Snatch Game is the great equalizer of the competition. You can't hide behind small acting roles or stunning ensembles; you have to shine on your own.
On RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 Episode 6, the queens made their big attempt to win the iconic Maxi Challenge!
Some landed heavy-hitter jokes that brought the funny, others hit a few missteps, while others flat-lined completely. The proof is in the comedic pudding.
The choice of Snatch Game characters is very important. If a queen chooses an overly series or unfunny role, her chances to win are over before they even started.
This misstep has hindered many queens in the past, like the infamously disastrous Snatch Game on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 4 or when anyone chose Beyonce against their better judgment. (Beyonce is a queen, but she isn't a strong Snatch Game character.)
Before the queens even stepped to the stage, based on their character choices alone, I had the most faith in Heidi N Closet's Leslie Jones, Jackie Cox's Lisa Rinna, and Jaida Essence Hall's Cardi B.
These three characters are strong comedic roles and they could get some easy laughs by channeling their outlandish vibe. Plus, there's a lot of material to pull from!
Just think about any episode of Saturday Night Live, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, or Cardi B's fun-loving tone!
The biggest hint that a queen might need to reevaluate their choice is when RuPaul walks through the Werk Room.
RuPaul doesn't give much direct feedback to get a queen to change. He'll share his opinion and suggest a new funnier character, but he'll stand back to let the queen make their own choice.
I love it when RuPaul does this because his advice is the key to winning the Snatch Game. At the end of the day, you just have to make RuPaul laugh to win. (That's it!)
RuPaul Charles, done shook up the building. It’s the m*****-f****** Snatch Game! I’m excited!!!Widow Von’Du
Based on his expressions, Gigi Goode, Crystal Methyd, Aiden Zhane, and Widow Von'Du had the biggest hurdles to overcome.
RuPaul has never been this openly fearful in the past; he stepped in more during RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 Episode 6 than he ever has done before. Though, it was a clear sign who was confident about their roles (Gigi, Widow) than those who doubted themselves (Aiden, Crystal).
Aiden and Crystal should've taken the hints.
Plus, if a past contestant warns you about how to play the Snatch Game, you better listen!
Vanessa Vanjie Mateo had good advice about her time playing Snatch Game on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 11. And, Vanjie performed terribly in her role, so her tips were more about how to avoid ending up in the bottom.
Sure, she spent most of her time making jokes, flirting with Jackie Cox, and riffing off RuPaul, but she had golden nuggets of truth too.
I miss Vanjie! She has so much energy and personality; she always made each episode fun and light-hearted. Her guest appearance was a great surprise!
During the Snatch Game, the clear frontrunners were Jackie Cox, Gigi Goode, and Sherry Pie. These three dominated so far ahead from the others that they were destined for the Top 3.
RuPaul seemed to be laughing at every response the queens hit back!
Jackie channeled full Lisa Rinna vibes. It's the small details that built toward a funny character, like her repeating her husband's name, selling clothes, and the reality TV drama. For any Housewives fan, this was a cheeky nod.
Sherry Pie delivered an eccentric turn for her portrayal of Katherine Hepburn. (But, her edit has continually reduced due to her disqualification involving the catfishing incidents in the real world. So, we'll take the few scenes as proof she did well.)
Gigi Goode, on the other hand, had the biggest surprise with her character. She killed it as the robotic android, Maria!
Her performance is the perfect example of utilizing an underestimated character and confidently landing the jokes. Gigi made a fully fleshed-out character from the mannerisms to the delivery. (If you didn't know who Maria was before Snatch Game, you got the gist of this sassier inspiration.)
RuPaul, the guest judges, and the queens were all bursting out laughing with Gigi's movements and hilarious one-liners.
RuPaul: Now, let’s move on down here to Maria the Robot. Hi Maria!
Gigi Goode: [Moves robotically to RuPaul] What’s up, B****?
Gigi might follow the same trajectory as Aquaria from RuPaul's Drag Race Season 10. Both are look/fashion queens who discovered their strength for comedy during their time in the competition.
Aquaria won her season, so this might be a good sign for Gigi.
Jaida Essence Hall, Heidi N Closet, Jan, and Widow Von'Du did well enough in the performances. They didn't have gut-busting laughs, but they landed a few jokes that made RuPaul laugh. So, they met their requirements.
However, it's the bottom three of Aiden Zhane, Brita, and Crystal Methyd that delivered the most uncomfortable moments. It was ... a train wreck.
Firstly, Brita relied too much on a loud voice to cover up not landing any jokes. Simply shouting out answers or utilizing the same one gag (i.e. a slack jaw) wasn't going to get her a win as Jennifer Holliday. She had to change up her performance, but Brita kept hammering in the same style.
A queen has to adapt or riff off of others if their jokes aren't working by themselves.
Crystal Methyd's dedication to the style of Poppy worked against her. She channeled Poppy's robotic and mysterious nature, but she didn't deliver any jokes. She even shut down opportunities to land zingers that RuPaul gave her!
Snatch Game is essentially improv at the end of the day. Keep the ball rolling and take every opportunity to make a joke.
Aiden Zhane's portrayal of The Rocky Horror Picture Show's Patricia Quinn is one of the worst Snatch Game characters in RuPaul Drag Race herstory.
Let's be upfront here: Aiden didn't do any prepping for the character. She didn't know much about Patricia Quinn's career, her biggest hit that everyone knew, or had planned mannerisms that would suit the character.
Even Michelle Visage was shocked that Aiden didn't match Patricia Quinn's British accent!
These b****** have been coming for me from Day One. Honestly, I’m not here for it. So, quiet Aiden isn’t going to be quiet for much longer.Aiden Zhane
Aiden stuck to the same safety net of "forgetting everything due to drugs" instead of putting the effort into Snatch Game. The proper approach for this character is to match her role of Magenta from Rocky Horror and incorporate the drugs/eccentricities to make her character fun and off-beat.
Snatch Game is the one challenge that the queens can truly prep for since they know it's always coming. Aiden Zhane not having a fully designed role is disappointing.
The mirror moments continue to be heartbreaking and inspiring.
We're getting a great view of Widow Von'Du's life and personality pre-series. This is her second mirror moment after she shared the tragic story of her mother's death on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 Episode 5. It was great to hear about her past because it shed light on how she turned to drag and how it brought her to Drag Race.
The same goes for Gigi's life pre-series.
RuPaul's Drag Race has lightly touched on the topic of gender, like the iconic moments when Sonique, Monica Beverly Hillz, and Peppermint discussed being transgender. But, these are discussions that the series should include more of in the future.
Many of their queens don't fit into the same box. Some have come out as nonbinary, like Valentina and Aja, while others are on different journies on the spectrum.
Gigi discussing their realization of being gender fluid is a landmark moment because it could help someone also dealing with the same thoughts. The segment presented a good overview of Gigi's past and how they came to the discovery of who they are.
The runway category was "Frozen Eleganza," so everything was picturesque winter wonderland from the frozen trees to the snow coming down during the lipsync.
My first thought, however, was wondering if Frozen on Broadway was sponsoring the episode? There were plenty of references to the show, the movie, and the lipsync song came directly from the Broadway show. (Hey, I guess it's helping Mama Ru get her coin.)
The standout outfits of the runway came from Jackie Cox, Jaida Essence Hall, Gigi Goode, and Crystal Methyd.
[As Bernadette Peters] There’s no business like show business, so let’s send in the clowns. Oh wait, they’re already here.Jan
Both Jackie and Jaida channeled elegant ice queens that served the heat and the style. Gigi Goode's turn as a bubbly ice cream server is the type of campy outfit that always delivers! It's both simple and high-fashion.
Crystal Methyd's inspiration of a high-fashion Mr. Freeze killed it on the runway!
Pants don't always translate and the outfit could've come across as sloppy/casual, but the look was fitted and had a flair for style. She went for a high-end approach that elevated the theme.
Great job, Crystal!
Compared to this, Aiden's look was too simple. She could've had more fun with the outfit by incorporating a corset or utilizing fake fur to become the abominable snowman.
Widow Von'Du's outfit looked too much like a costume. It's almost as if someone could've worn that to a Halloween party instead of the Drag Race runway.
And, Brita's outfit was just another outfit in her repertoire. The mirror ensemble, while pretty and fashionable, looked like any other gown instead of one designed for an ice-themed runway.
It's not surprising that both Brita and Aiden Zhane ended up in the bottom two. Both queens failed in the Snatch Game and their outfits didn't wow during the runway.
For the lipsync of "Let It Go" by the Broadway cast, Brita easily won it hands-down.
Brita brought the energy, the movement, and she incorporated a magic trick to capture Disney's whimsical nature. Once the song started building up, Brita drew excitement and moves to get the judges invested.
Aiden didn't have much of a chance. She kept it more of a serious tone and her energy stayed at the same level.
It's a shame to see her go, but Aiden Zhane might be a case of a drag queen coming to RuPaul's Drag Race before their time. With a few more years to polish their look and drag aesthetic, Aiden could be ready for RuPaul's Drag Race All-Stars.
Last Thoughts From The Werk Room:
Dahlia Sin might be the cameo nod all season. Her broccoli outfit has now appeared in three episodes.
RuPaul looked so uncomfortable hugging Crystal Methyd in the Werk Room. This was not a Plastique Tiara emotional moment from RuPaul's Drag Race Season 11.
Why wasn't the runway themed after Mean Girls? Both are the judges are from the movie and there is a Broadway musical about it. Major miss!
I don't get why Widow Von'Du wanted to change in Ike Turner. The stunt worked for queens in the past, but the history between Ike and Tina wasn't the most fun.
- Crystal Methyd needs to get out of her head and focus on the game.
Now, over to you, Drag Race fans!
What did you think of "Snatch Game"?
What was your favorite performance of the Snatch Game? Will Crystal land herself in the bottom next? What will Brita say now that she was the one who eliminated Aiden Zhane?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.