‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ season 15 episode 12 recap: ‘Wigloose: The Rusical!’

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” season 15 continued on March 17 with the next step in the competition toward discovering “America’s next drag superstar.” Last week, the queens stood on stage in pairs for a stand up comedy challenge. In keeping with the spirit of iconic duos, both Luxx Noir London and Loosey LaDuca were named challenge winners and Marcia Marcia Marcia was asked to “sashay away” following an impressive Lip Sync for Your Life against Anetra.

This week, the final six combined their dancing and acting talents to perform in the topical off-off-off Broadway show “Wigloose” about the cultural value of drag. Seated at the judges’ dais for episode 12 titled “Wigloose: The Rusical!” was Emmy winning host RuPaul Charles, longtime bestie Michelle Visage, judge Ross Mathews, and music artist Orville Peck.

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The seven queens still in the competition are: Anetra, Loosey LaDuca, Luxx Noir London, Mistress Isabelle BrooksSalina EsTitties, and Sasha Colby.

Check out our full recap of episode 12 below:

Following Marcia’s elimination, Anetra was proud to have shown once again how strong of a performer she is, but had her sights set on earning a second maxi challenge win of her own. At this point, Salina EsTitties was concerned that she was the only queen left without a challenge win to her name, but she knew the focus should be on advancing to next week, with or without a win.

The next morning, Ru joined the queens in the Werk Room to present the details of this week’s maxi challenge. Set in the 80s in a small fictional town where drag has been outlawed, “Wigloose” was the new musical that the queens would perform in to show off their singing, dancing and acting talents. Instead of assigning roles to the queens, Ru gave them authority to choose among themselves. Right away, Mistress Isabelle Brooks asked to play Preacher Teacher and no one contested so we got that role. Everyone agreed that Anetra could play Mama Bacon and Sasha Colby could play Carl. Both Loosey and Luxx wanted the lead role of Heaven Bacon, leaving Salina comfortable with her first choice of Christian.

Loosey and Luxx went back and forth insisting that they’re better fit for the role of Heaven, but Mistress jumped in to mediate. While Loosey was saying that she connects to Heaven the most, Mistress and Luxx wanted Loosey to admit that she actually just wants the lead role because realistically she’s more like the role of Tuck. Loosey took offense to the accusation that she’s lying about her reasons for wanting Heaven, so when Loosey flared up Luxx decided that she’d concede Heaven to Loosey. From there, Luxx asked Salina if she can do Christian and if Salina will do Tuck and they agreed.

To further prepare for their performances, Ru returned to the Werk Room later to check in with each of the queens. Ru was surprised to hear that Sasha volunteered for the role of Carl, but liked that she was willing to take on the unexpected role and show a different side of her abilities. While this was going on, Loosey was touching base with Salina by apologizing for her outburst earlier and Salina lent her a shoulder to vent on. Salina pointed out that the other girls are just trying to get her to crack and then let Loosey cry on her shoulder about what it felt like for her growing up and being bullied.

Anetra told Ru that she relates to the role of Mama Bacon because of the tenderness she has about how drag saved her life. Anetra opened up about how life-changing it was for her to attend her first DragCon and finally feel surrounded by a supportive community. Salina also attempted to articulate her connection to the character of Tuck, but Ru picked up on the anxiety swirling in Salina and asked her to take a breath and believe in her power that got her to the top six.

Later, the queens hit the Main Stage to learn choreo with Miguel Sarate. He told them he’s looking for energy, personality and their ability to sell their character and the rusical even if they’re not trained dancers. Loosey was excited for the challenge as an opportunity to show the other girls her talents on stage, but when she was learning her choreo the impression was that she was too “studied” and she was not fluidly moving. Someone who has already shown their abilities on stage is Anetra, but Miguel was concerned with the slow pace at which the moves were clicking for her. Mistress said she hates choreography and that showed in her slow learning on stage, insisting that she’ll work on it through the night despite her hesitance during rehearsal.

While the girls got ready for the show, they discussed the current state of affairs with the protesting and laws against drag performers sharing their art form at bars and family-friendly events. They explained that the backlash is hard because on one hand they want to be out and proud about their lives, but out of a sense of safety they know to sometimes minimize their identity in certain environments. Sasha made a really good point that people are threatened by drag queens reading books to kids, when in reality the community pushing an agenda of sexuality and gender identity on kids is actually the technique of a heteronormative mindset that is asking kids at young ages whether they have boyfriends or girlfriends yet or putting little boys in shirts that say “Ladies Man” on them.

On the Main Stage, the queens performed in the world premiere of “Wigloose.” The show opened with a solo from Mistress as the conservative, God-fearing teacher followed by a duet from Luxx and Salina as the secret queer kids from the classroom bringing Loosey’s character in on their secret. Loosey had her solo after that which transitioned in to drag showcase later that night where Anetra’s mom character performed a ballad about the important value of drag. Sasha’s old man character Carl came out in drag at the showcase as the final step toward reminding Mistress’ character that she, too, used to love drag.

On the runway, the queens walked in the “Everybody Say Glove” category. Loosey had a 50s style swimsuit inspired by a sea creature with webbed globes, Anetra went with a rave look that had blue leather gloves with lights in the palms of them, Mistress impressed in a glamorous yellow gown with full arm gloves dripping in jewels, Luxx dressed like an emo teen whose gloves were actually two broken arms casted, Salina wore a red and purple jumpsuit with oversized red hands, and Sasha created a standard outfit made entirely out of antique leather baseball gloves.

In their critiques, the judges agreed that all six queens were outstanding in the rusical. Orville loved Loosey and Michelle thought the work she did was “very professional” and she called her runway look “cute.” Ross told Anetra that she didn’t have the biggest part in the story, but she took her one moment and ran with it by creating a truly emotional take on it. The judges also liked Mistress in the rusical, but it was her elegant runway look that had them most impressed. Orville told Luxx that she had the best runway concept and Ross said she, too, made the most of a tiny part by connecting with the character so authentically. Michelle appreciated that Salina was able to take on a role in the rusical that was so different from her, but Ross pulled back on her runway outfit because of the distracting jumpsuit. With Sasha, the judges echoed Ru’s sentiment earlier that it was a smart move of her to take the least expected role because the risks she’s taking are paying off.

Before further deliberation, Ru wanted to know from each of the queens which of their peers should go home this week. Loosey and Anetra both threw Salina under the bus, basing their opinions on track record. Salina was not pleased to hear this, particularly from Loosey who she supported earlier in the episode. Mistress named Sasha as her biggest competition and said she should go home. Luxx gave compliments to all the queens individually, but then said that Loosey delivers the least unique perspective in her drag and that’s why she’d send her home. Salina took a shot back at Loosey, saying that she offers nothing new. Sasha went the Mistress route, saying that Luxx and Loosey are her biggest competition so they should go home.

In rendering her decisions for the week, Ru gave safety to Mistress, Luxx and Sasha. From the remaining three, Anetra was declared this week’s challenge winner, leaving Loosey and Salina as the bottom two. In their LSFYL battle to “Running Up That Hill” by Kate Bush, both queens emphasized the drama of the song and used their gloved looks for two armography-focused performances. From the back of the stage you could hear Mistress cheering on Salina, saying “Come on, Salina, eat her up.” Neither queen gave much to differentiate their take on the song from the other, but with it being Salina’s fourth time in the bottom it was fair for Ru to send Salina home and give Loosey the win in the head-to-head.

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