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All T, All Shade: RuPaul’s Big Opening

All T, All Shade: RuPaul’s Big Opening
February 25, 2014 JEREMY FEIST
RuPaul's Drag Race

RuPaul's Drag Race

The wait is over kittens! … Well, half over anyway. Yes, the big twist of the RuPaul’s Drag Race season six premiere was that there were two of them, and we’d be seeing the second half next week. I regard this the same way I regard the All-Stars teams format: It’s a twist on a well-established formula, and as much as the fans complain about it, the pros outweigh the cons: We have a better chance to get to know the queens on a personal level, and dividing the queens in half means that “safe” is off the table. Throw in the fact that elimination is no longer on the table (I blame this one on Lineysha Sparx’ piss-poor acting and Alyssa Edwards’ Katy Perry impression) and it’s obvious that Ru isn’t playing the radio anymore. This week, the queens had to make a dress based on a hit TV show. Who was must-see TV and who got canceled? Well …

Adore Delano [Bottom 3]

I honestly thought Adore was going to be the bitch this season, so I was wonderfully surprised by just how much I liked her! She’s an excellent mix of sassy, witty, and vulnerable, she has a great aesthetic, and she gives good confessional. That being said: GIRL. It’s season six. If you’re trying out for Drag Race, you should know there’s a sewing challenge. That being said, I actually though her dress was pretty okay, although that bow had to go. I’m keeping my eye on her, because she’s gonna go far.

April Carrion [Runner-Up]

April seemed like she was going to win it there for a second: Taking something as trashy and pedestrian as Duck Dynasty and making it look that fashion-forward? That’s no small task. You can tell she has a lot of creativity behind that pretty face, but I think the big reason she didn’t win is, well, she’s a bit flat when she’s in front of the judges. Being able to field the judges’ questions and throw it back at them can save you from elimination or put you over the top for the win (see Ben) but I think using her time to flirt with Adam Lambert just barely cost her the win.

BenDeLaCreme [Winner]

Congrats, Dela! Hope you enjoy your spot in the final three, because you earned it! Her Golden Girls realness looked homemade, but the good kind of homemade where people go, “You MADE that?!” The fact that she could put together a fit like that with nothing but hot glue and a can-do spirit has me feeling confident she’ll be around for the long haul. She’s a fantastic mix of funny, polished, and crafty, and she made that half-premiere her BITCH.

Gia Gunn [Safe]

You can literally hear the bored bitchiness oozing out of her mouth every time she speaks, can’t you? The only problem I have with the half-premiere is that it gives the less exciting queens just as much camera time as the more interesting ones, and that means Gia has plenty of time to mug for the camera when she probably shouldn’t be. Her Keeping Up With The Kardashians outfit was appropriate in the sense that it reminded me of Kim, but that’s not a complement. The chevron was nice, but the barely-there skirt? Noooooooooo.

Laganja Estranja [Safe]

Once again, another one mugging for the camera when she probably should have played it subtler. I don’t think Laganja is far enough in her drag career that she’s settled on a clear personality, because last night saw her restlessly jumping from one persona to another. Even worse, none of them really felt natural on her. I actually liked her outfit, even if I thought the hem could have been a skotch shorter and the ruffled neckpiece needed to be edited out, but when even Ru is commenting on your ersatz personality, it’s time to spend a little time getting to know thyself.

Kelly Mantle [Sashay Away]

I guessed that Kelly was going to end up dinged over her styling, and … well, look what happened. Despite Michelle’s protesting, I actually liked Kelly’s Downton Abbey bacon top, but the rest of the outfit didn’t look great. Also, the wig? The make-up? Not good. It would have been nice to see what Kelly had hiding up her sleeve — her confessional segments were particularly inspired! — but after seventeen years in drag, you need to be able to understand how to style yourself.

Vivacious [Shantay You Stay]

Based on the initial trailer for season six, I kinda new Vivacious was going to be on the bubble in the first episode. I’m happy she was able to stick around, because I think once she starts bringing out the club kid looks, she’s going to come into her own. I mean, when Orancia just randomly popped up from the foam pit during the mini-challenge? That was an audible laugh moment. Her Game of Thrones realness was a bit rough, and throwing the crow on the wrist was a bit on the nose, but I’m still happy she was able to stick around to show us her style.