Winning a RuPaul Roast is a big step toward making the finals. If you can make RuPaul and the judges consistently laugh, the odds of winning shoot straight up!
The queens put their comedic skills to the test on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 13 Episode 12.
The zingers were cutting. Many laughs were had on the main stage. And several queens stood out from the pack in one of the most crucial challenges yet.
Before we get into the Roast, we need to talk about the Mini Challenge. The live makeup application might be one of the funniest challenges RuPaul's Drag Race has ever done.
Having one queen apply makeup to another queen from behind a sheet wasn't the most original idea. Drag Race had done something similar during RuPaul's Drag Race Season 6 with a beach dancing challenge. However, the concept alone is just so funny and weird.
Rosé, Symone, and Gottmik were covered in messy makeup and outrageous looks!
RuPaul and Norvina could barely keep it together through all the laughter. All I could do was think "Same!" in between all the laughs. And beyond just being a fun challenge, the outcome had stakes to the competition.
Winning the power to set the Roast order was a make-or-break type of prize that changed everything. Kandy Muse and Rosé did a great job making the most of their power.
Kandy Muse easily won the Roast. She had all the judges, contestants, guests, and viewers laughing from beginning to end.
Kandy is a naturally funny person; she lets out sassy and cutting zingers regularly. And she has served as the season's unofficial narrator in confessionals, so it made sense she would dominate on the main stage.
[In confessional] Lord have mercy, help me! Child, I’m not funny. This is not the gig.Olivia Lux
Her jokes on the judges hit the hardest, and her quips toward the Miss Congeniality guests brought plenty of laughs.
Going first is a tough spot during the Roast because it sets the tone for the rest of the show. Kandy killed it here and started on a high-note; she made the right call by claiming the spot during her meeting with Rosé.
Plus, her sparkly fitted gown looked gorgeous! This was a strong week for Kandy.
Rosé easily had the second-best performance of the round.
She was funny, quippy, and she had the confidence of a seasoned veteran on the stage. Rosé came across as the most natural comedian compared to the rest of the queens, so that helped set her apart and potentially secured her spot in the finals.
I do agree that her jokes during the rehearsal were funnier and landed harder. She didn't need to change them if they worked.
If she had kept that same energy throughout, she would've snatched the victory away from Kandy.
Gottmik's roast was funny and playfully cutting. She let the judges have it with each of their quips, especially Ross with the pizza comment.
Was anyone else worried for her before going into the rehearsals? She acted so scared about performing that it seemed like a foreshadowing of bad events to come. However, this was another case of the red-herring edit.
If you glue your lips, doesn’t it look like I’m a Jenner now?Gottmik
Gottmik easily killed it on stage during both her rehearsal and the main performance. And her uncertainty during the rehearsals only made it even funnier!
Gottmik has a future with these types of performances, and we should start penciling her in for a spot in the finals.
Olivia Lux's performance kicked off the plunge with how awkward the remaining three queens were during their comedy sessions. For instance, what was with the nice girl persona?
Granted, some queens like to portray a fake persona for a Roast (like Coco Montrese on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 5). However, Olivia's persona didn't have the rhythm with landing the jokes to make them funny.
Olivia was awkward, cutesy, and stuck to a tone that didn't give her any comedic heights. She had a few zingers that landed (like the quips about RuPaul), but she couldn't keep that momentum going throughout.
Olivia needed better self-awareness about herself and her performance. There was no way anyone coming off that stage would've thought they did a great job after that number.
Utica and Symone, on the other hand, bombed all around! With exception to a joke here or there, neither queen mastered the Roast challenge. These types of comedy performances aren't their strongest skillsets.
Utica's jokes became pretty mean very early on. There's a fine line between roasting/reading someone and shading someone; Utica kept crossing that line by making each joke more insulting than the last.
Rosé: I’m feeling absolutely stunalina with my Norvina.
Norvina: I think we have our new slogan.
Michelle Visage's face gave it away when Utica started roasting her with very shady zingers. Michelle didn't have it, and if a judge got turned off from the routine, there was no going back for her.
Utica should've heeded their advice. Had she done that, she could've saved her routine by not reusing the jokes that rubbed the judges the wrong way.
Utica didn't listen nor had the self-awareness to apply the critiques.
Symone's performance stalled right out of the gate. Her gown looked amazing on stage with the golden fabric and sophisticated fitting, but that outfit was the only golden positive of her challenge performance.
When she's had to think on her feet and be outside of her comfort zone, she's hit some hurdles. The same happened with the social media musical on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 13 Episode 8; she couldn't get into a comfortable rhythm.
RuPaul: “I’d like to keep it on please.” She was right, I was wrong. There!
Symone: Growth, RuPaul. Growth.
RuPaul: Thank you, Dr. Fauci!
Symone tried to match the persona she portrayed on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 13 Episode 4; she used the same fun inflections and sassy attitude. But, that character only worked because of the set comedy in the script.
Her Roast felt more conversational with musings instead of delivering punchlines. Winning the Roast requires landing zingers on a strong note.
Somewhere out there, Trinity the Tuck is shouting at a screen, saying, "Where are the jokes?!"
Both Utica and Symone rightfully belonged at the bottom two this round. Their Roasts bombed and didn't measure up to the rest of the queens.
Their lip-sync of "No Tears Left To Cry" by Ariana Grande was a nice and overall enjoyable number. However, this number wasn't their best. Each queen has had a stronger lip-sync performance where they shined brighter and dominated.
Between the two, Symone won this lip-sync easily due to her facial expressions and exuding the song's energy.
Symone moved across the stage with confidence, wit, and style. She felt the lyrics and gave the judges everything they loved about her like the shoulder turns and her eye movements.
Utica played off on her bigger movements, but this round was Utica's time to go. Let's be real: she wasn't going to beat Symone in this lip-sync or in this competition. And after this Maxi Challenge, the writing was on the wall.
Last Thoughts From The Werk Room:
The queens reading each other in the Werk Room was everything we needed and more! Could we have a second reading challenge? Is that possible?!
Utica's outfit looked stunning with the elaborate ball headpiece and the silver robe.
The Miss Congeniality queens should've roasted the other queens when it came to their turn. Drag Race missed out on letting Nina West rip everyone to shreds.
- The queens tasting the makeup products during the Mini Challenge wasn't the safest idea.
Now, over to you, Drag Race fans!
What did you think of "Nice Girls Roast"?
Which zinger was your favorite? Are you sad to see Utica go? Which queens do you think will make it to the Top 4?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Justin Carreiro was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on X.