The Norm Can Conform

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TV Review: RuPaul’s Drag Race S11 Ep 4: Trump: The Rusical

The competition is really starting to heat up. We’re now at a part where we’re seeing some front runners. But enough speculation, onto the show! By now the queens have pretty much accepted that Brooke and Vanjie are an item. To be honest, I think even Stevie Wonder saw that one coming.

The Mini Challenge

RuPaul gave the queens a nice topical challenge this week, the queens had to deliver their best Rachel Maddow news report. Honestly, it was a pretty ‘meh’ challenge but it did teach us one thing. Barely any of the queens could read.

Like, legitimately illiterate. They struggled with words like ‘ginormous’ and that had me absolutely baffled. Maybe Serena Cha Cha had a point when she said she was educated. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Miss Vanjie seemed to struggle but she just did what she does best, yell in a gravelly voice and swear – it seems to work out for her. Anyway, Scarlet Envy won the mini challenge as she was one of the only queens competent with reading.

The Maxi Challenge

Anyway, this news anchor mini challenge would (loosely) get the queens prepped for this week’s maxi challenge. It was a musical extravaganza this week where the queens would play significant women in President Donald Trump’s life in “Trump: The Rusical“.

As the winner of the mini-challenge, Scarlet was in charge of casting the roles for the show. Of course, you can never please everybody and Silky was pissed off that she had been given Oprah as her character because she wanted to be the main character. However, the team assured her that Oprah would be right for her and it was obvious she should have been Oprah, she wouldn’t have been cast well as Shandy.

The rehearsals were entertaining as they got former Britain’s Got Talent finalist, Yanis to choreograph the routine and he brought all the shade and sass. I preferred him so much more to Todrick Hall. Yanis was shady but he also worked with what people could do, not acting like the queens were a failure if they couldn’t follow an extremely complex routine like Todrick used to give them.

There were a few queens that stood out to me in this challenge. I think Brooke did a brilliant job as Ivana and she was the part I would have loved to have played.

Nina nailed it as Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Yvie killed me with her brilliant Kellyanne Conway performance.

I also think Scarlet did a good job as Betsy DeVos, Shuga was a fun Hilary Clinton and Plastique made a convincing Melania Trump.

There were also some not-so-great performances. Mercedes played Ivanka Trump who, granted, is a bit of a personality-voided robot so you couldn’t do much with her. Vanjie didn’t give me any Rosie O’Donnell vibes and Ra’Jah’s Omarosa was bland.

Overall, I rather liked this challenge. The songs weren’t as good as previous musical challenges but hey, it was still fun and the references were great. But by far, the best thing about this maxi challenge was having Ginger Minj cameo as Donald Trump – that absolutely killed me.

Category is: Orange You Glad To See Me? – Toot or Boot

Keeping up with the Donald Trump theme, this week’s runway theme was to wear their best orange attire.

I can’t imagine that the Trump overlord would be particularly happy with this episode but hey, we’re not happy with his presidency.

Yvie Oddly – Toot

I fucking love this. It was kooky, creative, spooky and the headpiece landed beautifully with the theme. I love seeing outfits that haven’t been done before. It’s not necessarily a fashionable outfit or well-tailored, it’s just fun.

Plastique Tiara – Boot

She looks great, don’t get me wrong, but it doesn’t particularly excite me. I think the corset makes her look quite wide in the middle and the butterfly wings can be seen at any carnival.

Ra’Jah O’Hara – Toot

I love this. It looks cool, the shoulder piece looks great, the wig with the sunglasses are awesome and the chaps are sass.

Nina West – Toot

I love the reference and the fun, you can’t beat a good old southern belle/prostitute.

Scarlet Envy – Toot

This is giving me some severe Tammie Brown realness and I absolutely love it. The dress looks great, the bow is lovely and I love the hair. This is retro glamour done well.

A’Keria Davenport – Toot

This is great. The hair travelling down to the floor looks sassy as hell, the nude bodysuit with the silver details that match the wig look beaut. This is Nicki Minaj meets Lil’ Kim and I’m living for it.

Silky Nutmeg Ganache – Boot

Her hair and makeup look great but this is a very generic pageant gown in my eyes.

Ariel Versace – Toot

I quite like this. The makeup, the wig, the feathers it all looks great. Not the most exciting outfit but still a really nice look.

Mercedes Iman Diamond – Boot

I like the blonde hair and the headpiece but the rest of the outfit was so disappointing. The shoes are nice, but at the end of the day, she’s just wearing a leotard and that doesn’t excite me.

Vanessa “Vanjie” Mateo – Boot

I swear Vanjie is turning the same looks this season. This would have also been red if the challenge didn’t demand for orange. The chest glitter is starting to bug me because it just looks like she hasn’t shaved. The wig is nice though but the outfit doesn’t particularly excite me.

Brooke Lynn Hytes – Toot

This is a look and I live for it! The coat is beyond stunning and the wig and makeup go beautifully with the overall look. It kind of reminds me of Detox’s robot hooker look from All Stars 2.

Shuga Cain – Toot

I love this. It’s campy, it’s cringe and it’s a brilliant take on the ‘orange’ theme. To do her skin rather than her outfit I thought was a nice touch and the fact that she referenced Donald Trump without knowing what the maxi challenge would be was great. Bravo Shuga.

The Results

In the end, Silky was named the winner and I have to say, I thought it was a little undeserving. I thought she looked just like Oprah, don’t get me wrong, but her runway was mediocre and I felt other characters played great parts and had to learn more choreography, mainly Nina and Yvie – either of those two should have won in my eyes.

I don’t know about you, but I feel like for one reason or another Ru really warms to Silky and so she is doing well, but I don’t think she’s actually done anything of great value yet and, in fact, she’s incredibly irritating.

Bonus Thought

I was pretty excited by the judging panel this week. I’m a big fan of Tiffany Pollard and I think Joel McHale is also a hoot but Tiffany didn’t really give me anything this week which was a shame.

However, Joel had me howling with his “YEAH!” screams as he acted like every straight man at a drag show, bravo sir, bravo.

chosen queens drag race draft

Winner: Silky – 5 Points
Top: Yvie, Brooke – 3 Points
Safe: Scarlet, Nina, Ariel, Plastique, Shuga, A’Keria – 1 Point
Bottom: Miss Vanjie – 0 Points
Lipsyncing: Ra’Jah – -1 Point

Eliminated: Mercedes – -3 Points

This week, I gained 9 points which took my total to 33 points and Tom got 4 points which brings him to 18 points. Vanjie remains on 7 points. Somehow I’m managing to keep a strong lead, but for how long? Only time will tell.

Harry J Bartlett

Digital Content Creator, lover of fashion, drag queen connoisseur and all around phenomenal human being. If I had to describe myself in 3 words I would say; Gorgeous, Talented and Humble.

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