RuPaul's Drag Race Power Rankings: Who Has The Staying Power of Cher?
Never put a major dramatic curve beyond RuPaul's Drag Race, but with Aquaria and Eureka O'Hara's tickets to the final three (or will it be another final four?) all but officially stamped the next few episodes will be about who will be joining them. Beyond that top two, it's an interesting horse race. Kameron Michaels and Miz Cracker have slid through the competition with several high placements, but not a single win between them. Asia O'Hara and The Vixen both have a win each, but have hit several stumbling blocks since. Then there's Monet X. Change, a consensus fan favorite who seems to have steadied after some downfalls but whose ultimate fate still remains a tossup.
Who has what it takes to make it to have the staying power of Cher herself, and who should find inspiration in cameo-ing queen Chad Michaels and just call it a Race and start preparing for All Stars run instead?
Whatever the case the opening mini challenge isn't really going to help us decide much. It's mostly a delightful excuse to let RuPaul"fake" slap each and every one of the remaining queens after they deliver a zinger, mostly at the expense of Ru's age. Though, we're sure Aquaria's pointed reminder that she was born in 1996 left a good chunk of longtime fans wishing they were in Ru's place. Someone is going to have to do the research, but is Aquaria the first queen born after Ru's "Supermodel (You Better Work)" was a hit? Though, it's Asia O'Hara who Ru makes actual accidental contact with, and in exchange for signing away her right to sue Asia is awarded the win, a weeklong stay in Los Angeles, and the chance to slap Aquaria herself. We're still sort of surprised, however, that no one took the opportunity to ask Ru if they had anything on their face.
With that sorted, Chad's earlier video cameo as Cher is explained, and the challenge is revealed: an unauthorized Cher Rusical. The girls are assigned various eras of Cher's decades long career. Afterwards, the workroom breaks into a cacophony of half-baked Cher impressions that made us realize that if a 24/7 live stream of drag queens walking around an empty white room doing vague Cher impressions amongst themselves, we would probably watch it. Ru's gives enthusiastic consultations, and her observation that Eureka's Cher sounded more like Ethel Merman made us realize that we also need to see Ethel Merman on Snatch Game.
Aside from offering up her encyclopedic knowledge of all things Cherilyn Sarkisian, Ru also tries to get to the bottom of what The Vixen's deal is, but the conversation only stirs more drama as other queens overhear it.
In dance rehearsals, the enormity of the queen's task really comes into focus. Not only do they have to convincingly channel Cher, but they have to do so while singing live and dancing. It's a big ask for anyone, let alone performers who are more comfortable with lip syncing. Todrick Hall is on hand, and while we know he does some phenomenal behind-the-scenes work on these challenges when he pops up, his whole onscreen thing is kind of route without a hint of inspiring advice in sight.
Todrick: OK, do these incredibly hard thing.
Queen: I can't, because when I was a child I developed a lifelong….
Todrick: Blinks Twice Ok …but just, like, do it.
Sorry, Todrick, Alyssa Edwards is our favorite Drag Race guest choreographer now, and that's just the world we live in.
Back in the workroom, it's touching moment time, and we discover that Miz Cracker's jokes about growing up in poverty weren't exaggerated. Her mother literally sent her to school with no food in her lunchbox because she couldn't afford it. Meanwhile, Asia takes The Vixen aside to really, really get to the bottom of the Eureka feud. Discussion of the ensuing moment is probably best left to people who aren't so white their last name is German for the phrase "Of course, not to make assumptions about experiences and oppressions I myself will never know, but…"
In the actual Rusical, Kameron starts things off with a pretty competent standard issue Cher impersonation, and then Monet's gives us her over-the-top version in a segment that pokes fun of Cher's history of cultural appropriation. Things are off to a good start, but it goes south from there. The Vixen hits her marks, but doesn't give us much actual Cher. Aquaria is captivating, but, likewise, only offers up small tidings of an actual Cher impersonation. Asia's is a mess, but at least her adlib that she screwed up her words provided some comedic relief. Eureka hits the mark with Cher's single most iconic look (right down to the rose tattoos on her butt), but it takes a while to get going. Miz Cracker closes the show with what we thought was a pretty competent performance, but unfortunately is saddled with a pretty stale joke. The joke, in 2018, shouldn't be that she relied on autotune as a gimmick, but that everyone copied that gimmick for the next decade and a half.
Ultimately, it rightfully comes down to Kameron and Monet. Apparently there's just something about the drag last name "Michaels," because Kameron takes it. Monet meanwhile might go down in Drag Race history as the clearest example of a queen who let a potential challenge win slip through her fingers because her runway presentation was subpar.
Meanwhile, The Vixen and Asia find themselves in the bottom. While at first it seems weird they're not performing an actual Cher song, it actually makes sense because a) there is a thing as too much Cher and b) Deee-Lite's "Groove is in the Heart" is every single human alive's favorite song, and that's just facts, and the girl's accidental "1 …2 …3 …..shiver" in unison just proves the song has a universal effect.
Now, for the rankings:
1. Eureka O'Hara
Even with her hesitation about singing live, Eureka continues to be unshakable in this competition. Sure, stylistic, she went over-the-top with her holographic effect runway, but she's a drag queen. Is there such a thing as over-the-top for queens just as long as it all goes together?
Leave it to fashion queen Aquaria to be accidentally in synch with this week's Met Gala theme with a stunning Catholic glam runway look. While other queen's throw a little bit of shade at her growing confidence in the competition, it continues to pull her through challenges that we wouldn't necessarily assume would play to her strong suits.
3. Kameron Michaels
So is Kameron going to emerge as a member of our final three? She continues to be competent in just about everything she's done, and hasn't totally laid a clunker all season. Then again, has anything she done, including tonight, going down in the all time Drag Race greatest hits?
4. Monet X. Change
Monet's exuberance and performance continue to pull her through, but while she went for an unexpected gothy style on the runway, the execution of even some drag 101s basics just weren't there. Drag has evolved to be so experimental and inclusive where it's not even a necessarily anymore to hide your boy parts all the time, but, girl, you still have to hide your tape.
5. Miz Cracker
Cracker's runway was an artsy hoot, like Ornacia's demonically possessed cousin, but she continues to remain overshadowed in the challenges.
6. Asia O'Hara
We loved Asia's decision to add another oddball thematic layer to her glitter runway, but this week gave us one more reason to believe that impersonating celebrities still remains to be not her destiny, child.
7. The Vixen
The Vixen leaves a classic Drag Race anti-hero. The competition, however, got into her head, and hopefully she'll get a chance to spread her message with out the restrictions of challenges, competition, and editing in the future.
Related: RuPaul's Drag Race Season 10, Episode 7 Power Rankings: America, It's Snatch Game!
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