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Rupaul’s Drag Race Down Under Series 1 Episode 4 Recap

The queens are asked to transform trash into treasure in a design challenge.

Rupaul's Drag Race
Credit: World of Wonder/BBC Three

Welcome to our weekly look at what has been going on in the Werk Room and Main Stage of Rupaul’s Drag Race Down Under.

If you want to avoid spoilers for Rupaul’s Drag Race, stop reading now.

Last week, we saw the queens forming two girlbands, writing and performing verses for a new track called ‘Queens Down Under’. It saw Elektra up against Coco in the lip-sync; neither’s first time in the bottom two. In the end it was Coco who sashayed away.

Following the eviction and as we start this week’s episode it’s clear that Elektra is confused what she needs to do to win over Ru and the judges but Etcetera and Scarlet are only to glad to point out her flaws! The bitchiness in this season continues.

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As Ru entered the Werk Room, he ushered in the Pit Crew who pushed in a skip full of unwanted stuff. It was soon explained that this week’s challenge was a design challenge, transforming someone’s trash into a runway treasure. But wait…the trash is moving….suddenly out popped former evictee Art Simone and Ru explained that like other peoples’ trash, Art also deserved a second chance.

Some queens genuinely looked please to see her back but others were clearly as confused as I was. As I waited for more of an explanation as to why she was back, it unfortunately never came. It just appears that Ru has decided that Art should be back in the competition. To be fair I suspect she will bring more polished looks than a lot of the other queens, but she wasn’t very likable last time and it does seem very unfair on those still remaining. Maybe she would fall foul of the returning queen curse and be going home before the end of the episode?

As the queens got to work on their outfits, Ru came in to talk to some of them individually and Elektra asked for some advice from Ru after telling him that she planned on having a kangaroo hunter outfit. Ru’s face said it all and soon Elektra was back to the drawing board, but not without Ru stirring the pot by asking last week’s winner, Scarlet, what advice she had for Elektra. The shade commenced!

Another interesting choice was Karen who decided she was going to create a character based on a woman who was caught trying to smuggle weed into Bali. Again, Ru’s face should’ve told Karen to rethink but she didn’t.

Anita seemed to be struggling on this challenge with the conceptualising and sewing parts and in the end went down a well-done route of book pages and unraveled video tape.

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Later, Etcetera opened up about her struggle with feeling like she wasn’t in the right body and now identifies as non-binary. The other queens all offered their support.

As the queens hit the runway, Rupaul, Michell and Rhys were joined in the studio (hoorah no zoom guest!) by ‘Rurangi’ actor Elz Carrad. All of the looks felt solid to me but I was most impressed by Maxi’s Vivienne Westwood style look made from shopping bags.

Elektra surprised with a classier look (clearly she heeded Scarlet’s advice in the end) made of ties. Kita’s look was very campy and fun with plastic balls everywhere; Art went Marie Antoinette; Scarlet and Etcetera both served retro Hollywood glamour.

As the queens lined up for their critiques, Ru asked Kita and Elektra to stand forward and for a horrible moment, I thought this could be the bottom two. Luckily these two queens were told they were safe and left the stage. That left six queens as the usual tops and bottoms of the week.

After deliberating, Ru called three queens’ names – Art, Maxi and Scarlet – and then told Scarlet she was this week’s winner and the other two were safe. Then she told Etcetera that she was also safe, leaving Karen and Anita in the lip-sync. Karen’s look was super basic and she had chosen to create a character rather than make a runway look so she did deserve to be in the bottom. Anita however, I actually liked the look despite it having been done better in previous series, but then again I’m not sure who else deserved to be there.

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In a bizarre ‘why didn’t you use this song in the week you had two Minogues guesting’ moment, this week’s lip-sync was set to Dannii’s ‘I Begin To Wonder’. It was quite a weak lip-sync starting quite slowly and although it improved it just felt a bit pedestrian. Karen was better at the actual lip sync and Ru clearly thought the same as she saved her and sent Anita home. It’s a shame as I didn’t want either of these queens to go before we’ve at least seen them in a comedy challenge, but someone had to go.

Next week the queens have to create their own brand of yeast paste or at least that’s what the trailer suggested – everyone in Australasia loves Vegemite right?

Rupaul’s Drag Race Down Under is on BBC Three every SundayWatch on iPlayer.

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