RPDR: Politics as Usual

Posted on March 28, 2012


We’re a couple of white boys, so it’s not for us to say whether the “The Help” joke was offensively racist. Our problem with it is that it just wasn’t funny. Drag is almost always politically incorrect in one form or another, so a talented queen might’ve been able to make the joke land correctly. We got what she was trying to do – a riff on a pseudo-Palin – but it was poorly conceived. Sarah Palin really is the only person in politics who looks like Sarah Palin. So when you pile your hair up and slap a pair of glasses on, it’s clear that’s who you’re going for. We suppose a literal Palin impersonation wouldn’t have been what the judges were looking for, but she didn’t do a good enough job of making this character seem distinct. She was just a poorly done drag version of a Texas socialite.

This we don’t get at all. Sure, a drag queen inauguration is such a fantasy concept that you could do anything if you can explain it well enough. After all, look who won the challenge. But we just don’t see what the point was to this utterly generic look.

Her makeup’s getting better but she still looks a good 15 years older than she is.

A move almost as ballsy as Sharon’s futuristic dress. We admit, we weren’t entirely sure she was pulling off the comedy, but she was fricking Lucille Ball in comparison to most of the rest of them.

Michelle Visage, we luvyahun, but you have GOT to let go of this lame-o “I don’t know who Chad Michaels is” critique. We can guarantee that prior to this TV series, the vast majority of people who recognized RuPaul in drag would NOT have recognized him out of it. You know why? Because drag queenery is all about artifice and creating characters. This critique is extremely ill-advised because the more it’s made, the more arbitrary and meaningless it sounds. Especially when Chad is SO GOOD at creating characters. This is an hysterically on-point parody of political wife drag.

Miss Latrice was a huge disappointment this week. She didn’t even remotely bring the comedy to this challenge. For some reason, she though acting imperious and humorless was the way to go. It’s as if she decided that the look was going to do all the work. It’s a great look and very commanding, but she really missed an opportunity do something interesting here.

Honestly, we think part of the reason so many of these attempts failed is because these queens don’t know a damn thing about politics. The reason Sharon and Chad scored near the top is not because they displayed impressive knowledge on the topic, but because they knew just enough about it to skewer it.

And like Phi Phi’s entry, we just don’t get how this relates to an inaugural look. She tends to default to the Star Jones look on the catwalk just a bit too much. Sure, that’s to be expected given her physicality, but Chad Michaels literally reshaped himself into the spititng image of Cher and he can manage an entirely new look every week. He hasn’t limited himself and Latrice needs to start thinking that way. There are more characters to play than simply a generic bold black diva all the time. Give us some Michelle Obama realness. Or Jessye Norman. Mary J. Blige. Hell, even a decent Oprah pastiche would be welcome after seeing the same face, hair, and dress style walk that catwalk every week.

And that visible bra strap is an offense unto God. Michelle should’ve had his balls in her hand for that one.



[Screencaps: tomandlorenzo.com]

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