I'll break down the episodes by going over the Drama, the Mini-Challenge, the Main Challenge, the Runway, and Untucked (which technically, is a separate entity from the actual episode, but I don't feel like doing a separate recap. So there). The orders of these may vary as the episode calls for it.
Pictures will mostly be screenshots that I take, with the exception of runway looks, which I will probably take from Tom and Lorenzo since they tend to grab better ones that I can.
We get to meet the contestants! Since their outfits are featured in the Mini-Challenge, I will show them out of drag for this part.
I was mildly familiar with Detox from the Season 3 casting special, plus Willam Belli's "Chow Down at Chick-fil-a" and "Boy is a Bottom" videos, so she was an initial favorite. One of the other queens commented that it looked like Detox had work done, and it appears that she did after a motorcycle accident. So, bad shade throwing there. She comes across as very confidant and smart.
Very cute. Apparently is considered plus size (although the only one I would consider to be truly plus size is Penny). She throws some good shade, isn't in her head about her weight, and appears just as confidant and smart as Detox. I would place her amongst the contenders.
FISHY! She seems sweet (although she does throw some nice shade/bitchery in Untucked), but maybe not quite at the taste level that Ru prefers for her girls. I see her being either a Dida Ritz that gets her shit together and goes fairly far or being like The Princess who just couldn't get into competition mode. The laugh can go away though.
Girl, you are not as talented as you think you are. Spewing attitude is not a way to make friends or get fans. The more experienced queens will eat her alive.
I'm honestly curious as to where the feud with Coco is going to go (they were both infuriatingly vague about it), but I think I am initially Team Alyssa just because Coco seems to be deliberately provoking Alyssa. She doesn't feel like someone who is going to go far. Maybe lower-middle-of-the-pack. She seems a bit high strung which will not work in her favor as the competition goes on.
I like her! Interesting to see how narcolepsy is going to affect her in the competition, but she appears to have the talent to go fairly far. The only reason I'm not putting her as a contender is because she is a comedy/camp queen, and they never win.
Another pre-favorite just based off the name alone. The lone 'plus size' queen (since I don't consider Roxxxy to be one), she was voted in by the fans of the show. As you will see later on in the recap, I feel that this doomed her to an early exit. Unfairly, I might add.
Another cute one. Didn't get very much screen time, so withholding final judgement, but currently I see her at about the same level as Alyssa.
Another pre-favorite, mostly for being the boyfriend of last season's winner. Hard to live up to that, and the comparisons start early. I would hesitantly put her in the contenders (because of her Mini Challenge failure) just because she seems to know her stuff. However, I think a fourth or fifth place finish is more likely.
Cannon fodder. Didn't stand out at all.
The fourth and final of my pre-favorites. Also, I believe that this will be my Season Boyfriend (joining an illustrious group: Pandora Boxx, Carmen Carrera, and Willam Belli held the title in prior seasons). Low key, amazingly talented with her looks, and I LOVE that she used to be a clown. She belongs in the Contender category.
Monica Beverly Hillz
I do not understand how this one avoided being in the bottom. She is definitely one that is going home early.
Another Contender. She's this season's Puerto Rican queen, and like the others, she has language issues. Can they not find a PR queen that is comfortable with English? Was Alexis Mateo the only one? Would hate to her go home early for not understanding a challenge. While Lineysha isn't amongst my favorites, I think she is fairly talented and one to watch.
I like that she throws shade, I think she is definitely a Contender, and I cannot stand her. I am more than curious about her past with Alyssa, and she comes across to me as the more talented of the two, but she seems like the instigator in all the workroom drama.
The Mini Challenge:
Will show the pictures in order of how I rate them. Pictures are taken from Tom and Lorenzo.
Had one of the better intro-looks, and one that worked well visually with the challenge. Completely agree with this win.
I may have hated her, but this was a great shot. Too bad it was all Mike Ruiz. She just lucked into a good picture - and the intro-look wasn't that good.
Interesting pose, although the bubbles kind of hide her face. Love her intro-outfit
Beautiful shot. Kind of low-key as far as intro-looks go, but given the challenge, it worked in her favor.
Solid, but not outstanding - for the picture and the look.
Great pose, but the look wasn't all that strong.
Another strong pose with a weaker outfit.
Great look, but horrible face in the shot.
Good, in a campy sort of way, but I think it was unintentional. Nice that she had a swimsuit on.
Ivy WintersGreat outfit that just didn't work for the challenge. The pose is okay, but doesn't really work with what she is wearing.
Monica Beverly Hillz
The outfit wasn't anything great, and the photo is kind of unintentionally funny, but Monica obviously lucked into that.
Not a terribly impressive outfit, and the pose is fairly lacking also. Good face though.
Detox called her a 'RuPaul without the polish' and I feel that was a bit generous on her part. Terrible outfit, with a terrible pose. She's lucky Alaska fucked it up, or she would have easily been the worst.
Your computer didn't mess up: There isn't a photo for Alaska. After trying to get on the show every season, I would have expected her to try a little harder. I can only assume that she panicked in the water (it happens), but I was disappointed nonetheless.
The Main Challenge/Runway:
The queens had to dumpster dive for materials to make a dress out of. Fun challenge, although I heartily disagreed with who was in the bottom. Pictures are placed in order of my preference. Screenshots taken from Tom and Lorenzo because the Logo website kept screwing up on me *shakes fist angrily*
Beautiful, especially considering it was made out of wallpaper. While I wasn't bothered by who got the win, this was the top look in my opinion.
Why do the ones I don't like have to be so infuriatingly competent? She went with a movie theme and dialed it to 11. Love it for the sheer nerve. Very close second.
Roxxxy Andrews (winner)
For those that can't tell: those are her actual hips poking through. While I feel that my top 4 could be ranked in any order (they was a substantial drop between my fourth and fifth choice), this was a deserving winner. Loved it.
A tad more low key than the previous ones, I appreciated the natural beauty of it. She's got serious sewing skills.
Nice effort, but it seemed a bit ill-fitting. Wish she had jazzed it up a bit also.
Wish she hadn't had her mouth open so much (not giving good face, with that), but man, I want her to be Joan Collins if she makes it to Snatch Game. The outfit is nice, but I don't like the cloth tumor she has on her leg.
I like that she embraced the trash theme, but this doesn't look red carpet couture to me. In fact, it feels a little underdone and I feel the judges graded her on a bit of a curve.
It looked like a cheaper version of Ivy's look. Solid, but very much a middle-of-the-pack dress.
I thought the judges were a little too harsh on this, but Ru probably wanted to give the 'edit' critique early (which is fair). I loved the look and thought it had just enough business to it without going overboard.
I thought they were way to hard on this look also. It obviously isn't a contender for the win, but it didn't have any of the problems that the ones I have below it did. Just lower-middle-of-the-pack in execution.
This and Penny's are both solid and uninteresting, but hardly worth ripping. But somehow Vivienne got a pass while Penny landed in the bottom 2.
What a mess. She has an eye for color and the face is good, but the dress is all over the place and poorly made. How this escaped critique is a mystery.
Monica Beverly Hillz
Kind of the opposite of Honey: The face is harsh, the colors are all over the place, but the outfit is well made for the most part. But I have no idea what she was going for - this isn't anywhere close to red carpet.
Easily the worst on the runway. The top part makes any chance of female illusion a no go, and the wig prevents it from being a bit of genderfuck drag. The makeup is terrible also. She was in serious denial/delusion if she wasn't worried about this look.
Too many girls for there really to be much of anything (although I do kinda love that the safe ones assumed Alaska was on the bottom only to be terribly wrong). Jade's read of Serena was nice, and I am fairly disappointed we didn't get to see the lipsync battle between them.
My Top 4: Lineysha, Coco, Roxxxy, Ivy
Ru's Top 4: Roxxxy, Lineysha, Alaska, Ivy
My Bottom 3: Honey, Monica, Serena
Ru's Bottom 3: Jade, Penny, Serena
Lipsync Song: "Party in the U.S.A." by Miley Cyrus
Result: Penny Tration sashays away after one of the worst LSFYL ever. The only one that comes to mind as worse is the Shangela vs. Venus from Season 3. The edited the other queens commentary to make it seem like Serena handily won it, but I thought they were about on equal footing as far as performance went. However, I think Penny was doomed by virtue of being the fan pick. RuPaul has eliminated every queen brought back into the competition (Carmen Carrera, Kenya Michaels) and eliminated the top 2 vote getters for the All-Star season right off the bat (Pandora Boxx and Mimi Imfurst). I won't go so far as to say that RuPaul purposely eliminated Penny, but I think that Penny wasn't who she wanted out of those competing for the fan vote, so if Penny didn't get top 3, she was out. And, unfortunately, Penny didn't get top 3.
How'd I rank the remaining queens:
1) Detox - Strong first impression, and a professionalism/intelligence that will help her navigate the challenges.
2) Roxxxy Andrews - Winning the first challenge tends to mean good things (unless you are Morgan McMichaels), so I think she will be around awhile.
3) Lineysha Sparx - Nice sense of style, but hopefully the language barrier won't hurt her later.
4) Coco Montrese - Because I don't like her, she will prove to be one of the better queens. Dammit.
5) Ivy Winters - She has a strong sense of style and great makeup/sewing skills, but she may end up being too low-key.
6) Alaska - I think it bodes well that Ru put her in the top 4 for the main challenge, but I'm not quite sold yet.
7) Jinkx Monsoon - Camp/comedy queens never win. But she could go far.
8) Vivienne Pinay - Perhaps a little too low-key (like Ivy), but her looks have been strong so far.
9) Jade Jolie - That 'edit' critique was given early, and I bet she runs with it.
10) Alyssa Edwards - I don't see her in it for the long haul. But she could surprise: You don't win Miss Gay America without having some skills.
11) Honey Mahogany - Sometimes the middle people step it up as the competition goes on. I don't think that will happen with this one.
12) Monica Beverly Hillz - I just don't see her lasting long.
13) Serena ChaCha - Tick-tock, honey.