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All Stars Round Table: The Once and Future Queens

All Stars Round Table: The Once and Future Queens

All Stars 2 Episode 3
RuPaul's Drag Race/YouTube

Who run the world?

RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars 2 returned this week with a "herstory" lip sync that was so good, even the judges has a hard time finding critiques. Luckily, our staff's Drag Race superfans found plenty to read the queens on as they channeled the baddest gals of all time.

Associate editor Michael Lambert, assistant editor Glenn Garner, and travel editor Brandon Presser sat down to talk about the latest episode

Which queens caught your eye this episode?

Glenn Garner: I actually like Alyssa this season. She's totally come into her own and she's just doing her.

Brandon Presser: Is it just me, or does out-of-drag Alyssa kinda look like Will Arnett's super-gay Devon Banks on 30 Rock but with a southern drawl? I love Alyssa--toss her a wig and I'd watch her read the phonebook.


Michael Lambert: I'm living for everything Katya this season. She is adding the quirkiness that I had hoped to see from Adore Delano before she copped out. Can she go back to playing Bjork from Snatch Game and just keep that character going for a whole season?

GG: Of course, Phi Phi was the victim of bullying after being a bully. And now, she's a bully again, just on the DL.

ML: I can't tell if Phi Phi is actually playing games, or that's just the editor's fell touch at work. I recently rewatched her season, and I honestly didn't think she was that bad to need this whole redemption story arc.

BP: The producers are really beating a horse--a Catherine the Great f-cked horse--with this "emancipation of Phi Phi" bit and giving her way too much air time about how she's not actually a villain or a pageant queen. Acid in the face? For real? As Alaska said, "It's just drag."

Does the "herstory" lesson get an A+ in your grade book?

GG: This herstory lesson was just as boring as any history lesson I had to sit through in high school. If you're going to deprive us of a mini challenge, at least give us something entertaining in the maxi. When they wasted the library and the snatch game in the first two episodes, I assumed they had something better up their sleeves. But I'm beginning to doubt that.

ML: I agree. I think this made for one of the most lackluster episodes in the show's history--if we're judging by "good" reality television. Drag-wise, all the queens were poised, professional, and delivered a great show. But the drama was cheap to non-existent. And they totally sabotaged Katya with Princess Diana.

BP: They absolutely nailed it. Nailed it. I wish I could have been in the audience for this lip sync. While everyone got a character, though, Katya got a familiar person with Lady Di. Sure, most of the other characters were real at one time, but our impressions of them are caricatures today. I'm glad Ru called this out because I found it really unfair.

What about the runway? Did you see the future of drag on stage?

GG: Detox came out in silver, but she deserves gold for that look. Too bad about that bald cap though. Katya's Jestsons look was almost as sad as her Princess Diana.

ML: I go back and forth on Detox, but the silver body with those "Fifth Element"-style bands? Legendary. Take me to whatever space colony she's from.


BP: Alyssa did her Alyssa thing again--building a Barbarella tin-foil troll nightmare that was so wrong that it was exactly right. And was it just me or did she kinda look like Teresa Guidice? Maybe it was the swooshing, super-low hairline.

GG: But let's agree--Alaska's alien screech could win this whole thing, right now.

ML: Preach.


Were you surprised by the queen who got the chop?

GG: I was a little surprised by Alyssa's choice for elimination. I'm glad Katya stayed because she could win it. She may have had a bad week, but she's got what it takes. Still, it's sad to see Ginger go home. Big girls represent!

ML: I thought Katya was gone. But Alyssa finally stepped up and decided to play the game. She knew Ginger might not be the fiercest queen against the others, but she would make a hell of a competitor later on. The way Katya shut down after landing in the bottom two--Alyssa is banking on that happening again.

BP: I'm so glad they trimmed the bottom down to two queens instead of three. I think that's a better recipe for drama. Watching Ms. Minj go home reminded me that she's really under-appreciated in general. There are a handful of queens that should have been voted off drag island before her.

GG: I haven't always been a fan of Alyssa, but I'm really loving her personality this season with her Joan Crawford and now her Annie Oakley--which was really the only semi-interesting part of that high school assembly production number.

ML: Alyssa's growing on me more than I thought she would. She and Alaska feel like the two queens to watch because they're going to breeze through this competition.

BP: In next week's previews, everyone seems mad that Alyssa supposedly flipped the script. But I think Alyssa did the right thing! It's like in Bring It On -- Kirsten Dunst makes sure that the Clovers can compete, because in order to feel like you're the best you need to compete against the best.

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