Drag Race Holland: Give Face!

Posted on September 25, 2020

Sorry we’re a little late with this recap, darlings, but we simply had to spend an hour or so today talking about Matt Bomer’s penis. You understand, we’re sure. Also, hell-oooo Dutch Pit Crew! There’s a joke in here about plugging a dike that we will refrain from making since we’ve already made a dick reference.


One funny thing about this episode: in the first half, we were sitting there thinking “Hmmm, the Dutch queens seem to be so much nicer than the American ones,” only to rapidly change our mind when the claws started coming out among this crowd. In pure shady fashion, the prettiest queen got attacked and the chubby queen got treated like the outcast. At first we thought Abby OMG was over-reacting to her missing corset, but when everyone went in on ripping her mediocre final look (which was nowhere near the worst of the week), we think her suspicions may have some merit. Keep your eye on Janey Jacké, girl.


A “Drag up your clogs” mini-challenge is GENIUS.


And the results were appropriately hilarious, but like almost all mini-challenges, the winners seemed rather arbitrarily chosen. In fact, as much as we enjoyed it, the whole episode felt a bit off in its editing and critiques.


A workout video challenge feels like a classic Drag Race challenge at this point and while most of the girls went the easy route and just played it slutty, it felt like none of their efforts seemed to matter much in the final judging. Then again, we’ve always said that Drag Race was basically a variety show with a little prize awarded at the end of each episode. The point is almost always more about being entertaining for the audience than competing in a strictly and consistently judged competition.

It probably wouldn’t be fair of us to try and assess who did the best in this challenge; not just because of the editing and the rather low-key response from the coaches, but because trying to assess someone’s comedy from reading subtitles is a fool’s errand. Suffice it to say, the girls gave it their best shot, but aside from Sederginne, none of them come off like comedy queens.

You’re welcome.


After dispensing with a comedy challenge that barely got referenced again, the episode moved on to a makeup-based runway challenge in which the critiques all seemed to center around the dresses and bodywork. Like we said, things were a little off in how this one was put together, but at least it was entertaining.


We thought Janey had this one completely locked up, but instead they waved her through as safe.


ChelseaBoy’s look was strong, but the hairspray effect wasn’t as good as it could have been, what with the can bouncing around his head with each step. We kind of don’t understand what Ma’MaQueen was going for here. We get that it was about chakras, but it seemed kind of undeveloped as a concept and underwhelming as a look.


Sederginne did what she set out to do, which was prove to the judges early on that she can do more than old lady comedy drag. The concept was strong, but the execution was a little on the crafty side. Megan’s look was cute enough, but we tended to agree with the judges that parts of her makeup didn’t make sense and her body suit was a little dowdy.


We were so disappointed with Patty PamPam’s look. The wig was great, but the makeup was underwhelming considering his inspiration. When he started applying it, we assumed he was going to paint his whole face like “Starry Night.” Both his face and his rather cheap-looking gown looked like he gave up halfway through putting the look together.


We’re not sure why some of the queens went for an art inspiration with their looks, but it felt like the audience didn’t receive the same information about the challenge that the queens did. It can’t be a coincidence that several of them came out made up like famous paintings. Madame Madness’s face skills are better than anyone else’s and we thought NikkieTutorials’ complaint that she’d seen this face before on his instagram was a bit of a copout. Almost all the queens are pulling things out of their trickbag for each challenge. No one’s social media work should be brought in as a criterion for their placement in the challenge. Yes, the dress was ugly. If you’re going to do Klimt’s “Woman in Gold,” why on earth would you NOT utilize sequins or lamé? Still, it struck as crazy that she landed in the bottom of a face-serving challenge. We suppose her mediocre performance in the workout video had something to do with it, but it seemed to us that most of the queens were only so-so in that regard. Abby OMG deserved all the critiques she got. It’s not a terrible look, but it’s kind of unresolved and it felt like she was relying on being pretty rather than on producing a great look.


One thing we can’t argue with is Envy’s win. The dress was kind of ugly, but the face was pretty amazing.


Can’t say the Lip Synch For Your Life was all that electrifying. We’re afraid both of them came off like underwhelming performers.


And while we can’t say we’re happy to see Patty PamPam go (she seems fun and shady), if we had to choose between the queen with amazing face and ugly dress or the queen with the underwhelming face and dress, we’d go with sending the latter home. There was a lot about this weirdly entertaining episode that seemed off to us, but at least we can’t argue with the final decisions.


“Our critically acclaimed book Legendary Children: The First Decade of RuPaul’s Drag Race and the Last Century of Queer Life is on sale now!

The Los Angeles Times called it “a nuanced exploration of the gender-bending figures, insider lingo and significant milestones in queer history to which the show owes its existence.” 

The Washington Post said it “arrives at just the right time … because the world needs authenticity in its stories. Fitzgerald and Marquez deliver that, giving readers an insight into the important but overlooked people who made our current moment possible.” 

Paper Magazine said to “think of it as the queer education you didn’t get in public school” and The Associated Press said it was “delightful and important” and “a history well told, one that is approachable and enjoyable for all.”






[Stills: WOW via Tom and Lorenzo]

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