RuPaul’s Drag Race – ‘Queens in Space’

The queens begin another day in the Drag Lab. Shangela, despite being battered bruised and beat down, is still there and he promises (mainly Manila) that he’s got a lot of great things to come. You go, Shangela! Nicolette seems to disagree with me. “I think she should have been the first one to go home.” The guys seem to have finally come to the realization that they’re in a competition and that anyone can be sent home. Poor Shangela seems to have a target on his back – Alexis says he’s got to watch it because the queens this season are even more fierce than their season 2 counterparts. (I disagree – Pandora Boxx, Raven, Morgan and the crew from last season are just as fierce in my book!)

Oooh, girl, you’ve got She Mail! RuPaul introduces this week’s challenges with a Star Trek analogy – on the Starship Drag Race, the boys will tuck where no man has tucked before! (This comment elicited a giggle from my girl Nicolette!) Boy Ru, in a downright snappy ascot, tells the boys to pair up with the person they feel closest psychically to and puts them through a test of their ESP abilities. Each team is separated by a wall and one member has to determine the color of props his teammate is sporting (a wig, a boa, a ring, a stuffed cat) through their “psychic bond.” Hey Nicolette, do you think you have a psychic connection with any of your fellow Lips queens? “Ummm…sometimes, well, once I had lunch with a friend of mine, one of my girls, and he texted me one of the places he was thinking of going was the same place I was thinking of and I guess so, there’s a little bit of something to it.

My girl Francesca, we’ve been friends for 8 or 9 years though.” Raja thinks she and Delta have a good bond (they perform together in the Dreamgirls revue). Well…not so much….The other pairs don’t fare much better. Nicolette can’t get over how feminine Stacy looks. “A lot of times, being a big girl is an advantage to your look, because you have the round features and the soft face – you don’t have the chiseled man features that you have to kind of contour and take away.” Phoenix and Mariah emerge the winners. (Nicolette says, “I’d never expect Phoenix to do drag.”) Ru tells the queens that their main challenge will prove which queens are out of sight – as they put together the space saga “Drag Queens in Outer Space”!

Oh, you know there’s more to this RuCap! Read on after the jump!

Ru tells the boys that they’re going to split up into two teams. Since Phoenix and Mariah won the mini-challenge, they are now the team captains, competing against each other. Phoenix chooses Raja, Delta, India, Manila and Carmen. Team Mariah is made up of Yara, Alexis, Shangela, Stacy and Mimi. I’m kind of surprised Mimi was chosen last, as he’s had oodles of theater experience. Nicolette agrees (as we discovered last week, Mimi is one of Nicolette’s Lips sisters) “Even from his runway last week, he not only had a defined and cute character, he sold it through his actions.” I guess the crying hasn’t helped him out in the competition. Ru has two scripts for the sci-fi epics, one team gets “Drag Queens in Outer Space: From Earth to Uranus” and the other team gets the sequel “Drag Queens from Outer Space 2: Return to Uranus” (Stacy laughs at the title. It’s so cute that you can appreciate a good butt joke at any age!) Who are you liking here, Nicolette? “I can’t tell just yet! It’s only two episodes in and I don’t really have a read on the girls yet.” It’s really anybody’s game here!

Mariah gets right to the casting of his trailer. He casts himself in the lead character – Boobarella. Mimi is cast as the villainous Hermaphrodite. Mimi promises to bring some “Meryl Streep realness” to the role. Tweaker, the alien monkey is played by Yara and Shangela and Alexis are given the roles of the Twinbots. Alexis was not looking forward to working with Shangela because he failed to see any improvement in his teammate from last season. Me-ow! Phoenix is confident that his team is going to win the challenge, while Manila seems more content to play with the enormous fake boobs provided for their wardrobe. Nicolette asks, “Did you ever go on the web and price those boobs? They’re like $650!” Oh, no, girl, I don’t need that – well, not that I don’t need that, I just don’t need it (yes, I’m lacking in the racking – what of it?) Raja isn’t confident about Phoenix’s leadership skills and manages to help India and Carmen get into their Twinbot characters way better than Phoenix did. Back on Team Mariah, Mimi is really hamming it up and driving his teammates crazy (Nicolette says “He’s being quite theatrical for a read-through!”) Ru comes to check in on his starlets. Ru was surprised that Phoenix didn’t take the lead role of Boobarella for himself. Phoenix tried to play Ru’s comment off, saying he knew Delta would make a better Boobarella. Manila impressed Ru with his improvised “Tweaker-speak” and the Twinbots already seemd to have morph into their characters.

Over at Team Mariah, Ru tells the gang that they have chosen the sequel and hopes they don’t get stuck in the old “sequels suck” trap. Before Ru leaves his “girls”, he tells them that they’ll be visited on the set by Michelle Visage and his “very special guest star” Caprica’s Alessandra Torresani (Do you know her, Nicolette? “I knew of the show, but I didn’t know her.”) The queens feign excitement because I’m pretty sure most of them aren’t sci-fi fans. As the boys get into makeup, Mimi is still upset that he was picked last and tries to get to the bottom of this mystery with a little help from Delta. Mimi thinks Phoenix is threatened by him, but Delta doesn’t think that’s the case because if it was, he’d have been picked earlier. That Delta is a wise one!

The queens arrive on the set – and it’s the most fabulous spaceship evah! Leopard print walls, feather and fun fur-covered consoles…if space travel really was this fashion-forward, I would have gone to school to be an astronaut! Team Phoenix is up first. Manila makes the cutest pink monkey ever and Carmen and India look adorable. Michelle and Alessandra are there to direct (and Alessandra is wearing some craveworthy leopard print gloves!) I like Delta’s Pam Anderson take on Boobarella, but her foam rubber “muppet boobs” are distracting. And Phoenix, girl! She looks like she’d rather be anywhere else. (Nicolette says, “Phoenix is awful! There’s no life to her delivery.”) Poor Delta’s having problems with her lines and Phoenix keeps delivering her lines away from the camera. A shy drag queen? Aw hell no, we can’t have this! Nicolette: “He seems so disconnected, like he doesn’t want to be there.” Alessandra tries to give Phoenix some motivation, but it falls on deaf fake Vulcan-inspired ears. Raja is vaguely terrified of Michelle, but doesn’t seem to show it in his performance as Hermaphrodite. Manila’s having a camel toe issue with his wardrobe. As he put it, “Tweaker’s got pipe!” As a laser gun battle ensues on set, Manila is reprimanded for making “gun sounds” as he fires his gun. I’d do the same thing, because I’m highly immature.

Team Mariah is up next. You can definitely tell Stacy’s new to the game, he had a little problem with the whole “action” thing. Mimi is chewing up and spitting out every inch of the scenery – and wearing terribly distracting facial hair (it reminds me of an old episode of Beavis and Butthead where the boys glued pubic hair to their faces in an attempt to look older and score chicks.) Meanwhile, Mariah/Boobarella is working those latex fakers! He’s having a little problem with his lines, which just furthers the stereotype that girls with big boobs are less intelligent. (Sadly, I wouldn’t know!) Nicolette is amazed that for taking on the lead role, Mariah didn’t take enough time to learn her lines. Alexis wasn’t happy to be sharing the spotlight with Shangela, but they were great together – and they were literally bound together by a shared ponytail. Nicolette: “That is so cute!” I wonder what would happen if they would have to lip sync for their lives while attached at the head…we’ll have to wonder about that later because it’s a wrap! The trailers will make their world premiere on the runway and the queens need to work the runway in their finest space age couture. They’ll be judged by Ru, Michelle, Santino Rice and Alessandra and “extra special guest judge” Lily Tomlin! This time around, the queens are genuinely excited (I would be too!) Nicolette is excited by the presence of the pit crew (“The one on the left is cute!”) Nicolette and I agree – more pit crew! The next day, the queens get ready to put their space age realness on display. Mimi decides to shave his head to wear his super funky headpiece, a decision Nicolette can’t believe (“Bald? Just for a challenge?”) Phoenix is nervous – as well he should be. India thinks that Mimi, who is now bald, has mouths painted around his eyes and googly eyes glued to his face, looks like Uncle Fester from The Addams Family. Nicolette thought he looked more club kid, like an extra from the Boy George musical Taboo. Good call, Nicolette! I can’t disagree with either assessment.

It’s runway time! Ru once again works it in a gorgeous, peach ruffled dress. Mathu Andersen is a freakin’ genius! Santino, Michelle and Alessandra are in their best sci-fi inspired togs. Lily Tomlin – not so much – but as Nicolette said, “She’s Lily Tomlin, she doesn’t have to!” (but the fact that it looks like she hasn’t aged since 1982 is supernatural enough for me!) The queens hit the runway in their space gear. Yara is a vision in green, complete with some crazy shoes (Lady Gaga? Alexander McQueen?) Raja looks like a sexy C-3PO. India is back showcasing the fakers in a Xtina/Gaga/Britney inspired outfit. Alexis looks like she walked off the set of George Michael’s “Too Funky” video in a red, silver and black ensemble (as Ru put it, “Flash Gordon does drag”.) Nicolette loves the fact that her hair matches her outfit. Stacy made the daring choice of a silver catsuit. Me-ow! Love the fearlessness! Shangela is also rocking the red and silver, topped with a bedazzled space helmet. Mimi really does look like she stumbled out of the road company of Taboo (Nicolette loves the outfit, but thinks the makeup’s not giving us space age realness!) Phoenix is decked out in a cool bodysuit that has a strip of fabric connecting his legs at the knees – and those crazy Gaga/McQueen shoes! I like the metallic orb headpiece and the cool eyepiece too. Carmen Carerra is having hair issues. It looks like his huge hairpiece could take off at any minute. Mariah is a vision in black and white (as Ru says, “She’s not having any trouble with her tribbles!”) and Delta shines in a green dress, blonde wig and sparkle-encrusted face. Manila is working a black bodysuit with yellow accents – I love it, and I’m getting a Batman vibe as well (Nicolette loves it too – “simple and effective”). The trailers make their debut. Phoenix’s has strong performances from Delta, India, Carmen, Raja and Manila. Phoenix, not so much.

After the break, we get to see Team Mariah’s performance. With the exception of a little too much ham from Mimi, the gals did fabulous (I would have liked to see more of Yara’s Tweaker though…gee, that sounded dirty!) We both LOVED Alexis and Shangela together! Nicolette thought Mimi was really over the top. Ru and the judges pick the winner and, no surprise, really, it’s Team Mariah! The queens on her team are all safe, but there does need to be a winner. Ru acknowledges Mimi, Alexis and Shangela as the standouts and declares our li’l Twinbots as the week’s big winners (even though they won, there’s no immunity in it for them, but they do win a set of hand-sculpted silicone fakers from! Mimi looks very upset that she didn’t win. It’s now down to the members of Team Phoenix. One of them is going home – and it’s not Raja, who has immunity from last week. Phoenix was called out for not being “zany enough” as Lady Tata and wasn’t committed to his role. Lily was taken with India’s bosom, Michelle said India’s look was “Judy Jetson does Vegas”. Carmen was having issues with her hair – and her second week of excuses. Manila got kudos for her role and runway. Delta was Divine and Dolly in her performance, which Lily loved. Santino (as always) hated her runway duds. Nicolette disagreed with Santino’s assessment that Delta’s look was dated, “I’m not crazy about it, but I do get it.” Raja got teary-eyed when faced with the prospect of Delta going home. Who is going to lip sync for her life?

Ru brings her girls back to the runway and doles out the remaining condragulations – to Raja, India, Manila and Carmen. That means Delta and Phoenix must lip sync for their lives. The song this week is “Bad Romance” by Lady Gaga. Does every drag queen need to know a Lady Gaga song now, Nicolette? “Pretty much!” Phoenix kicks off her McQueen knock-offs to perform (A drag crime! According to Nicolette, “No matter how painful or uncomfortable the shoes are, you perform in them! You’re competing to be the next drag superstar and you’re performing barefooted? Nope, that doesn’t work for me!”), while Delta just nails it – she played it perfectly, letting her own personality shine through. As much as I love my southern belles, Phoenix is sent packing. Next week, the queens make their own workout videos and are judged by none other than Susan “Stop the Insanity” Powter and La Toya “Not Janet” Jackson! Until then, can I get an “Amen”?

Don’t miss an exciting episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race! New episodes air every Monday night at 10pm EDT on Logo!