Reaction Journal: RuPaul’s Drag Race S1 Ep 5

Disclaimer: I don’t have a prior knowledge of the history of ‘drag’ and its culture and I’m only bringing in my limited knowledge of reality TV shows particularly America’s Next Top Model so apologies in advance. Timestamps for scenes and snippets of conversations have been included so if you want to read ahead, make sure you are also watching RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix.

Workout Mini Challenge

Ru has introduced real women to the remaining contestants and all of them have to go through this workout routine. The women make it look easy and from my experience in bodycombat and marathon, to be honest, it does not look that hard. I attribute the contestants’ reaction to editing, of course.

I’m surprised that Nina does not win this round because she appears to have toned guns but Rebecca wins this challenge and is given the chance to choose her makeover partner whom she has to turn into her “female version.” This gives her the upper hand as she can easily determine who among the female fighters has her similar features.

Makeover Challenge

I have to agree with the ladies that Rebecca definitely has a motive in choosing their partners but, hey, it is a competition and they would have done the same thing in her place.

This episode shows how other people perceive the contestants-this is what I prefer to believe- more than their ability to make over a group of female fighters. Some of the lady fighters want to represent the drag queens very well and some… some just don’t take instructions just because their drag queens say so.


I think Shannel deserves to win this challenge as her partner, Swepee has the biggest transformation among the other contestants. Bebe has put her own cultural interpretation into the challenge but I do think, but her partner Michelle, has not changed much apart from the clothes. They both look gorgeous though. Personally, I’m not a fan of how Nina has transformed her lady fighter, Mia. It looks like a taller version of her, but I’m just not a fan of the style. As for Ongina and Jarrett, apologies to the Ongina fans out there, but Jarrett definitely outshines her on the runway.


Rebecca wins today’s episode even though Shannel has done better. Ongina and Bebe have to battle it out in the lip synch challenge and eventually Ongina is sent home.

My Reaction

Ru has made a terrible choice giving Rebecca, again, the upper hand. The instructions have been to make over the lady fighters into a real life female version of the drag queens. In that case, wouldn’t Shannel have won instead? Even the flamboyant accessories speak for Shannel. Nina’s partner also looks like Nina as well to a certain degree. What Rebecca has managed to accomplish is to make her partner wear a wig and a dress that all of the contestants have done with their partners.

Prex J.D. V Ybasco

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