Drag Race: All Stars 6 has finally delivered on the lip sync assassin format’s potential
I believe in Laganja Estranja supremacy
When All Stars 5 announced it would be switching up the All Stars formula, the concept sounded incredible. Instead of the top two queens winning the challenge and then lip syncing for their legacy like we’d grown accustomed to on All Stars 2 through 4, this time there’d be just one main challenge winner. The winning queen would face off against a lip sync assassin – a returning, guest not there to compete, but simply to turn up to perform the house down. Whilst there were some good lip syncs in All Stars 5, it just never felt like it fully delivered on the hype it promised. Enter: All Stars 6.
We’ve had three assassins so far on All Stars 6, and each one truly showed exactly why they got asked to be there. It’s been Drag Race at its most exhilarating. Coco Montrese turned up looking like the human embodiment of tinsel and it’s always great to see a Drag Race legend as revered as Coco, who’s been in the game for so long, come and do what she does so well. Brooke Lynn Hytes looked BEYOND beautiful as she faced off against Rajah in a Janet Jackson showdown that I didn’t think would be bettered this season.
But then in walks Laganja Estranja.
Oh y’all wanted a twist?
Laganja Estranja’s earth shattering arrival to All Stars 6 was the kind of entrance that made you jump out of your seat. It took gag worthy to the next level.
Laganja doesn’t get enough credit for how much she actually changed Drag Race culture with her entrance on season six. Her endlessly quotable “oh y’all wanted a twist, eh? Come on season six, let’s get SICKENING *deathdrops*” is parodied and referenced relentlessly, by queens and fans alike. Laganja started a laughing stock – a season six queen roasted for her affected mannerisms and apparent lack of authenticity. But as Drag Race has continued, her legacy has shone. She changed the game for entrance lines and for what queens really need to do to make their mark when they first enter that werk room. It made her return all these seasons later all the more euphoric – from season six to All Stars 6. Dropping onto that runway from the height she did has potentially upstaged Aja’s All Stars 3 drop from the block in the Talent Show – a feat I didn’t think possible.
The episode’s winning queen Trinity K. Bonet (getting her first ever Drag Race win) jokingly comments that Laganja’s entrance stunt doesn’t count towards the lip sync battle, but there’s more than a little bit of nervous truth to her joke. Because, let’s face it: It absolutely DID count. Laganja set the tone that the lip sync to come was going to be one for the history books.
Sometimes it feels like on All Stars that the lip syncs don’t have the firepower that they do on the regular format – with no one going home, the fight isn’t always there. But Laganja came back to the competition with a different kind of fire. Last month, she came out to the world as a transgender woman. Seeing her now back on All Stars, we’re seeing a performer who so clearly knows who she is and is excelling as her authentic self.
After winning the EXCELLENT lip sync, Laganja and Ru seemed to imply a potential return for her in a future All Stars season. She’s previously said publicly that she wouldn’t want to come back and compete as she doesn’t perform well in the stress of the Drag Race pressure cooker – but after her appearance on All Stars 6 and her new perspective as an out and proud trans woman, I really hope she’d be willing to reconsider. She’d dominate on All Stars 7.
This season is just SO GOOD
All Stars 6 has just continued to prove that it shows no signs of slowing down. These queens are so talented and so fun to watch. Considering this week was an acting challenge, it had no business being this enjoyable. All of the queens turned out a good performance, and the judges were clutching at straws to really establish the low placing girls.
A RuDemption themed runway is always an All Stars highlight because the backbone of an All Stars season is for the queens to get their chance to improve on what they did before. Seeing Rajah O’Hara elevate the look that she got sent home in to the standard it is now on All Stars 6 was absolutely breathtaking. The same goes for Scarlet Envy, who looked like the most gorgeous creature on planet earth in her renaissance art gown.
Silky’s departure was sad, and that’s coming from a lifelong member of the Silky Nutmeg Ganache had no place in the top five of season 11 club. It was nice to see Silky back on All Stars 6 with a refreshed perspective and she had a much better energy and better drag – it’s such a shame she got in her own head about her performance and I hope that her All Stars appearance will earn her more fans and that she doesn’t experience the hatred she received previously online.
Next week is the Rusical; a challenge that really separates the wheat from the chaff. Here’s to next week and another iconic Drag Race episode for the history books.
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