Drag Race UK 2, Episode 3: A Flock of Bitchy Magpies

Lawrence Chaney looking like a cursed doll with a penchant for mulberries ❤

Week 3 and the conspiracy theory that eliminated queens are being chosen by a series of ferrets in a ball pit are growing stronger every week.

Cherry-Oh!

It’s fairwell to Cherry and now our local news has no way to remain attached to this show because they still can’t bring themselves to support A’Whora because A) She’s the villain and B) her name is A’Whora and they can’t say that on the 6 o’clock news.
The queens are all a little bit dismissive of Cherry and Lawrence claims she was “a wee shady bitch” which didn’t come across to me at all? Name me one shady thing Cherry Valentine ever said or did. Quickly.

Over on the Post-Elimination Sofa and everyone is finally realising that Veronica Bot 3000 is a threat in this competition – to be fair I kind of wrote her off in the first episode because her entrance look was… not the one

And they very much seemed to be trying to Gothy Kendoll her up until she showed up on the runway and killed it for 2 consecutive episodes.

And then it’s time to de-drag and hoenstly I just love it when Drag Queens pop off their wigs like they’re LEGO figurines

Stuck in Limbo

The next day and apparently the dress code for the day was berets

A Quick Beret Ranking

  1. Bimini’s Leopard Print Beret
  2. Ginny’s Lemon Yellow Beret
  3. Tayce’s Well Styled Dystopian Military Aesthetic
  4. A’whora’s Brown Leather Beret
  5. Asttina’s Beret
  6. Art Teacher Sister Sister

The mini challenge for the day is for the queens to compete in a limbo competition and so everyone has to race around in complete and utter chaos to get into Quick Carnival Drag in 15 minutes

and of course Ginny Lemon looks exactly like Ginny Lemon whether given 20 minutes or 2 hours

She also had someone of an advantage being the shortest in the competition and able to just walk straight under the first two bars

Lawrence is the first one to go

And she’s quickly followed by Ginny who finally reaches a point where she cannot just walk straight under the bar.
It was all looking good for Ellie, who must have been at least a little bit pissed that she’s wasting this headpiece on a nonsense mini-challenge

but eventually she and her guest starring bollocks hit the floor which she at least managed to style out into a sort of shablam

unlike Tia Kofi who lasted much longer than anyone who could feasibly dress up as an unclockable giraffe should when she just lies prostrate on the floor for a few seconds

The reigning Queens of the Limbo are Tayce and none other than Veronica Green who both manage to reach the final bar and produce a rather fun edit

And for all of this back pain the two of them win nothing but the opportunity to at least affect the main challenge a little bit.

Fashionable Frenemies

We finally get to a sewing challenge in which the Queens have to pair up with one another to create a look each from a monochromatic box of fabrics that will be assigned to each team by Veronica and Tayce. The colours available are Pink, Blue, Black, Green and Gold. Now you would think with them all be drag queens they’d immediately gravitate towards the gold box like a flock of bitchy magpies? You would be wrong, the gold box is the last to be assigned to Ellie and Lawrence.
Veronica gets the first choice and for reasons only known to herself and I’m guessing because her drag name is Veronica Green and she had a lot of red wigs (show me 1 red head who doesn’t look phenomenal in green) she immediately takes the green box, much to team mate Tia Kofi’s utter horror and Tayce’s bemusement

Have you ever watched the show Tamar?
The teams and colour pairings are as follows

Veronica and Tia: Green
Tayce and A’Whora: Black
Bimini and Asttina: Blue
Ginny and Sister Sister: Pink
Lawrence and Ellie: Gold

There is a twist though! In each pairing there will be a winner and a loser, the loser will inevitably be up for elimination while the queen who wore the colour best will be at least safe.
Immediately everyone regrets not pairing themselves up with Baroness Basic herself, Tia Kofi.

Gold Members

Lawrence and Ellie are both obviously very confident with this challenge given that they both make their own stuff. More out of necessity than anything else as they both reveal that the paying of drag queens in Scotland isn’t great and they regularly have to take time off the scene in order to build up enough cash to buy the materials to make their next lot of outfits.
We also know Ellie can sew because she made both her entrance look and her Dennis the Menace look, which as it turned out happened to be exactly the same dress in different colours – hey, it worked for Bianca del Rio! Her final Marie Antoinette inspired look wasn’t really much different, all it was missing was the mermaid skirt

So basically, Ellie can make a very good leotard. While she was aiming for Marie Antoinette, I’m more on board with Michelle’s assessment that she looked like the prettiest pirate wench in Pirates of the Caribbean 25: All That Glitters. But I am obsessed with her make-up

The little sequin on the end of her nose? It could be a touch smaller, it leans a little warty but it’s a cute detail and whenever it hit the light it did bring me an immense amount of joy. The other moment that brought me joy was Jourdan Dunn telling her that she looked like Beyonce and Tayce reacting thusly

Lawrence’s look was also very well made, I just personally didn’t love it

It’s like the outfit you wish your aunt hadn’t worn, and I think to criticise Ellie for being too costume-y and not enough fashion while crediting this as fashionable is a little weird to me? Even more so the fact it wins the whole bloody episode.

Feeling Blue

It’s no real surprise that despite being given an entire travelling case of fabric that both Bimini and Asttina would inevitably use as little of it as possible to varying degrees of success.
Asttina really should have seen how this was going the moment RuPaul completely checked out when she even so much as said the word “anime”. It’s not a reference or a concept that Ru is familiar with because RuPaul only cares about anything that happened within Hollywood pre-1990.
The final outfit is incredibly simple and could have used a significant amount of embellishment to bring out of ice skater and into the anime school girl vibe that she was going for

Even a white trim around the skirt might have done the trick, but really it needed a collar and a little pussy bow or school tie – it’s just falling a little short of the Sailor Moon aesthetic.
I did feel a little uncomfortable about quite how hung up Ru and Michelle were on Asttina’s broad shoulders – mostly because I am a broad shouldered woman, which was pretty useful when you needed to barge through a crowd of people.

Bimini went for a very different kind of sex appeal with her vampy number, looking like the best dressed stripper in Blade

And Bimini being Bimini of course had her ass out for boys

I’m glad Bimini finally managed to have a moment on the runway that actually worked and didn’t end up with her standing in front of the judges looking lonely and naked.

Blacklisted

I’m pretty ready for the whole Tayce and A’Whora having had a hook-up in the past plot to conclude now, especially as it has given us this meme

It has nothing else to offer and at this point has become such an over-produced, tumorous plot that any sort of interaction or talking about it feels like you can see the producer forcing the queens to talk about it. Because it’s not that big a deal? Two people in the same industry, with similar interests and time to kill fucked one another? ESCÁNDALO!

But back to the fashion! A’Whora is fully in the belief that she is about to win the episode because after all, she went to the most prestigious fashion colleges in the UK! (where one of the projects she produced was a 9/11 fashion film – it’s on YouTube and is A BIG YIKES.) She also eagerly showed this off by asking Tayce if she had toiled the coat she was planning on making. (Toile being a French term for muslin cloth, a common fabric used to pre-design a garment) Obviously Tayce hasn’t

She’s not a London Fashion School graduate and has like 12 hours to make this damn thing NOBODY IS TOILEING.

A’Whora claims that despite being a graduate from The Prestigious Fashion School she is “blacklisted” from the industry because she’s a drag queen. Which doesn’t ring entirely true given that drag queens are very much “en vogue” right now and some of the biggest names in the fashion industry are heavily collaborating with queens. I think A’Whora just happens to be very young and suffering from a severe case of delusions of grandeur because from all of her looks, I’m yet to see ~fashion~. Also, numerous people have pointed out that A’Whora doesn’t have the best reputation for professionalism and I’m not entirely sure that her feeding into the villain edit is going to help with that.

A’Whora’s plan to win the episode is by making a catsuit with puffy sleeves and a late contender for Beret of the Day. And I’ll give her credit, she pulls it all off, I think she was perhaps let down by the fact it was an all black outfit and texturally didn’t read very well on the runway

It also looked very similar to Sharon Needles’s outfit from The Bitch Ball episode

A’Whora’s is much more accomplished but also sadly lacks a poodle.

While A’Whora knocked out a full three piece look, Tayce was trying to get to grips with a sewing machine and ran into a brief rocky patch when she sewed her sleeve entirely shut, producing a sort of leather pocket of air

A’Whora kindly helps remedy it and Tayce’s final outfit is pretty killer

It’s just very unfortunate that silhouette-wise it’s very similar to her Welsh Dragon look but I think I still would have given her the win over A’Whora purely for it being a more interesting look with actual, readable details – the safety pins gave it a punky flair that felt very fashionable.

A Little Green Around the Gills

The major disparity between Veronica having the greatest time, sketching out numerous potential designs for her outfit

And Tia hurriedly sketching out a cartoon hippy was definitely my favourite team dynamic of the episode

Tia just happens to be that queen that has seen every episode of Drag Race, seen how the sewing challenges worked, got onto the show and still never bothered to even watch a YouTube video explaining the mechanics of a sewing machine. So once she realises that the hippy costume is not feasible given the time frame and her sewing ability she pivots to a circle skirt and a few bows and you might be thinking “that sounds like it’ll look like a particularly terrible child’s dance costume!” and you would be entirely correct

If Abby Lee Miller choreographed an Irish jig.
I felt really awful when Tia had a bit of a wobble about the fact she doesn’t pretty when she looks at someone like Tayce (who is absolutely the most strikingly beautiful face to grace Drag Race) but I happen to think Tia looked really pretty tonight! (I’ll ignore the brows)
But of course the outfit is eviscerated on the runway, mostly because she’s essentially a sample size and, like guest judge Jourdan Dunn, she could have got away with something really wacky and insane, like dressing up as a rattan chair for example

She tried her best to distract everyone from the fact she was wearing the most hideous shades of green she could find by doing the best impression of an octopus that she could

Alas, it was an effort in vain.

While Tia crashed and burned, Veronica was once again having a grand old time making one of the five gowns that she sketched out, and I think I hate it?

I think I would have liked it more without the midriff cut outs – she has a great body so I understand why she’s flaunting it, I’m just never a fan of this particular style of gown. But, it was a fully hemmed and lined gown which takes a lot of work.

One in the Pink

Pink is a bit of a poison chalice on this show – it can often look very junior and tacky (especially with the fabrics they get given) but you also inevitably run the risk of being told you look like Trixie Mattel, no matter what you do with it – she just has a monopoly on pink.
Ginny and Sister Sister both have such strong individual aesthetics that I think they were definitely the best ones to take on the challenge of pink, the problem lay in Ru’s advice as he challenges Ginny to produce something sexy, which just happens to be code for “feminine” on this show, and as we’ve seen Ginny doesn’t do feminine and actively strives to separate the Ginny Lemon character from sex appeal.
Out of drag, as Lewis, they don’t even feel sexy or attractive, going as far as describing their body as “repulsive” and a lot of this obviously stemmed from the trauma of growing up non-binary in a time where they didn’t have that vocabulary and an environment that treated any sort of queerness as a negative and something to be derided.
I’m glad that Ginny had another non-binary queen to fall back on when something as so specific and personal comes up, but even more so that Bimini is the antithesis of Ginny in that they’re clearly very proud and open with their body. And I genuinely think that Bimini and Ginny’s conversation about the complexities of gender and how having a binary to sort a population as broad and complex as the human one doesn’t make sense is one of the most important conversations that has ever been televised.

Long live The Non-binary Beret Club.

And so it does feel a little weird after having this conversation about being free and open with the concepts of gender, that Ginny was then forced into a breast plate

and down the runway looking visibly uncomfortable in a sort of lamé body sock and a pair of Gia Gunn’s wonky eyelashes

At least there was the fail safe of the fact they couldn’t eliminate Ginny because Ru had kind of forced this upon them.

While Ginny was having a bit of a struggle, Sister Sister was knocking up quite the outfit and I’m glad she at least got to achieve her dream of “performative sleeves”

But truly it’s the ruched trousers that steal the show. As a whole the look doesn’t work for me, I find it all a little too incongruous and busy. That mug on a sleek little number? Sure. But with the major pants, the big hair and the telescopic sleeves? It’s a little too much if you ask me.

A Runway Ranking

  1. Horned Tayce 2: Electric Boogaloo
  2. Ellie Diamond is Gold Beard
  3. Bimini’s Vamped up Blue
  4. Lawrence Chaney’s Golden Globes
  5. A’Whora’s Unlucky Black Catsuit
  6. Sister Sister’s Performative Sleeves
  7. Veronica Green is Green
  8. Sailor Mandella
  9. Ginny Pink Lemonade
  10. Green Tia

The winners of each pair are A’Whora, Veronica, Bimini, Sister Sister and Lawrence, with Lawrence somehow winning the whole thing. Of all that lot I think I’d have given it to Bimini but truly in my heart of hearts the winner was either Ellie or Tayce, both of whom are pretty quickly dismissed from the notion that they were truly bottom looks – the bottom three clearly being Ginny, Tia and Asttina.

Backstage, A’Whora thinks it’s time for Tia to leave because apparently Tia’s jokes are “pure desperation” and I feel like A’Whora doesn’t understand the concept of jokes? I did appreciate Veronica shutting her done pretty quickly because at the end of the day Tia Kofi knocked it out of the park last week in Rats: The Rusical and it’s looking pretty good for next week with the hosting live TV challenge.

Don’t Start With Me

It’s Asttina and Tia who find themselves in the bottom 2 and lipsyncing to Dua Lipa’s Don’t Start Now. Can we accept that Dua Lipa just doesn’t have very good lipsync songs and that both her and Ariana Grande’s discography need to be banned from the show?

I was so convinced that Tia Kofi was going to go home that I had fully prepared the poll for her best outfit ahead of time and then the story produced decided that they’d really like to eek our the A’Whora vs Tia drama for at least another week. But also Tia put in a pretty strong performance and definitely had more attention grabbing moments than Asttina managed

And I could talk all day about Tia’s little 1-2 cha cha that she was doing over in the corner

As well as the rather painful jump onto her knees that she did, the highlight of which is Ginny watching her go up and coming down

To which Ru reacted to as though she had just done three somersaults into a death drop

And if this had been a lipsync later on in the competition I think they’d have managed to excuse it as a double save because Asttina certainly put in some good work during it

But sadly it apparently wasn’t enough and Asttina has to sashay away in true Asttina style

This is the earliest a queen who won an episode has ever been eliminated- so that’s some sort of award at least.

And so 9 Queens remain

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