Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under, Ru and Michelle made the perilous trip to the southern hemisphere and after two weeks in quarantine, joined Rhys Nicholson on set to join ten of the best Aussie and Kiwi queens. One by one the departed, with Jojo tragically robbed first though winning the honour of being the Down Under Pork Chop.
She was followed by Art Simone, but that meant nothing, because after Coco was felled in Girl Groups, Art was returned to the competition in a pile of trash. Which honestly is how the fandom reacted to the lack of explanation about her return.
Which Anita’s business partner and Elektra’s boss, the lovely and supremely talented – not that Supremme – Kita Mean to take out the first title of Down Under’s Next Drag Superstar. And keep it firmly on New Zealand soil.
While she was overwhelmed by the experience at the start, Kita grew from strength to strength throughout the competition and by the time it came to the finale, there was no other person that should have been crowned.
Which is convenient, since she was.
After taking out victory, I pulled her into my arms and grabbed her by the face and through gritted teeth, told her that she is the most damn talented queen I’ve ever seen and I am so proud of everything she has achieved and I can’t wait for her to take over the world.
And did I mention I love you Kita?!
If that intense display didn’t sink in, I hope that my Turkita Mean Tostadas convinced her.
Inspired by those made by the iconically flavour-packed Half Baked Harvest number, these tostadas are the perfect way to honour a victory. Hot, spicy and layered with creamy, sweet and tangy flavours, they’re damn near perfect. Just like Kita’s run.
Turkita Mean Tostadas Serves: 4-6.
Ingredients extra virgin olive oil 500g turkey mince 1 onion, chopped 400g tinned diced tomatoes 2 chipotle chillis in adobo, finely diced 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 tbsp chilli powder 2 tsp ground cumin salt and pepper, to taste 12 corn tortillas 1 cup Mexican cheese, shredded 1-2 avocados, mashed 1 lime, juiced 1 cup iceberg lettuce, shredded and washed coriander leaves and sour cream, for serving
Method Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Heat a good lug of oil in a large skillet over medium heat and sweat the onions for a couple of minutes. Add the turkey and break up the mince with your wooden spoon until it is cooked through. Add the tinned tomatoes, chipotles, garlic, chilli powder and cumin with a good whack of salt and pepper and cook for ten minutes or so, or until reduced. If it gets too dry, add water in ¼ cup increments throughout the process.
Meanwhile run the tortillas with a little bit of olive oil and place on a lined baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake for five minutes, or until crisped and lightly browned.
To assemble, place a sprinkle of cheese on top of six tortillas and top with the remaining six. Bake for another couple of minutes or until the cheese is melted.
Remove from the oven and plate your cheesy shells before topping with the meat mixture, mashed avo, extra cheese, sour cream, lettuce and coriander.
Like Art before her, I’m not going to dwell too much on Scarlet. I mean, damn Ru, why you gotta have four people left in contention for the crown? It really makes my life that much more difficult.
In any event, Scarlet well and truly stormed through the competition, served killer looks and well, that pole dancing was damn impressive.
That being said, it would be remiss to not say that her well-known past performances were horrible and as a white man, it is not my place to forgive her or accept her apologies. But I do hope that she is genuine about making amends and learning from the this because the world needs growth and healing with those she hurt so stupid, racist shit just stops happening.
Which is what I told her as I sat down and slammed a plate of Sticky Meatball Scarlettuce Cups in front of her.
Like at the end of a good night, there is nothing I love more than sweetly, sticky balls. Combining san choy bow and ramen influences, these babies are earthy, spiced and most importantly, easy. Which is what I like to hear when I’ve got sticky balls.
Sticky Meatball Scarlettuce Cups Serves: 4.
Ingredients 500g beef mince 1 tbsp ginger, minced 4 garlic cloves, minced 1 tbsp chilli paste 225g water chestnuts, finely chopped ⅔ cup panko breadcrumbs 4 shallots, thinly sliced salt and pepper, to taste olive oil ⅔ cup plum sauce 100g vermicelli noodles 1 red chilli, thinly sliced 2 baby cos lettuce, leaves broken off and rinsed.
Method Combine the mince, ginger, garlic, chilli, water chestnuts, breadcrumbs and shallots with a good whack of salt and pepper. Scrunch to combine with your hands and mix into golf-ball sized meatballs.
Heat a lug of oil in a wok over medium heat and cook the balls for five minutes or so, tossing infrequently. Add the plum sauce with a cup of water, stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer until thick and sticky. My two favourite descriptors.
Cook the noodles as per packet instructions and drain well to avoid any drippiness.
To assemble, divide a couple of lettuce leaves on a plate, top with noodles and meatballs and garlic with a few slices of chilli. And then, obviously, devour.
Given Art already had an episode of my love, I’m going to keep things brief.
Art truly is the future of drag.
On top of being funny, filthy and oh so fierce! She was an absolute joy to watch all season, providing hilarious commentary, giving us heartfelt moments and while she never took out a win, I’ve got a feeling that she will have a triumphant run on a future All Stars season.
You heard it here first!
And obviously I told her of this as I pulled her into my arms, cast aside the snag rolls and gave her a fresh bowl of more finalist friendly, Spicy Artichoke Simone Pasta.
Salt, creamy and packing a kick, this very basic pasta tastes anything but! Plus, you can whip it up in sub-twenty minutes – genuinely, Jamie Oliver – which is very important to me as I age.
Spicy Artichoke Simone Pasta Serves: 4.
Ingredients 500g rigatoni 700g marinated artichoke hearts, drained ⅓ cup olive oil 1 lemon, zested and juiced 1 tbsp chilli flakes 1 cup parmesan, grated salt and pepper, to taste
Method Bring a large pot of water to the boil over high heat. Heavily salt and add the pasta before cooking per packet instructions.
While the pasta is gettin’ al dente, place the artichoke, oil, lemon, chilli and half the parmesan in a food processor with a good whack of salt and pepper, and blitz to form a smooth, velvety paste.
Drain the pasta, reserving a cup of the cooking liquid. Combine the cooked pasta with the puree and stir to combine, adding as much liquid as required to make it saucy. Fold through the remaining cheese and again, add more liquid as needed.
When at the desired consistency, serve immediately, top with more parmesan just because and then devour. Triumphantly.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under the top five were tasked with showing off their impressive talents, by way of a talent show. Despite never having pole danced before, Scarlet put on an impressively dangerous show, thankfully avoiding falling from the top and cracking her skull. Elektra meanwhile performed a powerful contemporary dance, but due to her thirsty wig somehow landed in the bottom despite Art’s talent involving her eating things. Which is far more iconic than that sentence gives it credit for. She was joined in the bottom with her boss Kita Mean and despite being the undisputed lip sync assassin of the season, Elektra found herself exiting the competition just before the finale.
Aka as the robbed goddess of the season.
Backstage the girls were thrilled to make it to the top four, with them discovering Elektra was proclaiming Kita as the winner of the season on the way out of the door. Art and Scarlet admitted that they felt Elektra kind of gave up in the lip sync, which felt like it was kind of them trying to be nice about how much Elektra loves Kita rather than saying she couldn’t have won the lip sync otherwise. Hopefully. The girls celebrated making it to the top, though were shady to Art about being eliminated and coming back to the competition. That being said, Art wasn’t bothered and still thought she could take out victory. Particularly since Karen pointed out that Scarlet had half a beard when she snatched her third victory, so anything truly is possible.
The top four jigged back in the next day with Kita still jumping out of her skin with excitement, giddy about potentially bringing the crown home to New Zealand. We were then treated to the girls flashing back through moments of the season before Ru arrived and tasked them with their final challenge of the season, where they would be writing their own verse on the rumix of Ru’s You’re A Winner, Baby. And then, you know, performing it live on the mainstage with full choreography. After a light lunch with Ru and Michelle. The usual.
We were then gagged by Dame Olivia Newton John and daughter Chloe Lattanzi who gave the girls a little bit of advice in a pre-recorded but made to not look pre-recorded message, but who cares given it is ONJ, dammit.
Just like that, the queens split up to work on their verses with Scarlet oozing confidence, while Karen had written two verses, one from her boy self and the other from Karen. Not to be confused with a Karen, since it is a loving verse telling all the eliminated queens that they’re all winners too rather than the poster child of middle aged, white privilege. In any event Art thought the loved-up Karen idea was a shit one and as such, encouraged her to run with it. Kita meanwhile shared that she was going with a heartfelt verse that she was going to sing. Full power ballad style, I assume.
Scarlet dropped by for lunch with Ru and Michelle, praising her mother as the person that has shaped her life the most. She said that being away from her loved ones was the most difficult part of the competition, but her partner organised a pack of letters from home, which she has been opening episode by episode to keep her focused. Ru advised that Scarlet not engage with the comment section and get distracted by the noise and given the backlash, it definitely is good advice for young Scarlet.
Meanwhile backstage Kita, Karen and Art were imitating each other and living their best lives and I love everything about it. And them.
Art excused herself to chat to Ru and Michelle, with her thanking them for giving her a second chance. She admitted that it taught her to let go given she supports everyone in her life, which made Michelle give her a pep talk and tell her that she needs other people to turn around and look after her too. Otherwise she is going to burn out. And ugh, this is why I love Michelle. Ru joined in and suggested that she remember she exists without people needing her and to focus on letting go.
Karen from Finance shared that her deceased mother did work in finance, but wasn’t the inspiration behind her. Talk turned to the pressure of living up to the name of Karen from Finance, given she is an internationally recognised thanks in no small part to how much Trixie and Katya love to talk about her.
We checked in with Art who was still processing the fact that she spends so much time looking after others, which has led to her burning out and not letting people in. She caught up with Karen and they had a really nice chat about freeing themselves and the way the show has made them reevaluate their lives and ugh, I love them both! And well, despite the criticism, proves that this show has still got it.
Kita then rounded out the interview portion, joking about not being shocked that she made it to the end. Though she did admit to getting into her own head throughout the season. Ru and Michelle reminded her that she needs to deal with whatever issues she had which led to her putting on the weight, now that she has lost it. Michelle then told Kita that her need for love comes from trauma, before they let her marinate on what her trauma was and helped her start to work through it. NO JOKE. Did Michelle get a psychiatry degree in lockdown, because she is amazing?! She then fit two jaffas – aka balls – in her mouth and had them in stitches, and please let this be the start of her coronation.
The top four then joined Lance Savali on the mainstage to learn the finale choreography, with Karen admitting that she is well and truly out of her depth. Kita was charming despite struggling to pick up her’s, Art was patting the puss and slaying her sexy choreography, while Karen got the Trixie in All Stars 3 choreography, complete with baseball bat dad dancing. And then Scarlet nailed the entire rehearsal, despite getting the easiest moves.
Coronation Day arrived with Kita sharing how her sisters and he and her brother were split up when her parents divorced. Karen agreed that growing up in a house full of boys was a struggle for her too and how they both needed to let their families in. Scarlet spoke about how she has never met her father as he reached out to her as a teenager but stopped talking to her when she found out that she was gay. Art shared that she had the same story, but loved how her father now has to see her on ads and hear her on the radio given she is famous. Which is an iconic and amazing way to look at things. Talk turned to the dangers of being queer, though all of them agreed that they wouldn’t change anything as that is what has made them strong.
Kita then summed things up, explaining about how much bigger the journey was than she was expecting and was so grateful to make it to the end. And again, please let this be part of her coronation edit!
Ru, Michelle and Rhys took their places for the debut of the Down Under remix of I’m a Winner Baby with Kita coming out looking just like one. She was shimmering in white and sang beautifully, Art was hilarious and charming, dripping in technicolour neon. Karen owned her awkward dance moves though definitely had the weaker of the verses, despite the really sweet and kind message. Scarlet oddly looked a mess, though nailed the choreography and gave a classic finale verse.
On the Best Drag runway Art was beautiful in a teal ball gown fit for a princess, Karen was classic Karen in a shimmering boardroom eleganza. Kita was a gorgeous angel with blue hair, complete with moving wings. And Scarlet was inspired by Princess Grace in a rose gown, looking gorgeous.
The judges lived for everything Art did in the finale, looking stunning on the runway and nailing the performance. Ru praised her as the future of drag and ugh, I love her. Michelle lived for Karen’s Elvis style look in the performance, with them all loving her runway. Kita too was praised for everything she did, with Michelle loving her singing voice and living for how diverse she has been throughout the season. And how she has slayed the entire time (kinda proving her bottom placement was bogus). Scarlet too received universal praise, killing the dance moves and looking stunning in the finale. And then Ru gushed about everything she has done.
Art was first to give advice to her younger self, learning from her chat with Ru and Michelle, telling his younger self to look after himself as well as others. And to wear his fucking retainer. Karen told herself to remember that love will always be in her life and to power through the moments she doesn’t feel it. Cute young Kita was told to grow from her weird relationship with herself but to remember that there is light at the end of the tunnel and know that you have strength to get through anything. Bringing everyone to tears. Scarlet meanwhile cautioned herself to own her mistakes and use them to grow. And that she is worthy of love and isn’t alone.
When it came to laying claim to the crown, Art pointed out that she has been a champion for Down Under Drag her entire career and wants to invest in its future. Oh and just fucking loves drag. Karen said that she is the future of drag and a little bit of coin would really help her grow. Kita spoke about how drag has shaped her entire life and wanted to make Ru proud, as the victorious music started to play. And Scarlet said that she has proven her versatility and won the most challenges and would love to continue to push drag into the mainstream.
We didn’t get to see what went down backstage, but the top four exited as the judges deliberated and then returned to learn that they were required to complete the final lip sync solo, one after the other, to ONJ’s Physical. Which is truly iconic. Scarlet channeled sexy, Karen cleaned her glasses, Kita was filthy and ridiculous while Art was truly polished. But let’s be honest Kita’s sexed up ridiculous performance, complete with rubber gloves to give the judges a literal physical was far and away the best performance.
And thankfully, she rightfully was crowned and we didn’t have to suffer through another Bimini situation!
That being said, the finale really cemented my love for Karen from Finance. She was vulnerable, polished and like Ru and Michelle, I feel the next two years are going to push her further than she could even imagine.
As we sobbed in each other’s arms after I gushed about her performance, I remembered that losing isn’t the new winning and as such, she needed something to sweeten the deal. Which thankfully, is where my Carrot From Finance Cake comes in to play.
Full disclosure, carrot cake is my favourite cake. Most likely because of its pairing with cream cheese icing. That being said, the sight of carrot in raw cake batter is kind of disturbing but work through it. Spiced, moist and fluffy, this truly is culinary perfection.
Carrot From Finance Cake Serves: 8-12, greed dependent.
Ingredients 250g plain flour 2 tsp baking soda ½ tsp sea salt 2 tsp ground cinnamon ½ tsp ground ginger 1 ¼ cups vegetable oil 200g raw caster sugar 200g muscovado sugar 3 tsp vanilla extract 4 eggs 300g carrots, grated and peeled 500g cream cheese, at room temperature 350g butter, at room temperature 800g icing sugar 100g pecans or walnuts, roughly chopped
Method Preheat the oven to 160C and line the bottom of two 22cm cake tins with baking paper and greasing up the edges.
Working with two bowls, combine the flour, baking soda, salt and spices in one and the oil, sugars, one teaspoon of the vanilla and eggs in the other, whisking well to combine. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ones until a smooth batter forms. Followed by the carrots.
Divide the batter between the tins and bake for about 45 minutes, or until springy and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pans for ten minutes before turning out on to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Once the cakes are chill, place the cream cheese, butter and remaining vanilla in a stand mixer and beat for a couple of minutes, or until fluffy. Fold through the icing sugar, and return to the mixer for a couple of minutes or until smooth and velvety.
To ice, dollop a bit of icing on the top of one of the cakes and smooth to form a ½-1 centimetre layer of icing. Top with the second cake and use the remaining icing to cover the surroundings. Decorate with the chopped nuts before placing in the fridge for an hour or so to set.
Then, confusingly, remove from the fridge 15 minutes before serving and then devour.
Previously on Drag Race España the top nine were tasked with serving full diva in a girl group extravaganza. After the two new bands debuted and broke up, the queens paid homage to Veneno on the runway with Carmen and Inti singled out for channeling the icon. At the other end of the spectrum, Vulcano and Arantxa completely bombed the challenge and were read for filth by the judges. Ultimately Carmen took out her first victory, while Vulanco and Arantxa battled to stay in the competition, with Arantxa narrowly saving herself and sending Vulcano out of the competition second.
Backstage the queens were saddened to have lost the iconic Vulcano, well, except for Hugáceo, who was thrilled that Arantxa managed to take out a huge threat for everyone else. Arantxa requested they all buy her dinner as a way to say thank you to her, though I don’t think Carmen will be doing that since she felt Arantxa should have been the one to go home. Speaking of Carmen, everyone congratulated her on the win, well, except for Pupi who was just irritated by Carmen’s passion for looking at herself in the mirror.
The next day Arantxa led the queens back into the Werk Room in a tribute to Drag Vulcano. Except for Carmen and Dovima, who had no interest and were just tributing themselves. Talk turned to how open the race is since they lost two of the biggest names back to back, with Carmen and Pupi kindly suggesting the other one should follow the other names out the door.
Before they could get into a fight, Supremme arrived to welcome the Pit Crew back into our lives for this week’s Mini Challenge. And again, with those packages we all win. Apparently the queens were tasked with doing football quick drag and then competed in a cheeky little sports pageant. Cheeky coming from (or on) the Pit Crew. Arantxa was a mess, but so charming. Killer was a butch monster, Sagittaria was a sweet little twink, Carmen was a stunning woman, Dovima rocked Bob Downe realness, Hugáceo was a thing of nightmares – in the best way possible – Inti was adorably, ridiculous and Pupi looked like a Little Britain extra.
Ultimately Killer Queen took out victory before the group played a quick kick of football on the pitch. Are these the right terms? All I know is that I pitched a tent over the Pit Crew.
For the Maxi Challenge the queens were required to sell themselves in ads promoting themselves as influencers for one of four magazines. While highlighting their skills as singers, models and actresses. As the winner of the challenge, Killer Queen was able to choose her magazine and her partner, opting for Abuela with Arantxa. She then paired Carmen and Dovima on Glamurosa, Pilingui went to Sagittaria and Inti, leaving Pupi and Hugáceo with Chunga. Opting to be kind, and not shady, thinking that is where they will all excel.
The duos quickly split up to work on their looks and brainstorm how to influence within their brands. Killer shared her weight loss journey with Arantxa and how she was bullied throughout her school life and kids used to take photos of her in the change rooms. And then spoke about coming on to the show to encourage people to love themselves. Ugh, I love her. Sagittaria meanwhile wasn’t feeling loved up and instead assumed the duo would land in the bottom because they’ve been doing nothing but talking.
Oh and clearly eavesdropping on the chat, Carmen apologised for leading the anti-ugly brigade the week before and vowed to stop.
On set for their modelling Arantxa and Killer were the most ridiculous old grannies, Carmen and Dovima were in their element as slutty models, Pupi and Hugáceo were sexy, alterna-punk delights and Inti and Sagittaria were the filthiest bimbos I’ve ever seen. When it came to the singing portion, the queens had to lip sync on the treadmill with Carmen and Dovima running through it and popping tits, as the former fell off. Killer and Arantxa continued to lean into their ridiculous, Hugáceo – who also fell – and Pupi looked demented, but the latter got special attention from the Pit Crew so she truly won. Before Sagittaria popped a tit and tried to give fellatio.
When it came to their acting challenge, Hugáceo was a sadist waxer that relished Pupi’s overacted pain. The grannies worked hard to pick up the Pit Crew at the bar – swoon – Inti and Sagittaria were a little bit of a mess as phone sex operators, until Sagittaria stepped in as a mother looking for a good mac and cheese recipe. Which I have, coincidentally. Oh and they got to dance with the Pit Crew. As did Carmen and Dovima who were ridiculous, and kinda bad, after realising that they’re dating the same man. Ultimately becoming a very sexy couple themselves.
On the My Roots runway, Pupi was a glamorous red and black showgirl in honour of Madrid. Inti was stunning in a Diablada inspired look from Bolivia, which was used to scare away colonists. It was bright, bold and so powerful, and I loved everything about them. Arantxa came out in honour of the cheese of her home town – Manchego – but plot twist, she wasn’t actually from Castilla la Mancha and instead had an Iberian Ham reveal beneath it. Hugáceo was once again a flawless work of art,with a heart that literally gave off sparks. Dovima drew inspiration from San Jordi from Cataluna, serving A Knight’s Tale chic and was kind of just, there. Carmen was a sexy pussycat, but to quote Michelle, it is just a bodysuit. While Sagittaria slayed in a gown of dripping, Creme Catalan latex and Killer meanwhile was the good version of the cat look, as a sexy, suited pussy.
The Abeulas magazine ad was a demented delight as the Pit Crew thrusted away in the background before the queens served the creepiest kiss. And well bitch, they died. The judges lived for everything both of the queens did in the challenge and on the runway, however they wished that Killer challenged herself a bit more to get out of her box. Dovima and Carmen’s ad was silly and ridiculous, but they ended up making out only with each other and actually ditched the Pit Crew guy, so big mistake. HUGE. The judges meanwhile wished they were able to showcase a different side of themselves. Though Dovima was praised for growing, the Javier’s wished she would work on her runway walk. As it was a mess.
Chungas magazine was gloriously punk, with the judges living for every minute of it. Though Hugáceo was read for having too much going on in their look. Rounding out the ads, Inti and Sagittaria were hilarious and served us mother daughter bonding over their prostituion careers. Until they fought over their husband/father. That being said, the judges loved everything about Sagittaria but felt like Inti was just there. And that she didn’t have the energy on the runway to sell the outfit. Into then opened up about the meaning behind their outfit, with Ana pointing out that she felt like there was too much happening and while the message was strong, the look was confusing. Though wished it had more detail, confusing the hell out of Inti.
Ultimately Killer, Arantxa, Carmen and Hugáceo were deemed safe and sent to untuck before the judges read Dovima for not giving enough. Pupi was praised for thinking outside the box on the runway and being a damn delight in the performance. Inti was praised for the stories they infuse into their outfits, with Javier Ambrossi encouraging them to take critiques that mean something to them onboard and tune out the ones that don’t, but cautioned they are only trying to help them. And Sagittaria received universal praise for everything she did.
We then forwent Untucked as Inti brokedown and started to get out of her drag and remove her make as the other queens rallied around to try and talk her out of it. But sadly, they couldn’t as Inti shared that she mentally can’t face week after week of being misunderstood and honestly, I relate to that on a deep level. Add to that the pressure of being in a competition and it more than makes sense.
Supremme joined them backstage to try and talk them out of it and remind them it is a fair competition, but it fell on deaf ears. As the top seven returned to the stage, with Sagittaria taking out her first victory of the season, Dovima lip synced alone and Inti was left to join me for a delicious Beetroot & Minti Salad.
Neither of us was feeling very jovial after her emotional elimination, but this salad truly is life affirming. Sweet, tart and packing a massive punch, this is the perfect way to get yourself back in the game.
Beetroot & Minti Salad Serves: 4.
Ingredients 2 beetroot, peeled and grated 1 orange, peeled, segmented and diced ½ cup mint leaves, torn 100g feta, crumbled olive oil, salt and pepper, to taste
Method Soooo, its salad so just chuck it all in a bowl with a lug of oil and a good whack of salt and pepper.
Previously on Drag Race Down Under the final six were tasked with making over six sexy gay rugby players, who upon completion, were well and truly feeling their oats. The delightful wacky Kita finally scored her first victory of the season after slaying the makeover and nailing the family resemblance. On the other end of the spectrum, Scarlet well and truly had a fall from grace and bombed, focusing more on her own look rather than the makeover. Sadly for Elektra, she wasn’t down for the count, however, as Maxi landed in the bottom with her and was tragically felled. Likely only because of her track record.
Backstage the queens proudly toasted their iconic sister, delighted by the fact her signature is made up of giant tits. Thankfully Elektra got to gloriously rip on Scarlet for doing the splits in her lip sync and let’s just say, Scarlet was not happy about having to pretend she wasn’t bothered by the comment. Before she could fully unleash her rage, everyone rallied around to congratulate Kita on her victory, with Karen rightly pointing out that she is really the one to beat at the moment. Talk turned to the need to win a challenge to win the show, with Art looking very attacked by the fact she is the only one left without a victory. But where there is a Velour, there is a way and Art isn’t bothered. Which is why she is an icon.
The next day Scarlet was a little bit more relaxed about being in the bottom last week, though was still annoyed enough to be shady about Art’s second chance. Which we all got over weeks ago, right? Like she wants everyone to get over some of her past performances. Kita shared that she journaled who she thought she’d make it to the end with at the start of the competition, admitting it was the rest of the queens. Except Elektra. Which once again fired Elektra up to remind everyone that she is just as talented as them. Her basic outfits be damned.
The potential drama was interrupted by Ru who joined them to announce that for this week’s maxi challenge, the dolls would be putting on a little talent show for the judges. Which should be the perfect way to showcase all the queens before the finale. Right? As the victor of the last challenge, Kita was able to choose the order in which they will perform and damn, please, be shady as hell. PLEASE.
Scarlet nervously tried to influence where she was placed, before Art suggested Kita sit on it before locking in her decision. With that, they split up to rehearse with Kita prepping a magic act as Art appeared to be doing a work out routine in the background. In the most demented way possible. Elektra was obviously going to dance – despite Karen reminding her she needs to remember to look good while doing it – while Scarlet was preparing a pole dance. Oh and then Elektra quietly pulled Kita aside, begging to be the last performer. Which is also where ameteur Demi Moore in Striptease wanted to go.
Kita pulled the girls aside to lock in the order, going with Karen, Art, Kita, Scarlet and then Elektra. And hot damn, did young Scarlet throw an epic tantrum about it! I mean, it almost rivalled Alaska’s in All Stars 2. Before she quickly pretended to be very unbothered by it as Kita really didn’t seem to care, so instead, she vowed to destroy everyone.
Ru arrived with the iconic Raven to chat with the queens. Elektra was up first, sharing that she plans to do a slowed down dance as Raven began flirting with her and to follow from last week, they should start an Only Fans. Elektra pointed out that she has x factor and can always work on the rest – like her outfits and make-up and well, that is very true. Kita shared that she would be doing quick change magic, with Ru admitting that she hates magic passionately, leaving Raven to give her the pep talk instead. Kita spoke about feeling guilty for winning the week before, with Raven wisely reminding her to get out of her head and to stop second guessing herself. Lest she messes up.
Scarlet got the slutty boots out to talk about her pole dancing routine, explaining how dangerous her inverted split will be. Oh and did she mention, she’d never done it before. And ugh, we know where this is heading, don’t we? Boo. Art outlined that she would be doing a serious commentary on the media, using the second most talented hole on the body – her mouth. Art asked Raven for advice about surviving life post drag race, with she and Ru reminding her to never venture into the comment section. Which is wise. Even for a mild celebrity like me! Oh and Karen will be doing some clown work and making balloon animals. Which, lol. Oh and Ru then shadily pointed out that Karen has started to flatline in the competition which hopefully fired her up to step out of her comfort zone and slay the judges.
After they left, Karen started to panic about delivering a sexy balloon artist instead and spiralled. Driving everyone mental, particularly Elektra who wanted Karen to listen to Ru’s advice because that is exactly why she herself has started to succeed in the competition.
Elimination Day arrived with the queens well and truly stressed out about the make or break challenge. Karen meanwhile had decided to change her act, but didn’t want to talk to anyone and instead focused on getting ready. Which obviously meant that Art continued to talk to her, which I think was her trying to help get her out of her head rather than being shady. Elektra spoke about how confident she was before we took a very hard pivot with Art, who opened up about getting death threats after performing drag Christmas carols on Chapel Street. And how her own cousin made death threats against her because they were jealous that Art was living the life that they wanted before they died by suicide. She then told her sisters that she is always there for them all and fuck, I don’t care if she has no wins, give her the damn crown.
At the talent show Ru, Michelle and Rhys were delighted by Karen’s sexy showgirl turn as she violated all the balloons on their way to making poodles. Well and truly leaving the judges wanting more. Art was bizarre and demented while shoving entire foods into her large mouth without chewing. And I absolutely lived. Kita came out ready to win, serving energy and fire as she slowly did stripper-reveal magic. Which is honestly something you can’t describe. Scarlet meanwhile did her pole dance to the theme of House of Drag, absolutely slaying the house down and thankfully not cracking her skull and bleeding out mid-performance. And then Elektra served a moody, contemporary dance routine and was great. But the vibe didn’t feel like it would be Drag Race enough for the judges.
On the How’s Your Head … Piece runway Karen was stunning as a giant pink poodle, Art was a garden fairy with butterflies flying around her head. Thankfully fake and moving, unlike Asia’s. Kita was a glorious robotic, sexy club kid with a wig of lights. Scarlet was a stunning, shimmering showgirl and Elektra was a Fosse dream, complete with a swing.
The judges lived for Karen’s runway, but felt her talent was good but way too short. The judges lived for Art’s glorious runway and her talent, despite not knowing what she was doing. Kita was praised for her energy, though was read for the bland outfits in her talent. Though they loved her runway. Scarlet received universal praise for everything she did this week, while Elektra was read for not being drag enough in the talent show – see?! – despite being more than ready to appear in Sia’s next video.
Wanting to make things shady, Ru asked the dolls who they each thought should go home tonight, with Karen saying Elektra should go because she has gone as far as she can go and her storyline is already so epic. Which Art, Kita and Scarlet all quickly agreed with, while Elektra suggested it should instead be Art. Given that Art hasn’t grown in the competition. And you know, since she has already been eliminated once.
As the girls Untucked, Elektra was annoyed that they all piled on her but knew that it was the easiest choice. Art meanwhile was unbothered that she was identified as the one to go by Elektra because she just doesn’t really give a shit. Thankfully The Veronica’s arrived to kiki with the girls before Elektra and Kita could delve into the drama. They shared with the girls that Scarlet will definitely win, and Elektra will be joined in the bottom by either Karen or Kita. Talk turned to who they all thought would win the contest, with Art suggesting Scarlet, Scarlet went with Karen, Karen with Kita and Kita with Elektra. Because if she doesn’t win, the judges clearly aren’t looking for talent.
Obviously Scarlet won the challenge, while Elektra found herself in the bottom. Somehow Karen narrowly avoided the bottom with Art, leaving Kita to battle it out against her fellow kiwi. Which is totally rigor morris. But you know, whatever. As The Veronicas’ Untouched got started Elektra pretended to quit before the duo absolutely left everything on the floor and fought for their lives. Hard. Kita was demented and hilarious, Elektra felt every moment. Given their track records though, it was Kita who was ultimately saved as she sobbed while holding her sister in her arms.
Backstage Elektra was the same charming, thirsty star I first fell in love with on House of Drag before pursuing as a lover. While I was specifically looking to marry anyone from New Zealand so I could move there and have Jacinda as my PM, I genuinely well in love with zaddy Elektra. The passion was instant, but I was tragically deported for not being friendly enough to live in NZ and our relationship fizzled out. So it was so nice to once again hold her in my arms and share a loving Tortelektra Shock together.
Cheesy, pillowy parcels of pasta slathered in a spicy sauce of sundried tomato and mushrooms, this is such a simple – dare I say basic – dish, but it tastes so damn good. Just like Elektra … ‘s talent.
Tortelektra Shock Serves: 4.
Ingredients 1 pack gow gee wrappers or portion of pasta dough 300g fresh ricotta 1 egg, whisked ⅓ cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated, plus extra to serve 4 garlic cloves, minced salt and pepper, to taste olive oil 1 cup mushrooms, sliced ⅓ cup sundried tomato pesto 2 tsp chilli flakes 1 cup cream small handful basil leaves, sliced
Method If you’re not being lazy like me, start by prepping your pasta dough.
If going with gow gee, ignore them for the moment and instead focus on the filling. Combine the ricotta, egg, parmesan and two garlic cloves in a bowl with a good whack of salt and a better whack of pepper. Stir until well combined.
To make the pasta, place a teaspoon of the filling in the centre of a wrapper – or a 10cm square of pasta dough – and twist to form a tortellini. Repeat the process until it is all done.
While you get a large pot of water on to boil, heat a lug of olive oil in a medium frying pan and cook the mushrooms for five minutes or until browned and soft. Add the remaining garlic and cook for a further couple of minutes before stirring through the sundried tomato, chilli and cream. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low and keep warm while you cook the pasta.
Once the pasta is floating in the top of the boiling water – because you put it in the water, which I’m only just reminding you to do now – scoop it out or drain and stir through the sauce with the basil.
Serve immediately with a good layer of parmesan and devour.
Previously on Survivor South Africa, twenty brand spanking new castaways were dropped off on the tip of South Africa, with everyone on the Vuna tribe quickly falling in love with Anesu and wanting to align with her. Which, same. While I fell in love with Chappies, for bravely showing us his Chappie. Over at Zamba, Dino put a target on his back after snatching an individual immunity necklace during the marooning challenge, and Shaun and Qieän put one on theirs for looking for an idol. But it turns out none of them were the actual target, as zaddy Jason worked too hard to try and save Shaun from getting booted and as such, found himself booted from the game.
The next day Shaun pulled Renier and Anela aside to apologise for his desperate performance at tribal council, though thanked them for ultimately saving him. Oh and reminded them that Dino is only looking out for Dino. Remember when he went for immunity rather than supplies?! Renier went for a walk and caught up with Amy, sharing with us that they have a very secret alliance going on and they plan to ride it for as long as possible without people catching on to how close they actually are. And just like that, Renier is my favourite.
Over at Vuna Paul outed himself as a Bear Grylls type, with everyone rallying around and praising him for keeping them protected and covered under the shelter. Then out of nowhere Pinty and Carla kinda started fighting, with Carla surmising that Pinty just doesn’t like her and nooooo, I love both of them and this makes me sad.
My love Nico returned for this week’s reward challenge where the tribes would each race out to a cube over water, climb over and inside to retrieve puzzle pieces. And then you know, race back and then use the pieces to solve the puzzle, with the victor getting an epic fishing kit. Paul continued his dominance and got out to an early lead for Vuna while Amy held Zamba up. Side note, Chappies looked like a babe as he climbed the cube in his boxer briefs. In any event, Santoni held them up big time but somehow both tribes managed to be neck and neck on the puzzle. Apparently it was harder than it looked as each tribe tapped out puzzle solvers multiple times, before Zamba slowly started to pull ahead and ultimately snatched victory.
Back at Vuna the tribe was disappointed to have lost, though Chappies reminded them it was bound to happen before Carla suggested it would be good to be humbled at a reward challenge, rather than immunity so they shouldn’t let it get them down. Chappies, Paul, Pinty and Anesu caught up, with Chappies sharing the information about his diplomatic immunity from the previous episode. But that wasn’t the main focus, since we learnt that Anesu doesn’t know whether she can trust Paul and wondered why he was included in the discussion in the first place.
Meanwhile Zambia were all smiles as the tribe celebrated their success, praising Dino for dominating the puzzle component. Though it did make everyone wary about letting him get too far given the number of puzzle challenges towards the end game. Which he realised. Quickly.
Back at Vuna Chappies and Paul caught up, with the former zaddy suggesting they pull in Santoni, given it is very likely that she will be sent to Immunity Island should they lose immunity and as such, keeping her for themselves to give them knowledge. Back at camp, Tyson was trying to run his numbers and was appearing to trust everyone but Mike, which was a feeling shared by Queen Pinty. Anesu meanwhile was catching up with Wardah by the well, locking in their trust with each other and Tyson. They agreed that Santoni is the most likely person going to Immunity Island and as such, she isn’t going to be an option to vote out should it come to it and as such, they need to keep their options open.
Like us, Carla realised it was too early to scramble but did it anyway, chatting with Kiran about how they can protect their ally Mike. And to do that, identified Queen Pinty as the easiest to turn the entire tribe on. Pinty then started a fight with Carla back at camp and ugh, I feel like this isn’t going to end well for one of them. Loving the drama however is Santoni, given it means the target is off her back. For now.
Nico returned for the Immunity Challenge where the tribes raced through an obstacle course carrying heavy bags full of sandbags and coconuts. At the end, they use the sandbags to knock over a table of blocks and once clean, they need to rebuild the logo. Vuna got out to a massive lead as Amy struggled with the see-saw obstacle for Zamba. Then Anela happened, decimating the blocks for Zamba and closing the gap, with Qieän and Dino making the most of his handiwork and throwing the puzzle together quickly, snatching Immunity out from under Vuna.
As predicted, my dearest Santoni was sent to Immunity Island where she was challenged to swing a loop on a rope and try and snag it on a hook for the chance for a clue to a hidden immunity idol. Which she quickly won, learning that the idol is hidden in a log behind the seats at tribal council. Aka this is a great day for my new Queen, Santoni.
Back at Vuna the rest of the tribe were struggling with the weather and relocated to a nearby cave for the night in the hope of staying dry long enough to make it to tribal council.
The next day the camp looked absolutely disheveled as the tribe all huddled together for warmth. But being Survivor, they quickly split up with Tyson and Kiran debating the merits between voting Mike and Pinty. Mike and Carla approached Anesu to float getting rid of Pinty, with Anesu quickly highlighting the duos in the tribe but conveniently keeping herself out of things. She gauged whether they would have enough votes to get rid of Pinty, cautioning them that Mike is likely the target if they don’t manage to flip it.
Anesu and Kiran caught up, with Kiran happy to get rid of Pinty as she is so abrasive with him. She then iconically approached them and made Kiran uncomfortable as she interrogated him, before asking to speak to Anesu alone. Locking Kiran in as a Pinty vote, no doubt. Pinty suggested that getting rid of Mike would mean Carla would be alone and need friends, and would no doubt align with them, unaware that Carla is leading the charge against her.
Back on Immunity Island, Santoni was making the most of her private time, hunting for an idol or clue freely. Which once again, she quickly found, directing her to search back at camp and dig three paces from a scoop or something. And now, Santoni needs to win because she is a damn icon.
Back at Vuna, Anesu caught up with Wardah to talk about the dueling plans admitting that she really doesn’t care which route they go, but if Pinty is abrasive, they will always find a time to get rid of her. Pinty approached Tyson and when it didn’t seem to be going anywhere, she decided to share with him that Chappies won the diplomatic advantage at the fire challenge and as such, now Tyson sees him as a threat. Pinty then went to Chappies and didn’t say anything but convinced him that he can’t trust Mike, unaware he really shouldn’t trust Pinty.
At tribal council Santoni quickly cased the joint for the hidden immunity idol while Wardah spoke about people starting to get irritated by everyone’s little ticks. Carla admitted they might learn they have a black sheep after the vote before Tyson admitted that the mood back at camp was definitely nervous and anxious. Anesu said that being relaxed about the vote generally means you’re out of the loop and as such, they all should be nervous. Santoni then announced that her immunity comes at a price and as such, she doesn’t have a vote.
Chappies spoke about the need to build relationships to make it further, with Pinty agreeing her odds should be ok if she has the relationships she thinks she does. Anesu shared her choice was all about tribe harmony, while Mike was focusing on trusting those that he feels he should and Kiran agreed that he just wants unity. WIth that the tribe voted and my dear Queen Pinty was sadly blindsided from the game.
I was heartbroken that my girl Pints didn’t get a full chance to shine and pulled her in for a hug, which she quickly pushed me out of. Given she is a strong, independent woman and doesn’t want me patronising her with pity. As such, she sat down and we got to reconnecting over a Pintky or seven.
Sometimes the simplest drinks are the tasiests, aromatic, punchy and sweet – this baby is the perfect way to drink away the post-boot blues.
Pintky Serves: 4.
Ingredients ice 1 egg white 200ml grenadine 200ml gin
Method Fill a large cocktail shaker with ice. Top with ingredients and shake like a mo-fo.
Previously on Drag Race España ten gorgeous queens entered the Spanish Werk Room and were quickly tasked with creating a look from trash. After riding uno toro bareback, which is my idea for a glorious Saturday night. The Macarena – who shared her passion with nudity – lacked polish on the runway, while Dovima’s polished look left her unable to walk. Despite flashing a ball on the bull, Carmen was bested by the artistic and glorious Hugáceo. And Dovima managed to lip sync her way to safety as my nude icon The Macarena found herself becoming the Chuleta de Cerdo.
The queens returned to the Werk Room, overwhelmed to have lost the first queen. They then danced the macarena as Dovima cleaned the mirror. Which is the right balance of a beautiful tribute and the ridiculous that I love. Inti was glad to have the weight of The Macarena off her back, while Dovima was just sad to have sent home someone that had supported her. Pupi being the icon that she is called shade on the show of emotion as Carmen kindly gave her a pep talk. Oh and then sweet Arantxa turned the attention to Hugáceo and congratulated her on her victory, before Vulcano shared that she thought Carmen should have won.
Which is deliciously shady.
The next day the dolls were feeling their oats, with Carmen, Dovima and Sagittaria forming a new villainous trio known as the Ugly Busters. Spraying everyone with hairspray and annoying the shit out of them and, sadly, us. The hole in the ozone layer was given a reprieve with the arrival of Supremme for this week’s mini challenge where they had to unscramble words using the letters pulled out of the sexy, super-sized pit crew member’s underwear. As is oft the case, let’s be honest, nobody cares about the words – and Hugáceo was only thinking about cold sores – all that matters is the pit crew are stunning and we get to watch them pull the coloured letters through the mesh sides of their underwear. Mesh, without pixelation. Swoon.
In any event Pupi apparently took out victory despite the fact I personally won, particularly as they started bouncing their junk around. Again, sans pixelation.
With the boys farewelled, the dolls were tasked with splitting into two girl groups and writing and recording a song about being a diva. As the winner of the mini challenge and the last maxi challenge, Pupi and Hugáceo were team captains with Pupi snatching Inti, Arantxa and Dovima for herself and Hugáceo going with Carmen, Sagittaria and Killer, and as the last queen standing Vulcano was allowed to choose her own team. Ultimately going with Pupi and Co.
Team Hugáceo quickly got to work brainstorming names, settling on The Metal Donnas while Team Pupi seemed to be living their best lives and were well and truly embracing their stupid. Pupi admitted that she can’t sing to save herself but assured her team that Killer Queen is definitely worse and will bring her team down more and as such, they shouldn’t worry about her.
Team Pupi were first to record the song with Supremme before she dropped the bomb that they’d also be premiering their song on the main stage with full choreography. After the queens worked past the gag, Pupi kicked off the recording and thankfully was nowhere near as bad as she made out, which is honestly a great strategy in these instances. And then when she added straight porn moans, I was sold. Arantxa meanwhile sounded like she was chanting, Vulcano seemed nervous, Dovima was dirty in all the right ways and Inti seemed to be better than the awkwardness that was coming across. Team Hugáceo was up next with Carmen needing to add more fire to her performance, Sagittaria needing to find the beat, Killer Queen killing it and Hugáceo feeling overwhelmed and then bombing as they couldn’t get out of their head.
Dia de eliminacion arrived with Hugáceo feeling nervous but ready to work her performance and save herself after struggling the record. Talk turned to Carmen taking over leadership of the team at the request of Hugáceo before Killer spoke about how well they worked together. Oh and Pupi, still, was not trusting anything about Killer. Because she has the word Killer in her name. Carmen was confident that The Metal Donnas were far and away the better group, with Five and a Quarter – hopefully something is being lost in my inability to translate – quietly working away in the corner to serve the very best looks possible. As Pupi continued to be a shady icon. And then Carmen and Killer got into a fight.
It all happened very quickly.
On the mainstage Supremme, Ana and the Javiers were joined by the absolutely iconic Paca La Pirana. First up were Las cinco y cuarto, with Arantxa’s verse making far more sense as she slayed the opening like the love child of Katya and Miley Cyrus. Inti was sexy and smart, Pupi was wild and hilarious … on her way to her climax, Dovima was channeling a bit of Miss Fame and then Vulcano looked gorgeous but kind of blended into the background despite being 7 foot.
Las Metal Donnas definitely came out strong with Carmen channelling Shakira and Beyonce’s love child, Sagittaria flipped and splitted all over the stage. And then Hugáceo then had a massive fall from last week, despite looking like absolute perfection. And after that Killer’s energy and rocker look really slayed. See what I did there?
On the Night of 1000 La Venenos runway Sagittaria slayed in a striptease reveal complete with balls pushed up to serve the most realistic fish. Pupi was a flashing delight in a leopard print bandage dress with all the cutouts, Vulcano was stunning in a reveal from a saint to a whore, Inti was stunning in a white mullet altar boy gown before revealing a fishnet and lace dress. Killer Queen was stunning as the sluttiest angel I have ever seen. Dovima was so damn sexy in a red latex bondage madam look, Aranta was channeling Courtney Love in the late 90s in a black bodysuit with shimmering mesh dress over the top. And obviously Hugáceo was a gorgeous sight as she dressed like a straight up superhero, complete with her buns out. And then Carmen stole the show in a red cape before revealing an Eve and the Garden of Eden snake look which was just absolute perfection. Particularly with her buns outs.
Paca praised Inti and Carmen as the most like her friend Veneno, before Sagittaria, Dovima, Hugáceo and Killer Queen were sent back to safety before the judges heaped praise on Pupi for her complete turnaround from last week. She was fun, funny and totally in the game. Vulcano received universal praise for her looks, but not much else. Inti too was praised for her looks, though was read for not giving enough in her performance. She then shared how she knew Veneno and she encouraged Inti to transition and damn, it was beautiful. Arantxa was praised for her charm but was read for having inconsistent energy and not giving an iconic enough Veneno look. And then Carmen received universal praise for literally everything she did in both the performance and the runway.
Backstage the queens were just grateful to be safe, particularly since they thought they would be in the bottom once Hugáceo was grouped with them. They explained how their superhero outfit was a tribute to Veneon. They speculated who would be in the bottom with them all agreeing it should be Arantxa and Vulcano. Just like that, the tops and bottoms joined them with them quickly sharing that Carmen clearly has the win on lock, crying tears of joy in the process. Vulcano meanwhile was annoyed that she was tasked with losing the platforms, despite the other queens not having to ditch their heels. The girls were interrupted by Inti breaking down over the emotion of talking about Veneno and sharing their journey as a trans person. But Arantxa, being a sweet icon, quickly gave her a hug and supported her before the rest of the queens rallied around her to remind them how brave they were to share their story. Pupi admitted that hearing Inti’s story really moved her. While Dovima was annoyed that she couldn’t hate them all like she wanted to.
Ultimately Pupi was sent to safety as Carmen was handed her first victory of the season. On the flipside, Vulcano was enraged to find herself in the bottom while Inti’s killer Veneno look saved herself, and Arantxa found herself lip syncing against Vulcano. As soon as Veneno’s Veneno pa tu piel kicked off it was clear that neither queen wanted to go anywhere, but it was truly Arnatxa’s demented, maliable performance that stole the show as she sold sex while flipping around the stage and tearing off her outfit. As such, when the votes came in it was Arantxa that was saved as my love Vulcano exited the competition.
Thankfully both Vulcano and I were filled with the same simmering rage about the fact she was felled from the competition. I mean, normally I am being talked down but this time, I was able to feel mature as I allowed myself to remind Vulcano that being eliminated is nothing more than bad luck and that she will always be a talented icon. Being a calming influence is nott something I am used to, but I’m glad I was able to put that mood to use and perk Vulcano back up.
Thought maybe that was my Dragfest Vulcanos?
Combining the holy trinity of breakfast items, these little numbers are a kitsch delight that are also a winner when it comes to flavour. A little salty, creamy and spicy, the oozing cheesy egg is the perfect way to start the day.
Dragfast Vulcanos Serves: 2.
Ingredients 3 large potatoes, washed or peeled depending on the variety 6 rashers streaky bacon 5 eggs, whisked ½ onion, finely diced 2 tbsp chives 1 tbsp smoked chilli sauce salt and pepper, to taste 1 cup vintage cheddar, grated
Method Preheat the oven to 180C.
Cut each potato in half and hollow out to form a potato shell, placing them on a lined baking sheet with the larger side down. Wrap each potato with a rasher of bacon and hold in place using some toothpicks. Transfer to the oven and bake for half an hour, or until the bacon is golden and crisp.
While the potato is cooking through, whisk the eggs together in a small bowl with the onion, chives, chilli and a good whack of salt and pepper.
When the potatoes are prepped, add a sprinkle of cheese on the bottom then fill the potatoes with the egg mixture. And then topping with more cheese. Return them to the oven and bake for a further twenty minutes, or until cooked through. Top with remaining cheese and cook until melted.
Serve immediately and devour, happy in the knowledge that Drag Vulcano is an icon.
Previously on RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under the queens found themselves creating and marketing their very own yeasty spreads. Which really exemplifies why people don’t understand the attraction of any and all of the -mites. I mean, who even says, mmm, yeast! That being said Elektra somehow managed to make hers seem appealing, as she slayed the game and proved her doubters – aka Scarlet – wrong. At the other end of the pack, Ru expected more from Maxi while Etcetera went too far but wasn’t funny enough. As such, Elektra earnt her first victory while Maxi and Etcetera battled to survive with the iconic Etcetera going home.
Backstage the queens honoured the delight that is Etcetera, with Maxi admitting that she knew she had to pull out every damn trick she had if she wanted to compete with the whippersnapper. Scarlet was shocked to land high, while Karen from Finance was frustrated that beyond week one, she has been flatlining through the competition. Art tried to perk her up and say that she has a name to live up to, while some of the others don’t have a reputation that the judges are holding them against. Oh and speaking of no name – allegedly – Elektra was feeling her oats and agreed that she far and away had the best commercial. Which led to Art pointing out that they all packed what the packed, so the rest of the competition is going to be what it is. Elektra kikied with Kita and willed a double elimination to get rid of some more Aussies. Oh and she’d love one of them to be Scarlet.
But wouldn’t we all.
The next day the queens were feeling far more friendly, talking about their general horniness and how they’d love a Mini Challenge featuring 100 pit crew members pulling down their pants. Which, same. After briefly trying to set up the revirginized Art and Kita as a lovely drag power couple, they were interrupted by Aunt or Auntie Donna and I don’t actually know who they are, but work. More importantly, Ru arrived and proved Karen is part psychic, wheeling out ten gorgeous men with the queens needing to guess what animal the men are packing in their pouches. In any event, I want all ten of them and my basement is no longer just flooded, there is a tsunami and I’m sorry to all the things that will suffer water damage for the rest of their lives.
I’m not sure if anyone could actually be bothered counting, but Maxi took out victory.
And she didn’t just win a gift card, she also got to pair the queens with their makeover partners from the New Zealand Falcons aka the gay rubgy team of abbsolute zaddies. Again, all six can do whatever they want to me. Maxi first paired Karen with someone that looked pretty similar to her, which she also did for Elektra, Art, Kita and herself, leaving Scarlet with the biggest uphill battle. Though they could pass as a mother and daughter, I guess?
Kita quickly got to work charming her partner, while Scarlet’s partner was adorably excited to try drag for the first time. Karen’s partner had dabbled with his mum’s shoes, Art’s had worn lippy and Maxi quickly realised she had actually picked the biggest battle for herself, despite their resemblance. And oh God, please don’t let it be that storyline where the one that chooses the pairs goes home. Oh and Elektra and her newest family member need to start dating and open an Only Fans – see, I’m cool – because I love them. We then had a montage and while only Elektra’s zaddy could rock a heel, I think this proves rugby players are near perfection. Which, at this point, is all we should care about. Oh and we then learnt that Kita and Scarlet’s partners are dating and damn, why don’t they do an Only Fans while I’m suggesting businesses.
I guess I should talk about the challenge rather than my erotic fan-fiction, so Scarlet and Art were shady about queens not making outfits for their new family members. Though Scarlet felt Art’s custom outfit wasn’t very custom, so was including her in the shade.
Elimination Day rolled around, with Elektra’s daughter worried about having to share the limelight before Maxi finally got confirmation that she would be shaving off her sister’s beard and damn, when it went they’ve got the family resemblance on lock. Elektra and her daughter were bonding over their lives, with him sharing how as a Pacific Islander man he has been taught to try and present as straight and as such, this is so liberating for him to participate and firmly embrace all the colours of the rainbow. Swoon. Meanwhile Art was not sure that Kita was doing enough to take out a win, despite the fact Kita knows that she needs to step out and prove herself. And thankfully, her daughter is ready to take out the win for her.
Karen had half done her sister’s make-up when she realised that Art is only focusing on herself, rather than getting her sister prepped. Scarlet meanwhile was trying to learn her partner’s bone structure, while Elektra was finishing up and teaching her sister as she went. While Art continued to wait for her sister’s eyebrows to dry. Apparently.
Ru, Michelle and Rhys were riding solo for the mainstage runway presentation, with Kita and Feta Mean looking like a Cruella black and white delight as Feta lived her best life. Elektra Shock and ReRe Action were space-age stunning, Maxi Shield and Cilla Wet were dressed as jellyfish and well, it wasn’t great. Art and Craft Simone rocked Priscilla chic and were totally gorgeous, Scarlet and Sapphire were slutty, sexy showgirls but tragically didn’t do the wagon wheel watusi. Karen was joined by Debbie from reception and it was damn glorious.
Kita and Feta received universal praise for their makeover and the fact they gave all of the personality. Elektra meanwhile was read for filth by Michelle, but loved by Rhys. Maxi was praised for bringing the fun, though read for literally everything else. Art was read for the lack of family resemblance, despite them both looking absolutely stunning. Scarlet was praised for being cute, despite her clearly focusing on herself, rather than her sister. Though she got lucky by how damn charming Sapphire is. And despite them all hating the thick glasses, Karen and her sister were praised for the look while Ru wasn’t sure about how much of a transformation Karen produced.
Backstage the queens and their daughter/sisters/I can’t keep it consistent untucked, with Karen leading a toast to all the iconic rugby players. Art and her sister continued to be funny and charming, before Scarlet spun things around to who would be in the top and bottom. Everyone agreed Kita would be in the top, while Karen assumed she would be there with her and the rest would be in the bottom. Since Elektra was read for make-up, Maxi was read for lacking detail, Scarlet was read for being basic – lol – and Art for not bringing family resemblance.
Back on the runway, as if it were in any doubt, Kita took out her first, very well-earned victory of the competition, while Art and Karen were sent to safety. The bottom three nervously awaited their fates, before Scarlet’s track-record couldn’t even save her as she was forced to battle it out against Maxi, as Elektra was sent to safety. The. Gag.
Anyway, from the moment Kylie’s Better the Devil You Know started, Scarlet kicked straight into dancing diva mode, as Maxi stuck with her hilarious and charming approach. While Maxi lived her best life, Scarlet proceeded to strip and sell sex, which sadly proved to be enough as Maxi was robbed on her way out the door. Much to my bitter rage and disappointment.
I pulled Maxi as close to me as her breast plate would allow and hissed into her ear how wrong her elimination was and that she deserved to stay. But being the absolute delight, she had a quick chuckle, told me to calm my farm and get to work chatting. After I bequeath her a Maxi Shiely Temple, that is.
Maxi and I grew up in the ‘80s pubs, living our best lives on a cheeky pink lemonade and climbing trees set over tables while no adults supervised. It was a wonderful time to be Australian. Now that we’re adults, we like to add a bit of vodka to the mix but that doesn’t change the fact that these spiked Shirley Temples aren’t nostalgic AF.
Maxi Shiely Temple Serves: 1.
Ingredients ice 1 tbsp grenadine 1-2 shots of vodka lemonade, to top maraschino cherries, to garnish
Method Fill the glass with ice. Top with grenadine, vodka and lemonade.
Stir. Add a maraschino cherry or two. And down. Like the damn icon herself.
After the longest, darkest off season Survivor is back. No not the Jiffy Pop brand of Survivor but a Survivor, and since Nico my love is super hot, you’re going to buckle in. Whether you like it or not, ok? Because this is Survivor SA.
We opened with my dear Nico, perilously close to a cliff face on the southern tip of Africa, filling me with fear and dread since we’ve all lived through enough in the last 18 months. I mean, that was worse than the Game of Thrones series finale. Anyway, my mood perked up when we met Tyson who is a babe and just like that, I love him. We followed him with Jason who is thrilled to have a homeground advantage being in SA, despite everyone having the same advantage. Though it turns out Amy kinda proved Jason may actually be correct, since she has no idea what to fear IN HER OWN COUNTRY.
Though maybe that is because in Australia, we just assume all bugs and snakes will kill you.
My hair twin Qieän was living for lady Rupert who we learnt is called Santoni. She in turn is scared by how built Marisha is and Anesu was intimidated by a shirtless old zaddy called Shaun. Nicole is looking forward to being underestimated, shirtless zaddy was shirtless so I didn’t absorb much information aside from his passion for backstabbing while sweet Pinty was pumped to be honest – no Queen Pinty. Nico then introduced us to the conceptImmunity Island which appears to be the same as Island of Secrets, which was fun and not overpowered, so I’ll let it slide.
Oh and Thoriso is ready to win, Wardah is ready to practice her mindfulness and Renier is excited to prove himself. And Tyson swung back around to tell us he will win. So I’m going to say he actually will win. As much as I love most of the cast.
The castaways finally joined Nico for an official welcome to the game where Santoni spoke about her weird and whimsical ways and damn, I love her. Tyson again reminded us he is here to win and again, I’ll listen. Until I realised Chappies was showing off his beautiful gams because now he has won something. My heart. Oh and Marisha the strong was charming and iconic, and I feel deep within my waters that I’m really going to enjoy her.
Nico explained that someone will head to Immunity Island after losing an immunity challenge. Once there they will be faced with a challenge offering them advantages and disadvantages. But that is all he was willing to share at this stage.
Nico instead announced that they would be split into two tribes based on random draw with Amy, Anela, Dino, Jason, Marisha, Nicole, Qieän, Renier, Shaun and Thoriso landing on Zamba and Vuna made up of Anesu, Carla, Chappies, Kiran, Mike, Pinty, Paul, Santoni, Tyson and Wardah. Nicole was thrilled to be on the tribe with buff queen Marisha, while Paul was annoyed to be the only buff guy on the weaker looking Vuna tribe. Though Anesu thinks orange is a colour of abundance and therefore, didn’t care. And now, I vote for her to win. Oh and Thoriso was annoyed to be with the buff squad while Amy was thrilled to be with them, as Wardah was loving the energetics of her tribe. And then Jason talked smack about his rivals’ chill ways.
But enough set-up, the tribes were immediately tasked with running into the jungle to grab as many supplies as possible in two minutes. Oh and to make things more complicated, there were two immunity necklaces for each tribe that are good for their first tribal. As they ran off Renier knew not to go for immunity and instead to look out for an advantage amongst the loot, while everyone ran around like mad for the fruit and snacks. While Dino it turns out, was the one to make a run for his tribe’s immunity necklace. And nobody from Vuna snagged one. Dino was thrilled to not become the first boot, though was nervous about what it could potentially mean for his game. Nico then announced that there was also a brown envelope with a tribe advantage in it, but the person had to reveal who they were to receive it. With Renier thrilling his tribe by the fact that he grabbed it, but I can’t help but feel the secrecy may come back to bite him. And you guessed it, I love him.
Particularly since Nico told them that Renier is a game player. Though he did win the tribe camp comfort supplies, so maybe they won’t worry too much.
With that the tribes grabbed their maps and headed off to their camps, ready to start the game. We first checked in with Zamba where Dino was apologising for grabbing the immunity necklace before the tribe went on a group trip through the jungle to get water and to get to know each other. Meanwhile at Vuna they was far more chill about things as they got to work and hanging as a pack, talking about not working too hard and just doing a temporary shelter to get them going. Chappies meanwhile was wooing me as he rubbed two sticks together in his undies to try and make fire.
We bounced back to Zamba where Renier was happy to let other people take a leadership role in the tribe and paint a target on their backs. And given how the tribe grew more and more frustrated as they attempted to build their shelter, Jason girl, you’re in trouble. Well other than Shaun and Qieän who were desperately searching through the supplies for a flint or an idol. Which Amy noticed and immediately reported to Renier, Dino, Jason and Anela. And all of them were thrilled to have a target on someone else’s back. Oh and during the conversation we learnt that Nicole and Marisha were also aligned, apparently.
At Vuna Pinty and Chappie waded in the shores and quickly aligned, Kiran and Anesu aligned in the shrubs due to attending the same university before Kiran roped Carla, Mike and Tyson into their alliance. Oh and Anesu was quick to align with Wardah, given they are both influencers and Wardah thinks Anesu should keep her career as a doctor secret. And then Wardah caught up with Tyson and aligned with him too as Chappies and Pinty tried to recruit Anseu. But let’s be honest the main take away is that everyone wants to align with Anesu. And who wouldn’t because she is now my winner’s pick.
That night Zamba were sleeping under their shelter on the ground while Vuna struggled to stay dry in the rain. Though Carla proved herself to be a damn icon and that truly matters to me.
Zamba woke up dry and comfortable on day two, ready to finish their shelter and make things more comfortable while Thoriso worried about getting herself up from the bottom of the totem pole. As such, she set her sights on Shaun and his brash lack of people skills and turning people against him.
Before she could get to that, treemail arrived tasking each tribe with sending one champion to go and battle creating fire using a flint, with the winner securing a fire making kit for their tribe. Chappies and Jason were each nominated, with Thoriso quickly surmising that by nominating Jason the tribe appear to trust him and as such, she had another target in her sights. In any event, Jason and Chappies joined Nico with the latter trying to intimidate Jason by pretending they already have fire. Which Jason rightly called bullshit on. But more importantly, I think they should date. In any event, both of the boys were quick to get a flame but Chappie ultimately smoked the competition and secured reward for his tribe.
Oh and then Nico gave them diplomatic immunity, meaning both of them now have the power to mutiny from their tribe after losing immunity but only before the merge. Which could be really interesting.
Back at camp Chappies was quick to share his victory with the tribe though wisely kept quiet about his power to defect, should he need it. While Mike pondered whether something else happened at the challenge, Chappies invoked Zaddy John and got naked and ran into the water as a dick-straction. So basically, I love Chappies and would die for him. Meanwhile at Zamba, Jason was heartbroken to have lost and he too kept his mouth shut about his immutinity. Queen Thoriso meanwhile was frustrated by the fact the loss won’t really change anything for Jason and right on cue, he wandered off to align with Shaun.
That night at Vuna, the tribe joyously gathered around fire and basked in the warmth and victory as they roasted their veggies.
The next day Nico returned for the first immunity challenge of the season where the tribes would swim out to retrieve rope rungs from buoys before using them to build a rope ladder to get to a second level of a tower where they would need to solve a rope ladder puzzle and then venture to the top floor and wait wait wait, I’ve missed this, solve a puzzle. Renier got Zamba off to a slight lead over Chappies, which Paul quickly closed as Jason was felled by knots. Vuna continued to hold on to their lead, building their ladder while Zamba desperately tried to close the gap. Until Santoni struggled and the tribes became neck and neck. Zamba got their start on the second ladder first, getting to the final level while Vuna languished on the second. But then the puzzle happened, as Vuna smoked them and snatched the first immunity thanks to Queen Anesu. As Dino begged Paul to save him and send him to immunity island.
Sadly for him, the tribe went with my Queen Thoriso. Which is the only answer I was willing for them to make.
We followed Thoriso off to Immunity Island where she learnt that she had earned immunity for herself, as well as food, shelter and fire. But obviously there was a cost, where she could face a challenge for another advantage and risk losing her vote at the next tribal. Though if she doesn’t play, she has to return to the tribe and hand over the immunity necklace to someone else. Obviously she opted for the challenge and got digging in a sandpit to find a red ball within a couple of minutes, which she sadly failed at and ended up losing her vote.
Back at camp Shaun was annoyed by Dino trying to align with the other tribe while Amy languished over being the reason they lost the challenge. Dino acknowledged that he was trying to woo the other tribe and Rinna it (aka owning it) to his advantage. Thankfully for him, Amy, Nicole and Marisha didn’t care as they desperately wanted Qieän gone first and were willing to join him. Meanwhile Jason and Anela – aka Smash – were catching up about who best to target and focused on the scramblers, which made Jason nervous given he is aligned with Shaun. In fact, it made Jason so nervous while trying to protect Shaun that Anela started to think Jason needed to go.
Shaun meanwhile was busy searching everywhere for the idol.
Renier joined Jason to talk plans and while they were aligned, Renier grew nervous about Jason’s unpredictability. And immediately got to work turning the vote on Jason. The girls quickly got on board, but only if Smash was willing to join them. Then Jason and Renier spoke to Dino about the vote, with Renier earning icon status by pointing at Jason to let Dino know to vote for him. While Jason was confused as to why he was holding his hand up the entire conversation. Meanwhile Shaun was desperately trying to get Anela to protect him, surmising that since nobody has given him a name, he is clearly the name. Which really upset Qieän, given it was a sign that she will be an early boot.
At tribal council Thoriso rejoined her tribe, completely unaware that even without immunity she would have been safe tonight. Shaun spoke about the nervousness caused by the backstabbing of the previous day as people were looking to build their alliances. Jason spoke about the beautiful friendships they are already forming, before Shaun cut in to tell them that friendship is nothing and they need strength to make it to the merge. Amy spoke about focusing on trust as her deciding factor while Shaun continued to try and cut in, this time talking about working hard and being above board with everything. With Anela cutting him off to point out the target was on his back because he was searching through the food for an advantage.
Shaun said he was actually trying to find bad fruit to dispose of it before it ruins the rest of their food. Shaun told them that if they felt he had an idol, they should have gone through his bags or at least asked him. Because that is how you build trust. Thoriso was thrilled to have immunity amongst such uncertainty, while Shaun pointed out that he would always be the target. And then instead opted to remind everyone that Dino is trying to build bonds with people on the other tribe. Thankfully that was brushed over as Thoriso was forced to announce that she doesn’t have a vote at tribal, which didn’t bother Jason because one vote doesn’t really matter should you have the numbers.
Which he tragically learnt he didn’t as he was blindsided – genuinely, I might add – as the first boot. Much to the shock and delight of Shaun, who didn’t receive a single vote. He was gutted but delightful, given he is such a babe and as such, I was thrilled to fill me, hard, to the brim with some Jason Porkstein Chow Mein.
Spicy, sticky and oh so sweet, these noodles are near perfection. A little bit of hit, full of fresh veggies and packed with my other other favourite white meat. Noodles and stir fry are always a winner, particularly if you’re the first boot.
Jason Porkstein Chow Mein Serves: 4-6.
Ingredients 5 garlic cloves, crushed 1 tbsp minced ginger ¼ cup shao hsing ⅓ cup oyster sauce ¼ cup soy sauce ¼ tsp ground white pepper 1 tbsp vegetable oil 500g pork mince 1 onion, sliced 1 red capsicum, sliced 400g tin baby corn 1 cup snow peas, trimmed 2 tbsp minced chilli 440g fresh chow mein noodles 1 cup wombok, sliced 4 shallots, sliced green
Method Mix the garlic, ginger, shao hsing, oyster sauce, soy sauce and pepper together in a jug and leave to rest.
Place a wok over medium-high heat and add half the vegetable oil and quickly stir fry the mince until cooked through. Add half the sauce and cook until sticky and browned. Transfer to a bowl to cook.
Heat the rest of the oil in the wok and add literally everything but the noodles, wombok and shallots. Stir fry for a couple of minutes and then add the remaining ingredients and cook for a few minutes.
Remove from heat, serve immediately and devour. Joyously. Because a Survivor is back and Jason is as gorgeous as a stir fry.