Rupaul's Drag Race: Season 4, Episode 11

(Chad's note: due to some technical difficulties, the images in this post won't appear correctly. Sorry!)

Man, this was an episode, people. Lots of good stuff--I was especially charmed by the puppetry mini-challenge. Chad Michaels stole the show, remarking to his little puppet Phi Phi: "America's just going to love you." Last week, we saw the Pit Crew bring in piles of teddy bears, and this time they arrive with adorable dogs? I'm not typically a canine person, but with that kind of introduction, how could I resist? Yeesh.

Like so many of the challenges this season, I was skeptical of this episode's dog theme, but it proved to be a lot of fun. Of course Phi Phi was going to get the biggest, frumpiest dog, and of course she was going to bitch about it. And although I'm rarely impressed by Phi Phi's runway apparel, I do think she made the best of her bloodhound motif.

The challenges involving multiple costumes are always fun--I thought Chad Michaels looked more stunning than ever in his first two outfits. And Sharon continues to show her endless variety and humor. And fuck yeah, her poodle costume was kickass.

[singlepic id=153 w=350 h=550 float=left] But boy, her drama with Phi Phi really took over the rest of the episode. During Untucked, Rupaul repeatedly tried to interrupt their shouting match, but she eventually gave up. (And poor Dita Von Teese!)

Do I think Phi Phi is a terrible person? No. But within the crazy pressure cooker of this competition, she has certainly proven to be a stubborn, combative, short-sighted contestant. She seems to have this highly defensive attitude where she'll relentlessly attack others whenever she feels threatened, but she never dares to question her own assumptions and actions. Arguing with that kind of person is infuriating, since they're so puffed up with their own self-righteousness that there's just no reasoning with them.

Doesn't she realize that her rabid, frenzied outbursts would make her the clear "villain" of the season? I guess Phi Phi has some fans, so good for her. And it's gotten her into the final three.

Honestly, I was rooting for her at the beginning--I think she's cute as hell, and maybe outside of the show she's a much cooler person.

[singlepic id=151 w=320 h=550 float=right]During Untucked, Chad really blew me out of the water with his graciousness and candor toward Phi Phi and Sharon, trying to settle both of them down with such classics as, "Edit yourself, bitch."

Latrice knocked me out, too, by trying to mend fences with the girls even as she grappled with the possibility of being sent home.

Goddamn, do I love that girl.

I adore both Latrice and Chad, so it was brutal watching them face off against each other, but I thought they both did really well. And honestly, up to the last second, I really thought that Ru would keep them both in the game. I thought, "Surely she can come up with some twist to keep these two fierce bitches on the damn show!"

It was with a very heavy heart that I watched Latrice leave the Drag Race, but she left at the top of her game, and with a whole lot of love from a whole lot of new fans.

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Don't forget to click on the images to see larger versions, and check out the rest of this season's Drag Race art! This week's illustrations are already available as prints right here!