Drag Race: All Stars 8, Episode 5: Unstoppable Tap-dancing Freight Train

ah yes, the eternal [crying].

I hope you’ve got your tap shoes ready.

Snatch Ya Later!

Having whittled the cast down to 8 queens it was time for the Snatch Game of Love – and I know I said somewhere that I wish they had done a regular Snatch Game with 10 queens, I would like that statement struck from the record upon the revelation that Kasha was going to potentially be The Sun

that’s up there with Honey Davenport wanting to do Santa Claus as disasters we were mercifully spared, because for the most part I thought this was a really good Snatch Game – nobody was a complete unwatchable disaster, Jessica as Iris Chacon was one of the more forgettable performances

which is a shame because Jessica has one of my all time favourite absolutely unhinged Snatch Game performances when she did RuPaul as a haunted scarecrow in front of RuPaul

the season 2 Snatch Game is one of the funniest pieces of Drag Race history because nobody knew what the hell they were meant to be doing so you had Kylie, Raven and Tyra all doing very serious impersonations, Pandora and Tatianna being the only two that knew what they were meant to be doing, Morgan dying at the hands of a bad P!nk wig and Jessica operating on a different plane of existence – it’s a Hieronymus Bosch painting of comedic intrigue.

Jessica’s main roll in the Snatch Game was to be the safety buffer between Heidi as Heidi-in-a-pirate-costume and Kahanna as Coco Montrese

the first red flag for Kahanna was the fact all her confidence for this Snatch Game performance came from the fact she had once dressed up as Coco for Halloween, when everyone is obligated to tell you “you’re doing great sweetie!” – there’s a reason Spoopy Season is the Baby Queen hatching period. The other red flag is that it’s Kahanna who lands a joke like a kamikaze pilot, not that she was actually telling jokes so much as she was just playing a Best of Coco Montrese youtube montage and she couldn’t even use the best one because she was the one being Jade’d

and I think everyone else did a better job of making Coco Montrese jokes than she managed

she got really hung up on the facetune/filter jokes and it’s really probably not a great idea to make those jokes to RuPaul who who has the Drag Race filter set to “Nuclear Baby”

that being said, Coco Montrese’s use of a filter is truly sublime, she’s like the Ecce Homo of drag

she’s all cheekbones and no nose.

So Kahanna was drowning in poorly deployed Cheetos jokes

(babe, he can’t see you, there’s a wall in the way.) and her only life raft were 10 year old Drag Race memes and Heidi decided that she was going to chum the waters with her own Coco Montrese reference

Was it a kind thing to do? No, Kahanna was already dead. Is interacting with the other players a key component of Snatch Game? Yes, absolutely and unfortunately Kahanna had chosen a character that was an incredibly easy target, but it wasn’t like Kahanna was Heidi’s only target

Heidi’s choice to go this weirdly antagonistic fascinates me because I think she had decided before this Snatch Game even began that she was going to peach out this episode, or at least the palpable sense of resent sinking in about halfway through indicated as much

but my God, what a way to go? I LOVE a historic Snatch Game, I think it’s a clever choice because you can literally do anything, not that Heidi was doing that much with Blackbeard, she was just being Heidi-in-a-pirate-costume, but the thought of the roughest, toughest pirate of the 18th century saying “honey” every three words like he’s on an episode of Unhhhh tickles me immensely

for me this touched the same sort of transcendent divinity as Alyssa Edwards doing Joan Crawford in that they’re not playing a character, they’re just my favourite drag queen wearing a silly outfit saying silly things

I’m curious to know how the judges would have judged her Blackbeard and whether or not they’d have put her in the bottom over Jessica – although personally I think the peg leg mishap was one of the funniest parts of both rounds

but I do think they’d have jumped at the chance to have a dramatic Heidi vs Kahanna bottom 2.

But while Heidi drilled holes in the S.S. Snatch Game, Jaymes Mansfield was on hand to play Looney Tunes and stick her fingers in as many holes as she could to keep the whole thing afloat as Jennifer Coolidge

shockingly this is only the second Jennifer Coolidge to grace Drag Race – the first being Scarlett Adams on The Season We Do Not Talk About making a singular hotdog joke before vanishing from the edit completely

it is about the 7th one if you can’t queens who were eliminated prior to Snatch Game and in a post-White Lotus world I will eat Jimbo’s breastplate if we don’t get at least 2 more from any of 73 Drag Race seasons that air later this year. What made Jaymes’s a good Snatch Game is that while she did hit a few of the obvious references, she was mostly just saying things that sounded vaguely like things a Jennifer Coolidge character would say so it didn’t really matter that she just looked like a really sticky Jaymes Mansfield

because the voice was a decent enough parody and her jokes were solid, and she managed to cope with Heidi firing cannonballs in every direction. (apparently I’m more dedicated to the pirate jokes than Heidi ever was.)

The second round went a lot smoother, but it was also bookended by two previous Snatch Game winners

which I was sure would spell disaster for Kandy and Lala but they were fine – I mean, they were absolutely supporting cast members in the Alexis and Jimbo show, and if Heidi was just Heidi-in-a-pirate-costume then Lala was just Lala-with-a-breastplate

and Kandy was just Kandy-with-a-cigarette

which I suppose made it harder to criticise Kandy for breaking character when Jimbo, dressed as Shirley Temple, launched herself into a tap dancing showcase in what will be the only dance off Jimbo ever wins

the thing that made it so perfect was the moment Kandy absolutely realised Jimbo was getting a third win and was at this point an unstoppable tap-dancing freight train

because not even Alexis Michelle pandering to RuPaul’s refusal to believe the 80s were 40 years ago and your average Drag Race contestant could have lived twice over in that interrim could circumvent Jimbo’s inevitable win

Alexis and Jimbo were a great duo though and tossed each other a few very easy to volley lobs – the clam chowder/best clam in Miami joke and of course “in what, dog years, Shirley?” when Jimbo said she was 100 years old

one of my favourite tropes a queen does when playing an older pop culture reference is getting meta with the age – Sasha Velour acknowledge Marlene Dietrich’s death

and of course Rita Baga playing exhumed Edith Piaf are some of my favourite Snatch Games

I just want to know at what point Jimbo ripped off the head of her baby doll and why

and did another canned snake come out of it?


This week’s runway theme was the annual REVEALS! Runway which I don’t really understand why they keep trotting it out because at this point I think we’ve largely exhausted all the potential themes and stunts therein so we’re kind of just going over everything again. Regardless, Jessica Wild kicked off the proceedings with a tale of farm to table

I still don’t know how much everyone really remembers Jessica’s demented chicken that I think every modern point-and-click survival horror video game owes her some residuals for

but I guess it’s easier to make that your brand rather than tiptoeing the legal boundaries of stealing Absolut Vodka Berry Acai’s identity.

After Jessica was Kahanna dressed in just the cuffs of Jessica’s coat of many chickens

I thought for sure the gag was somehow going to be her putting on more clothes considering she came out wearing less than most queens revealed to, but no, she just found a way to get more naked

I might have been slightly more impressed if we weren’t already incredibly familiar with Kahanna’s ass by this point so I’m not sure I would have called this much more of a reveal than Lala Ri shrugging off a bolt of fabric her designer hadn’t had enough time to turn into a cloak to reveal the bodysuit that they had had enough time to make

I like the bodysuit, I think it’s really pretty, but the velvet thigh high socks that go into a strappy heel? It’s like her thighs and feet are experiencing a technical glitch and the texture didn’t load in properly. Also, somehow she looks more like Jennifer Coolidge than Jaymes ever managed.

Jaymes had by far the most reveals, starting out with a Paganist muppet offering

and taking us on a whirlwind tour of all the Jaymes Mansfield hits, Red Carpet Barbie



and Pin-uppiest

and naturally with a total of 4 discarded outfits, it was very much a literal roadkill runway with her limp muppet looking up at her begging for the sweet release of death in The Barbiepocalypse

mother… please.

Despite The Vivienne having already done an Into The Woods reveal on All Stars 7, Alexis Michelle was not going to let the opportunity to do her own nod to the witch slide by

I did find it very funny that Ross said the witch costume should have been a different colour because he’s only familiar with the Meryl Streep version and you absolutely know that Alexis Michelle does not consider Rob Marshall’s offerings to the musical world canonical – it’s Broadway or it didn’t happen, Baby!. I just found the big plastic monkey hand with the painted nails really funny

and I think this does now confirm that Alexis Michelle is the original cell shaving of all the Jan Variants

I don’t really know why Alexis was so white in the face, but it might have had to do with her eyeliner fake smudging when she fake cried

why isn’t Best Reality TV Cry not a category at the Daytime Emmy’s? Or at the very least The Humanitas Prize: Promoting Human Dignity, Meaning and Freedom. (very Drag Race…)

One of the hardest parts of a reveal runway is obviously getting everything to fit – we saw Jaymes struggle with some loose looking fabric and Kandy also had some fit issues, which is surprising to me because while Kandy’s outfits haven’t been wildly interesting to me the majority of them have fit her impeccably so I was a bit surprised when she came out with Roblox proportions, but she did have an entire ballgown shoved into her low-poly looking torso

I thought for sure she was going to have several reveals, but no we got her going to a pretty ok red dress that looked lovely with her blonde hair

and now would have been a perfect time for her to reveal to one of her really good bodysuits and then… no, it’s a sexy Robot costume that looks like it got made in an unconventional materials challenge

the absolutely flat boob cups will mystify me until the end of time – an iota of titty contour would have gone a long way.

The last of the currently competing girls was Jimbo who honestly should have come with a jumpscare warning both because of the mask that looks like a National Geographic rendering of early man

and the feet that look like a root vegetable Roald Dahl would have made up to scare children

but my God was this Adam and Eve look good – it’s not the most original concept but she nailed the execution

and given how top tier her runways and how good her challenge performances have been, it’s hard not to feel like Jimbo has already won this season, but there’s still the Fame Games for everyone else to play for – starting with Monica who I think was doing a nod to the Morton Salt girl going through the apocalypse

I did enjoy that the mid-reveal looked like Lady Wolverine though

that had to be her intention, right?

One of the Drag Race looks I think about more than I should is Naysha Lopez’s entrance look (from season 8, not All Stars 8 – I try not to think about that one, WHY WAS SHE A PRISONER?)

everything about it perplexes me – the proportions, the feathers, the fact her hair and the feathers are the same colour, it all feels like it should be a Demi Lovato red carpet meme – all this is to say that her first look reminded me a lot of it

this is significantly more successful and feels fashionable – I wish the outfits that followed kind of lived up to the drama

I mean, they’re perfectly fine, pedestrian dresses but ma’am… this wig?

it’s a 3 serial killer pile-up on there and at least one of them has to know who the Zodiac Killer is.

Black and white was the theme for the Fame Game queens, with Kasha doing a Cruella themed look that was also a nod to fellow drag queen Maya Douglas who did the exact same set of reveals when she won Entertainer of the Year in 1997

I appreciate them a lot more knowing the prestige and story behind them, I do kind of wish maybe the first dress had been a little more interestingly Cruella, maybe just throw a few dalmatian spots on it for narrative sake.

Lastly we have Darienne doing a good old bride to widow transformation

it’s catnip to me, I do wish the reveals had been a little cleaner – as much as I didn’t like Kandy’s outfits, I have to admit her reveals were cleanest of anybody’s that counted as an actual reveal, the red dress fell away so cleanly, I just wish it hadn’t been Rosie the Robot cosplay underneath it.

Getting Judgey

So, elephant in the room… Heidi sadly quit before she could get to the runway which kind of felt like an inevitability after the last few episode – I was surprised she even did Snatch Game. Do I wish she had a slightly better flare for the dramatic and walked the runway with her Reveal! being taking her own lipstick out of her bra? Yes! I do, but I’m also not mad at her just wafting out of the Werk Room in a dashiki saying your goodbyes like she was boarding a transatlantic voyage in 1894

the circumstances surrounding her exit were bananas – it started with Kahanna feeling that Heidi dug her grave for her and then somehow that derailed into Heidi revealing that Kandy was planning to vote for Jimbo if Jimbo ever landed in the bottom (big if.) However, said conversation happened off set, which is why it’s such pointless uninteresting drama to the viewers, and we can’t verify who said what about who and when because Alexis answered the interrogation like a Magic 8 Ball in an earthquake

and naturally had to have ~a moment~ once Heidi had ascended to the Heaviside Layer

much to Jessica’s absolute disgust

if this running narrative of Jessica being annoyed every time Alexis goes for gold in The Crying Games doesn’t build up to Jessica eliminating Alexis, then the producers are pulling the wrong strings.

With Heidi having removed herself it certainly took the suspense over who the bottom 2 would be with Jessica and Kahanna being the obvious weak links and Jimbo was the runaway winner, but it was nice to see Jaymes and Alexis getting a rebound after last week and landing in the top.

Dueling Peep

This week’s Lipsync Assassin came in the form of Jasmine Kennedie, truly thriving in her transition, we love to see it

and they were lipsyncing to Hallucinate by Dua Lipa which was Jimbo’s 6th lipsync across the Drag Race franchise spectrum and there are a lot of different types of lipsyncer in the world – you have your Comedic Powerhouses like Ginger Minj

you have your straightforward assassins who the show just can’t shake off until clotheslining them with something completely out of their wheelhouse on a 4th strike – Coco Montrese, Jasmine Kennedie and Jorgeous

then you have the truly unique Lipsync Terrorist that is Samantha Ballentines of Drag Race Espana fame who will win a lipsync through brute force alone

and that brings us to Jimbo who managed to lose a lipsync against Jasmine Kennedie who maybe knew every 6th word, meaning she has lost all 6 of her lipsyncs, making her Drag Race’s official Lipsync Mass Grave

what an honour.

Obviously with Heidi peacing out, nobody was eliminated but Kahanna is going to be sweating seeing as it was a unanimous vote against her. Assuming she can still sweat?

And so, we have 7 queens remaining

And if you’ve enjoyed this recap and would like to support the blog, you can leave a small donation via my Ko-fi HERE.

And if you’ve enjoyed this recap and would like to support the blog, you can leave a small donation via my Ko-fi HERE.

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