.

Bless her. I’ve not seen that face since the last time I watched The Secret Life Of Five Year Olds. It’s a shame Eureka was stymied so, as her intended editorial line for the task of “let’s be ghetto” really could have swung things for them. I know we all wanted Charlie Hides to get the old blackface kit out again. Speaking of Charlie, after the teams broke off to rehearse their individual skits for the morning show, she was stuck with Cynthia, and decided the best route would be to micromanage her diction and sentence structure on the grounds that comedy is a serious business and just one word or syllable out of place could cause the joke to collapse. Which she would have known was a bad angle to take if she’d just looked over and seen Cynthia was writing her notes in

sparkly cornflake, but there we are.

5. This week’s hot button topics? AIDS and eating disorders! Charlie Hides told us all that she was alive and on the scene in the 1980s (and the rest) so she lost most of her best friends to AIDS, and had a very touching meltdown in the workroom over it, which of course was immediately narrated by Sasha, because Sasha is a brainy queen who gets it and is here to educate the children about how AIDS is bad. Happily (or otherwise), Sasha also decided to break out of her talking head lecture series on queer theory to get involved in drama for real this episode, as she chided Eureka for making an eating disorder joke in the safe space that is the RuPaul Drag Race workroom (remember when this show was won on two separate occasions by a racist insult comic and someone who regularly did Nazi cosplay what a time to be alive, Miss Sasha would have stroked out). Eureka of course immediately doubled down in response and pulled the “I’m sorry that you were offended” and “stop trying to make me look like a bad person” defences, so I’m perfectly comfortable saying that this was drama I’m quite happy to stay out of and play Valentina : clucking at the sidelines and telling both queens to just focus on getting ready for the challenge whilst teasing my perfect wig out and sliding in my coloured contacts.

6. So time for the queens morning shows to go out LIVE. I mean, obviously not LIVE. They clearly edited down about 20 minutes of footage to about 2 to make for a segment of suitable length for the show. Really this meant that everyone got one take, and if they made a mistake they’d just have to carry on, which circuitously probably worked in the queens’ favour, as you know it took a good 7 or 8 takes to find one as bad as, for example, Vivacious’ infamous Head In A Box. The Good Morning Bitches crew were up first, with Alexis making sure

that all the logos on the mugs were turned to face the camera before the green light came on, what a professional (talking of professional, can I mention Farrah’s whole look here, which is flawless). In truth Good Morning Bitches didn’t really get going for a while. Alexis and Farrah’s intro was watchable but banal, and Aja and Valentina unsurprisingly turned out to have negative chemistry and had to resort to nothing but mugging

from about 10 seconds in. In truth, Good Morning Bitches’ victory came from two angles – firstly that Aja as team captain had decided to play it straight, and have the hosts try for the genuine shellac “cameraderie” of real morning hosts, meaning the show had the same soapy warm fuzz about it as the real thing, and also that Shea and Sasha as a subteam had decided to play it really



NOT STRAIGHT and spent their entire airtime on the verge of lezzing out. Shea in particular shone (that jacket, I love it, that hair, I adore it) but I don’t really mind them sharing the win for the episode, even if it felt very much like a ‘Les Chicken Wings’ “ok you won now fuck off now so we can relentlessly stir amid the losers.

7. And what losers they were. In fairness, I can see Trinity’s decision to take “Not On Today” down the road of passive-aggressive nastiness paying off under other circumstances. Everyone loves a parody of Anthea Turner types that relies on them secretly being OCD phony careerist psychos, and a couple of the jokes were decently structured. The problem was that both Peppermint and Charlie Hides decided to trip all the way over their own tongues, repeatedly. I’ve got some love for Peppermint’s look here

just because of the perfectly balanced combination of pearls and boobs, but really it’s a wonder she wasn’t in the Bottom 2 given how thoroughly she bombed everything and the less said about Charlie’s insanely clipped delivery and control freakery the better. The celebrity interview (with special guest judge Naya Rivera) on Good Morning Bitches may not have been technically perfect, with the same question being asked twice (well done Alexis!) but it at least seemed relaxed, and didn’t have someone yelling “THAT’S ALL, GO TO COMMERCIAL!” out of nowhere. The only saving graces were Cynthia ploughing through Charlie’s tightly written script and proceeding as blissfully incoherent as ever with her “intolerance lactose”, and Nina and Eureka, who had great rapport, albeit whilst running through two of this show’s most well worn tropes

Black Girl Is Ghetto And Fatty Love Food. (Also where are you shopping that the cheapest instant noodles you can get are $6, go thriftier ladies).

8. This week’s abbreviated runway theme? Naughty Nighties.


Valentina : I love the colour scheme here, although it may be that red light district crimson is one of the few colours capable of standing out under this purple lighting.


Alexis Michelle : In fairness this is almost right but that metallic breastplate is so many shades of wrong. Make it lace and you could be a minor Frasier girlfriend. Keep as it is you’re Brunhilde.


Trinity Taylor : I love this because it’s giving me “Saucy Coronation Street Escapade On A Fire Escape” realness. The bona fide Bet Lynch leopardprint robe she was wearing on Untucked? Seals the deal!


Cynthia Lee Fontaine : Again, this is almost there. It’s cheap and cheerful, but that’s Cynthia. What’s bothering me is that George III wig that she’s wearing.


Charlie Hides : In a way I resent this whole look, because it’s holding Charlie back from having a truly 100% classic trainwreck boot episode for the ages but on the other hand this is undeniable. Morgan Fairchild forced into a photoshoot she doesn’t really want to do fabulousness. And that FACE. Sexy Sylvia Dirty Granny Hotline, call her for a good time, no questions asked. Wayne Rooney would be gagging.


Peppermint : That shot of her knickers poking out is classic editing shade (be aware this entire runway lasted about 20 seconds for all 12 girls that’s pretty much all we saw of Peppermint). This looks like something Hottie would have worn on Flavor Of Love, and not in the good way.


Farrah Moan : Hands up who’s surprised Farrah rocked the Playboy photoshoot runway challenge oh right nobody.


Eureka O’Hara : “Naughty” not “Demon Out Of Silent Hill”

9. It might not all in all have been a classic episode of drag race overall, but truly we got a lip sync for the ages. It was Trinity vs Charlie, squaring off to the Britney classic “I Wanna Go”. Trinity flipped, Trinity gurned, Trinity pawed at the air and howled, Trinity stalked the runway, Trinity did leaping forward rolls and Britney hair tosses and owned the stage and Charlie…well Charlie stood there. And gently wiggled. And clapped. And occasionally shoved her hand into her crotch for no reason. And gave talking heads about how she couldn’t lip sync because she had a cracked rib, and because we don’t have lip sync’ing in London, everyone just sings live and also she just didn’t feel like it ok. As if this wasn’t humiliation enough, the show made sure to play in audibles of the queens stood at the back yelling “COME ON CHARLIE” and “DO SOMETHING, CHARLIE!” like some sort of insane rought cut remix. This version better replace the original in all the clubs. There’s few songs that wouldn’t be improved by Cynthia Lee Fontaine screaming “support” over the top. And so Charlie left, and all of us in the UK were glad, in the end, that the “first British queen on Drag Race” turned out to be American enough that we could all claim a safe distance. To sit and watch the footage again. With popcorn.

10. This week’s Untucked Highlight : the extra slow-motion recap of the lip-sync. Beautiful cruelty.

11. Jeffrey Bowyer Chapman.

That is all.

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One thought on “RuPaul’s Drag Race 9 – Good Morning Bitches

  1. Matthew

    Jeffrey Bowyer Chapman for permanent judge role/new Pit Crew/makeover contestant/Derrick Barry boyfriend.

    Reply

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