When last we met, the queens were forming girl groups, with Alexis Mateo and Yara Sofia being sent to sashay away.
Back in the workroom, the final four chew over the previous episode and all decide that no one is safe. Soon, Ru enters to give the girls their mini-challenge, a basketball game of Skirts vs. Skins. There are some unhappy drag queens up in this mug.
"This is like my worst nightmare," says Chad Michaels with a groan. "Sports and day drag. What a treat!"
As they get ready, some of the most fuglious drag ever put together begins to take shape in the "Drag Race" workroom. And the ladies are not totally unaware of this.
"We all combined could not look any more disgusting. I feel like Peg Bundy on steroids," Shannel says, being perhaps even a bit overly generous about her own look.
Raven looks uncannily like Kris Jenner on testosterone but plays basketball with surprising ability. Between her and Jujubee, they manage to win the challenge.
"Take your victory lap, you f*cking whores!" Chad says, with more graciousness than you might imagine.
As the winners strut their stuff, Ru fills them in on their main challenge, which will be to create drag superfoes. One in each pair will be a superhero and the other a supervillain. The winners will make it into their own comic book.
As they get down to brass tacks, the queens' personalities shine through as they plot their hero/villain backstories.
Chad suggests something about fire pussies and vagina rejuvenations and it's all very horrible.
"Really?" Shannel asks in her best "perhaps you'd like to rethink that one, tragic Tammy" voice. She counters with a tale of exotic black diamond thievery.
No, Chad decides. It would be much better to have Shannel's boobs shoot magical fire extinguisher that renders Chad's superhero helpless.
She starts to plot the red pubic hair she'll have sticking out of the crotch of her costume.
Oh, Chad. Explain it to Ru, please.
"I'm from Little Twat, Arkansas," Chad says of her character.
"Oh, that's such a sweet town!" Ru exclaims a bit uncertainly.
"They run things real tight over there. They run a tight ship," Chad replies.
Ru pauses, takes a breath and gently suggests they tone things down. Like, tone them all the way down. To the freaking ground. You wierdos.
As Shad frantically de-pornos their plot, Rujubee get to telling Ru their plan.
Here's the story, as I understand it:
There is a planet with a dark side and a light side (how very Pink Floyd!) and the superhero and villain both live on the dark side. But then the she-ro gets a tanning gun (?) from the library (?) that shoots people with melanin and allows them to live on the light side of the planet.
I'm starting to suspect that Snooki may have had a hand in helping Rujubee with their backstory.
Ru thinks perhaps they could simplify things a bit.
After scaring the living daylights out of both teams, Ru tells all of the contestants that the loser of the competition will be forced to lip-sync against her teammate, and informs them that they also have to come up with a routine for all four of them on the main stage.
As they plan their lip-sync out, Dramatic Shannel of the planet Intensia emerges to boss everyone around and pooh-pooh any choreography suggestions that don't result in her being in the center of the stage throughout the entire performance.
Raven purses those blown-up lips so hard it looks like they're gonna pop and Juju just gets realistic.
"This bitch is crazy," she says.
Shannel is literally sweating she's exuding so much oddity.
It doesn't look good for the final four routine, but there's no more time to rehearse. It's up to the queens to make. It. Work.
Back on the main stage, guest judges Elvira and Wendi McClendon-Covey will join Ru, Michelle Visage and Santino Rice in giving the side-eye to the superhero queens.
Chad's an elegant lady in red who transforms into a fire-licious diva. Her nemesis is Shannel as a dominatrix Catwoman.
Unfortunately, they've kept the "vaginal rejuvenation" backstory but just dropped a curse word here and there.
Rujubee has also kept their bizarre backstory about tanning guns but at least they've tweaked it to be a bit less convoluted.
Juju is a stunning tanned hero in a white bodysuit and long, red wig while Raven transforms from Pucci-print princess into a terrifying plastic surgery victim wrapped in the feathers of 1,000 black crows.
They're clearly the better team, at least from where I'm sitting, so it's shocking when Rujubee are forced to lip sync against one another to Robyn's "Dancing On My Own."
In the opinion of this recapper, Raven and Juju deliver the most moving lip sync in the history of "Drag Race" as they sing together, not at one another.
There are no histronics or over-the-top dancing. No one pulls their wig off or does the splits.
There are genuine tears as the friends realize one of them is heading home.
But then, Momma Ru makes it all better and announces, "F*ck it. We have a top four."
Both will stay for the finale. From the background and apparently from inside my head, Chad shouts "YES!"
See you next week, squirrelfriends, when we crown the Queen of Queens.
Here are some of the best quotes from the episode:
"Nobody's on the top anymore. We're all on the bottom," Chad Michaels.
"Well, she's a top," Jujubee, pointing at Shannel.
"Well look who's here. It's the Harlot Globetrotters," RuPaul.
"I'm giving Kareema Abdula Jabara realness-a," Raven.
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