MADAME BUTTRFACE (RPDR RECAP)
Welcome to week three of RuPaul’s Ninety Minute Death March--make that 120 minutes, if you watch Untucked! I kid, I kid. Anyway, the girls enter the workroom and shed a few tears for my homegirl, Kalorie, and then it’s straight on to the mini-challenge, which is a casting call for RuPaul’s chocolate bar. It’s a known fact that RuPaul loves audition challenges, and his glee is evident as he makes the quick drag wearing girls pretend to be fresh off the bus and sell this chocolate. Blair St. Clair shines as Parent Trap era Lindsay Lohan, tap dancing her tiny butt off. We find out Kameron Michaels can’t read. Monet X Change also rocks it as an Irish girl in a close cropped green wig, and her jig kills. Monique features giant pillow tits and a hilarious English accent. A good time is had by all, and Blair, Monique, and Monet win.
The maxi challenge is creating commercials for unconventional dating apps. Blair is leading team End of Days, made for doomsday preppers, and she chooses Miz Cracker, Eureka, and The Vixen. Monique gets Fibster, a platform for pathological liars, and chooses Dusty, Kameron, and Mayhem. Last but not least, Monet gets Madame Buttrface, a dating app for women with beautiful bodies and busted faces, and chooses Aquaria, Asia, and is stuck with Yuhua, who she really doesn’t want to have to deal with.
The girls sit down to work on their material. On team Fibster, Mayhem is not having it. She seems upset and disconnected by the whole process. Monique acknowledges Mayhem’s discomfort in her cutaway but basically shrugs her shoulders, saying closed mouths don’t get fed. True, true. Dusty is like, bad at writing but thinks she’s good. Kameron ends up stealing the narrator gig from Mayhem.
Meanwhile, on team Buttrface, Yuhua seems very dumb. Monet is not happy about Yuhua being on her team, and has been consistently shady towards Yuhua throughout. She was calling her out on the difference between a seamstress and a designer in the first ep. Monet has little patience for Yuhua, and Yuhua has a very low tolerance for criticism, as we’ve already seen on the mainstage.
On team End of Days, Blair is so young and beautiful. She could win a fetus beauty pageant (hat tip to Mr. Show with Bob and David). Eureka wants to lean into her size for her comedy and the Vixen is grossed out and pissed off. It’s not a good look on The Vixen, to be honest. Eureka is pitching some funny ideas, and The Vixen comes off as insecure and afraid of being overshadowed by Eureka. She’s disgusted that a drag queen would want to steal a scene, to which I say, have you ever seen this show? That’s like 90% of it right there!
Buttrfaces have so many prosthetic noses. I mean, all of the prosthetic noses in the world. But Yuhua can’t have any, and Aquaria has a million prosthetic noses. Also Yuhua gets so flustered and mad and feels attacked when the other queens ask her to paint to be ugly, which is the whole point of the challenge. Yuhua ends up doing pure beauty glitter eyebrows, and Monet is going to bite her.
On set, Carson has a very confusing sweater. Fibster is straight terrible. Michelle and Carson’s direction becomes more and more terrible. Sometimes they laugh at how horrible the team is, and it gives the team a false sense of confidence (see: Valentina and Nina in their sitcom challenge last year.) Kameron is so unimpressive that she is basically a beige wall, and Monique directs herself (“Action! Cut! Let’s do it again.”) Throughout, Mayhem is defeated and uninterested. I wonder who will end up in the bottom?
End of Days looks great, feels good, and Eureka actually slaps Miz Cracker. The Vixen hates Eureka and Eureka thinks she is taking it too seriously. But their concept is the most sound and the team chemistry is good (except for The Vixen skulking in the shadows.)
Madame Buttrface features the fine stylings of Asia’s ugly makeup, and as Carson says later, it is the funniest thing that’s happened in the last ten years. I’ve watched this episode four times and I still die laughing when I see Asia with her terrible nose, moles, and EYEBROW. Yuhua is not ugly and also she doesn’t make any sense. Her lines are not funny at all. Monet wisely sees that she’s being upstaged by Asia, but Asia is the standout. It’s just undeniable. I wonder who will win this challenge?
During makeup time, Blair talks about how much she misses her mom and she and Eureka reenact the scene in Boogie Nights when Heather Graham asks Julianne Moore to be her mom, minus the giant piles of cocaine.
The Vixen and Aquaria mix it up about the Vixen’s borrowed wig, but luckily a spider appears (which looks wicked as f. Maybe a black widow.) and everyone freaks out and that diffuses the brewing fight. I don’t really care about any of this. It is boring to me. The Vixen has told us she loves to fight, and Aquaria is willing to be bitchy as we already know. The other queens mostly call for peace and reconciliation, and The Vixen slaps that away and Aquaria continues to snipe at her. I mean, really, it’s so boring.
More interestingly, Blair and Dusty talk about their religious upbringings. Dusty had a terrible experience and was sent to reparative therapy. It’s very sad. I feel for Dusty in a way that surprises me. After that, Aquaria and The Vixen go back to war, but Aquaria’s snide comments are no match to The Vixen, who likes to fight (in case you’ve forgotten.)
Runway time! Courtney Love is a guest judge, and as Adrienne Gunn, Heauxs editrix and close personal friend of mine, said, Love is transitioning into the full Madonna.
Feathers on the runway! Miz Cracker tells a sad story about a dead friend and a bluebird. The Vixen has bad wigs but I like her on runway. She fiercely sells that peacock dress. I was quite taken with her! Mayhem has zombie eyes and it messes up the outfit. Dusty is terrible--I can’t even really focus my eyes on her because it’s so bad. Kameron looks like a gross Maleficent. Asia serves Tweety Bird fantasy and it is great--next level, All Star shit. Like a real moment. Aquaria is wounded bird, which haha whatever.
It’s time to examine the product! End of Days is the best concept, and three of four do a great job. Blair plays the surprised Amy Adams type virgin, afraid to be left with her hymen as the world ends. The Vixen is dressed in orange with a “The End is Nigh” sandwich board, and Miz Cracker and Eureka play the church ladies who are hip to the coming apocalypse. This has everything you could ever want: puns, humor, slapstick! It’s a real masterpiece.
Fibster is just so bad. Nothing about it makes particular sense, and the choice to make Kameron the narrator ruins the only real joke. Monique calls her cockroaches “houseguests and house visitors” and that’s comedic, I suppose.
Asia saves Buttrface all by herself. I’m laughing right now, just thinking about her face. Monet is fine as the narrator with the busted body, and Aquaria is adequate with all her prosthetic noses. Yuhua blows it completely--she painted dots on her face and attached some long hairs, but it doesn’t read as ugly at all. At least Aquaria really painted ugly, you know?
The teams are judged separately, and the tops are Blair, Eureka, and Asia, while Yuhua, Kameron, and Mayhem are in the bottom. Personally, I find Blair really beautiful. Courtney Love starts comparing her to Doris Day in a condescending way and I shout: “You’re drunk, Courtney, go home” from the comfort of my living room. The judges call Mayhem out about not speaking up, which is true! She should have said something about how dumb those ideas were! Closed mouths don’t get fed! I’m fired up about this, apparently, if all of my exclamation points suggest anything. But it is true--you have to advocate for yourself, girl! During her critique, Yuhua loves talking back so much. Michelle Visage is going to ground her from her phone for a week if she doesn’t straighten up.
Asia wins the challenge and everyone cheers with delight. Yuhua and Mayhem end up in the lipsync. They are doing “Celebrity Skin” by Hole, and I always feel a bit uncomfortable when queens perform rock numbers. It just makes me feel weird, but Mayhem sells the everloving shit out of the song. Call her UPS, because this bitch delivers! Yuhua flops around in her underwear and does air guitar and it’s terrible. At the climax of the song, Mayhem starts ripping feathers from her dress and I swoon. Mayhem wins the lipsync and Yuhua sashays away. Yay for Mayhem, who is a contender, as long as she doesn’t get her feelings hurt and then shuts down!