Eureka! Now with helpful instructions!
I hope you’re sitting comfortably because there’s 36 looks and an etymological study of the word “trade” to get through.
Except For Serena…
In terms of the voting, it was a unanimous decision to save Trinity over Serena, except Yara is there to throw a spanner in the works because she was fully planning on eliminating Trinity. Whether it’s because she believes Trinity is more of a threat in the competition or not doesn’t really get brought up. I personally think Serena did a much better job of appealing to Yara in their little All Stars Job Interviews – Trinity is still a little withdrawn from the group, after all she does keep calling everyone her “co-workers” which seems a little formal for a reality TV competition about drag queens.
Once the queens are done mourning the loss of one Serena Cha Cha for 3 minutes, they get to set the record straight on the definition of the word “Trade” which has become severely bastardised over the last few seasons of Drag Race. Jiggly had it down though and fully harpoons Jan’s hopes of being The Trade of The Season by saying that Jan in boy-mode looks like he belongs in the Mickey Mouse Club. And also Trinity’s brooches denying her trade status is one of my favourite moments of the series so far
They are lovely brooches though, in fact Trinity has great style all round.
Blue Balls To The Wall
Well, they’ve decided to throw the Ball Challenge early this year meaning there’s a mind numbing 36 looks to talk about – my screencapping abilities are being tested this week – I had hoped that the Drag Race wiki would have all of the looks up so that I could just easily make a side-by-side of each queens’ looks but SOMEONE over there is slacking and I do not have the patience to screenshot, crop and arrange the pictures so we’ll just go by category and do each queen individually. I suggest getting some snacks, maybe a nice glass of wine and a tent, you can make base camp between the second and third category and reach for the summit in the morning.
The theme for the Ball is Blue with the first category being Blue Better Work – a look inspired by a blue collar worker and a category I think many of the queens wildly misinterpreted. The second is Blue Jean Baby, which is just about wearing something fashionable made out of denim and the last category is Blue Ball Bonanza in which the queens have to make a looks entirely out of random blue items
I love that not a single queen reached for that pile of blue sponges, fully knowing it was a death trap.
Blue Better Werk
This is where I have kind of an issue with the Drag Race balls because to me this category should have been about “realness” and trying your best to look like you work one of these jobs, and sure give it a fashion twist, this is Drag Race after all but (for me) a fair few of these didn’t quite meet the criteria. It started strong though because Ra’Jah gave me everything I needed
it’s very reminiscent of the vibe of Alaska’s overly demanding architect look from the season 5 ball, which I like and the fact the helmet hovered a good inch above her head was the kind of silly fun I look for.
Sonique went for a very pin-up mechanic look and looked as good as you would expect
I’m not entirely sure why she has a metal plated $100 bill around her neck and whether this actually fit the category but I mostly enjoy that she looks like my favourite niche YouTube personality: Jenny Nicholson, but specifically Jenny Nicholson dressed as Nicole from the cursed Hallmark Cards Crafts YouTube channel
This is now my go-to reference point for any short icy silvery-blonde wig.
Eureka did what Eureka does best and went full camp for the first of our two crossing guard looks
Her padding and figure is immaculate every time she steps onto that damned runway and it’s a cute look, I don’t know if she needed the massive bedazzled whistle, the campy signs AND the dead child on her ass
Maybe ditch the child? But this is Eureka and gilding the camp lily is kind of her MO.
Jan was the biggest offender of Being Too Fashion – it’s a very modern and specific war crime
it’s a really fucking cool outfit and I would expect cost her a minor fortune to have made, it’s just a little too far removed from the category and feels like it’s pulling far more from Lady Gaga’s paparazzi video than it does a garage.
I was surprised that only Jiggly went for a garbage collector
I LOVE this, it feels very recognisable and yet has a slight fashion flair – she could have maybe been a bit more inventive than a simple black dress underneath but the bin lid sarok is a fun touch, as is the fact she dragged a bin behind her with all of the other queens’ names written on it
For me, she killed this runway.
Next up is Silky who is still plugging away for those dairy brand deals
This is absolutely just something she owned prior to getting cast on the show and just thought “Yeah, I’ll make it work somehow.” because nothing about it reads as “a milkman” who have very famously white uniforms. It’s not a bad look though and for someone who did her paint in 25 minutes and is having to battle against the harsh runway lighting, she looks fine!
And if Jan thought her Blue Ball Bonanza look was “Very Hunger Games”, well Scarlet just wore a Distric 7 parade outfit
Hi, I’m Ariadne, I make fun of people who still reference The Hunger Games and yet continue to do it myself.
The look doesn’t do a lot for me, I can appreciate the work that went into it and I love that she looks like a Final Destination death scene but it just lacks a little something, unlike A’keria who had far too much going on in her very confused welder’s look
this is unparseable. There is not a single way in which this welding accident makes a lick of sense. Am I being petty and literal? Yes, have you read the blog Tamar? But she could also have just said she was a plumber and it would have been fine, even if she did have to them compete directly with Ginger Minj in her gender swapped Mario fanfic
I have no notes, this is perfect.
And guess who Pandora looked like again?
I mean, less so but there’s still a Bette Davis vibe and I could fully hear her saying “What a dump!” every time she pretended to scoop a ladle of assorted horse parts (NOW WITH MORE TESTICLES!) and then she had a needless reveal to a sort of 50s diner waitress look
it’s cute, and it’s fun to see Pandora doing something that’s a little more youthful.
Yara went for a construction worker and yes, the boobs were indeed back and were joined by muscled arm socks
I mean, there’s only so much for your construction worker outfit that a hammer and a high vis vest can do, the rest of it looks like she’s the villain on an obstacle course gameshow from the 90s.
And lastly we have Trinity K Bonet as our second crossing guard and serving nothing but realness right up to the plain slacks and loafers
…this is kind of what I asked for when I said I wanted everyone to look like they actually work these jobs, but this feels slightly too casual and I’m trying desperately to work out if the makeup was a direct reference to something
that is some HARSH lipliner.
A Blue Better Werk Look Ranking
- Ra’Jah’s Forewoman of the Apoc-her-lypse
- Sonique’s Mechanic Would Like To Talk To The Manager
- Jiggly’s Taking Out The Trash
- Pandora Boxx as Lunchlady Doris
- Eureka’s Camp Crossing
- Ginger Minj as Super Maria
- Jan’s Tyred Mickey Mouse
- Scarlet Envy’s Johanna Mason Cosplay
- JUST GIVE SILKY A DAIRY QUEEN DEAL
- A’keria’s Misplaced Plumber
- Trinity Having The Audacity To Wear Slacks On The Runway
- Yara Sofia’s Tits ‘n’ Biceps
Blue Jean Baby!
And now we return to our regularly scheduled, fashion runway as we essentially rehash the Denim and Diamonds theme from Season 10, which Ra’Jah did perfectly
she looks phenomenal, everything about this is ace and I love that it feels both slightly retro and very modern and contemporary. Put it in a music video RIGHT NOW.
Sonique also went quite retro with a very Christina Aguilera inspired look and a big old trans sleeve
nothing but respect for MY president! I don’t know if the denim was necessarily the focal point of the look, but I don’t really care because she looks incredible and I’m happy that she’s happy.
I was expecting something a little more from Eureka, I mean this was her look from the previous denim runway
so the long, navy blue trenchcoat dress and a simple E necklace kind of felt a little bit like a downgrade
but it is chic. I do however hate the wig because all I see is a pompadour’d villain from Yu-Gi-Oh – the sideburns are… perplexing.
Remember Blair St. Clair’s tree look from the last All Stars season?
that’s what Jan dressing up as a giant denim maple leaf reminded me of
the audacity of her to say that she was meant to be a star. It’s a maple leaf through and through.
It’s amazingly well made and I really love that red, very formally styled wig on Jan, it suits her round features SO WELL. It look does however give me the same energy as Lisa Simpson’s Floreda costume
I think it’s just the structure of it and the fact she walked SO. SLOWLY.
Jiggly was next and had gone for something a little more streetwear, which was unfortunate given that the judges clearly wanted something high fashion
it’s a really cute look, she looks like a Nickelodeon character in a revisited All Grown Up spin-off. But the top is a little simple and if she had maybe bedazzled or embellished the trousers in some way, maybe done a graffiti pattern, she’d have been much better off. Also a cute little leather jacket would have been nice. Killing it on the wig front though.
We’ve come back to Silky and if I thought Sonique’s denim was of questionable prominence, then Silky’s was practically non-existent
I love and hate this in equal measure, do I love beaded fringe? Yes, almost as much as Damien from Sewing Bee does. It does however lack a little bit of an edge, even if the belt around her waist had just been more of a statement it would have elevated the look a lot.
And then we have Scarlet who, I really don’t even know what Scarlet was doing
this feels like a very specific reference but it’s hard for me to see anything other than Lana del Rey in another very confusing perfume advert. I would just even settle for some sort of explanation for the hat that’s missing its crown.
And now for A’keria and I was baffled by the judges’ critiques of this look, particularly Michelle who said “it’s more like you’re going to the club than RuPaul’s Drag Race.”
EXCUSE ME? This look is nothing but an A grade SERVE. The fit is phenomenal, it’s intricate, it’s clearly bespoke – what are you on about Michelle? I’ll be permanently mad on A’keria’s behalf.
Pandora was back in her wheelhouse doing a straight up Dolly Parton look
I can never be mad as a teeny tiny hat and this had some great movement to it and is considerably more fashionable than I thought we’d get from Pandora.
Yara Sofia has shed her wildly bouncing tits and was now nothing but abs
I really want to love this and I certainly don’t hate it, but I just get a little stuck around the neck where it’s VERY crapped up
are those elephant tusks? Whatever it is, she didn’t need it.
Ginger was next and just being very Ginger
it’s a little safe and ordinary, the boots could have maybe been more of a statement, or like Silky just wear a much bigger belt so that the centre of your outfit doesn’t look like a barren wasteland.
After a dubious first look, I was delighted that Trinity came out swinging with this sort of boujie hippy look
the styling is incredible, the wig is gorgeous and the outfit is just really interesting – that wispy beige fabric paired beautifully with the sturdier denim and just made her look like a dream.
A Blue Jean Baby Look Ranking
- Ra’Jah’s Denim Retro Wonderland
- Trinity The Boujie Hippy
- JUSTICE FOR A’KERIA
- Jan, It’s a Maple Leaf.
- Sonique’s Trans Sleeve
- Pandora Boxx’s Denim Dolly
- Eureka’s Pompadour’d Anime Villain
- Yara Sofia’s Diamanté Elephant Tusks?
- Jiggly’s Casual Weekend
- Scarlet Envy’s Weekend Bender in South Texas
- Ginger Minj’s Lacking Boots
- Silky’s Fringe First, Denim Second
Blue Ball Bonanza
With 2 queens having been sent home during design challenges there was plenty of hand wringing and wistful shots as the phrase “It’s very Saint-Tropez” echoed through the Werk Room. Ra’jah was the first of the queens who were previously eliminated on a design challenge, although I really don’t think her farm-to-runway look was actually that bad and the bottom 2 should have been A’keria and either Nina or Vanjie. But Ra’jah was in her element this time and by the time Ru came around to do their talk throughs, she just about had a finished garment
and it barely changed by the time it hit the runway as a two piece dress and cropped jacket
it’s very well made, she looks great in it, it has a very 80s futurism vibe going on, it was just such a good episode for Ra’jah.
Jiggly also found herself eliminated in a design challenge and was desperately trying to avoid being likened to a baked potato again this time. I do love that this episode implied that RuPaul actually remembered who Alyssa Summers from season 4 was because I don’t believe for a second that RuPaul could tell you who was on Season 12.
As for Jiggly’s efforts to not look like microwaved food again, I guess she did fine
has she just glued a lot of crap to a blanket and worn it as a poncho? Yes, that’s exactly what she did but I do like the little rainbow side-swept hair, it’s got a cute little scene girl look to it. It’s certainly an improvement if not a success.
While Jiggly and Ra’jah were eliminated for their previous design efforts, A’keria was rather silent about her dip into the bottom two alongside Ra’jah and didn’t have a much more wildly successful time this go around
it’s not bad, the fact she managed to glue together about 100 plastic cups is mightily impressive, it just lacks a little bit of a shape and looked distinctly uncomfortable but the texture of it is really cool.
While Jiggly and Ra’jah constantly fretted about trying to redeem themselves, Yara had a thoroughly different approach after her multitude of successes during Season 3’s marathon of design challenges – remember when they had 2 balls, back to back and just about had to make a new garment every week ultimately ending in Yara Sofia having a complete meltdown on stage? BECAUSE I REMEMBER. So maybe it’s no wonder that Yara wanted to spend as little time sewing as possible and then show up in a gown that’s a little generic
it is pretty though, I appreciate a big textural shoulder and those layered, 3D Zach Kilian wigs are always fun to see on the runway. It just didn’t have as much pizzazz as some of the other looks.
Jan being Jan felt like she needed to redeem her safe placement during the Ball Ball – I guess she still feels a little bad about having the most expensive garment of the season with that bedazzled tracksuit set of hers. She was hoping to create the evolution of her Ball Ball look which for the sake of reference was this Mary Queen of Space Scots look
and then yeah, Jan literally just made it again but this time sold it as Effie Trinket cosplay
the flowers do work A LOT better than a deconstructed Zorbing ball and once again it was a perfectly cute, quite safe look.
I had expected slightly more from Eureka, who we know can sew and make an outfit, lest we forget the intergalactic space squid look she made for the Season 10 Ball
and so I was a little disappointed by the fact she just came out in a little blue skater dress
it’s very well made but it’s VERY pedestrian, there’s no flare to it, there’s no razzle-dazzle, it’s just a blue dress that’s slightly too short?
At least Scarlet was on hand to bring some pure unadulterated glamour to the proceedings
This is immaculate, if only mostly for her face – I love the ways she does her brows, they make her look like a very stern bird of prey.
Also going for a ball gown was Trinity who gave us a full on Cinderella fantasy
the leaving behind of the shoe on the runway really reminded me of Tyra Sanchez’s bridal runway that utterly captivated the judges, I was surprised she wasn’t in the top for this and then I remember those goddamn slacks and lips.
Pandora took a break from looking like Bette Davis and instead looked like Carol Kane
I truly expect I have facial blindness and that she looks nothing like anybody I’m saying she does.
The dress is fine, there’s a little too much going on around the waist so the definition is somewhat lost but it’s cute enough.
Ginger Minj also turned out a perfectly ordinary and slightly expected look
I ADORE the shoes though. The rest, eh, give or take, something about the wig just feels a little flat, the ponytail just needs to be brought up a scooch to create more of a shape and give her some height.
Sonique looked as phenomenal as ever, and continued to dig deep into her very Southern aesthetic with her star spangled look
I don’t think she needed to cover herself in glitter but I respect that if the chance arises, you might as well take it. I hope she’s prepared to pay for the cleaning deposit on her hotel room though because there’s going to be glitter EVERYWHERE.
And lastly we have Silky who somehow avoided being in the bottom 3 despite looking like an exploding mattress
The fact she made trousers is worth commending, I just don’t understand who she’s meant to be or where she’s meant to be going. Why has she got a giant blue flower in a box? There are so many questions and I doubt I’ll ever get an answer.
A Blue Ball Bonanza Look Ranking
- Trinity’s Production of Cinderella: A One Woman Show
- Scarlet Sings The Blues
- Ra’jah’s Little Lady Blue
- Star Spangled Sonique
- Jan’s Belated Hunger Games Cosplay
- The Textural Chip on Yara Sofia’s Shoulder
- Pandora Boxx as Horse Show Winning Carol Kane
- Ginger Minj’s Fine Blue Dress
- Pour One Out For A’keria
- Eureka’s Little Blue Dress
- Jiggly’s Bedazzled Blanket
- Silky’s Abominable Blueman
Based on my scoring, my top three would have been Ra’jah, Sonique and Trinity – this is a system where the final, self-sewn outfit counts for 50% of the final score and the other two count for a quarter each. My bottom three would have been Jiggly, Ginger and Silky with the bottom 2 being Silky and Jiggly – it isn’t far off from what actually happened, the judges really loved Eureka’s work and for some reason hated A’keria’s and Yara’s looks.
Ra’jah takes the official win while the choice for elimination comes down to being between Yara and Jiggly.
A Season 11 Smackdown
Ra’Jah’s opponent for the Legacy Lipsync was none other than Brooke Lynn Heights, who looked amazing
and that’s not to say Ra’Jah didn’t because I loved her glitzy little number too
She’s the legs of All Stars 6.
They lipsynced to Janet Jackson’s Miss You Much; I think it might be impossible to do a bad Janet Jackson lipsync and this was no exception from the moment Ra’Jah dropped into her splits, I was SOLD
and Brooke obviously responded by shablaming left and right and doing one heck of a knee slide that I hope she has the correct insurance for
I think I personally found Ra’jah more fun to watch – and I love that after Monique’s disastrous cartwheel in season 11 that the biggest scream from the judging panel came from Carson the moment Ra’Jah did one
Thank God she pulled it off.
It really was a great lipsync and I can kind of see why it was a double win, not that it really matters because Ra’Jah got the full $20,000 and both of the them had Jiggly’s lipstick in their bras
I’m gutted to be losing Jiggly so early on in the competition but I can see why the queens might have responded better to Yara’s more emotional plea for survival – the rule seems to be if you cry you get saved. I think what sucks the most is that Ginger voted to eliminate Jiggly
but at least Trinity had her back and I can’t wait to see how the back and forth between Yara and Trinity’s escalates.
And so, 11 All Star queens remain
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