Off to the runway, and then suddenly: From behind the screen, out toddles an enormous viking! Why, it’s Season 4 contestant Chris March. He and Heidi try to air kiss, and there’s a very awkward moment where his disco-ball-breasts get all in the way. Next comes a full parade of drag queens—not unlike the Olympic stadium a few episodes back, Korto proclaims them to be “ginormous!” The contestants are looking less than thrilled with the task at hand, and we can’t blame them. Since when did designing drag attire become a way to prove yourself as a competent modern designer?
Only Terri is thrilled: “This is the challenge I’ve been waiting for, because I love drag queens.” Really, Terri? This is the challenge you’ve been waiting for?
Tim urges the designers to “be theatrical and go over the top.” Because! Not only are these designs for drag queens, they’re also going to be auctioned off for charity! Which begs the question: Who exactly is going to fork over good money for a drag queen dress? Other independently wealthy drag queens? Large women from Texas with big budgets and no taste? The mind boggles.
The drag queens do add a lot of extra fun to the brainstorming process. We loved when Varla Jean Merman took off her detachable bangs and completely flabbergasted Goatee Joe. (And, we admit, us. Seriously, where do we get some of those?) And when one of the drag queens told Tim to call her? These are TV moments in the making, people.For someone who seemed completely overwhelmed by the concept of drag queens to begin with, Goatee Joe has really embraced the idea. He dances around in the ginormous bra and faux rubber breasts left behind by Varla Jean. He proudly sports a pink collar at the sewing machine. He even goads the other contestant with RuPaul-isms: “You better work!”
Tim and Chris March make the rounds and survey the gaudy damage. Tim, in the clip that’s been shown about a hundred million times in previews, proclaims Blayne’s winged creation to be like a pterodactyl at a gay Jurassic Park. The group bursts into laughter, but Blayne is really thrilled at the idea. Moving on, Tim gives Suede some serious advice on how to reign in the overly opinionated Hedda Lettuce. Daniel continues to live in his own little world where everything must look evening-appropriate and the task at hand doesn’t matter.After some more fitting shenanigans—it’s never a dull moment with the drag queens!—and some touching moments between Hedda and Suede (you’ll be happy to know that they air kiss and make up), we’re off to the runway. Where RuPaul is the judge! Seriously, Ru is almost 50 years old and as fierce as ever. Looking good, Ru!
We launch into what is clearly the most entertaining runway show in PR history. The costumes may be conventionally hideous and otherwise completely unwearable, but those drag queens can work it! The judges are clearly enjoying the show. Even the ultra-reserved Nina lets herself have some fun, allowing for a small smile here and there.
Jerell gets called out for designing something more fit for Michael Kors’ elderly aunts. “It’s a good bar mitzvah moment!” Michael chortles. (So maybe it’s the Kors aunts who will be bidding on the designs?) Daniel defends his Plain Jane salsa number with utterly clueless sincerity: “This is a drag queen costume. It’s not a Vegas showgirl or something from Cirque du Soleil.” RuPaul admonishes Daniel outright, letting him know that if a drag queen can’t pull in the bucks, she might have to resort to “selling hormones up in Harlem to make [her] rent money.” Um. What does that even mean? Our sheltered sensibilities are completely confused.
In the end, Goatee Joe—who we might have to start calling Mullet Joe; it’s definitely time for a haircut!—is the winner for his hideous pink sailor suit. (What? If we were a drag queen, we’d totally want Korto’s fiery concoction.) The utterly naïve Daniel is out. We are not surprised, but he’s seriously crushed. Bye, Daniel.
Next week, we return (thankfully) to some normal designs. The drag queens were fun, but we’re not sure that America’s Next Top Fashion Designer needs to also be well-versed in over-the-top drag wear. Now, if you’ll excuse us, we’re joining Michael Kors in the search for Acid Betty’s insane striped platform boots.
What did you think of this week’s Project Runway episode? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Read last week’s recap here, and check back next Thursday for Betsy’s Project Runway recap!