The time has come to watch RuPaul’s Drag Race online live stream this week, and for some fans, it might be the last chance Season 9 gets to keep them on board.
A series of bizarre challenges — including one reflecting the dark days of America’s Next Top Model where competitors had to create a fairytale princess’ animated sidekick — seem to have thrown off the talent present on Season 9, sometimes literally. Who could be more fun to watch on Snatch Game than Charlie Hides, a queen who has made his name on irreverent impersonations of Lady Gaga, Lana Del Rey, and the Kardashians? The London-based queen didn’t even make it to last week’s uneven Kardashian musical episode.
It’s a criticism that might ring familiar for the powers that be behind RuPaul’s Drag Race. During Season 7, the online response was also extremely critical. As a strong batch of “look” queens stayed on, challenges often focused on acting chops — leaving a limited pool of talent to pull off scripts that were already stale. “Shakesqueer,” a high school comedy based on works by William Shakespeare, is often cited as the worst episode in Drag Race history.
The online stream of Drag Race’s Snatch Game episode this Friday could well be the test that reveals if producers have made the same mistake. RuPaul has hosted a total of 11 seasons of Drag Race, including All-Stars, so the bar is rather high. Here are 10 of the best Snatch Game performances for you to watch online before tonight’s new episode.
10. Sharon Needles
Sharon Needles was downright nasty compared to the previous queens on RuPaul’s Drag Race, and her ballsy impersonation of judge Michelle Visage cemented that reputation. Even Visage herself admitted it was hilarious, even if some of those cackles probably got under her skin.
The first great Snatch Game performance, created long before queens knew in advance that they would have to come prepared with a convincing yet off-the-cuff celebrity impersonation. Tatianna gives both of those things here, and most viewers agreed that she was actually better than the Britney Spears offered by Derrick Barry, who impersonates the pop singer professionally in Las Vegas.
8. Bianca Del Rio
RuPaul loves Judge Judy herself, which put Bianca on the spot for the first time in her nearly flawless run through Season 6, but if there was ever a perfect character for someone to play on Snatch Game, it was the acerbic Bianca Del Rio as Judge Judy.
7. Katya Zamolodchikova
Who doesn’t want to see Katya do Bjork? A lot of Drag Race fans undoubtedly thought “Duh” when they started to watch this Snatch Game. As one off-the-wall personality imitating another, it was one of the popular queen’s best moments from the series.
6. Adore Delano
Adore had a rough start on Season 6, landing close to the bottom in the first few episodes and feeling the need to prove herself. That opportunity came in the form of Snatch Game, where her Anna Nicole Smith sealed her position as a top contender.
5. Bob the Drag Queen
She couldn’t just pick one, so Bob the Drag Queen did both Uzo Aduba and Carol Channing. While it could have easily come off as a gimmick, it instead just showed how much Bob had to offer.
4. Chad Michaels
Chad is a legend for his Cher impersonation, so much so that he’s been mistakenly photographed by the press thinking it was her before. While it’s true is a consummate professional from start to finish on this Snatch Game, she clearly didn’t rest on her characterization being the most developed. Instead, she pushed it further with three outfit changes and some of the best one-liners of the evening.
Season 6 was the tightest Snatch Game on a non-All Stars season of Drag Race, and it doesn’t seem to be getting unseated anytime soon. Yet even against the formidable competition of Adore and Bianca, Ben absolutely obliterated his competition here.
2. Jinkx Monsoon
Jinkx Monsoon reinvented Snatch Game on Season 5. The bar was forever set just one tier higher, not only for a dead ringer impersonation of the subject but for choosing someone with more depth to them than some reality show one-liners.
1. Alaska Thunder**k 5000
Alaska came into All-Stars the favorite to win, but she sealed her victory during Snatch Game. Her Mae West is the most flawless performance in Drag Race history. Like Jinkx before her, she likely introduced her character to a large portion of the fan base, a risk that doesn’t pay off for everyone, and will continue to be who they associate Mae West with in the future.
[Featured Image by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images]