The queens return to the Werk Room after Salina EsTitties' elimination, and it's clear that her lipstick message shows some remaining bitterness over being one of the contestants named to leave the competition. Loosey LaDuca is thinking about her confrontation in Untucked with EsTitties, where the latter accused the former of betraying her.
Mistress Isabelle Brooks, still in her "congenial era," congratulates herself for "a perfect pageant answer" of saying Sasha Colby should go home. Luxx Noir London, who chose a dissertation-style method of nominating someone to exit, holds true to her assertion that Loosey's drag is "generic." Now the Top Five are looking toward the Top Four and the stakes have never been higher.
Mini Challenge: Spill The T
One perk of longer episodes is that mini challenges actually get some airtime. As the girls begin a new day in the Werk Room, RuPaul enters to share details on the mini challenge they'll be playing today - Spill the T, which will entail the cast sharing details on each other. Norvina, president of show sponsor Anastasia Beverly Hills, is on hand as Ru's lovely assistant.
The queens get right down to business on this one, answering questions like:
Which queen makes you laugh the hardest? Mistress
Which queen thinks she's the smartest? Loosey
Which queen is the shadiest? Mistress (this one's unanimous)
Which queen is the hairiest? Mistress
Which queen is most likely to steal your Anastasia Beverly Hills cosmetics? Mistress (also unanimous, and her recent interviews have confirmed she's been a kleptomaniac on set)
Which queen is most likely to have a sugar daddy? Luxx
Which queen is going home next? Loosey (she even votes for herself - because as said above, she does think she's the smartest!)
Loosey says she knew that the rest of the cast would pick her for the final question, so she selects herself just to gain the points. With that, she becomes the mini challenge winner. This means that Loosey gets special perks in the week's maxi challenge, which is going to provide a real education.
Teach Them Well
RuPaul then announces the true focus of the episode: The contestants will be tasked with giving makeovers to hardworking teachers. As Ru says, "Transform these educators into Glamazons."
Makeover challenges have been a staple of Drag Race since the beginning, but it's particularly poignant this season to focus those skills on teachers. While the previous episode's Wigloose: The Rusical reflected on the anti-drag movements happening around the country, putting the spotlight on educators allows the audience to consider the role of teachers and the stress that so many are under due to recent restrictive legislation. In numerous states and municipalities, teachers can be fired or even arrested for delivering information to their students that goes outside the accepted curriculum, whether that's assigning a banned book (like Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl or Toni Morrison's Beloved, both of which are banned in Florida and Texas) or discussing topics of sexuality and gender that the school district feels are "inappropriate." Florida's House Bill 1467, signed into law last year, requires "transparency" from educators that translates to the state government needing to approve all materials taught in public schools. Reports beginning in January 2023 noted that additions will be made to the law that allow teachers to be charged with a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison, if they assign unapproved materials.
Given this climate, as one Twitter user commented, it's brave of the teachers chosen for this episode of Drag Race to appear on the show, since they may be risking their livelihoods to do so.
Preach Her, Teach Her
Getting back to the more fun aspects of this challenge, the five teachers come to meet their drag queen mentors. Because Loosey won Spill the T, she has the power to pair each teacher with their respective drag mother. For the most part, it seems like she's creating the partnerships based on who seems to fit together, but then she decides to pair the only Black teacher in the room with Sasha instead of Luxx. Is Loosey deliberately sabotaging Luxx? Is she making a smart competitive choice? Most of the other mother-daughter pairings have some kind of physical resemblance, but Luxx and her teacher do not.
Anetra is pleased to learn that both she and her teacher are half-Filipino, and they bond over insecurities. The only place their partnership falls flat is during rehearsal on the catwalk, where Anetra realizes that "Alektra" can't duckwalk. Loosey's daughter "Lala," who already facially resembles her, quickly agrees with the LaDuca vision of accentuating the female body in drag. Sasha's teacher explains that she watches Drag Race with her family at home and is thus "game for everything," including padding. Although padding isn't Sasha's typical M.O., she allows herself to try it in the spirit of mother-daughter bonding with "Ferocity Colby."
Some of the most emotional moments are happening between Mistress and her daughter, Ms. Tang. Upon learning the educator is Latina and also identifies as queer, Mistress takes her under her wing immediately. They talk about Ms. Tang's job as a high school art teacher and how she provides a safe space for her students, as well as the obstacles they have both faced in being authentic to their queer identities.
Luxx by contrast doesn't seem to pay much attention to her teacher, "Asia Azul," at all. She focuses instead on designing clothes for the challenge and doesn't include her "daughter" much in the process. Mistress observes that Luxx is panicking.
Yet as the queens paint their daughters and themselves in preparation for the maxi challenge, Luxx finally learns that her teacher left her church when the institution wasn't supportive of queer people. This enables a connection between the two at last.
Runway: "Drag Family Resemblance"
With everyone gathering for the runway, it's revealed that queer pop musician Haley Kiyoko is joining the judges' panel this week. Kiyoko's inclusion is a fitting choice, as the singer is an advocate for all things LGBTQIA+, and she was one of the performers in last summer's Clio Award-winning music video "Taste So Good (The Cann Song," which featured Drag Race Season 14 cast members celebrating Pride Month and cannabis education.
However, the people are really here to see how the mother-daughter makeovers turned out. Sasha Colby and Ferocity Colby start their engines, giving padded extremism with a floral nod to Sasha's Hawaiian heritage in matching pink outfits. Loosey LaDuca and Lala LaDuca move in sync in their tropically-patterned ensembles, although Lala's simpler red dress looks a little dowdy compared to her mother's more over-the-top glam. Their family cohesion, though, is off the charts. Loosey says she feels that she's looking at herself, and those of us watching would have to agree.
Mistress Isabelle Brooks and Madame Thang (because there was no more obviously perfect name) present a kind of full-figured parallel to Sugar and Spice, as mother brings pastels and daughter classic black, both in long gowns and feather boas dripping with old-style elegance. Luxx Noir London and Asia Azul really don't have any mother-daughter vibe at all, though Luxx has worked her design magic on the clothes to make them as camera-ready as can be. Asia steals her mother's spotlight because in drag, she resembles actress Jennifer Coolidge far more than Luxx.
Anetra and Alektra appear as a spot-on "mother and Mini-Me" duo, wearing matching yin and yang-inspired catsuits that emphasize their Asian pride. Even if Alektra can't dance, she definitely made her mama proud.
Before the teachers sashay away, Mama Ru mentions that they have prepared a lip sync to her song "Champion." Each educator gives it her very best. Ferocity throws out some Sasha-style hair flips, Asia and Lala concentrate on audience engagement, Madame Thang takes charge of the runway just like her mother, and Alektra even tries out a few dance tricks. We stan these queens of the classroom.
Who's On Top?
Mistress and Sasha both place highly, but ultimately the judges determine that Anetra is the maxi challenge winner. This means that Luxx and Loosey fall into the bottom.
Lip Sync For Your Life: Who's Going Home?
Luxx Noir London and Loosey LaDuca, as the bottom two, must now lip sync for their lives to Haley Kiyoko's "For The Girls." Luxx is deemed the winner, and it's time for Loosey to sashay away. We're left with the top four that most people predicted from the beginning: Anetra, Sasha, Mistress, and Luxx. But who will take the crown?
Check out Loosey LaDuca's exit interview on WHATCHA PACKIN':
Learn about the anti-LGBTQIA+ laws up for consideration in every state by clicking here. Stand with the ACLU, RuPaul's Drag Race, MTV, and World Of Wonder by clicking here to support the Drag Defense Fund and fight back against bigotry.
Watch New Episodes of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 15
Catch next week’s episode on March 31 at 8PM ET on MTV. Stay up to date on RuPaul’s Drag Race through MTV.com and check back in with us for more episode recaps!
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Featured image: Mother Anetra (right) and drag daughter Alektra (left) strut their stuff on the catwalk (C) MTV