‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Season 5, Episode 4 Recap: “Black Swan: Why It Gotta Be Black?”


In the world of reality TV, just as it seems like peace is breaking out, another conflict is ready to rise to the surface. Coco Montrese, who got in hot water last week for admitting that her feud with Alyssa Edwards was “distracting,” shocked everyone by picking Alyssa first to be on her dance team and even complimenting her rival on her dancing. But then, of course, tensions flared up between Vivienne Pinay and Roxxxy Andrews during a challenge that entailed performing a “ballet”that reenacted major moments in Ru’s life. The heat was on this week, and it’s only going to get hotter as more queens are eliminated.

Prima Diva: Roxxxy Andrews

Roxxxy did well in last week’s challenge, so much so that Vivienne felt that she was overshadowed. In a way, she’s right: being a queen isn’t all about being loud. One must also exercise grace and learn to balance with one’s teammates. Roxxxy, who loves showing skin and is not shy with the makeup brush, may need to tone it down in a few places (while being more energetic in others) in order to stay in the judges’ line of vision.

Faded Out: Vivienne Pinay

The judges urged her to step up her game and be louder and more creative with her look and performance, but in the end, one of the prettiest queens was just too low-key to capture anyone’s attention. To no one’s surprise, she was voted off this week. But, wait! There’s a twist…

Sweetly Preserved: Honey Mahogany

Like Vivienne, Honey is beautiful, but she’s also a reserved dancer and wears the same caftan and Afro wig every week — even her color scheme tends to stay the same. A queen must love her body and feel fully comfortable with herself. Honey just doesn’t seem ready in that respect, so BOOM — she was booted off too, making Drag Race history for the first time two contestants have been eliminated in the same episode.

Shade Jolie: Jade Jolie

If the queens had to agree on something, it would probably be to ax Jade, who takes it personally every time she isn’t picked for the team she wants and gives everyone major attitude. While she wasn’t in the bottom two, her sore loser personality is rubbing everyone the wrong way, and if she doesn’t get it together, she may be kicked off the show… and not missed.

Twirling With Fire: Coco Montrese

Coco went a full 180 since last week, picking her sworn enemy as her teammate. That takes serious soul-searching and a desire to win, and the two used their fire to dance a White Swan/Black Swan routine that stole the show. The risk definitely paid off, and Coco proved she won’t be leaving the competition so easily.

Dancing Queen: Alyssa Edwards

It takes two to tango, and Alyssa also put aside her past beef with Coco for the sake of the competition and ended up winning the big challenge by leaps and bounds, playing the Black Swan. This beauty has incredible rhythm and the ability to move on when necessary, both of which are key assets to getting the gold.

Saving Face: Alaska

Alaska may have struggled with her dancing this week, but her expressive face and great opening to the show as Ru’s mother made her safe this week while leaving a lasting image in the audience’s mind.

Fiercely Crafty: Ivy Winters

Ivy Winters also had difficulty with her rhythm, but her handmade Lady Bunny costume and enthusiastic performance showed that she can distract and wow her viewers with her other talents — which, one must admit, is crafty on a multitude of levels.

All Glammed Down: Jinkx Monsoon

Jinkx gave us a fiery performance as Ru and wore an absurd and creative headpiece on the runway, but the judges are waiting to see a softer side to her (here’s where a touch of Vivienne would come in handy.) Will this quirky queen be able to clean herself up and don the crown?

In Need of Schooling: Lineysha Sparx

Lineysha was pretty unmemorable this week, except for when she said she didn’t know who Diana Ross was (despite having to play her in the ballet.) Oh, honey, no.

Enough for Two: Detox

Detox may not have taken her usual place in the spotlight this week due to all the drama, but she did prove to be a worthy competitor once again in compensating for her dance partner Honey Mahogany’s lack of energy by bringing out a lot of her own. Werk.