RuPaul's Drag Race: EP 01/02: I'm That Bitch/You Don't Know Me
March 9, 2020 10:41 AM - Season 12, Episode 1 - Subscribe

A split premiere: E01: Kicking off Season 12, the first seven queens strut the runway in a fashion show, then rap and perform a choreographed dance in front of guest judge Nicki Minaj. E02: In part two of the Season 12 premiere, a new set of queens walks in a fashion show, then performs a Bob Fosse-inspired number in front of guest judges Thandie Newton and Robyn.

A lot of controversy already with one contestant being already disqualified.

I'm posting the first one to see if anyone else here is watching. Feel free to take it over.
posted by Anonymous (10 comments total)
This episode just felt so wrong. I couldn't watch the disqualified contestant's footage without feeling entirely creeped out by it, and the whole thing just seemed really lackluster, even compared to last week.

I'll probably keep watching, out of Friday night boredom, but RPDR really has to shake it up in some way (and not by moving to Showtime so I'd have to pay to watch All Stars, geesh!) to compete with things like Dragula and Camp Wannakiki at this point. There needs to be a wider selection of contestants and a different aesthetic than "Things RuPaul thought were really hilarious from 1975-1993."
posted by xingcat at 11:58 AM on March 9, 2020 [2 favorites]

Queerty has a full detailed investigation into Sherry/Joey's abusive behavior. (Potentially triggering details.)

I appreciate they want to air the full series out of respect for the rest of the queens, but having read that whole Queerty piece it really grosses me out that person now gets to be highlighted on TV for weeks, and may even sadly build a fan base of people willing to overlook just how violating he was to a large number of people. (hope I'm wrong about that.)
posted by dnash at 12:24 PM on March 9, 2020

In their episode recap, Tom and Lorenzo report on a rumor related to Sherry. Don't click if you don't want progress through the season spoiled, but if whether you watch depends on how far Sherry makes it through the season, you may be interested.

Was that neutral enough?
posted by supercres at 8:54 AM on March 10, 2020

I went back and watched a little of this episode again. They could absolutely cut around Sherry more. It's not hard; no talking heads would be a good start. Only include conversation if it's for another queen's benefit. Maybe skip runways. Wonder if they'll do that going forward; IIRC this made major waves real soon before airing; I'm sure it had been edited already.
posted by supercres at 9:20 AM on March 10, 2020

I understand how difficult it would be to recut an entire season at this point, but it is uncomfortable watching Sherry knowing what he's done.

I noticed that he has been cut from the official social media of the show pretty extensively. His runways are not being shown in clips and they only mentioned him once in the Pit Stop and I think that only happened because he was Top Two in the episode.

I hope they keep that disclaimer up about his disqualification on all the episodes.
posted by Julnyes at 2:14 PM on March 10, 2020

Between Gigi, Widow, and the goofy/fierce treasure that is Heidi, I loved that first premiere. Despite all the hype I have to say, I really wasn't that impressed with Brita and was kind of turned off by her personality.

The second premiere definitely suffered for its association with Sherry. I've honestly just been fast-forwarding around her. Of the second crew, Jaida, Rock, and Jan S. (lol'd at this being bleeped out) were my favorites. I'm hoping Rock might be the first SF queen to really do well. Jan is definitely Alexis Michelle's drag daughter and will probably get the "we need more vulnerability" critique a bunch. Aiden does seem cool but I think she's not totally done cooking yet, and Dahlia doesn't have the stage presence I'd have expected.

I like starting things off with a top 2 LSFYL: it gives the episode an emotional climax while letting everyone stick around another week, which is good for both the queens and their audience. I agree though that the show needs to mix things up somehow; other people have said this but it does feel like it's become more straight-faced reality TV, instead of something that calls attention to the artifice of reality TV competitions in a "draggy" way. Still one of the best reality shows out there but the production strings are ever more visible, the contestants have to self-edit more, etc.
posted by en forme de poire at 5:23 PM on March 10, 2020 [1 favorite]

I went back and watched a little of this episode again. They could absolutely cut around Sherry more.

Although I understand his activities have been a poorly kept secret for years, the main pickup of what Sherry had done only broke on Thursday so I think (knowing not much about TV production otherwise!) they were stuck with how this episode was cut. Hopefully they can do something with that for the remainder of the season but awwwwwkward because you probably can't just edit the guy out entirely.
posted by urbanlenny at 12:53 PM on March 11, 2020 [1 favorite]

I love the format of cutting a premiere into two parts so you can get to know the contestants up front.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:43 PM on March 11, 2020

Rewatching the two episodes to get my mind off the news.

I kind of felt that the first episode's girls were stronger, or maybe just appealed to me more. I really love Widow Von'Du (top talking head queen this year, I bet! I love how flattering his outfit is and his tattoos... maybe my favourite?), Nicky Doll and Jackie Cox. Oh and Gigi Goode. Okay pretty much all of them. Episode 2 girls I like Jaida Essence Hall and Jan.

Heidi N Closet reminds me of Mayhem Miller x Kennedy Davenport.

Dahlia Sin is VERY AJA WOW.

I feel like Aiden Zane was getting the first-eliminated-queen edit, but maybe not. Jan is definitely getting the poised queen who the show breaks down the confidence of deal.

The Nicki Minaj entry/Nicki Minaj's Drag Race was cute and great and Robyn seemed so sweet and funny.
posted by urbanlenny at 5:23 PM on March 12, 2020 [1 favorite]

For both episodes' fashion shows, Raven was seated next to RuPaul. Never mentioned or introduced, barely any camera/voiceover time, certainly less than the celeb impersonators. Weird?
posted by donnagirl at 4:35 AM on March 13, 2020

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