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Ranking the Glitter Ball Down: A Breakdown of the Final Four of Rupaul’s Drag Race, Season Six

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by Gregory Rosebrugh
May 2, 2014 7:22 AM
3 Comments
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#4. Darienne Lake
Where she will finish: #4

It is easy to commiserate the loss of Ben by lashing out at her rival this week, but then that would overlook how enjoyable Darienne was this episode. There are a few things that deserve acknowledgment with reference to Darienne’s performance in this challenge. First of all, she outshined the other queens in that opening musical number, and reminded us exactly why Ivy Winters’s impersonation of Marilyn Monroe in last season was so offensively boring. By the way, who is writing these embarrassing musical numbers? These songs are the worst—they should be dragged out into the yard and shot. But back to Darienne...

It is true that Darienne’s interpretation of banjy girl was more club kid (basically, the reincarnation of Ornacia), and when she walks out in her business attire it shows on Darienne’s face that even she is in disbelief that she is wearing it—she even exhales on the main stage like she just ate something she would regret. (Best critique: Michelle: “The executive realness—didn’t buy that either. Where, Jiffy Lube?) Darienne’s eleganza look, however, droopy topaz vagina aside, was beautiful in its conception. I would even bet that it looked great when Darienne first put the gown on. The stretchiness of the material was an unfortunate fashion hazard because from waist up Darienne was the best looking of the five queens in the eleganza category. It is also remarkable that she turned that look out after scrapping a half-finished topaz look, a wise a choice it appeared. “Whole new dress, whole new fabric, whole new everything—what the fuck am I thinking?” she said, and we all panicked for her. So with this is mind, Darienne’s final product is not that terrible, is less of an eyesore than whatever Ben stuck in her hair and on her hips, and had the potential to be the best look of the bunch. Too bad that it wasn’t.


Looking back at the whole season we can tell Darienne will not send Courtney or Adore home, and comparing her with the other three queens makes it a moot point that she is even left in the competition. However, Darienne showed sensitivity and vulnerability in the Untucked Lounge this week that reminds us why we still like her, and this shows promise that she could leave season six on a more sentimental note. Aside: Bianca’s read of Darienne’s childhood photo was rich like butter: “The picture is sepia so it must be Darienne!”

#3: Courtney Act
Where she will finish: Runner-up

Santino was right about Courtney’s eleganza: it was the best of the five queens, and was walked in a way that seemed so natural and effortless. Michelle has become tired with Courtney because this queen has only been a pro for the entire season. She shows no flaws! In fact, the only critique the judges make of her is that she shows no flaws, which is not much a critique. 

Courtney’s major glitch, however, is her personality. This queen is not relatable at all. She is so high above us, on a fucking pedestal, posing and smiling perfectly and waving her hand like drag royalty. Nothing fazes her because she is a robot. This makes her less likeable than Bianca and Adore, and it arises as an issue whenever Courtney has to step up to any challenges that require charm or empathy or anything remotely relational.

Exhibit A: Courtney is not funny. She just isn’t. Go back and re-watch that puppet mini-challenge and try not punch yourself in the face.

Exhibit B: No one believes Courtney when she says in the Untucked Lounge, “Today’s the first time that I’ve actually felt like myself, and today I feel like the silly, crazy, zany, fun Courtney that I am when I’m just with my friends has come through . . .” It seems like she practiced that line in front of a mirror: “Today I will be personable!” 

Exhibit C: Courtney knows how to be beautiful but not how to express anything through her beauty. Her banjy girl was calculated and turgid, when banjy is supposed to be about vibe and nerve (as Adore and Bianca demonstrated). I laughed so hard when she explained her banjy look in the phrase of a question: “I’m feeling pretty banjy? I’ve got my boyfriend’s flannel and I feel like I could cut someone?” That’s Beige 101 right there. Best critique: Michelle, on Courtney’s silhouette: “Go rob a couch.”

Exhibit D: Courtney is the queen who shows the MOST skin and is the LEAST sexual!! That makes her about as charismatic as a fucking Dove commercial.  

I am starting to think that Courtney would have been more likeable if she played the villain of season six, because this week she conveyed so much soreness towards the judges’ decisions. She made about a hundred bitchy faces and it was delightful to watch, especially through that squirmy, manic smile and that angry-looking ruby red mask. She is so obviously tense but keeps on this creepy veneer of loveliness, and it was kinda fun to watch her split at the seams (not literally—squirrel friend is a size 00 I bet). I am waiting for Courtney to blow her lid and destroy the set like Carrie White at the high school prom. That would make her relatable!

Do you not find it fascinating that Courtney is most entertaining as a brunette? Stew over that for a moment.

#2: Adore Delano
Where she will finish: I DON’T KNOW ANYMORE!!!!!

Adore turned it around this week, like we all wanted, but did anyone think she would win the Glitter Ball? That was impressive, and deserved as well, though we should break this down some more. Adore did not win because she was miles ahead of the other girls in the challenge—Bianca got two out of three ensembles right, as did Courtney—but really because Adore had the best average across the three runway looks. It deserves saying that if we had not heard Adore audaciously describe her business realness as “hot lesbian” we would not have loved it as much. In fact, it was only when she opened her top to show her black bra that it started to feel like we were watching Linda Fiorentino in The Last Seduction. (Here’s an idea for a future Drag Race challenge: the queens re-enact 90s erotic neo-noirs and we all get wet!!!). When she first walked out on that runway I was reminded of my days as a sales associate for Club Monaco, when all the girls I worked with had to wear uniforms comprised of a “Vanessa shirt” and “Tex pants” that stretched at the crotch. Of course, Adore is always reliable to sell a garment regardless of how it looks on its own, and the boss bitch act worked in the end.

With Ben out of the way, Adore is Bianca’s main threat, and much so after her challenge win this week. Even with the challenge win aside, we can still tell that this is where the season is going from the five minute long exchange between Adore and the judges during the queens’ critiques. If Courtney does not win next week’s challenge, one of Bianca or Adore will rise to tie Sharon Needles for most challenges won in a season. I am extremely nervous because Adore is great on camera (when scripted), and if she wins this whole thing I will go on a rampage. I might even set fire to the high school prom. I love Adore, but I have all my chips on Bianca and I need the Goddess of C.U.N.T. to take the crown, at least to maintain order in this world.

#1. Bianca Del Rio
Where will
she finish: I TOLD YOU, I DON’T KNOW ANYMORE!!!!!

It is true, her eleganza was a worse version of looks we have seen from her before, but overall Bianca was strong in this challenge. Her reference to early 90s Mary J. Blige was an impressive take on banjy girl, and the way she matched her orange beehive to her blue two-piece for her business ensemble was very eye-catching. This was another week of Bianca just being Bianca, which is always better than the other queens. Still, we are bummed that she did not win the Glitter Ball, because our bets were on the professional seamstress stomping all over the challenge.

Adore is rising and Bianca is about the same as she has been throughout the whole competition. Will Adore speed ahead of Bianca in this season’s Drag Race? Has the world gone topsy-turvy? Where’s my rosary?!

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3 Comments

  • Megs | May 4, 2014 7:25 PMReply

    "beautiful in its conception"? It looks like her bikini had a glittery pee spillover. She's been flat this entire run with rare moments of success. Ben's more consistent, show-girl looks or no (and hello she comes from a burlesque background so of course, but she's varied them - she was a friggin' housefly for chrissakes). Bianca's had the exact same silhouette and face for this entire season. Maybe if she'd stayed she would have gone home next week and I guess that's fair, but she could have battled it out with another contender who has the talent it be there. There's NO way Darienne should have stayed compared to Dela.

  • Jesús | May 2, 2014 12:57 PMReply

    I knooooooow!!! OMG for the first time in this season im anxious to know the final results....Will be Bianca? will be Adore? I dont know anymore.......and for the first time we finally get a chance to see those Bianca mysterious legs in the Sissy That Walk video challenge......will she be a mess? will Adore win?

    Im so full of doubt!!!!!!

  • jesus (again) | May 2, 2014 1:00 PM

    Dont get me wrong, im not saying that Adore doesnt deserve that crown...but it will be the end of civilization if she snatch that prize from Bianca´s pearl teeth.

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