Rank the RuPaul's Drag Race Queens Season 5 Episode 2: Lip Synch Extravaganza Eleganza
Feb 09 2013 11:42 am CET
This week on RuPaul's Drag Race the queens split into teams to recreate classic fights from Untucked. One queen reveals an incredible secret while another reveals the truth of her personality. How did the 13 remaining contestants rank this week?
This week on RuPaul's Drag Race, the 13 queens had to lip synch for their lives in a review (or revue) of the show's most memorable fights. After a glory hole themed lip synch mini-challenge (ask your parents), Ivy Winters, Serena Cha Cha and Detox were made team captains and each assigned a previous season of the show Untucked. Each team had to reenact two (in)famous blowups from their season, including lip synching the dialogue and recreating their characters' styles.
Team Ivy won the challenge. Honey Mahogany channeling Mystique "Bitch, I'm from CHICAGO" Summers Madison was a revelation, but Laneyshia Sparx won the challenge with her dope(d up) interpretation of Tyra Sanchez in her Bride Wars war with Vivienne Pinay's Tatianna. Although the other teams more-or-less rocked the challenge, each team had a player that did not deliver. Serena Cha Cha did not understand RaJa at all while Monica Beverly Hillz was preoccupied with her own personal struggles during the episode. That struggle: coming out as transgendered. Despite these mitigating circumstances, Monica still had to LSFYL against Serena, but she killed Rihanna's "Only Girl (in the World)" and New Monica got to stay. Serena Cha Cha was asked to sashay away.
In a challenge where just about everyone exceeded expectations, how do the queens stack up this week? Here are my rankings.
1. CoCo Montrese Last week: 4
The only reason CoCo did not win this challenge was because she was not on the winning team. She took on LaShauwn "This isn't RuPaul's Best Friends Race" Beyond and it could be argued she performed it better than the original. Also, CoCo was opposite Monica, adding bonus points to difficulty for working with a distracted scene partner. Where CoCo truly shined was during this week's episode of Untucked. When Monica received a message from her mom, CoCo added additional support and established herself as the mother hen of the season. Then Serena opened her mouth and CoCo turned into a mother goose when you get too close to her nest. CoCo knows who she is, she's a professional, and the judges are aware. Expect to see #TeamCoCo pop up on Twitter again. Let's confuse Conan O'Brien!
2. Roxxxy Andrews Last week: 2
I admit that part of this ranking is residual from last week's performance, particularly since Roxxxy did not get that much screen time this week. I was surprised she wasn't one of the winners of the mini-challenge because I thought her lip synch was on point. However, Roxxxy exercised one of the best throwing of shade moments this show has seen. After Monica received her message from her mom and everyone was crying and reflecting on family, Monica admitted her apprehension came from feeling like an outsider to the rest of the group. Roxxxy reassured her "We're all in the same calibre…except Serena." BOOM!
3. Laneyshia Sparx Last week: 1
Laneyshia defied expectations in this challenge, which is surprisingly rare on this show. Her teammates were concerned that her sub-fluent English would make lip-synching dialogue tricky. Also, Laneyshia spent a lot of time goofing off and getting on everyone's nerves. If you remember the S2 wedding challenge, that is *exactly* what Tyra did. Laneyshia also tapped into the medicated monotone of Tyra's delivery, making her stupor performance stupendous.
4. Detox Last week: 5
Expect Detox to stick around for a while folks: she's getting what I like to call the narrator edit, which is usually reserved for contestants who finish in the top 5 (Jujubee in her first season is a great example of this). Detox won one of the mini-challenge rounds and delivered Kiss of the Spiderwoman realness on the mainstage. In the main challenge, she played Sharon Needles against Alaska's Phi Phi O'Hara. This twosome took the most liberties with the challenge and delivered the funniest performance. After the fight (which was not the Party City fight, unfortunately), Detox used a blood capsule to simulate the drool from the Apocalypse challenge before making out with Phi Phi/Alaska. Awesome. The judges did warn Detox she is coming across as overconfident, which seemed to shock the contestant. I hope that gets fixed early.
5. Alaska Last week: 7
Frankly, Detox and Alaska tied this week, but I don't believe in ties in lists like this. Both delivered equally in the challenge and they really are two peas in a pod. That factor will eventually cause problems for them, because how are you supposed to show off Uniqueness if you have a twin? The reason I ranked Alaska lower is because it seemed like it was her idea to do the fight involving Sharon (get off the coattails, girl) and it was Detox who suggested Alaska play Phi Phi. I want to see Alaska get out of the Sharon bubble soon.
6. Monica Beverly Hillz Last week: 12
Although Monica is not the first transgender contestant the show has had, she is the first to come out during the competition. And, much like when Ongina came out as HIV+, she was able to channel that experience into a dynamite performance. Monica looked so relaxed when she took on Rihanna's song. If that was the only part of the episode you saw, you really had to wonder what she did to be up for elimination. Now that Monica isn't standing in her own way, she has a chance to go far in this competition. However, America's Next Drag Superstar won't get far with a hooker wardrobe, so hopefully Monica can get some help with styling.
7. Alyssa Edwards Last week: 13
Alyssa didn't bug me as much this week, but I am still wary of her. In the main challenge, she was driving her teammates crazy by taking over the art direction of the performances. However, Alyssa – who was a mentor for Shangela when she first started in drag – had her character down. There was also a point during Untucked when she was trying to give CoCo a high five, so it seems like whatever their feud is has died down temporarily…until next week's episode.
8. Jinkx Monsoon Last week: 6
Jinkx faded into the background this week, which has me concerned about her longevity on the show. She had to channel MiMi Imfurst and got frazzled by Alyssa's directing. In an interview, Jinkx started to break down when talking about the pressure of the competition. She almost wants this too much, which kinda makes me want to see her in a LSFYL against Alaska. On the mainstage, Jinkx described her look as Hollywood 3012, but I saw it more as Florence Welch in the "Black Hole Sun" video. The judges like her personality, but that can only carry you so far.
9. Vivienne Pinay Last week: 3
Vivienne was almost non-existent this week. Aside from her runway performance and playing as Tatianna opposite Lenayshia, I think we only heard from Vivienne once. Even though she only received about 15 seconds of screen time, Vivienne strikes me as incredibly mild-mannered and aware of her surroundings, which could provide an interesting perspective once the competition escalates.
10. Honey Mahogany Last week: 14
Honey made an impression this week! Sort of. Although I enjoyed her Mystique Summers Madison performance, everyone should have "Bitch I'm from CHICAGO" in their repertoire. What caught my attention was during the Pink Furry Box Gold Room segment. This week's surprise was a game of 20 questions featuring a random draw of photos of the other contestants. Honey drew Alyssa's photo and gave some revealing answers to "is she pretty?" ("in this picture") and "is she plus-sized?" (Yes). Also during the game, Honey accused Jade Jolie of being a "shit-stirrer" and offered some pretty solid examples. Life rule #37: be careful of anyone who is quiet AND paying attention. We cause trouble.
11. Jade Jolie Last week: 9
The good news is I don't think we heard Jade's irritating laugh once this week. In fact, we didn't hear much from Jade at all. Jade was last picked and she didn't really get much of a say in how Serena wanted to run the show. Jade played Delta Work opposite Serena's RaJa but neither performance was memorable. I think they were at a slight disadvantage because their scene was trash talking about other people and not a fight. Jade did not help herself on the runway. The theme was Dress to Impress, so she showed up as a lion tamer. I think there may be a circus challenge this season because there have already been a few costume hints. Anyway, I get the sense people don't like Jade and she might be aware of this also.
12. Ivy Winters Last week: 8
How does one of the mini-challenge winners and the captain of the winning team in the main challenge rank so low? I have zero recollection of her after two episodes. She played Morgan McMIchaels in a fight that was 99% Mystique, so she's not going to stand out there. She wore stilts on the runway (adding to my circus theory), which distracted from any sort of fashion or drag critique. On Untucked, Ivy also revealed she still doesn't know everyone's name – calling Serena "Sierra" – even though it has been at least 4 days of competition at this point. If it wasn't for RuPaul's special way of saying "Iveeeee Winterrrrrrs" there would be no way of knowing she was around.
13. Serena Cha Cha Last week: 11
Slow clap for Serena, y'all. She has managed to outrank both Mimi Imfurst and Phi Phi O'Hara as having one of the stankest personalities ever featured on the show. Her dismal performance in the challenge wasn't the problem (even with a terrible, TERRIBLE lip synch of RaJa): Serena showed herself to be an absolute prat during Untucked. After trying to elevate herself by smugly declaring "I read books" – a phrase that goes over just as well as "you people" – Serena also expressed her annoyance with drag queens who speak "ghetto." This led to an Untucked first: Ru cutting into the scene and saying "Oh no she better don't!" As expected, none of the queens respond well to this, particularly CoCo and Monica. The editors got into the mix too, adding an interview where Serena calls herself "tri-lingual: English, Spanish and Ghetto." Sadly, unless Serena has a come-to-Jesus moment between now and the Reunion, her immaturity will not allow her to see just how awful her behavior was.
Mike McComb – TVLatest.com