RuPaul's Drag Race Recap

Drag Race Recap: Which Queens Are Headed to the 'Grand Finale'?

Friday’s Drag Race tasked the four remaining queens with writing and performing new lyrics to RuPaul’s “Category Is.” Unfortunately, not everyone turned out to be, ahem, well-versed in the art of songwriting. Or rapping. Or dancing.

Naturally, some finalists fared better behind the mic than others; Peppermint, for example, crushed it with few critiques from producer Todrick Hall, while Shea Couleé and Sasha Velour managed to make their verses work after making a few adjustments.

And then there was Trinity, who basically forgot how to speak while recording her verse. Listen, I’m a big Trinity fan — Sister Mary Kuntz can slap my ass with a ruler any day — but when it comes to her skills as a songstress, Todrick’s face says it all:

In addition to their performances, the finalists also appeared as guests Ru and Michelle Visage’s (phenomenal) podcast What’s the Tea?, where they opened up about the struggles that helped shape them into the queens they are today

Peppermint revealed the criticism she received from a “well-known and respected” New York queen who told her she couldn’t do drag as a trans woman; Shea recalled her identity struggle as a black person in a predominately white community; and Sasha and Trinity admitted to lingering feelings of regret over not sharing enough with loved ones they’ve lost. (In other news, when do we get to meet “Papa Velour”?!)

But the real waterworks came after this week’s runway challenge, when Ru asked each of the queens to offer advice to their younger selves. All four finalists bared their souls, but Peppermint’s speech to that little junior mint in the photo was absolutely heartbreaking — not to mention that it probably hit close to home for a lot of viewers, including yours truly.

When it came time for the big lip sync battle, all four queens came together to perform Ru’s “U Wear It Well.” And unless I was merely distracted by the finalists’ thoughtful voiceovers, I have to say… I kind of think everyone turned out an equal product.

And Mama Ru seemed to agree! In the episode’s final moments, she declared that no one was eliminated, and that all four finalists will return for the “grand finale” in two weeks. (Next week is the Ru-union.)

So, as Ru asked, are you #TeamPeppermint? #TeamSasha? #TeamShea? Or #TeamPeppermint? Cast your vote below, then drop a comment with your thoughts on Friday’s episode.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Van says:


    • Sam says:

      Good luck with that. I love Peppermint but I was honestly surprised she made it to the finale, since her track record of 1 win, 2 bottoms is the worst out of anyone. But I guess it would have been lame to send her home when she killed the challenge (even if her lewk was once again mediocre).

  2. AlexCarter (#TeamTrinity) says:


  3. Derek says:

    I kind of agree with the notion that a woman doing drag is not really fair. It’s kind of the point seeing a man go from himself to Cher on the strengths of his acting, make-up and costume. It’s another thing already being a woman.

    • Rook says:

      Honestly I had the same thinking as you a while back. That is until I start going to my local drag show hosted by the amazing HBIC drag queen Kelly Kline, who is also a trans woman. I learned that drag is so much more than men dressing as woman. So I don’t agree with woman doing drag isn’t fair, a woman can go from herself to Cher on the strengths of her acting, make-up, and costume.
      One of my favorite this Kelly does is she thanks LGBTQIA people for coming and then thanks the straight people for coming. Straight people coming to a drag show is allowing us to be who we are without judgement. So a woman doing drag should go without judgment because as Kelly would say “we get enough of it from the world, we don’t need to give it back.”

      • Derek says:

        It’s not a matter of prejudice… On the contrary. Isn’t a trans woman as much of a woman as a cis woman? Because, if so, the whole transformation aspect is lost. Of course, if you have had surgeries and take hormones, you are going to naturally look feminine. Therefore, to me, the drag queen craft is somewhat lost…

        • Van says:

          Trans women have competed before. Peppermint is the first one to make it this far. There is also female impersonation, which is a sub set of drag.

        • Rook says:

          Have you been to some drag shows? because I’ve seen queens who don’t tuck wearing a thong, and queens who wear just as much make up as a normal woman. I think your definition of drag is to small, drag is limitless. Look up Axel Andrews because thats a different take on drag.

    • Sam says:

      I think drag is whatever you want it to be and I think trans women should absolutely be more present on Drag Race. The question is how fair it would be if someone farther along in their transition, say with silicone breast implants, decided to compete. I would lean towards saying that if you can have a fake butt you should be able to have fake boobs, but I’m not married to that argument.

      • Derek says:

        Isn’t a trans woman as much of a woman as a cis woman? Because, if so, the whole transformation aspect is lost. Of course, if you have had surgeries and take hormones, you are going to naturally look feminine. Therefore, to me, the drag queen craft is somewhat lost…

        • Sam says:

          So what about someone like Trinity or Detox or Chad Michaels competing, all of whom have had extensive plastic surgery? I think you’re focusing in too much on what makes it fair or what drag craft really is. Most trans people do not have the funds to do a full Caitlyn Jenner so they still have to contour and pad and do everything else a drag queen has to do. What matters is that they’re a superstar. I see no problem including trans women and excluding cis women. This is a series for the type of people you don’t normally see on television and cis women have plenty of stuff for them already. This is our thing.

          • Derek says:

            I don’t really think of women as cis or trans. I think of them as women. Frankly, I think you might be stereotyping what a trans woman looks like. You’d be surprised how often you couldn’t even tell… I’m not sure I’m OK with opening drag to women in general. The whole transformation aspect would be lost. It becomes a fashion / make-up context. Not the beautiful illusion of Ru Paul going from clearly a man to a gorgeous woman.

    • readenreply says:

      google World Famous Bob

      (A self described female-female impersonator)

      she’s amazing

  4. #TeamTrinity #TeamTheTuck

  5. Trinity Taylor says:


  6. JJ. says:

    It seems like shea is going to take the crown this season but to be honest I’m not even mad about it. She’s been doing great all season and was fantastic in so many of the challenges

  7. Diane says:

    #team trinity

  8. The finale was taped, and the winner was determined by a lipsync challenge. Trinity Vs. Pep and Sasha vs. Shea. According to viewers, Sasha and Pep won the lipsyncs, and were the only two crowned.

  9. gary Smith says:

    My Vote is Shea Coule’. Trinity should not be in top 3…..

    • Pedram says:

      You MUST Not KNow Us Southern Queens from BAMA … I bet you a bag of 200 pieces of Swarovski Elements Trinity will Slay KoolAid

  10. gary Smith says:

    Team #Shea

  11. jaz says:


  12. Kitty Thomas says:


  13. Erin says:

    #TeamSasha I guess?

    I have found this season to be soooo boring, aside from Valentina’s surprise exit (although I’ll admit, she had been *too* perfect, and I had a feeling that something bad was going to end up happening).

    I don’t know what it is, but something has felt “off” this season. There aren’t any girls that I LOVE this time around, and no one catty enough to love to hate. This could all be in my head, but I feel like the jump from Logo to VH1 neutered the show a bit — we had a “Big Hair Everywhere” challenge, and not a single one of them wore a d*mned merkin? Are these queens just that boring, or is there someone behind the camera telling them to tone it down?

  14. Pedram says:

    & what ever the other ones name is KoolAid or Something

  15. Mary Thurston says:


  16. RJP says:

    #Team Sasha

  17. David says:

    Fab episode. Good riddance to Alexa Michelle.

  18. David says: