For the debut season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race UK vs. The World,” RuPaul Charles brought together nine all-stars from the series’ many franchises to compete against each other in the ultimate contest to find the “queen of the mother-tucking world.” Hosted in the United Kingdom, the new series set three queens from the UK franchise as hosts to six other competitors. The final four queens that competed in the “Grand Finale” were Jujubee and Mo Heart from the US and Blu Hydrangea and Baga Chipz from the UK.
In episode 1 and episode 2, Canada’s Lemon and UK’s Cheryl Hole became the first international all stars to “sashay away,” while Jimbo plummeted from two top placements to the bottom as the third queen eliminated. After sending Jimbo home in a shocking decision, Pangina Heals was sent home fourth by another queen despite being a frontrunner in challenge wins. Another previous challenge winner went home in episode 5 when Juju sent Janey Jacké packing.
Below check out our recap of episode 6 to see who takes home the crown in the “Grand Finale”:
Janey’s elimination paved the way for Juju to wipe the lipstick from the mirror for the first time in her long career on the show. She was proud of her decision, feeling like Blu and Baga still had a fire to remain in the competition that Janey seemed to have lost. Mo revealed that had she defeated Juju in the lipstick then she, too, would have sent Janey home, showing solidarity to the people that saved her in the competition and admitting to her alliance with Blu.
The next morning, the final four discussed the importance of the RuPeter badges — Juju and Blu both had one, but Baga and Mo hadn’t earned one of their own. Baga suggested that they don’t matter in determining a winner and that was more or less confirmed for them when Ru presented their final challenge: a lipsync smack down for the crown. But first, they’d walk the runway and then would be “probed” by the judges and the eliminated queens.
After a short reflection on their journey this season, the queens walked the runway for the final time in front of Ru, Michelle Visage and Graham Norton. The “Grand Finale Eleganza Extravaganza” category opened with the parade of eliminated queens: Lemon wore a red and white catsuit with a huge red maple leaf that folded up from the train of her garment, Cheryl wore a red gown with English flowers adorning it, Jimbo had on an iridescent gown with a moose-inspired helm, Pangina went Elizabethan vs. Thai in a golden look, and Janey had a sky blue gown with tulips on it. The finalists followed: Baga wore a simple gown inspired by Elizabeth Taylor with a headpiece, Blu wore a big-skirted blue dress with a dove on the bodice, Juju walked in a double peplum red gown, and Mo closed in a structured bodice with a long orange train flowing from her hips.
In their critiques, the judges complimented Baga for remaining true to herself even with the comedic elements of all her presentations. Graham thought that it took “Snatch Game” for her to come out of her shell and show her strengths. Michelle appreciated that for the finale Baga chose to be simply beautiful without the laughs. When it came to Blu, Michelle said that she’s the one that had the most to prove and that she came out hard-hitting from the beginning. Ru said that it was amazing watching Blu grow up in this second opportunity. Graham said that when Juju “defrosted” from the beginning of the competition, she came out swinging and came to the finale “on fire.” Ru was proud of Juju for making it to the final four once again and then gave her the opportunity to say that the world needs drag because drag “is love.” The judges enjoyed Mo’s stage presence all season and Michelle said she brought “epic” looks to the runway. Graham called Mo a brilliant competitor and Ru said that she looks gorgeous on the runway.
Alan Carr, Billy Porter, and Naomi Campbell all sent messages of support to the finalists, after which the finalists returned to the Werk Room to be joined by the eliminated queens for another grilling. Awkward entered the space when Lemon asked what the biggest gag of the season was and Janey said when Blu sent home the biggest threat in the competition. Pangina explained that she wasn’t prepared to go home that week because Blu had assured her she wouldn’t send her home. Blu denied ever giving her that assurance and said that she did exactly what Pangina did to Jimbo. Pangina said she didn’t send Jimbo home as a threat, but instead because she was the worst in the challenge that week. Jimbo told Pangina that the worst part of her elimination is how Pangina “didn’t listen” to anything she had to say prior to the elimination, but of course Pangina denied that. Before they wrapped up their session, Jimbo took a few deep digs at Pangina and Lemon admitted that she didn’t learn anything through her short-lived stint of a season.
Once back on the stage, the finalists heard how the smack down would play out from none other than Elton John. He introduced that a spin of the wheel will determine which two queens face off in the first lipsync and which would battle in the second. Then the two winners of those would compete for the crown. Lemon had the honor of spinning the wheel, landing on Mo who got to choose her own opponent for the first lipsync. “Wisely, strategically” Mo chose to go against Baga, meaning that the second lipsync would be between Blu and Juju.
As the chosen queen, Baga got to select between two boxes to determine which song they’d perform to. In her chosen box held by Graham was the song “Domino” by Jessie J. Like the song, their performance was mid-tempo with both queens staying relatively stagnant on their side of the stage, free of any physical tricks, wig reveals or gags and props. Mo went for a traditional interpretation of the song, relying on beauty and soft movement, while Baga delivered an expected comedic take on the lyrics, falling to the ground like dominoes. Ultimately, Ru went with Mo on this one, sending her to the next round and putting Baga on the bottom end as a runner-up.
The song left for Juju and Blu to perform to was “The Reflex” by Duran Duran, held in Michelle’s box. This head to head was much more lively, especially from Blu who bounced around from one side of the stage to the other, fully embodying the 80s vibe. Juju on the other hand was serving face, but really looked like she was performing a ballad rather than something upbeat. In this round, Ru gave the edge to Blu, leaving Juju as a running-up finalist for her fourth time.
When Mo and Blu returned to the stage for the final round lipsync, they were in their third looks of the evening. Mo was in a neon chaps look and Blu was in an iridescent mini dress with structured bodice. For their battle and the opportunity to prove that they are the “Queen of the Mother-Tucking World,” Ru chose the song “Supernova” by Kylie Minogue. In the duel, both queens used the same strategy that they did in their first battle. Mo served face and elegance in her slower movement while Blu covered the stage with various dance moves, including a death drop. Each of the girls gave it their all, but in the end there could be only one winner. Ru gave the first-ever crown in international competition to Blu!
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