'RuPaul's Drag Race' Recap: Episode Nine, 'LADP!'

Brittany Moseley,Erica Thompson
The guest judges for episode nine of 'Ru Paul's Drag Race' were Natasha Lyonne (far left) and Cheyenne Jackson and Fortune Feimster (far right).

Erica: Surprisingly, there wasn’t much drama following the battle between lip sync assassins, Brooke Lynn Hytes and Yvie Oddly. Well, except for Silky quoting unintelligible scripture and claiming she needed no improvement. A few queens agreed that it’s anyone’s game, but I disagree. I don’t think Silky will be in the top four. 

Brittany: I have to disagree. Although Silky isn’t a favorite of mine, I do like some of what she’s done, and she’s consistently impressed the judges. Regardless of how you feel about her, she’s always entertaining. But claiming she needs no improvement is a misstep. Personality will only get you so far Dr. Ganache.

Erica: Well, let’s take this week’s classic reading mini-challenge as an example. Silky should’ve crushed this one, but all she brought was an exaggerated voice and volume. Her jokes fell flat. Honestly, I was disappointed by most of the ladies’ performances. Given how much reading they’ve done untucking backstage throughout the season, it was baffling that they couldn’t bring it in front of Ru. 

Brittany: Not to turn this into a Silky recap, but I think her biggest flaw is her own confidence. She often assume she’s the best and uses it as an excuse to cop out. (We’ll see more of that later.) But I agree, the reading was a bit of a wash on all counts. I had that feeling where I’m embarrassed for people on TV, and yet I can’t look away. Brooke Lynn did good, surprisingly, as did A’Keria, who is coming out of her shell.

Erica: Right, who would’ve expected Brooke Lynn to win this one! It was a total redemption from last week’s Snatch Game. And Vanjie seems to be losing more and more of that magic we saw during the Britney Spears televangelist talk show earlier this season. She’s naturally funny, but she can’t seem to deliver when the challenge starts. Unfortunately, she would have the same problem during this episode’s maxi challenge: a LADP (Los Angeles Drag Patrol) skit, which required the queens to commit criminal activities and engage with cops. I thought Brooke Lynn was very gracious assigning teams. And she picked Nina, whom we all know is an improv beast. 

Brittany: Erica, you’re too nice. I’m with Yvie: Brooke Lynn was trying to split up the stronger personalities. Can’t say I blame her. At this point, it’s every queen for herself. Although I do think Vanjie was a bit miffed when Brooke Lynn didn’t choose her as her partner. Brooke Lynn paired up Vanjie and Plastique, A’Keria and Yvie, and Shuga and Silky. When Ru checked in with each pair, it was clear some of the non-acting queens were feeling nervous about the challenge, especially Brooke Lynn. In fact, her nerves seemed to affect her partner, comedy queen Nina. Luckily, Mama Ru was there to lighten the mood with a light-hearted dig at Nina’s many years doing drag: “And you, bitch, you been at this since after the Civil War.”

Erica: Oh, Ru. Nina was awesome in her trailer park skit with Brooke Lynn, but she ended up playing second fiddle. Brooke Lynn surprised again by hitting it out of the park as a naked (nekkid?), free-spirited yoga instructor. And Shuga ended up playing second fiddle to Silky in their skit at an illegal butt-pad operation. A’Keria shinedl as a veteran street-twerker who reunited with her long-lost twerking daughter, Yvie Oddly. The only performance that was an absolute disaster belonged to Vanjie and Plastique. Playing two cats in a literal fight, all I could make out was screaming about stolen men and milk. I was hoping they’d wind up in the bottom tonight.

Brittany: Brooke Lynn’s level-four vegan and A’Keria’s #neverstoptwerking character stole the show. Back in the workroom the runway challenge was Facekini. The queens had to cover the majority of their faces (except eyes and lips) but still serve a fierce lewk. With the details tonight’s runway would require, everyone quickly got to work. Except Silky...

Erica: Ugh, I’m so over it. She decided the best use of her time was dancing around the workroom while everyone painted. And sure enough, when she got on stage in her fly (no, not cute, like a literal bug) costume, she was read for not having enough makeup on. The judges were extra shady by calling her a roach. Even I thought that was too far. While Vanjie did not wear a leotard (thank goodness), she was critiqued for her ill-fitting pants, but her long braid was fierce. On the other hand, Plastique wore another leotard, but the top portion of her look did not impress; she barely covered her face. 

Brittany: I’m with Michelle: Don’t call yourself a fly if you don’t have wings. I loved Nina’s look. It was playful but also fashionable. Brooke Lynn’s was well made, but I didn’t realize she was supposed to be a horse until one of the judges pointed it out. Plus, I feel like she uses that color scheme a lot. (Maybe I’m just getting extra shady as the season goes on.) And we have to talk about Shuga’s look. She served us floral, Victorian,Eliza Doolittle realness. She’s been killing it recently with her runway. Which is good because the judges weren’t wowed by her performance in the skit. 

Erica: Yes, I think you need to check your shade(s) at the door. Brooke Lynn was absolutely breathtaking! I just don’t know how anyone can top her on the runway. A’Keria went out-of-the-box with a plastic surgery getup (without forsaking some of her classic jewels) and Y’vie went creative as a “sexy Black Lagoon” with, um, sex toy lips. A’Keria was crowned the winner for the night, and Vanjie and Plastique had to lip sync for their lives. 

Brittany: By the time we got to the lip sync, I was ready for the episode to wrap up. It seemed like it was lacking something the entire time. The lip syncs were fine, but after last week’s infamous battle, it’s difficult to compare. Vanjie and her leather braid eked out a win and Plastique was sent packing. 

Erica: You’re on thin ice, Miss Vanjie. And Nina, as one bar patron mentioned tonight, we don’t want a simple “safe” next week. We’re ready for another win!