There’s no way of putting it lightly: the premise of this week’s Drag Race episode is dark. The final five remaining contestants, having managed to survive ten episodes, faced their most personal challenge yet.
They are tasked with identifying their “inner saboteur” and creating an evil twin. This maleficent doppelgänger, a “dark-sided beyotch that oozes negativity,” will then take to the runway alongside the “best and brightest” version of themselves.
This episode is not about balance between good and evil however, and we don’t get to see any glimpse of the good twins until the runway. It’s all about brutal self-reflection and vulnerability. And, my god, is it beautiful to watch.
Creating a persona out of your worst qualities may sound like hell (or Johnny Depp), but the way Ru navigates it is wonderful. The queens open up about their flaws, and recognise truths everyone can all learn from.
We all have voices inside our heads telling us we’re not good enough is the main message. But it’s all about balancing them out with self-belief.
Ru’s advice resembles a drag-themed therapy session, blending sass with meaningful insight. “I always see my saboteur in my peripheral vision,” she says. But her best advice is on what to do next. “What you say to your saboteur is ‘OK! Thanks for sharing!’,” before moving on.
To prove that even she has an inner saboteur, “RudePaul” makes an entrance once Ru is finished. Swearing and shouting, she threatens to key everyone’s cars. Is Ru really worried about being too mean? The way to fix that, one can only assume, is to imagine how Michelle Visage must feel.
While the queens mostly band together throughout the episode, a sour moment comes when Miz Cracker is struggling with her outfit.
Eureka makes a long speech about how the challenge isn’t about creating something new but remaking what they have.
It’s an unsubtle attempt to sabotage her performance (Eureka is obsessed with being Machiavellian), and Miz Cracker knows it. “Everyone is going to bring their inner saboteur to the runway – I’m already sitting with mine!” she quips.
When it finally comes to the challenge, there are clear winners and losers. Aquaria’s two outfits are 100 percent in the former camp.
Her good side is dressed in a high fashion violet number, while her evil twin wears an ocelot-print number with bones hanging off her face. Meanwhile, Asia’s dark side, North Korea, is bald, sleek and deliciously nefarious.
Aquaria wins the maxi challenge, and along with Eureka they both stay. This leaves Miz Cracker and Kameron Michaels in the bottom two. Kameron, who still has the look of someone confused at how she’s made it so far, seems doomed. Miz Cracker has never been in the bottom two; this is Kameron’s third time.
But it turns out there’s a word for Kameron that, as a newbie, I hadn’t come across before: a lip sync assassin.
It’s one of RuPaul’s biggest quirks: no matter how badly you may do throughout the episode, you can still stay if you manage to murder the elimination stage. It seems lopsided, but it also ramps up the drama, and makes the climax of the show much less predictable.
And predictable is the last thing the episode’s conclusion turns out to be. Kameron gives a lifesaving performance. At one point she’s on her back, legs dancing in the air like a synchronised swimmer on ecstasy.
— schrödinger’s cunt (@FutureHeartsATL) June 8, 2018
Miz Cracker can do as many splits and cartwheels as she likes, but you can tell it’s not going to be enough. And it’s not. She’s out! Can you believe it?
But really, Kameron needs to go next week.