Well, it looks like Victoria Scone is in a real jam. Sorry. I’m sorry. I couldn’t help myself. Yes, poor Victoria is sent home because of the injuries she sustained in the premiere when she was lip-syncing for the win and losing to Krystal Versace, who would be a whole lot better if she pronounced her last name Ver-sayce like Nomi Malone in Showgirls. Ru announces her dismissal to all the girls in the workroom, and you can hear all the gears turning under their wig caps, thinking, Hmm. Guess this means there will be a double save one week. Ru does say, “I have a sense we haven’t seen the last of her,” but it isn’t his standard invitation for an injured queen to come back next year. What? Is she just going to be promoted to All-Stars immediately? Are they worried she’s going to sue and might not have her back? Did they take her out behind the Royal Vauxhall Tavern and put her down like an injured racehorse? What?
With all the girls assembled, Ru has them do the mini-challenge where they dress up in boy drag, which I always find a bit amusing but ultimately pointless. The one revealing thing is that Veronica Green gets into her harness. I have a feeling she is one of those gays who are looking for any opportunity to put on their harness: dance parties, Pride events, their niece’s christening. You know, completely versatile. I did get a kick out of Kitty being all like “Lads, lads, lads” and whooping it up with the boys and then introducing her character, who doesn’t just have a purse fall out of her mouth but an entire Hermès boutique. Scarlett wins with her East London working-class realness, so she is basically herself in a mustache saying she wants to eat her dinner off some girl’s tits.
Her prize is that she gets 15 more seconds to hunt for random crap in the annual challenge that I like to call the “Who Is Stupid Enough to Go on Drag Race Without Having Taken a Sewing Class?” challenge. The answer is that most of them have wised up and at least gotten their “nan” to give them a rundown of how to construct a garment before getting on the coach to go film the show. (A coach is not the bag that fell out of Kitty’s mouth; it is what the English call a bus.) This time, they have to make a camping-inspired dress from a bunch of camping equipment and walk the runway in a wilderness-inspired dress they brought from home. Camp on camp on camp. It’s like watching Ross Mathews do a Liberace impersonation in a remake of Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
Everyone scrambles for tents and hibachis and bear spray and whatever else fucking shit you find for camping. I have no clue. For me, camping is eating lunch on the bench in front of a Pret a Manger. We quickly learn that Ella can’t sew, Kitty can’t sew, Vanity can’t sew, and Krystal can’t sew. We also learn that Veronica and River are master seamstresses, but River is like, “Girl, I keep being in the bottom. I got enough to worry about. Go make your own damn dress. Also, why didn’t you take a sewing class before you got here?” Veronica, on the other hand, is helping everyone. Ooooh, Molly, you in danger, girl. Also, it seems like one of these girls who can’t sew is being set up as a dark horse to win the whole thing.
Kitty and Charity have a great chat, and Charity talks about contracting HIV when she was 18 and had no idea what the virus was or how to protect herself. What are they teaching these kids in English schools? I remember in fifth grade learning all about HIV and AIDS and how you catch it from gay sex. I’m so glad they had an in-depth discussion right here on Drag Race. If they’re not going to learn it in class, they may as well learn it on BBC III/WOW Presents Plus, which apparently is doing a much better job.
Before we get to the runway, we have to give a special shout-out to Nicola Coughlan of Bridgerton and Derry Girls. Sometimes I feel like the producers write some puns for the guests but not Nicola. She came with jokes. When Scarlett shoots an arrow at the judges, she immediately screams, “Oh, my eye.” You can see her almost shouting over the other judges. Give this lady a permanent slot on the panel already, or at least let her and Graham Norton share the same seat like a hilarious Irish conjoined twin.
The tops for the week are once again Krystal, for a super-polished Girl Scout look (note to Ru: They don’t have Girl Scout cookies in England, which is why your joke bombed) and a spiky plaid corset that looks like she stole it out of Aquaria’s closet. They also loved Scarlett, whose first look was the aforementioned “Katniss Everdeen at a sex party” drag and her totally polished, absolutely divine plaid gown made of blankets. Ella, the once and forever hottie, scored with her Victorian beekeeper and a little plaid dress covered by a fluorescent-yellow jacket with shoulders so big a whole orphanage of children could have sat on one another’s shoulders to pretend to be a grown man so they could buy cigarettes at a convenience store.
I need to give a special shout-out to Charity, whose demonic bunny with abs made me hide under the bed and get an erection at the same time. I may need to Google some goth furry porn in a minute.
I didn’t quite understand Choriza May being at the bottom. Yes, her first look is some weird blue bird-inspired thing that makes her look like she’s dressed as the Twitter logo, but I think her From Russia With Love supervillain couture is one of the best. Thank God for her wacky story about being blinded by jizz saving her from the lip sync. The bottom two are Vanity, who just pasted a bunch of ropes onto a corset, and Veronica, who took every scrap of fabric she could find and crafted it into some sort of Chernobyl butterfly. I don’t know. She looks like Fifth Avenue an hour after the Pride Parade has finished. Also, half of her face is painted black in an attempt to be edgy. She says it’s supposed to symbolize coming out of a depression to be reborn. Yeah, that’s great and all, but your inspirational story won’t save a horrible look. Okay, well, maybe if you’re Choriza, but otherwise, no.
In the end, Scarlett is the first non-Krystal win of the season and deservedly so. I hope this convinces her to give us a little bit more on the runway. I love Scarlett way more in her confessionals than I do for any of her outfits or performances. Maybe it’s just because I want to dress her up as a demonic bunny and shag the hell out of her. After a lackluster lip sync, Veronica Green is sent home, which just shows you the dangers of coming back for a second season. She did much better the previous season before being sent home with COVID. Maybe that’s why Victoria may not be back; she doesn’t want to do worse the second time around.