“American,” the 12th episode of season 10 of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” airs June 14 on VH1. For the mini challenge, the remaining four queens must guest star on “What’s the Tee?” podcast with judge Michelle Visage. The maxi challenge requires them to write, record, and perform their own verse to RuPaul Charles‘ hit song “American.” Joining those two on the judges panel are both alternates – Carson Kressley and Ross Mathews — as well as singer Todrick Hall.
Our exclusive Gold Derby predictions are forecasting that Aquaria will win the main challenge. And we expect that this sassy 21-year-old Brooklynite will also go on to take the title at the end of this season of “Drag Race.” Conversely, we are predicting that Kameron Michaels— a 31-year-old who hails from Nashville — will be eliminated at the end of episode 12. Do you agree? Be sure to make your predictions at the bottom of this post.
Kameron barely escaped being bounced at the end of episode 11. She and Miz Cracker had landed in the bottom two based on their combined efforts in the maxi challenge: to present two characters on the runway as representations of their best and worst selves. That meant they had to lip sync to “Nasty Girl” by Vanity 6. Kameron stepped up her game, with her enthusiastic performance. By comparison, Miz Cracker’s rendition of the song seemed stale.
Follow along for our minute-by-minute live recap. Keep refreshing throughout the episode for new updates.
7:55 p.m. – We’ve made it to the final four! If you’ve been tuning in for the last few seasons, including All Stars, then you know what to expect–my personal favorite moment of the season, the top 4 performance. Tonight we’ll see Aquaria, Eureka, Asia O’Hara and Kameron put their own spin on Ru’s song “American.” This challenge will literally make or break each one of them as they look ahead to the crowning of this competitive season’s winner. Whew!
8:01 p.m. – Last week Kameron became the first queen to lip sync three times in a row and not be sent home. The queens have no choice, but to see her as a threat (a “lip sync assassin”) now. Another threat is Eureka, but Asia thinks that of the final four Eureka is the least deserving of making it to the final three.
8:05 p.m. – For tonight’s maxi challenge, Ru asks the foursome to put their political caps on by writing and recording a solo verse to her own song, “American,” meant to help unite the country. They’ll also be working with Todrick on choreography because they’ll be performing their verses together as a supergroup for the judges. In addition they will guest star on the Ru and Michelle podcast “What’s the Tee?” to show off their speaking and interview skills.
8:07 p.m. – While writing their verses, Eureka and Asia both realize that they aren’t trained singers. To make it work, Eureka plans on developing a rap verse for herself while Asia is leaning toward winging it to see what works and what doesn’t. Aquaria and Kameron are much more comfortable, but when Aquaria meets with Todrick to record her verse things don’t go as smoothly as she expected.
8:13 p.m. – Eureka is the first to sit with Michelle and Ru for the podcast. When asked whether she had an advantage because of season 9, but Eureka points out that the injury then shook her nerves and made coming back this season scary for her. She also speaks eloquently about her relationship with her mother and that being on the show is the present she can give back to her for giving her the strength to be who she is.
8:16 p.m. – During her rehearsals, Asia is robotic and struggles catching a rhythm that works for the song. Meanwhile, Aquaria sits down for the podcast and discusses her youth and the inclination he’s always felt to be creative and fashionable. Her confidence continues to be her biggest strength and the passion she has for drag shines through in every conversation she has. Honestly, I think it’s going to be hard for any of the other three to chip away at that deep enough to push Aquaria off the pedestal and steal the crown. Aquaria is the most winningest among them you know!
8:24 p.m. – When Kameron meets with Ru and Michelle they immediately want to talk about her shyness throughout the season. Like last week it becomes a therapy session for Ru to stress to Kameron that opening up about herself is the only way for her audience to fall in love with her. Back on stage, Eureka rehearses her rap with Todrick and all goes well right from the beginning.
8:27 p.m. – On the podcast, Asia talks about overcoming the loss of her parents and how it taught her to depend on herself for all of her needs as well as the necessity of building a new family through her community. Kameron’s recording session is on point when it comes to rhythm and lyrics, but Todrick pushes her to take the vocal to the next challenge because he knows she can do it. It’s a lot of pressure on Kameron who won the last singing challenge of the season and has been on the hot seat for three weeks running.
8:37 p.m. – Next they meet with Todrick again to learn stage choreography. To preface the session, Todrick admits to them that this is the most difficult choreo he’s ever done for the show since the bar has been raised so high. Aquaria is the first to work her moves and she hits each and every mark perfectly, intimidating the other girls to high heavens. Asia, on the other hand, is simply hoping to make a better impression than she did on the Cher Ru-sical challenge earlier in the season. This time her confidence shines through, brightly enough for Kameron to notice and feel slightly intimidated.
8:40 p.m. – Kameron, the lip sync assassin that is typically on point with her own moves on stage, has a lot of work to do to keep up with Todrick’s choreo. Eureka battles her own demons on stage, by far the most uneasy with step by step moves. Todrick reminds Eureka that even if she gets the steps down she has to remember to keep her face right because if she looks scared then none of the steps matters. Determined to not succumb to the pressure, Eureka vows to practice all night in order to get the choreo down.
8:52 p.m. – In the Ru-mix to “American,” Aquaria looks glamorous in red and provides stunning choreo with her clear vocal. Asia is the second to come out and certainly managed to dig deep in the vocal she struggled with, but her choreo isn’t as exciting. Eureka is third-up with surprisingly high energy despite her nerves and Ru laughs throughout her lyrics. Kameron closes it out with what is probably the shortest set and least exciting, but still manages to hit all of her marks.
8:59 p.m. – The queens also hit the runway for “Final Four Eleganza” in their last strut down the catwalk before the finale. Aquaria brought a slim black gown studded with rhinestones, sticking to the old glam look of her performance, Asia wore an Egyptian-inspired baby blue structured gown, Kameron is lavender from head-to-toe and covered in crystals, and Eureka went comedic but also literal by wearing a dress defining the work “eureka.”
9:02 p.m. – During critiques, Aquaria is applauded for her season-long collection of high fashion ensembles for the runway and also for evolving into a mature young queen after a rough start to the season. Todrick and Carson are both in love with Asia’s look as well as the political statement she made in her lyrics. She also gets high marks for surprising comedy turns during some challenges and for always being near the top in each of the weekly critiques. Eureka has impressed the judges with her positive attitude and high energy throughout the competition. Michelle and Ross point out that Eureka managed to cut through the insecurities to become the queen that everyone loves. Todrick tells Kameron that his favorite moment with her was when she realized she had what it takes and Ross got emotional rereading the lyrics to Kameron’s verse. Overall, all four got positive critiques on their journeys this season. Will any of them even be eliminated? I’m starting to question it!
9:09 p.m. – As tradition, Ru asks each of the queens to reflect on who they were as children and speak to their younger selves with the words of wisdom they’ve come to understand. The through line between all of their statements is that even in the darkest times of childhood that light comes through and that with perseverance and hope everything and anything can be achieved.
9:16 p.m. – While the girls untuck backstage, the judges discuss the pros and cons of each of the queens. Ru doubles down on her previous statement that Aquaria is one of the top 5 fashion queens series-wide. They also point out that she’s never been in the bottom all season and won the most challenges. They refer to Asia as a seasoned performer, is likable and takes criticism and improves her drag from it. With Eureka, they’re impressed that she rebounded from the injury and has developed into a confident and high energy queen better than she was before. And Kameron is the unexpected finalist for all of them, but they admire her work ethic and determination to get to where she wants to be by fighting.
9:25 p.m. – In order to make her final decision, Ru asks all four queens to lip sync for the final time to his own song “Call Me Mother.” In Aquaria’s first lip sync of the season, she is ravishing and I don’t want to take my eyes off her, while Kameron slays the lip synchronization again, Eureka serves attitude and comedy and Asia delivers a pretty calm and laid back performance.
9:28 p.m. – Tonight, instead of announcing a winner and a eliminated queen Ru decides to send all four to finals! That means we will probably have another Lip Sync for the Crown tournament at the Grand Finale in two weeks. Next week we’ll be back for the reunion with all the queens from the season.
Here are the answers to Gold Derby’s questions for “RuPaul’s Drag Race” Season 10, Episode 12:
Who will be eliminated? No one
Who will win the mini challenge? No one
Who will win the main challenge? No one
Who will win the lip sync? All of them
Will anybody quit the competition? No
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