RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 12 Episode 12 Recap: Viva Drag Vegas
Another rusical has the queens competing for a place in the finale…
Here we are guys, the final episode before the reunion, and our now virtual finale, thanks to the current global pandemic. On the bright side, there won’t be three possible endings recorded so we will get to see some genuine reactions of whomever the winner is this season. Last week we of course said a tearful goodbye to Heidi, who was without a doubt the heart and soul of this season, so it won’t surprise me if she ends up taking the Miss Congeniality title in the finale. But the clock is ticking on season 12, and we need to find out who is going to the final, so let’s get into this week’s episode!
We meet up with the queens in the werk room following Heidi’s departure. Jaida is feeling bittersweet. On one hand she’s sent her sister home, but on the other hand, she’s one step closer to getting to the finale. As Jaida is reminiscing on her time with Heidi, the power in the werk room goes down, and the queens retreat to the untucked room to finish their memories of Heidi. Jackie is feeling the pressure from being the only one left who has not won a main challenge. Last week Ru did say that this was one of the strongest top six groups that the show has ever seen, so this week it will be getting harder to pick who the best of the best is. It’s going to come down to fine details, and the queens know it.
The following day in the werk room the power is back on, and Gigi is feeling like her power has also been restored. After she got lost in herself during her one woman show last week, she’s choosing to move past her feelings of self-doubt, and into a new direction of confidence which should carry her right through to the final lip sync. Ru’s video message interrupts right at a pivotal moment of self-discovery and it looks like it’s time for another mini challenge. The clues are all about Vegas baby, and I’m not surprised that this whole episode will inevitably be a long advertisement for RuPaul’s Las Vegas show featuring some of our favourite queens. The queens get into quick drag and give us their best showgirl lewks. After a sequin, and feather filled runway, Ru declares that Gigi is the winner of the mini challenge, which includes a trip to Las Vegas, and of course tickets to RuPaul’s Drag Race Live! This season’s final maxi challenge will see the queens performing (singing and dancing) numbers from the Vegas show, and writing their own raps to be included in a grand musical number.
In the werk room the queens get down to writing their lyrics. Jaida is having trouble right out of the gates. Jackie is feeling optimistic that she might be able to win this last challenge, and Crystal is unsure with her lyrics. Out on the main stage the queens get to record their individual raps. Gigi is up first, and her lyrics are there, but her energy needs some punch. Jackie’s lyrics are also great, but her vocals need some more personality. Crystal is on the right track, but her confidence is what’s holding her back. Jaida’s turn at the microphone is the first major hiccup of the challenge. She’s really struggling, I just hope she can redeem herself, and gain some confidence during the dance rehearsal. Speaking of dancing, it’s finally time to work on the choreography for the show with Jamal Sims. Jamal worked with the queens back on the Madonna rusical, so the queens are in for a lot of work. The queens are struggling at first, but they eventually get their steps down. Thank goodness, Jaida pulls it out during her rehearsal. Jamal is impressed, and so am I.
After a quick break it’s the last day in the werk room. As the queens prepare to perform on the main stage one last time, they share a drink, and a toast to the season. Over at the makeup tables the queens are reminiscing over their personal journeys while getting ready for their last challenge. They all share their first impressions of each other and share words of encouragement with each other. Jackie is feeling like she’ll be in trouble if it comes down to the judges looking at report cards, but at this point in the season, and the episode it is still very much anybody’s game.
The rusical’s opening number includes the queens recreating their werk room entrance looks, and it’s already off to a strong start. All five of these queens are incredibly talented and it will be hard to choose who makes it to the top from this challenge alone. This musical is strong. I don’t think any final five cast could have done that as cohesively, and as strong as we have seen this season. While I’m feeling thankful that we got two of the best rusicals in the show’s history in one season, the queens are getting ready to hit their last runway of the season. The category is Eleganza Extravaganza. There were some interesting choices made, but it is the perfect representation of the array of queens we got to watch this season.
Crystal is first to receive the judge’s critiques. The judges loved her in the musical except for Michelle’s opinion on her orange fringe. But they all agree that her final runway look is totally Crystal, and that she brings something unique and fun to the competition. Unsurprisingly, the judges adore Gigi. They praise her flawless performance in the musical, and love that she was able to be both fashion-forward, and goofy on the runway with her headgear. It’s an edge Gigi has been riding all season, and she’s not stopping now. Jackie’s last runway look is stunning, and so different than what we’ve been seeing from her lately. The judges commend her on her fearless performance in the musical. The judges love Jaida’s final runway look, and tell her she had an amazing performance in the musical. I hope we’ll be seeing her in the final. The judges tell Sherry they appreciate her attention to detail, and tell her that her performance was fun, although they weren’t loving her bell-sleeved bodysuit in the final number, and I have to agree.
After the judge’s deliberations Ru announces that Gigi has won the final challenge of the season, and the first moving onto the finale. Also going to the finale, is Jaida, and Sherry. This means both Jackie and Crystal are lip syncing for a place in the grand finale. The queens battle to Jennifer Lopez’s On the Floor. Both queens want this so bad, and it’s going to be hard to say goodbye to either of them, but there can only be a final four. Ru decides that Crystal and her El DeBarge mullet will be moving onto the final. Unfortunately, we have to say goodbye to Jackie Cox. She had an incredible journey and shared so much of herself with us. She will remain a season 12 fan favourite, and she will live in our hearts forever.
Quote of the week: “COSTUME?? This is a lewk” – Gigi on her pirate entrance lewk.
What we’ll see next week: A digital reunion. Because nothing is more enjoyable than watching 14 queens argue in the same room, than all talking over each other in a zoom conference.
Missed a week?: Read our RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 12 recaps right here!