RuPaul’s Drag Race – S16E8: The Recap
Are you up to speed? Let’s get into it.
The Mini Challenge
We kicked things off with the Reading Challenge. This was pretty solid – nothing groundbreaking but it felt fresh enough that it was entertaining to watch.
Xunami was declared the winner.
The Main Challenge
We had to get there eventually, this week was Snatch Game.
What I appreciated this time around was that they kept it all fairly tight – they showed us enough to give us the storyline flavours they were showcasing, but didn’t drag the whole exercise out. Was there anything incredibly memorable from any of the performances? No. But it worked effectively as a challenge and ticked the box on Snatch Game.
What was clear from what we saw was that Nympia and Xunami struggled.
The category was Dance With Somebody – looks that embodied some sort of dance style.
This is a bit of an odd category, the the results were all fairly literal.
- Dawn: Dawn gave us an anime polka look. Very cute.
- Mhi’ya Iman Le’Paige: Mhi’ya gave us a hip-hop look. It felt a bit simple.
- Morphine Love Dion: Morphine gave us a flamenco look. She was very pretty.
- Nymphia Wind: Shut it down. Nymphia served Butoh. Incredible. The detail in the look matched with the make-up and the presentation on the runway? Sure, it was foreshadowed in the work-room, but if ever a runway was going to save you, this is that moment.
- Plane Jane: This was cute from Plane – channeling her Latin Ballroom roots with a silver shimmying number.
- Plasma: In a shock to no one, Plasma served a musical theatre look, but the tap dancing was impressive.
- Q: I did not like this from Q. She was a robot, because the robot is a style of dance. Not great.
- Sapphira Cristál: Sapphira gave majorette. It hit the assignment.
- Xunami Muse: Xunami looked beautiful in a sparkly salsa dress.
Safe were Dawn, Q, and Plasma.
In the Bottom were Nymphia, Xunami, and Morphine.
In the Top were Mhi’ya, Sapphira, and Jane.
It was a bit of a stretch to put Mhi’ya in the top, but sure.
Jane was declared the winner – that seemed to come as a bit of a shock to everyone, it seemed like the consensus that Sapphira would be taking this one.
Nymphia was safe, leaving us with a Bottom 2 of Xunami and Morphine. Was that fair? Probably not, but given that we knew that Xunami and Morphine are friends outside the show, and that they’re both dancers, it was fairly inevitable that they were going to end up lip-syncing against each other at some stage.
The track was I Wanna Dance With Somebody by Whitney Houston.
I love that we’re finally coordinating the lip-sync track with the runway category. That’s fun.
This is a great track – it’s iconic. It gives plenty for a drag queen to work with.
Xunami and Morphine are both confident dancers, but Morphine really shone in this performance. She used her flamenco skirt to good effect, she threw in some stunts but not too much, and she felt like she was in control of the song.
It was an obvious win to Morphine, sending Xunami home.
Episode 8, done!
Dawn: I’m obsessed with Dawn. She’s a pocket-sized elf-twink, she makes all her looks, and they’re good. She also seems very comfortable performing on stage. I’ve got high hopes for Dawn.
Mhi’ya Iman Le’Paige: Mhi’ya is famous for her flips and stunts – she knows how to perform. Now that she’s survived two lip-syncs, it feels like we’ve reached the end of the road with Mhi’ya. Next week’s sewing challenge could be curtains.
Morphine Love Dion: The make-up is right. The performance is tight. Morphine is not here to mess around. The big question now is whether she can recover from her Snatch Game stumble.
Nymphia Wind: I’m obsessed with Nymphia. She’s kooky but also very serious about winning. She seems to be very good at everything. Having survived the stumble in Snatch Game, I can’t see how she’s not going to be in the Top 4.
Plane Jane: She made it clear from the beginning that she was here to be the villain of the season. That seems to be working out really well for her.
Plasma: A very accomplished theatre queen. There’s a lot to like about Plasma. Sure, she’s a bit annoying in a weaponised-BFA kind of way, but you can’t deny the talent and the enthusiasm.
Q: Q makes her own looks, and they’re spectacular. While she continues to get good critiques, her on-stage performances feel underwhelming. I can’t see her winning but she could make it to Final 4.
Sapphira Cristál: Sapphira is giving frontrunner energy. The confidence is palpable and justified.
Final Ranking: There’s a lot to like about Xunami – she’s warm, engaging, and entertaining in whatever she’s doing. She was always a bit under the radar on this season, but she made it to Episode 8 – beaten in the lip-sync by Morphine.
Final Ranking: Megami seems quite conceptual and the looks are strong – she’s got a cos-play background. It never really felt that Drag Race was the right format to showcase her skills, but she made it to Episode 7 – she can be happy with that.
Final Ranking: It’s been a roller-coaster for Geneva, and she’s done well to make it to Episode 6 – beaten in the lip-sync by Mhi’ya.
Amanda Tori Meating
Final Ranking: Amanda is talented, funny, and clearly a seasoned performer. Her weakness has been her runways and her make-up, but she knows that. She’s given us some great TV but it came to an end in Episode 5 – beaten in the lip-sync by Q.
Final Ranking: I love how Mirage gives low-key energy but next-level talent. She’s a fantastic performer on a stage and she’s going to very in-demand. We didn’t get to see a whole lot of mirage on this season – eliminated in Episode 4 – and maybe this format wasn’t the best fit for her, but there’s a lot to like about Mirage.
Final Ranking: I love Hershii’s personality and energy but we didn’t get to see much of her – eliminated in Episode 3, Hershii is the Pork Chop of the season.