RuPaul’s Drag Race S7 E6: Ru Hollywood Stories

Bryony Bates

To be honest darlings, I’m struggling to think of a dramatic opening to this week’s recap. Maybe it’s because I’ve had a couple of beers, but maybe it’s because there wasn’t that much … drama in episode six.

I’m not saying it was dull, but I missed the visceral hate which makes every season of Drag Race so lively.

I was immediately disappointed by the fact that this isn’t the Snatch Game. Given that last week also wasn’t the Snatch Game, I had a whole thing here pondering why this Drag Race institution might have been dropped and what that might mean for this season, but apparently it’s on next week.

Thank God, because last night saw me agree with Violet Chachki for the first time ever: ‘I’m a little bit over these acting group challenges.’ Amen.

I’m taking bets now as to whether Miss Fame will manage to outdo Ivy Winters as Marilyn Monroe. For those of you who don’t remember, it wasn’t good, I’m being mean, ha ha.

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Everyone sashays into the Work Room, with Max playing the lady a little too much with her tiny umbrella and reluctance to talk about S-E-X. Does anyone else reckon Max would be a little difficult in bed? One can hardly imagine her being enthusiastic given how prim she is whenever the subject of intercourse rears its purple, throbbing head.

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Which is why she’s quite unimpressed at this week’s mini-challenge, a fun excuse to get the pit crew plus friends to pull things out of their underwear. No, not their dicks. Cute little cards which will either award the queens points, or, if it’s a monster they’re hiding in their panties, completely wipe them out.

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I’m going to trust whoever edits this to stick in some appropriate visuals and leave this there because it is essentially near-nude Deal or No Deal and therefore not that interesting to describe in words.

[Ed: There’s really nothing to make this exciting except…]

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[Ed: Okay, we tease! Here’s a little more:]

Ginger wins, so she gets to assign groups (yawn) for this weeks main challenge: Ru Hollywood Stories. This involves the queens acting out an imaginary account of why Michelle Visage replaced Merle Ginsberg as permanent Drag Race judge for Season 3.

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Did I accidentally turn on The Wire? This show is just so involved and self-referential these days, I hope the viewers can keep up.

Ging picks Katya and Kennedy Davenport for her own team, sticks Max with Kandy Ho and Violet in a brazen attempt at sabotage, and leaves Pearl, Jaidynn and Miss Fame to their own devices.

By the way, there’s a rather contrived attempt to stir something up between Pearl and Miss Fame, who cannot shower positivity on all Pearl’s toxic energy, she doesn’t even want it near her, but this amounts to precisely nothing. Let’s move on.

Not a lot of excitement in rehearsals: people forget their lines, notably Miss Fame who discusses her feelings about forgetting her lines to the point where Ross Matthews, directing, says, ‘I feel like I’m dating you.’

I’m actually warming to Fame. It’s become clear that her self-absorption isn’t cruel or calculating – there’s really nothing going on in that pretty head except dresses and chickens, and that’s adorable.

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This week’s runway theme is ‘Death Becomes Her’, and Jasmine ‘If-I-put-anything-on-my-face-I’ll-end-up-in-the-hospital’ Masters shudders as she watches this at home.

The usual pre-show revelation is an emotional turn from Jaidynn Diore Fierce. She talks about how she is not officially out to her family, by which she means her family won’t acknowledge that she’s gay and will disown her if she doesn’t eventually marry a woman.

In every season, there are a few moments when Drag Race stops being silly entertainment, and hits on something real, awful and heartbreaking. I’m half-remembering a Dan Savage column where he said that sometimes people find out that their parents’ love is not unconditional: that’s what Jaidynn’s had to discover. Her mother won’t acknowledge that her drag queen son is gay, because she might stop loving him if she did. So yeah, we’re all here for you Jaidynn.

PSA over, it’s time for the runway! Another strong week, except for Kennedy who is, um, a chicken that’s been thrown in the fire? And so crystallised? Kennedy dear, do you understand cooking?

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Honorary awards for Miss Fame’s shiny 20s murder victim with a knife through her head, and to Violet for showing off that waist of hers to full effect. They’ll find rib marks on her liver at the autopsy, you mark my words.

Pearl overcompensates for her apparent lack of energy by doing an awkward impression of Max on crutches. Dear judges, I love Pearl’s DGAF Valium runway style. Please don’t make her do this again.


The Ru Hollywood Stories (did you forget about them? I nearly did) are OK. Ginger Minj makes a great Michelle Visage; Kennedy is a terrible RuPaul. Kandy has painted on a beard again in honour of the occasion, and Pearl and Fame cover up their lack of acting ability by making out instead: resting on pretty, anyone?

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As a whole, these skits are, once again, unfunny and kind of disjointed, and I can’t wait to see the back of this kind of challenge. Please RuPaul, make them sew! I’d do anything just to see them sew.

Katya wins for no discernible reason: does this girl have anything other than sequins to wear on the runway? Jaidynn gets read for her prison break look – which is apparently ‘a rung below’, despite the fact that Kennedy’s just walked off in her classic burnt chicken horse hooker ensemble – and her performance, even though she was the only one of the three RuPauls who actually, like, did an impression of RuPaul.

Of course it’s all politics, and the only reason Jaidynn was in the bottom two is because the judges/producers want someone who can send out Kandy fucking Ho. Kandy is one of those infuriating queens who is good at nothing but lip-syncing, and so needs to go up against someone who can beat her on that front, but who’s also kind of expendable, just in case.

Luckily, Jaidynn sends that Ho home. I really hope Jaidynn gets to stick around – she’s funny and sweet, and she’s been thoroughly under-appreciated so far. Then again, I was always a big fan of Stacy Lane Matthews, so looks like I’ve got a soft spot for the underdog.

As we enter the second half of the competition, top three predictions anyone? I’ve got Ginger Minj and Pearl in mine, but the third spot is up for grabs. Answers on a postcard.

About Bryony Bates

Bryony likes reading, writing, glamour and anger. @Bryony_Bates