The RuPaul’s Drag Race Tier List: Ranking the queens!

RuPaul's Drag Race

In honor of last night’s finale of RuPaul’s Drag Race season five, we decided to do something special: We went through each season, calculated each queen’s win-loss record, and then used the results to rank the queens’ performances on the show from best to worst. Before we get into the list, here’s a little rundown of how this works:

  • We calculated each queen’s wins (3 points), highs (2 points), safes (1 point), lows (-1 point) and lip synchs (-2 points) and then organized those scores from best to worse. Queens who won the crown got an extra point at the end. In the case of a tie, we organized them based on how far they made it into the competition.
  • These calculations are not based on how much we like a queen or how popular they are: We only based it on objective win-loss records. Some queens will rank higher than you expected, some rank lower, but we didn’t decide how each queen ranks. We just let the numbers do the talking.
  • No, we didn’t consider All-Stars. That season was weird.
  • These rankings are only a gauge of how well they did on the show. All the queens are talented, and these scores don’t reflect their overall abilities outside of the show. This is only meant to reflect their performance on Drag Race. Now, onto the tier list!

Goddess tier

1 – Jinkx Monsoon (19)
2 – Sharon Needles (18)
3 – Raja (18)
4 – Manila Luzon (18)
5 – Tyra Sanchez (17)

Legend Tier

6 – Chad Michaels (16)
7 – Alaska Thunderfuck (13)
8 – Roxxxy Andrews (13)
9 – Yara Sofia (12)
10 – Phi Phi O’Hara (11)

Empress Tier

11 – Raven (10)
12 – Nina Flowers (10)
13 – Bebe Zahara Benet (9)
14 – Alexis Mateo (9)
15 – Jessica Wild (9)
16 – Ongina (8)
17 – Pandora Boxx (7)
18 – Willam (6)
19 – Ivy Winters (6)
20 – Latrice Royale (5)

Glamazon Tier

21 – Stacy Layne Matthews (4)
22 – Lineysha Sparx (3)
23 – Detox (2)
24 – Tatianna (2)
25 – Shangela (2)
26 – Honey Mahogany (2)
27 – Mimi Imfurst (2)
28 – Jujubee (1)
29 – Rebecca Glasscock (1)
30 – Jade Jolie (1)

Supermodel Tier

31 – Morgan McMichaels (1)
32 – Shannel (0)
33 – Madame LaQueer (0)
34 – Vivienne Pinay (0)
35 – Lashauwn Beyond (0)
36 – Dida Ritz (-1)
37 – Jiggly Caliente (-1)
38 – Delta Work (-1)
39 – Sahara Davenport (-1)
40 – Mariah Balenciaga (-1)

Queen Tier

41 – Jade Sotomayor (-1)
42 – Sonique (-1)
43 – Mystique Summers (-1)
44 – Phoenix (-1)
45 – Nicole Paige Brooks (-1)
46 – Tammie Brown (-1)
47 – Coco Montrese (-2)
48 – Alyssa Edwards (-2)
49 – Milan (-2)
50 – India Ferrah (-2)

Princess Tier

51 – The Princess (-2)
52 – Penny Tration (-2)
53 – Alisa Summers (-2)
54 – Venus D-Lite (-2)
55 – Victoria “Porkchop” Parker (-2)
56 – Kenya Michaels (-3)
57 – Monica Beverly Hillz (-3)
58 – Carmen Carrera (-4)
59 – Serena ChaCha (-4)
60 – Akashia (-6)

Stray Observations
  • Jinkx Monsoon is the highest rank queen to ever appear on the show, mostly thanks to a string of high placements. That’s just what happens when you’re in the top 3 almost every week.
  • Willam is the only queen to ever be disqualified, so we weren’t sure how to calculate that into her score. Since she won the same week she was kicked off, we just decided to play it safe and consider that specific variable as 0.
  • Once again, math validates my love of all things Stacy Layne Matthews.
  • On the subjects of Shangela, Kenya Michaels and Carmen Carrera, all of whom were brought back after having been eliminated: We decided to use their overall performances to calculate their scores. Shangela left season 2 with a score of -2, but turned it around in season 3 to bring her score up to 2. On the other hand, Kenya and Carmen were both brought back, and were then immediately eliminated, negating two points from their scores. It sucks, I know, but if the judges are willing to give you a second chance at the crown, you best come correct.
  • Remember: We have no control over a queen’s score. All we can do is tabulate the results and organize them into a list. If you don’t agree with someone’s placement on the list … well, that’s math for ya. You don’t always get the result you want, but you can’t will the answer you want into existence.
Jeremy Feist About Jeremy Feist

Jeremy Feist is an (ahem) entertainer from Toronto, Canada. He writes, acts, and performs on stage, and has been a writer for Popbytes for almost three years now. He lives in Toronto with his boyfriend, his incredibly dumb but cute puppy, and his immortal cat.

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