RuPaul’s Drag Race premiered season 9 this week, marking the show’s move from the niche LGBTQ-focused Logo channel, to VH1, a technically bigger channel that none of us have really thought about since Flavor of Love ended. For anyone who has been following RuPaul’s Drag Race for the previous 8 seasons, you know that the queens on this show are basically a treasure trove of betchiness. For example, Shangela’s “You Will Never Have A Sugar Daddy” speech from Season 3 is basically a primer in how to completely tear another woman apart in 30 seconds or less. It’s basically The Bible. And let’s not forget the term “throwing shade” literally comes from drag queens, as does the concept of “reading” someone. Plus, the RPDR contestants are basically walking advertisements for aggressive contouring and highlighter use. So, naturally, with a show so clearly betchy and with with the stakes (and the stilettos) so high, it’s only appropriate for us to determine which of the season 9 queens are sickening, and which need to go back to Party City where they belong.
14. Charlie Hides
Charlie Hides is some kind of YouTube celebrity impression person who clearly thinks that she is the shit despite the fact that she made 0 impression in the first week’s episode. Idk. Something about this queen just rubs me the wrong way. Like the way she kept name-dropping her YouTube channel, and claiming that Lana Del Ray called her an “asshole.” Plus her hometown look was literally just a pilgrim costume from Amazon. An annoying YouTube star in Halloween store clearance? Oh hunty, no thank you.
13. Jaymes Mansfield
Okay, so first of all, I don’t like drag queens with male names. But that’s just a personal preference thing. Jaymes Mansfield’s entrance is what puts this queen at the bottom of our ranking. It was just far too awkward. The puppet? Girl, please. Aren’t you supposed to like, plan the entrance out? She looked like she had no f’ing clue what was going on, and that continued throughout the episode when her “hometown” look had absolutely 0 relevance to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Like, I was expecting her to serve us some full-on dairy realness ensemble and instead we got…black and white checkers? Not. Good. Enough. Girl.
According to Sasha, Aja is the “number one name in Brooklyn that people are talking about right now,” and like vinyl records and other things that Brooklynites love, IDGI. Her personality was fine, and she looks good enough, but, as several people pointed out, her makeup was totally fucked. Like, she looked like maybe she’d done her face on the L Train on her way to drag race. Which like, no shade to doing your makeup on the L, I’ve definitely been there, but just make sure you have a LuMee case or something so you know wtf you’re going to look like when you finally get out onto the runway. Also, I have a strict “no septum piercings” policy, and drag queens are no exception.
11. Trinity Taylor
Trinity Taylor’s whole “thing” is that she got plastic surgery and doesn’t have to pad her ass which, to me, is less impressive than the girls who literally mold their bodies out of pillows and foam and shit. IMHO, Trinity was too catty without the the humor to back it up. Like, she talked a lot of shit, but wasn’t ultimately that good at reading people. Her ass does look amazing, though, so I guess that’s money well spent.
10. Alexis Michelle
Alexis Michelle is our Broadway queen. While she didn’t really stand out this episode, she did do an amazing Gaga at the Emmys, so you gotta give it to her for that. All this queen really needs is one live singing challenge to move her up to the top, but until that happens, Alexis is pretty thoroughly middle of the pack.
9. Sasha Velour
Sasha Velour is our bald, artsy queen. She takes herself too seriously, and that was p obvious during her hometown look, where she came out with like, a thousand props to make some clumsy statement about art and culture in New York. It just didn’t make sense. Also, I like my queens to be wigged. The bigger the better when it comes to wigs, honestly. That’s why, despite Sasha being one of the judges’ top 3 picks, I just don’t think Sasha is going to make it. The whole “bald artist” thing gets old pretty fast—like, within the span of one episode I was already over it. Her eyebrows are fucking on point though.
8. Farrah Moan
Farrah Moan is gorgeous and skinny but she also seems like an idiot, and not in a cute way. Like why was she having such a hard time finding a work station? Didn’t you watch like every episode of this show in preparation for this day? Also her runway looks were meh. I want to like Farrah, just based on the strength of her pun game alone, but I don’t think she really impressed anybody this week.
I put Peppermint exactly in the middle of this list because she performed exactly in the middle of this episode. Her looks weren’t stunning, but they weren’t bad either. She seems to have a nice personality. All in all I could see her sticking around for a while, or maybe she’ll really blow up next episode. Either way, Peppermint def has the potential to become a fan favorite along the way.
6. Kimora Blac
Kimora Blac earned her spot solely based on the strength of her body. Like, hooooly shit that’s some amazing padding work. Even if she doesn’t win, I may call her up and just see if I can make use of her padding services for myself. Her body is probably the best of the season.
Valentina has only been doing drag 10 months, and she is straight-up amazing. Every season has its signature “Latin Queen” and Valentina might be the best one yet. She absolutely slayed her hometown look, and anybody who thinks she casually brought up how young in drag she is for no reason in particular knows nothing about Drag Race. Valentina obvs brought up her drag infancy to either intimidate her opponents or to lull them into a false sense of security regarding her drag abilities. Either way, I think Valentina will be with us through the end of the season.
4. Nina Bo’Nina Banana Fofana Osama Bin Laden Brown
Nina Bo’nNna not only found a way to incorporate Osama Bin Laden into her drag name (a hard sell) but she won the Miss Charisma Uniqueness Nerve and Talent title, making her the first challenge winner. Normally that would make someone the frontrunner, but IDK. Nina is obviously a very talented and fishy queen, but something about the animal/peach face motif just freaked me out. She looked like if a Snapchat filter came to life. It was unsettling.
Eureka was in the top three this week and for good reason. She seems to have everything you want in a queen: tons of personality, genuinely funny, fierce on the runway. Eureka is the whole package. However, she did totally lose her cool when Lady Gaga showed up in the runway, and while it was def a very sweet moment, it was also a little extra and shows that Eureka def has some emotional weaknesses that could hurt her later on in the competition. Keep it together sister, and maybe you’ll win the whole damn thing!
2. Shea Couleé
Sure, she didn’t win the challenge. She didn’t even place in the top three. But something about Shea Couleé tells me she’s in it for the long hall. Like Eureka, Shae has tons of personality and appears to be genuinely funny. She made that giant hotdog hat, and it somehow looked very chic? In my humble opinion, Shea Couleé is this season’s queen to beat. There’s just something about her—a certain drag ne sais quoi—that says “winner” to me.
1. THE 14TH QUEEN!!!
The mysterious 14th queen gets the #1 slot just because she’s a mystery, and nothing is more glamorous than a mystery. We won’t know who she is until next week, but I think it’s safe to say she’s a returning queen from a previous season, based on the others’ reactions. Why else would they bring her on so late in the game? She must be fierce AF to be used as an end of episode cliffhanger. Either that, or she’s so boring they had to come up with some kind of giant stunt to introduce her. We’ll have to wait until next episode to find out.
Honorable Mention: Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga is literally such a drag queen in her day-to-day life that when she came workroom everyone thought she was just another one of the contestents. She then went on to talk a lot about what drag meant to her, while the queens literally broke down into tears over her presence. So like, is what Lady Gaga does considered drag? Can Lady Gaga be a drag queen even if she is technically a cis-woman all the time? I will defer to the queens on this one and say that even if Gaga isn’t technically a drag queen, she is an honorary drag queen in all of our hearts, meaning that this year’s Super Bowl was essentially a drag show. Love it.