The 36 most unforgettable RuPaul’s Drag Race moments of all time ever
This show has given us so much
As season 12 of RuPaul’s Drag Race comes to an end this Saturday, it feels only right to look back at the greatest moments this show has blessed us with through its 11 years of pure, solid gold enterTAINTment.
Not many shows have offered us so many crazy arguments, beautiful heart-to-hearts, incredible looks and occasional romances (*cough* Jinx and Ivy *cough*). And yet, RuPaul’s Drag Race just keeps on giving. It turns out, if you put a bunch of grown men who are passionate about drag and bitchy af into a highly competitive, demanding and exhausting drag competition, you get the best TV anyone could ever ask for. So, it’s about time we put together the best of the best.
This is not just a measly guide of a few of the moments that made us giggle, no sir, this is a fully comprehensive, detailed list of only the greatest moments in the history of RuPaul’s Drag Race. This list is the result of years of closely analysing the show so we could successfully pick out the greenest of apples, the sweetest of berries and the shadiest of arguments. Grab your post-runway cocktails, unstick your tucks and let us reminisce.
1. Drag is NOT a contact sport
If you’ve ever wondered why queens and judges jokingly say “Drag is not a contact sport”, it’s because in season three Mimi ImFurst actually wrestled another queen during their lip sync.
Mimi lifted India Ferreh over her shoulder whilst they were both lip syncing. It was all kinds of crazy and RuPaul was so mad, when it was over she said “Mimi ImFurst, drag is NOT a contact sport” and sent her home.
2. Willam being disqualified
This was one of the first scandals of the show and it’s never been forgotten. Willam was disqualified for secretly having her husband over to her hotel room which is a huge RuPaul rule break. Even more scandalous, Willam actually won that week’s challenge and then Ru followed this win by disqualifying her.
3. Alyssa Edwards’ and Coco Montrese’s feud
Alyssa and Coco’s whole feud in season five was just historic. It all started back in the day after Alyssa won a pageant show but couldn’t collect the award and so it got given to Coco. They would argue on and off throughout the season about who was better and then it happened, the funniest argument ever recorded on TV:
All the queens were getting dragged up and suddenly Alyssa and Coco started bickering. After back and forth comments, Alyssa made a dig about Coco’s make-up being orange – it was mean but also her make-up was orange. Alyssa said, “Girl look how orange you look girl”, to which Coco completely lost it and screamed, “Oh I’m not joking, BITCH”.
4. Shangela’s “I’ve never had a sugar daddy” monologue
Another iconic moment to come out of season three was Shangela’s whole speech about sugar daddies. In the Untucked room, Mimi ImFurst and her were arguing. Eventually, Mimi said the only reason Shangela manages to achieve such great looks is because she has a sugar daddy buying all her stuff. Shangela then replied with the longest, most unexpected slap back ever:
“I don’t have a sugar daddy sweetheart. Everything that I’ve had, I’ve worked for and I worked to get and I’ve built myself, so I need you to know that 100 per cent. I don’t have a sugar daddy. I’ve never had a sugar daddy. If I wanted a sugar daddy, yes, I could probably go out and get one because I am what?” *stands up* “SICKENING” *points at Mimi* “You could never have a sugar daddy because you are not! that! kind of! girl!”. It was, and I’m sure you all agree, incredible.
5. Jade Jollie commenting on Alyssa Edwards’ back rolls
Jade Jollie’s mean comment about Alyssa’s back rolls lead to Alyssa’s best reaction ever and something RuPaul brings up in almost every season because it was too funny. Not only did Alyssa lose her shit when Jade made the comment but in the confessionals video when she was asked to talk about it again, all she could do was turn to the camera and go: “Back rolls?!”
6. Roxxxy Andrews second wig reveal
Everyone knows how much RuPaul and the judges hate when queens take off their wigs in a lip sync. However, Roxxxy Andrews literally changed the course of Drag Race history in her season five lip sync when she pulled off her wig to reveal ANOTHER WIG!!! RuPaul’s reaction says it all, just watch.
7. Laganja Estranja’s season six entrance
Most workroom entrances happen and pass and are quickly forgotten but some stay with us forever. One of the best entrances has to be Laganga Estranja’s “Come on season six, let’s get sickening!” *death drop*.
8. Ornacia’s painfully delayed workroom entrance
Laganja showed everyone how to do it, Ornacia did the opposite. She entered in an outfit that meant she couldn’t see anything and therefore couldn’t undo her zip for a good five mins. However, when she finally got the zip open, she did half-save it with the “Mother has arrived” line.
9. Violet Chachki’s double tartan outfit runway
The looks Violet produced in season seven are still constantly spoken about and were a key reason she took home the crown, but one look still hasn’t been topped. In the season seven Born Naked mini challenge, Violet’s two-in-one tartan-glitter-jumpsuit-poncho was something else.
10. Violet Chachki’s 18-inch waist look
The second Violet Chachki look that needs a mention is her Death Becomes Her teeny-tiny corset waist. She literally looked like a Barbie, her waist was as wide as her neck and was only 18-inches (baring in mind a size 6 is 26 inches). What the shit, Violet !!
11. Kennedy Davenport’s crystalised chicken
There are great looks and then there are truly awful fails. Most are just bad and never spoken of again, but Kennedy Davenport’s crystalised chicken needs a mention. It was the same Death Becomes Her challenge as Violet but so so wrong. Kennedy described the look as a chicken who got killed but instead of dying, it crystalised. Think this was another way of saying: “I had no idea what I was doing”.
This was her full explanation in Untucked:
12. Phi Phi O’Hara and Sharon Needles’ bust-up in the workroom
The moment in season four when we all realised Phi Phi O’Hara came to play dirty was in her argument with Sharon Needles. Sharon came over to air some issues she had with her and Phi Phi got very defensive. As Sharon went to walk away she called Phi Phi a “tired-ass showgirl”. Biiiiig mistake Sharon because Phi Phi turned around with the now-famous insult: “At least I am a showgirl bitch. Go back to party city where you belong”. Everyone in the workroom, including Sharon, literally went :O
13. When Lashauwn Beyond introduced the “This is not RuPaul’s best friend Race” phrase
This is another catchphrase we hear a lot and it all started in season four during, of course, another argument. Backstage after the runway a few of the girls were arguing about whether people were going behind each other’s back or staying loyal. In response to Jiggly Caliente, Lashauwn Beyond was the first queen in Drag Race history to utter the phrase: “This is not RuPaul’s Best Friend Race!” and it has been said every season since.
14. Pearl and RuPaul’s feud
Only very few queens have bashed heads with the queen of queens herself, RuPaul, but Pearl’s constant back and forth with her in season seven must never be forgotten.
RuPaul told her to “Wake up, Pearl” on the runway and made it clear she didn’t appreciate her “flazeda” attitude, however, it all came to a head in the workroom when Ru was trying to advise her and Pearl wasn’t having any of it. Ru stared at Pearl waiting for some sort of response until Pearl finally said the six words that made every queen and audience member poo their pants – “Is there something on my face?”. The disrespect, Pearl!! It was exceptional.
15. Kennedy Davenport’s season seven lip sync to Roar
This was a bitter-sweet moment in season seven. Although it was one of the best lip sync performances ever it was also the one that got rid of Katya. But even so, it was incredible – Kennedy did all sorts of crazy splits and cartwheels and moves and then went and topped it off by doing a jump split off the frickin stage. How does anyone do that, let alone a guy in drag?!
The clip is one and a half minutes long – take it all in because you’ll be sad when it’s over.
16. Then she went and beat this in her All Stars three Variety Show performance
If there’s any US Drag Race star I would travel to America to see, it’s Kennedy. In All Stars Three she somehow managed to wow us even more by doing a cartwheel against a block on the stage with such perfect timing. Look, it’s hard to explain just watch it.
17. Aja doing a death drop off a block
Speaking of Variety performances, in this same show, Aja did a death drop off a two-metre-high stage on top of the stage. Gooped.
18. Bebe’s All Stars Three Kitty Girl verse
A wonderful piece of musical genius that came out of All Stars Three was Bebe’s Kitty Girl verse. The whole verse is pretty jokes but the “meow meow” moment still cracks me up every time.
For Bebe’s verse skip to 1:10 but if you really love Drag Race I know you’ll watch it all.
19. Tatiana’s All Stars 2 “Same Parts” performance
While we’re already in the flow of talking about All Stars there’s just one more performance I need to talk about – Tatiana’s “Same Parts” in All Stars Two. A spoken-word piece about her admitting to a guy she’s about to have sex with that they have the same parts. Flawless.
20. Tatianna’s thank you and choices
A bunch of queens have become known for a weird word they repeatedly said in their season. Either how they say it or just the randomness of the word made it iconic to them as a queen. Tatianna is definitely one of these queens with her “Thank you” after every judge critique and her “choices” when talking about making a decision.
21. Adore Delano’s party
Adore Delano saying “Party” whenever she felt excited or awkward or nervous was a whole mood from season six.
22. I don’t get cute, I get drop-dead gorgeous
Alyssa Edwards has had so many unforgettable catchphrases including “Get a grip, get a life and get over it” and “Always and forever” but arguably the most powerful one was in the confessionals when she said, “I don’t get cute, I get drop-dead gorgeous”. Everyone needs this written on a wall somewhere in their house.
23. Kayta saying “party” to Alaska after she was close to tears
These catchphrases are often coined and used by future queens. One of the best examples was Katya’s use of “party”. Alaska was close to being eliminated and it was in Kayta’s hands who was going home. Alaska literally begged her to keep her in, speaking for about a minute about how much this meant to her and nearly crying. What did Miss Congeniality, Katya say in response? “Party”. Alaska literally looked like she was gonna vomit on her.
24. Robbie Turner lip syncing on rollerblades
Robbie Turner didn’t offer a huuuuge amount of entertainment in season eight, however her rollerblade performance was damn good. She skated all over the show, broke one of the floor lights and then did a backflip off the stage.
25. Rigor Morris girl
The moment Alyssa Edwards learnt Rigor mortis wasn’t pronounced Rigor Morris was fucking brilliant. Arguably the best part of this was when Detox replies “Morris? Who’s Morris?”.
26. Valentina refusing to take off her mask in her lip sync
This moment was bizarre. If Valentina was trying to cheat then she was never gonna get away with it this way, if she wasn’t then wtf?
3 years ago today, valentina didn’t want to take her mask off. she was way ahead of her time. pic.twitter.com/UpY57hQ06s
— 𝕕𝕒𝕟𝕚𝕖𝕝 🌹🥀 #teamjaida (@lgbtvelour) May 19, 2020
27. Monique Hearts fucked up cartwheels
Not much to say other than Monique Heart was scared of doing cartwheels and it was jokes. Skip to 0:35 for Monique’s moment.
— RuPaul's Drag Race (@RuPaulsDragRace) February 16, 2019
28. Alyssa Edwards’ first-ever tongue pop
Groundbreaking, history-making – the tongue pop. If you didn’t know, it all began with Alyssa Edwards and has been done by basically everyone since… even judges.. even people who don’t know what Drag Race is.
She actually did a whole YouTube video on how to do it and where it started.
29. Mrs Kasha Davis’ “There’s always time for a cocktail” exit
Like workroom entrances, a queen’s exit is also often pretty disappointing but Mrs Kasha Davis got it so right when she walked to the back of the stage and went: “There’s always time for a cocktail”. HA thank you Kasha Davis, there is always time for a cocktail.
30. Miss Vanjie’s backwards exit
As exits go, Vanessa Vanjie Mateo’s backwards exit walk whilst repeating “Miss Vanjie” over and over was second to none.
31. Giiiirl the shade, the shade of it all
Throughout RuPaul’s Drag Race, there have been so many hilarious responses to mean comments or petty arguments. Latrice Royale’s “Girl the shade, the shade of it all” whilst fanning herself has to be the best and, really, the only appropriate response when people are plain RUDE.
32. Your tone seems very pointed right now
Another hilarious response to an argument was when Phi Phi was ripping into Willam, getting super personal, saying she has no talent and shouldn’t even be on the show and Willam completely calmly replied with: “Your tone seems very pointed right now”. I think Willam maybe missed something – Phi Phi’s tone wasn’t pointed she was just fully insulting you.
33. Sasha Velour’s rose petal wig reveal
This was huge. As I said before, RuPaul hates queens taking off their wigs. Obviously Roxxxy Andrews smashed it because she had another wig on, however, Sasha Velour went five steps further on her finale lip sync. She took a major risk, slowly taking off her wig to reveal a bald head and rose petals which fell to the floor. It was dramatic, stunning, revolutionary.
34. Jesus is a biscuit
How can we talk about iconic moments without Jesus is a biscuit? The queens were four episodes into a series and needed a moment of release. Phi Phi asked Latrice Royale to take them to church and so Latrice sings “Jesus is a biscuit” while they all clap and dance.
35. Gigi Goode’s robot Snatch Game
A fresh entry but one that will stay in Snatch Game history forever. Everyone judged Gigi as a fashion queen who was never going to be funny in Snatch Game, then she said she was doing a robot and we all waited for the crickets. But she killed it and managed one of the funniest Snatch Game performances maybe ever.
36. Monét X Change fake split
And finally, another unforgettable moment from season four and it comes in the form of Monét X Change’s fake split.
Death drops, cartwheels and splits are obviously all very impressive and still achieve a level of surprise when they come out of nowhere. But build the audience up by acting like you’re about to do the maddest death drop split cartwheel we’ve ever seen and then… not do it? Now that’s surprise, that’s skill and that’s just goddamn fucking funny.