RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season 4, Episode 6 – Float Your Boat

After last week’s annually stunning “Snatch Game,” this week RuPaul’s Drag Race was a return to form in a lot of ways. Which is not to say it was overall good or bad. I’m happy to say Ru came back with tons of quotables this week, and we thankfully have a themed runway challenge, which has been rare this season. If you imagined there would be nautical puns, then girl were you not disappointed this week. I stopped counting at 20. Lastly, I found there to be oddly no obvious winner or even top 3 by the end of the show. As you’ll see the Drag-o-Meter rating system reflects this, registering several in the 3 (excuse me, [snaps!]) realm.

Drag-o-Meter Rating 1/5: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Nothing, Julie Newmar!

  • Logo apparently has to blur the silicone boobs, but only when the girls are actually wearing them. They are unblurred when they are sitting on a table. Lame.
  • The “Dragtona Beach Wet T-shirt Contest” mini challenge is certainly fun, but it doesn’t allow for a ton of creativity between the girls. It’s pretty much just jiggling and skin. Jiggly Caliente somehow doesn’t dominate.
  • Willam’s Sex and the City reference reminds me of a certain restaurant. No points; just self-promoting.
  • Jiggly makes a paper anchor and is ignorant that it clearly resembles a penis more. Ugh, get her off this show already. She’s such a mess.
  • In general all of the pride boat floats are boring or just don’t read well on television.
  • Ugh, Jiggly is terrible. Does anyone think she could actually win this? Never.

Drag-o-Meter Rating 2/5: You bettah work!

  • “Teeter totter” apparently refers to playing with gender performance, i.e. dressing as a woman dressing as a man. Need more of these explanations please!
  • Willam doles out the pride colors, her prize for winning the mini challenge, randomly. Fair but boring.
  • Chad’s runway look is, I agree, outdated.
  • The prize this week [again, but more fitting this time] is a cruise.

Drag-o-Meter Rating 3/5: [snaps!]

  • The guest judges are “that girl from that show on CBS about naval crimes with the terrible bangs” as I wrote in my notes and…Kelly Osbourne. There is a fame discrepancy here. See if you can figure out which one it is.
  • Ru’s first outfit is much toned down and appropriate.
  • I’m confused why Latrice’s junk was also blurred. What was down there? Nevermind, don’t answer that.
  • The main challenge is to design parade floats with matching runway looks for a pride parade, which is very cute. As an added bonus, we get more Pit Crew wearing next to nothing, again.
  • Since he’s so winning (and obviously among my top choices…see below), I will give Willam a pass for the various moments where he appears to be sucking up. I really do think Phi Phi is jealous, or at least she speaks up the most and is thus edited as the adversary. The constant name-dropping, though, is a little off-putting. I get that he’s in love with fashion and would like to explain it to people, but it’s sort of unnecessary. We can plainly see that the bathing suit and cape are designer, we just might not know which one. Really, I could go either way, though.
  • I’m sad to see Milan once again in the bottom 2, but at least we get to see her dance again.
  • Wow, the lip sync song is “Born this Way.” I wonder if Gaga licensed it for a reduced rate.
  • I take back some of what I said. In that odd “Saint-Tropez” one-piece bathing suit, Jiggly’s dancing is actually rather fun. I am, however, DONE with splits and DONE with the ubiquitous slow-motion editing.
  • So I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say Milan knew she was doomed and took this, her last chance to disrobe and make a statement about how her drag performance really truly is who she is. She’s born this way, if you will. Good for you, but you were never going to win.
  • “Duct tape and a prayer.”
  • Whether or not Willam was fake crying last week is moot because this is an acting/performing show. Hello! So either she was genuinely showing a part of herself (which is good)…or she can convincingly fake it (which is also good).

Drag-o-Meter Rating 4/5: Heyyyyyyyy Girl!

  • “You sent both of the Puerta Rican girls home. You’re never going to be in West Side Story again,” Willam says to Milan, referring to her winning last week’s Lip Sync For Your Life over Kenya Michaels.
  •” gets the first product placement of the episode, in the form of, you guessed it, giant silicone breast plates.
  • “My look is, ‘god I want to go to Miami, but all I can afford is Fort Lauderdale,'” Willam says of his mini-challenge outfit.
  • Willam wins the wet t-shirt mini challenge and explains it’s, “kind of a hobby of mine.” Classic.
  • It’s unclear if Chad was physically at the Stonewall Riots, but I like to think he was. It’s implied he was at least around at the time. It’s of course nice that he brought up the historical context for this a pride-themed episode.
  • “I have dignity looks, and I have paycheck looks. Dignity is when I won’t bend for anyone,” Sharon explains.
  • “Girl that’s pretty. You’re gonna win.” “You can kiss my ass.” (DiDa and Phi Phi)
  • “The hardest part of the challenge is not telling everyone else that I’m gonna win.” (Willam)
  • Ru’s runway look is also subdued (for her) and glamourous.
  • Kelly Osbourne’s amunition barrette.
  • Is Phi Phi serving Allesandra Torrisani realness? If so, good reference to last season. She’s definitely improving week after week, but she started so far behind I doubt she can catch up.
  • One of the best — although brief — parts of every episode is when the remaining contestants joyfully dance off the runway to one of Ru’s songs. It gets me motivated for next week, and you should be too.
  • In Untucked we see that the contestants got to meet Kelly Osbourne in person, in the “Interior Illusions Lounge.” Totally adorable.
  • When asked who she’d have sex with, Sharon says she’d do Latrice because, “the sex tape would sell millions.”

Drag-o-Meter Rating 5/5: Sickening!

  • After Pauley is announced as a judge, Sharon asks how many times Willam had worked with her. A fitting dig!
  • “I swallowed glitter.” “You’ve swallowed worse. Stop eating; we’re gonna have dinner soon.” (Jiggly and Willam)
  • I have to say that I think Milan is not a great fit for this show, but I can really imagine she is great in a live show. She says she’s a “floater” in the Manhattan drag scene and that she doesn’t want to be pigeon-holed. This never was going to lead to many/any wins on this show, but it makes me want to see her in person.
  • Extra Pit Crew members, just to hold up wave-shaped paper cut-outs.
  • DiDa’s runway look is super cute, especially the shirt and hair. I disagree that it’s pedestrian. It’s pedestrian for Palm Springs maybe.
  • Sharon’s hand snake is brilliant, but what’s going on with her wig? Is she a demented mermaid? Oh wait. Yes. Brilliant.
  • And on that note, Latrice’s sea witch look is fantastic. It gets better and better as you go up her body, culminating in the amazing headpiece.
  • Willams’ look and boat are of course very professional and polished, which is sort of redundant to highlight at this point.
  • As I’ve said numerous times, I think RDR is the culmination of the reality competition genre. One of the less obvious evidences for this is the way in which the contestants critique each other. When Jiggly does poorly and generally doesn’t try very hard, the others aren’t selfishly happy. They are genuinely annoyed that someone is doing drag poorly, because it looks bad for them and for drag in general. This is very different from wanting your fellow contestants to do well, because you want them to succeed or like them personally. This is about moving the subculture forward and representing it as well as possible. It is the paradox of drag: competitive and scathing yet communal and inclusive.
  • Yikes, in Kenya’s posthumous letter to the girls, she totally reads everyone. Well everyone but Phi Phi, about whom she has nice things to say. I half think Phi Phi wasn’t actually reading the letter but was saying what she thought. All of the girls’ reactions are just priceless. When she says Willam has a “man face,” there is a long pause, and then Jiggly just bursts out laughing. Loves it. Phi Phi, for her part, delivers the reading perfectly, with lots of dramatic pauses and darting eyes. When DiDa is told to burn the teddy bear dress, she breaks the fourth wall to address Kenya directly through the camera. “I know where you live.”

Ru must have heard my criticisms before, because she almost completely out-shined the other judges this week with various aquatic puns and clever jabs. Still, Michelle and others had some great lines too. Here are a few of my favorites.

  • “Phi Phi, do you have all your body parts?” (Her boobs and wig fell off.)
  • “Can I get a drum roll?” (The girls all smack their fake boobs.)
  • “She’s showboating.”
  • “She’s serving the deadliest catch.” “Yes, snapper.” (Ru and Michelle)
  • “Red sky at night, sailer’s delight.”
  • “Orange Jigglius.”
  • “It’s nice to have extra wigs.” “It is. Cuz if you end up on Gilligan’s Island, you can still do shows.” (Ru and Michelle)
  • “Does her snake have one eye or two?” (Michelle)
  • “She fell face-first at Claire’s.” (Michelle)
  • “Oh dear, she’s a low rider.”
  • “She’s showing us her starboard side. Stick it in the porthole, Willam.” (Michelle)
  • “You give very good masthead.” (Billy B)
  • “You always have to go there, darling, especially if you’re tucking.” (a very astute, for some reason, Kelly Osbourne)
  • “Jiggly your message was uplifting, but your float left us with a sinking feeling.”

Lastly, team As the Day is Long is still going strong. With Willam’s double win, we pulled in an impressive 37 more points (with no negative points to boot), for a total of 111 points. This makes us the 726th overall team in the world!


4 thoughts on “RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season 4, Episode 6 – Float Your Boat

  1. […] Phi Phi is uncomfortably bad at reading. (“Reading” in the trash-talking sense. We already know she can actually read.) […]

  2. I am finally caught up. I agree, the mini-challenge was awful. I actually pictured them rolling up to like a Best Buy parking lot in the valley or something. Jerch, you missed the best part of Sharon’s line: “I have dignity looks, and I have paycheck looks. Dignity is when I won’t bend for anyone,” when she goes on to say that when her electric is about to be cut off, only then will she dress up as Lady GaGa, and then they cut to Phi Phi. Subtle shade. Also, I think Willam was hands down the winner, but damn if Latrice didn’t look amazing.

    • Jerch says:

      OMG good catch. Sorry about that. I don’t want to be negligent in my RDR duties. There is so much subtle shade on this show. It’s amazing. Do you watch Untucked? You need to. It’s only like 20 minutes and adds context to the show, mostly the judging. They keep showing this clip of Willam and Phi Phi’s inevitable blow out, and if you haven’t seen it I won’t ruin it, but it’s just amazing the timing Willam pulls off.

  3. funnynurse says:

    Can I just say, when it came to the whole “Spring Break T-Shirt contest” nonsense, this is what I imagine really went down behind the scenes…RuPaul tells the girls to strap on some fake boobs, tuck like they have never tucked before and then they walk out on a stage behind some studio lot where a bunch of guys hired from central casting pretending to be on spring break. The actors were asked to stand 5 people deep, 10 people across and every camera angle was to give the impression of hundreds of men.
    This was perhaps my least favorite scene/mini-challenge in all of RDR.
    I will give mad props to Willam. You make me wish I was not a sex, tight diva with lady-parts.

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