Last week on “RuPaul’s Drag Race” season 13, tensions between rivals Kandy Muse and Tamisha Iman hit a feverish pitch after the queens both fell into the bottom two after a disco-themed dancing challenge. While Tamisha may have won over the hearts of audiences this season, Kandy defeated her in the LSYFL and remained in the competition. On the other side of the competition, Olivia Lux finally inched her way to the top of the leaderboard with her first maxi challenge win.
This week, the competition continued with the girls testing their improv skills on the set of the new Ross Mathews venture, “Bossy Rossy After Dark.” Which queens were able to think on their feet and which ones cowered to the larger-than-life energy of their scene partners?
Below, check out our minute-by-minute “RuPaul’s Drag Race” recap of Season 13, Episode 7 to find out what happened on February 12, beginning at 8/7c. After following along with our live updating blog, be sure to sound off in the comments section about your favorite queens on VH1’s reality TV show, who annoys you the most, and who you think will ultimately join the “RuPaul’s Drag Race” winners list.
8:01 p.m. – After eliminating Tamisha, Kandy expected she’d feel a sense of joy and redemption, but instead she was actually sad to see another sister in the competition go. What’s always true on “Drag Race” is that for all the drama, the girls truly are sisters and respect each other’s art. That being said, Elliott with 2 Ts was feeling left out of the sisterhood that was developing among the cast and wondered if the only path forward for her was to work through the competition on her own.
8:03 p.m. – The next morning, RuPaul Charles arrived to unlock the library, officially, for the first time this season in the annual “Reading Is Fundamental” mini challenge. In the challenge, each of the queens took turns aiming their sharp tongue at one another by throwing shade at their looks and personalities. Rosé came for LaLa Ri‘s fashion sense, Denali came for Gottmik‘s vocal fry, and Gottmik didn’t shy away from throwing her best friends (Kandy and Tina Burner) under the bus by coming for their body types. When all the books were read and slammed shut, Gottmik was declared the winner.
8:08 p.m. – In the same way that reading requires thinking on your feet, Ru announced that this week’s maxi challenge would also test that skill. In small groups they’d be scene partners on the set of a trashy late night talk show. In the scenes, like becoming pregnant by an invisible boyfriend or having a 600-pound ass, they’d have a general outline of the story, but no actual script to work from. Ross would be the host on set to throw curveballs at them and see how well they can improvise with him and each other. Ru picked the groups this time: Rosé, LaLa and Denali would perform the invisible boyfriend skit, Gottmik, Utica Queen and Olivia would appear as mimes, Symone and Kandy would be former teen queens, and Tina and Elliott would close out as friends who fell out over one of their 600-pound ass.
8:16 p.m. – As the girls set the plans for their scenes, Kandy was really concerned about not falling back on the loud, obnoxious character that the judges critiqued her for always relying on so she chose to take a more reserved approach to her character. LaLa and Denali knew that this was their chance to earn redemption from the last acting challenge where they both flopped. Utica and Olivia hit a wall with each other because they both wanted to play the same character, one with mostly no lines that would require a ton of physical comedy in order to pull it off. As a queen with a ton of improv skills, Utica felt she was best positioned to take that on, but Olivia wanted to take the risk. Eventually Utica cowered and gave the role to Olivia, leaving herself the short end of the stick in the role of her mother.
8:25 p.m. – In the first scene to film with Ross, Denali and Rosé each erupted on to the set with fully imagined characters inspired by the stereotypical women known for appearing on trashy talk shows. The gag of them having to interact with an imaginary character between them provided them both room to be both creative and physical in their comedy. The two played off one another really well, but that didn’t leave any room for LaLa once she arrived as a doctor with a reserved personality. Most of LaLa’s attempts at cracking a joke fell flat because she wasn’t reaching the level of stupidity that the other two were.
8:30 p.m. – The characters in the mimeology scene couldn’t have been more different from one another, but Gottmik and Olivia both managed to make that work. Gottmik was an intellectual psychologist interested in promoting her new book about the cult of mimes and Olivia as the 20 years silent mime balanced that chatty energy with her mute character that could only explain her story through pantomiming. Utica arrived later as Olivia’s mother, but dressed very young and slutty which made little sense with the storyline. Utica’s character choices and physicality didn’t fit the bill and so made the scene more confusing than funny.
8:40 p.m. – As planned, Kandy took a more reserved approach to her character which wasn’t playing loud enough for the screen despite her being able to have a decent back and forth with Ross. It was a fairly dead scene until Symone arrived as her ex-best friend with a louder personality that filled the space. Once again, Symone created her own way of saying a common phrase (her name De-bore-uh, not Deborah) that proved her knack for comedic creativity. It’s so impressive how she can twist concepts into something new just by changing the way you say them. Symone’s presence definitely saved the scene from remaining at the low register Kandy began it at.
8:45 p.m. – In the last scene, Tina came on to the set loudly and focusing on very physical comedy, falling over chairs and bouncing around the stage with her big booty. Her energy was at such a high level that once Elliott arrived it was almost impossible to match. While parts of Elliott’s character required her to stay a bit low key, when she finally switched to show her own big breasts she still didn’t explode to the level that Tina had already set the tone for.
8:52 p.m. – While getting ready for the runway the next day, Symone was still second guessing her performance and questioning whether or not her and Kandy did enough in the challenge. She opened up to LaLa about how growing up her mother was destroyed by her older brother going to jail which made Symone feel like she could never show vulnerability or failure. Those feelings remain for Symone to this day because her drag allows her to be the vulnerable person she never allowed herself to be. Elliott also opened up about how she holds herself back in the competition. She explained to Tina that her clinical depression has always had a debilitating factor for her because it’s an aspect about her life that other people never understand, requiring her to pay so much attention to her moods that she can’t relate to or be vulnerable with other people. Tina was glad that Elliott opened up finally and the two bonded over their shared experiences with depression.
9:02 p.m. – On the main stage, Ru was joined by Ross, Michelle Visage and guest judge Ts Madison for a “Bead It” themed runway. Denali started the show in an elaborate chandelier look that she said she’s always dreamed of presenting on the show. Rosé came next in a brightly colored fairy look with her usual bouncy walk, LaLa went for something sexy using Mardi Gras beads, and Gottmik veered left in a red latex look that was mod-inspired but also very clearly about anal beads. Olivia showed her take on beaded hair as a cute little girl with a jump rope, Utica arrived as a bloody bride in a white beaded dress covered din blood, and Kandy went for rich and elegant in a sexy diamond bead lingerie, oversized hat and fur. Symone had a beaded two-piece inspired by voodoo and African warrior with a beaded hairpiece that spelled her name, Tina went for a Mardi Gras clown with a beaded bra, and Elliott closed the show as a 1920s flapper using Mardi Gras beads as well.
9:12 p.m. – After some consideration, Ru announced that Rosé, Denali, Tina and Gottmik were all safe. LaLa was the first to receive a critique as one of the bottom three. The judges told her that her look on the runway wasn’t polished enough and in the challenge she failed to match the loud energy of her scene partners, making her own performance forgettable. Olivia was one of the judges’ favorites with her ridiculous mime and Ts was in love with her old school runway look. Ross really liked Utica’s runway look, but the judges all took issue with the character she developed for the challenge because it was hard to follow. Michelle was especially taken with Kandy because she managed to play the character quietly but with confidence and Ross thought she looked beautiful on the runway. Ru was amazed by the “stunning” look Symone wore for the runway and Ross was impressed that she didn’t bulldoze Kandy in the scene, which is a tough skill in improv. Michelle thought Elliott looked beautiful on the runway, but the judges were unclear what direction she had meant to take her character in the scene and felt she was lost under Tina’s over the top performance.
9:23 p.m. – Ultimately, Ru decided that for the second time in a row Olivia was the challenge winner, leaving Kandy and Symone safe as the other members of the top three. Among the bottom queens, Utica was the one declared safe. LaLa and Elliott, as the bottom two, had to go against one another in the lip sync to Kelly Clarkson‘s “Whole Lotta Woman.” The big, sensual song was a good one for both of the queens and they each approached it with similar passionate energy. In one particularly great moment they both rolled down their hips at the same time, but after that Elliott really exploded with multiple splits tricks and by taking up more space on the stage than LaLa. Thought it was surely a close call, Ru gave the “shantay” to Elliott and the “sashay away” to LaLa. As she exited backstage, LaLa said she was unsure what the judges had wanted from her, but that she was still proud of how she presented herself in the competition.
NEXT WEEK: It’s time for the queens to show they’re a triple threat in the annual Rusical singing and dancing challenge. Could that be why Oscar winner Anne Hathaway makes a surprise appearance?!