Octopussy: Season 8 of RuPaul’s Drag Race

After a somewhat rocky seventh season, RuPaul’s Drag Race has returned to its former stellar form.  What can account for this change?  Ultimately I feel that this season saw a return to the classic tropes of drag.  After much deliberation I have determined the four main ways that RuPaul got back to her roots in season 8:

1. Bad Teeth

There is perhaps no greater indicator of potential drag greatness than a busted set of chompers.  I’ve found that pretty teeth make for pretty boring drag.  I want some funk in my drag queens, perhaps even a bit of stank, and there is no better representation of this than an overgrowth of plaque.  This season didn’t settle for just a Jiggly Caliente or a Trinity Bonet.  From Bob to Kim Chi to Chi Chi to Robbie and various shades of yellow in between, this season was a nonstop dental train wreck and, not coincidentally, an unmitigated success.  At this point I have to assume that having stage 1 of gingivitis at minimum is a requirement for any future drag racers.

2. Bottoms By The Barrelful

Seriously, what the fuck is the point of an all bottom Pit Crew?

3. Bitchery

Perhaps the biggest disappointment of season 7 was the lack of a clear villain.  Sure, Violet and Ginger were kind of cunts, but there wasn’t a readily identifiable villain to move the narrative forward.  Enter Derrick Barry.  Granted, she was clueless, often basic, severely limited and sometimes utterly aggravating, but she fulfilled the villain role splendidly.  Whiny, entitled, and stuffed precariously full of shit, it was impossible not to hate her.  Being a basic white bitch will henceforth be known as Popping a Barry.

4. A Satisfying Narrative

Bob’s win brought the season full circle.  She had entered strong, clashed with Derrick, vanquished Derrick, stumbled briefly and then regained form to end up on top.  With her win, Bob’s story came to a neatly polished arc, thus providing the complete, satisfying narrative that was missing from season 7.  As I said before with Bianca, Bob didn’t win just by being the most talented, she won by being the smartest.  She knew this gig inside out and with every wisecrack, every side eye and every perfectly executed gesture (exclamations of “Purse first!” will echo on in gay bars for years to come) Bob cemented her victory with each passing week.  What’s more, unlike her predecessor, Bob’s victory felt like it really meant something.  I so rarely say this about a fellow transvestite, but that bitch has a hell of a lot of integrity.

Thanks for the memories, ladies.  Before I go, let’s open the library one more time…

Laila McQueen: Sorry, but anyone who bases her makeup on Marlon Wayans in White Chicks deserves to be in the bottom.

Dax ExclamationPoint: Live long and prosper, busted one.

Cynthia Lee Fontaine: Why the hell do bottoms get silicone ass implants?  That’s just an ER trip waiting to happen.

Naysha Lopez: Serving banality.

Acid Betty: That lip ring is taking me on a journey to the darker side of 2003.  That’s a flashback I could do without.

Robbie Turner: Can we start a Kickstarter for her braces?

Thorgy Thor: Poor Thorgy tried too damn hard.  She didn’t have to waste all that effort playing Michael Jackson on Snatch Game.  With that hair she could have just gone as Rachel Dolezal.

Derrick Barry: She’s awfully uptight for someone who spends so much time taking two dicks up her ass.

Chi Chi DeVayne: Anyone who eats possum is good people.  Know this.

Naomi Smalls: I’m not buying the Naomi Campbell illusion until she starts beating people with her phone.  She can start with Derrick.

Kim Chi: That runway walk is every bit as sweet and charming as the acrid, pickled vegetable that bears her name.

Bob: Congratulations on your victory, Bob.  Here’s a beauty blender.  USE IT.

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The Fakeness

A red carpet gala, properly executed, is a high drama sweepstakes of art and fashion.  Sadly, ever since the late, great Joan Rivers departed this world, red carpet events have returned to their former grim tedium.  If you are anything like me, you yearn for those four magical words, “Who are you wearing?” to be rasped at a terrified dilettante in borrowed Galliano.  Fat chance.  You can’t even say that half the time for fear of offending the fair maidens attending these dreary premiers.  What a world.

For a brief glamorous moment, the queens at the season 8 finale of Rupaul’s Drag Race resuscitated this dying art through the glorious bitchcraft of drag.  In honor of Joan River’s sterling example, I will call these looks in my typical cruel manner, all while grading them on a ten point scale.  Enjoy.

Kennedy Davenport

We’ve all tried to salvage a Dollar Beauty mishap, but such a monstrosity has no place on the red carpet.  The abdominal cut away strains good taste and basic decency all while giving new meaning to the term “raggedy.”  I appreciate the vintage Divine hairline but the gesture’s wasted on a mangled glitter tracksuit.  2/10

Honey Mahogany

A Dorothy Zbornak inspired mastodon motif shows both ambition and taste, but the execution fails dismally.  The hair recalls a failed perm while the seemingly endless layers are just mystifying.  What was she trying to hide?  Unless a hobbit comes out of that robe, I’m calling this a fail. 3/10

Madame LaQueer

What’s the point of wearing soggy selections from Hot Topic at an event attended by Laila McQueen?  That’s just redundant.  3/10

Laila McQueen

Dear God, those shoes.  Will someone please get her a Payless gift card? 4/10

Detox Icunt

I’m getting 90′s TV starlet channeling 50′s movie star.  It’s all a bit too 90210 for me.  Pass. 5/10

Stacey Layne Matthews

How do you salvage a failed dress?  Slap a couple of swollen nuts on the shoulder.  Typical brilliance from the true winner of Season 3.  7/10

Tatianna

Mob wife realness!  I will gladly swim with her fishes. 8/10

Alaska Thunderfuck

The delicate, fawn-like beauty of this ensemble is particularly impressive given that its model consistently looks like a horse.  The exquisite cinching channels shades of Twiggy while the hanky (code) motif recalls all those blissful nights of years gone by. 9/10

Derrick Barry

Redemption at last!  The high arched brows take this look past a mere Britney illusion into a far more glamorous porn-star-parody Britney illusion.  A square jaw set against arched brows is the surest path to glamour. 9/10

India Ferrah

This is what Jocelyn Wildenstein will be buried in. 9/10

Dax ExclamationPoint

In a spectacular act of contrition, this heavenly look atones for the lip sync disaster that banished her to drag hell.  Astonishing.  9.9/10

Katya Zamolodchikova

What do you get when you cross cocaine-era Stevie Nicks with Ghost-era Whoopi Goldberg?  Sheer perfection.  Brava, well done! 10/10