Natalia Pliacam Wins Drag Race Thailand Debut Season In A Close Sprint To The Finish

dragracethailand-5Drag Race Thailand is over, and what a finish. We’re going to break from the usual review format for this episode and tackle it more like editorial style … meaning, opinions will be made but factual. Why? The last five minutes of the show didn’t do justice to what they’ve been building week after week. We should be able to disagree on certain things and not just blindly accept what what we see. It won’t change the outcome but some things just needs to be said. So let’s do this.

Disclaimer: None of the situation discussed here are made up. Watch the ninety-minute finale for receipts. This is by no means a personal jab at anyone, just an opinion based on what was aired. So don’t take it personally. On the same token, we also need to put passion in what we do, so expect some fiery statements… be-because… passion! This is our longest review/recap yet about anything. And it only took three days to conjure.

Art Arya, Front And Center

Let’s start with the obvious, the title. Since episode one, host Art Arya played the role of the soft-spoken, reserved, wise and gentle mother who nurtured the contestants, facilitated the judges’ critiques and served as the cohesive force that kept the ball rolling. And when the situation calls for it, she throws sharp gentle reads with an accompanying apology. Her proper lady character is a great balance to co-host Pangina Heals’ extra, loud (in a good way) and fiery personality (pun intended) … who casually spits out cuss words and sometimes get a little extra physical. She single-handedly made saying “fuck” fashionable again on television. They’re the perfect Yin and Yang which makes for great television. Up until mid-season, it felt as though Pangina Heals was eclipsing Art Arya. Then came the finale, and all a sudden, Art Arya was throwing reads (albeit, filtered) that made Bianca Del Rio look proper. All Pangina did, aside from the opening act (more on that later), was stand beside her and react. The 8th episode should’ve been renamed to “Art-Arya In-dra’s Stand Up Comedy Special With Drag Race Final Runway Show Intermissions.” Which brings us back to this piece’s format; we’ll be sprinkling select quotes from Art Arya throughout this article … just for fun.

Spare No Expense

Drag Race Thailand’s finale was lavish, with the exception of the stage platform which was pretty standard – no LED floor lights, no plexiglass runway, no runway markings, no shine … just plain gray matte. Well, there was a T marker on the edge of the stage for the Queens to stand on. It was more about LED walls, overhead lights and rows of moving head lights. It was almost like Kylie Minogue’s Kyle X 2008 tour stage minus the floor. Never the less, the LED walls were fabulous and played a role in the final Maxi Challenge.

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The show started off with a fabulous opening performance by the seven eliminated Queens (B Ella, JAJA, Amadiva, Petchra, Bunny Be Fly, Morrigan and Meannie Minaj), backup dancers and headlined by Pangina Heals. She lip synced to an extended version of Banana Rama’s single “Venus.” Pangina emerged from parting middle LED walls, laying on her side in an open clam palanquin carried by four sexy buffed bearers. Three floor-to-ceiling LED walls displayed an animated version of the “Birth of Venus” painting by Sandro Botticelli in vivid colors, overlayed with floating bubbles and white flowers. Pangina was jaw dropping dressed in bedazzled nude body suit, white stoned panties, white corset adorned with intricate transparent dragon membranes, and wearing white wig and pearl hoop earrings. There’s something about her big mouth while in drag that is very captivating to watch. lol.

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She was helped off the clam by backup dancers and then proceed to work the stage. Then one-by-one the eliminated Queens, all dressed in pearls, gems and white goddess-inspired costumes, made their runway walk in the order of elimination from the sides to the center stage.

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Meannie Minaj looks gorgeous even with her cliffhanger toes and somewhat tamed outfit. She landed her marks and did her poses like a pro.

Bunny Be Fly seem nice in her tutu-inspired dress and eyebrow and lip gaps, even with her off-center giant crown, exposed black bra and the lack of body silhouette. She found her mark but was in a hurry to leave it.

Morrigan Xaster was fiery and beautiful but her outfit was a bit disjointed; from her Jadis the White Witch-inspired crown to her lavender boots … but at least her boots matches her hair color. She attempted twerking or a hump for two seconds then walked off. That was her finale opening runway walk. But wait, … there’s more … wait for the closing runway walk.

Petchra looked great in her cutout metallic pantsuit, although her exposed corset was off color and her hair and crown were a mismatch. She was going for a corral reef look. Her crown was made of dead corrals with assorted fish ornaments and pearls glued onto it. Her light blue hair is supposed to be beach water? Nevertheless, she nailed her marks and pose.

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Amadiva was fabulous with her short blonde hair. Her outfit seemed simple but well put together – white corset, silver shorts, white shoulder paddings, cape and simple headdress. She played with her cape and showed a little bit of sass as posed for the camera, it was great.

JAJA, what were you doing girl? LOL. Although she looked great in blonde with her sea urchin-inspired fascinator and wearing a layered puffy short skirt, she couldn’t wait for Amadiva to finish her turn, she walked right onto the exit path and collided with Amadiva … and in the process she totally wasted her opportunity to shine in the spotlight because the camera was still on Amadiva. Disaster. Drama #1. lol

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Fortunately, B Ella put the runway back on track. Bubbly as ever, she stomped the runway wearing a well put together white ensemble. Her black high-heeled boots wasn’t so bad, thanks to the dark stage that made it less striking. She executed her pose perfectly and did a little bit of dance.

B Ella joined the other Queens who were lined-up upstage, and together they sashayed downstage down to the steps, sat and posed while Pangina Heals dance with six backup dancers (fully covered with top hats – why were the hats black?) upstage. Pangina danced her way downstage while the Queens joined the backup dancers upstage … with Morrigan sort of aggressively humping the leg of her pair. lol. Freestyle choreography followed then they lined-up on the side, the center LED wall split open, revealing Art Arya who stood sideways and look so amazing in her black-and-white dress.

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Let’s talk about Art Arya’s opening costume; a black sequined dress with a side slit, an elaborate cape with black and white vertical stripes with ruffled collar and fluffy neck closure.

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What really stole the whole look was her fascinator – a big black sailboat with three layers of horizontal sails with it’s port side bow sitting on the right side of her head on some elaborate black and white feathery lace that resembles ocean waves … (panting) (gasp) (gagged) (faint). Coupled with smokey eyes and red lips … a true work of art, never been seen anywhere before. She pranced the runway twice … solo. And the show officially commenced.

I’m so excited I forgot the title of this show.“— Art Arya

[Pangina Heals] She is certainly a fierce one. However, she’ll be back for her hosting gig shortly. I’m not letting her do a number and leave. She better work too because we’re paid the same amount.“— Art Arya

A Night Of A Million Judges

Unlike RuPaul’s Drag Race where it’s just family (meaning no special guests, only RuPaul and regular judges take part, probably because they’re the only ones who has witnessed what the finalists have gone through since the very beginning, therefore, they’re the only ones who can accurately assess and judge each of the finalists’ growth and overall individual performance as a logical and fair criteria to win the crown) in the finale, Drag Race Thailand invited a boatload of judges … they came in tiers. At first I thought this could be a good thing, because there needs to be a consensus among a line-up of impartial judges, but in hindsight … probably not.

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  • Honorable Judges : Directors
    1. Tae Piyarat Kaljareuk, VP Katana Group
    2. Prae Panrapa Manoch, Head of LINE TV
    3. Pye Pattriya Na Nakorn
  • Special Judges : Who Begged To Return
    4. Sinjai
    5. Lukkade Metinee
    6. Cris-toris Horwang
    7. Ananda Everingham
    8. Tue
  • Extra, Extra Special Judges
    9. Jai Sira
    10. Madame Mod
    11. Maebanmeenuad
  • New Judges For The Episode
    12. Opal Panissara
    13. Gene Kasidit
    14. Nhong Wasan

*”Next up are the judges who fought tooth and nail to return to the show. I had to let them, we’ve come so far.“— Art Arya

Gotta hand it to her [Lukkade Metinee] when it comes to being a sharp tongue.” (Remember Snatch Game) — Art Arya

You [Jai Sira] are the Queen not the Princess. I remember that. “— Art Arya

Oh, is she [Madame Mod] going to bite me?“— Art Arya

Mod, are you allergic to the new laundry detergent? You lost all your bangs. You can read me later.“— Art Arya

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She’s [Maebanmeenuad] been ordained and everything, but she just had to come back and wear girls’ clothes again.“— Art Arya

She’s the ladyboy Queen, Opal Panissara! I’m telling you, she’s no bio Queen.“— Art Arya

Sorry if the shade was a little too strong.“— Art Arya

There you have it, fourteen judges! And Art Arya just won ten points from reading, and it’s only been ten minutes of the show.

Top Three Opening Number

The top three finalists (Année Maywong, Dearis Doll and Natalia Pliacam) performed “Lady Marmalade” in a group performance. Stoned corsets, feather boas, fabulous weaves and fierce makeup … they danced to an amazing red jailhouse backdrop with silhouettes of female dancing. Each took turn working an armchair, and finished up the number with some fancy hand moves using a giant fan.

The number was great, it didn’t need too much energy because the song is about being sensual and flirting. The routine could’ve been more cohesive, the chair could’ve been place downstage center or center stage so they could be more visible and easier for the judges to look, instead of upstage right where it’s a bit dark and farthest. Année and Dearis nailed their choreography while Natalia looked a little constrained. They didn’t really need the huge fans, it was cumbersome and at times awkward, making them visibly out of sync. Natalia had trouble with the whole fan routine; she did her spin one step ahead, and walked towards the audience ahead of Année and Dearis with her fan over her head still closed instead of open. Année was behind one step one time when they were flipping and tossing the fans from front to their back.

Art and Pangina joined the top three on stage after the number. Pangina was now dressed in a black and white checkered costume with her head covered with a giant whistle, think BeBe Zahara Benet’s in RuPaul’s All Stars Drag Race finale loin head but a whistle. She wore huge lashes, with her name spelled out on the tip in colored letters. It was likely very heavy as she was having trouble with it during the reunion. She kept pushing it in place with her hand.   The hosts asked the audience which team they’re rooting for. Année curtsy right about where stood as the audience screamed for her. Natalia Pliacam took four steps forward and knelt for her turn. And Dearis Doll took a few steps forward and throw herself on the floor and pretend to cry. dragraceth1.8-hosts-2

She [Dearis Doll] really is extra.”— Art Arya

Critique: The performance was not the best. They did better in previous episodes. Dearis Doll was the best of the three. Année Maywong had trouble with the fan. And Natalia Pliacam, made many obvious mistakes. The Reunion Art Arya and Pangina were joined on stage by all ten contestants, seated in two rows in the order of elimination, with the top five on front row, with Meanie Minaj and Année Maywong seated next to Pangina. dragraceth1.8-reunion Pangina asked Année if she split the ฿40,000 prize money with Meannie which they both won in last week’s main challenge. She replied, “I don’t have to, right?” “Just give her some cab fare,” Pangina told her. She turned to Meannie and asked her if she have memorized the lyrics to Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” single, the song that cost her the competition. “No, I haven’t,” she replied with a little bit of attitude. “And I never will. Clear enough for you?

She [Meannie Minaj] only needs one artist to make a living.”— Art Arya “Give her [Meannie Minaj] some time to improve. Who knows, maybe she’ll be coming back (for All Stars). But I might reconsider based on the answer.”— Art Arya

Bunny Be Fly thanked Art and Pangina, because her parents found out he’s gay through the show.

That’s a good thing, right?“— Art Arya

Bunny explained that after she lost in the lip sync to Petchra in episode two, her mother texted her a photo of her crying during the elimination to ask her if she already got kicked out. She said her parents are both proud of her.

Drag Race Thailand are dragging your children out of the closet.”— Pangina Heals

Art Arya added, “and also bringing them together. We’re always spreading the aura of love on this show.” She turned to Morrigan Xaster, referencing her food poisoning scare after the first episode that made her vomit and ended with her being hospitalized and missing the mini challenge in episode two, and said;

Speaking of aura, this Queen is always illuminating a ditz aura. She even went and got an abortion at the hospital that one night.”— Art Arya

Morrigan attempted to make a joke about her food poisoning, building on Art’s “abortion” setup but it fell apart. And like a good mother, Art said, “She’s trying to be funny. I tried so hard to help you.”

“Jokes are supposed to be funny.”— Pangina Heals

Noticing Morrigan’s less than stellar makeup work, she said “I should get her a brush.” lol. Art then turned to Petchra, she said, “her beauty is like a river that runs deep.” Nailed it! Petchra then said that she’s normally a mild mannered person, but she would do the opposite if she can’t be gentle, and she wouldn’t hesitate to slap the other contestants. Then I wonder who asked her? Must be an opening question that was cut out.

Petchra, your nipple is showing, darling.”— Art Arya “It’s so dark it looks like a burnt pancake.”—Pangina Heals “Next is our alien queen from another planet. Jaja Binks, how are you?“— Art Arya

A play on Star Wars’ annoying Gungan character from planet Naboo, Jar Jar Binks. JAJA opened her chat with, “Mabuhay!” – the Philippines greeting she used when she first walked into the Werk Room. “How do you say “Hello” in Thai?” Pangina asked her. She replied, “Sawasdee ka, e na hee!” meaning “Hello, vagina face,” eliciting big laughs from the audience. Art interjected, “Who taught her this?” Nobody answered, but it was Meannie Minaj on episode one when they all first gathered! “What do you want to say to your fans out there, who love you? Because I’m sure there’s a lot of people who has seen JAJA,” Pangina asked. She thanked Drag Race Thailand, and all the fans and followers of the show. Well, that’s not really a spot on answer, but we’ll take it.

Let me translate this for those who don’t understand her alien language and accent.”— Art Arya “She’s a creative queen. She is always painting this and that. And the day she decided to look pretty, she got eliminated. Amadiva!“— Art Arya

Amadiva protested, “seriously, Art. I think I look pretty in every episode.” “One shouldn’t make such assumptions,” Pangina shot back. “I’m serious,” Amadiva insisted. “I look pretty in every episode.” Pangina asked her about claims made by some of the other contestants about her being fake. “Yes, speak!” JAJA interjected. Amadiva stood up and turned towards JAJA and said, “Bitch!” She said she’s not fake, but still some of the contestants disagree. She said, her hoping one of the top three winning is an example of her being fake.

One of them is going to win anyway, darling! She’s a little confused.”— Art Arya

Lashes Red … Or Spells Out “Pangina Heals” At this point, Pangina’s huge eye lashes was obviously making her uncomfortable, she titled her head backwards and she kept poking at the lashes in an attempt to keep it in place. dragraceth1.8-pangina-1   B Ella’s turn came, and they talked about how she manage to dodge having to lip syncing for her life for six weeks, and when she fell in the bottom two last week and had to lip sync for her life … and got eliminated. She said she’s okay with it, saying, “I made it to top four.” Pangina was in the middle of phrasing her question to ask B Ella about what advice she can give to other plus size Queens when Meannie Minaj started laughing. Pangina turned to Meannie, grabbed her notepad and smacked her shoulder with it, “Why did you laugh?!” The slap was loud, drawing an “Ooooh!” and laughter from the audience. Mild violence on television in Thailand is acceptable. lol. Meannie leaned to her side, sheepishly laughing, like a baby who got caught doing a bad thing.

You don’t need to insert a sound effect, that was all real.“— Art Arya

It comes from within,” B Ella explained. “Don’t worry if you’re big or scary. If you have confidence, others will be able to see it and celebrate you for it.” Art turned to Pangina, she wanted to relive the moment when B Ella thanked the judges for a question when none was asked. “We didn’t ask one yet, you crazy bitch,” Pangina replied. “I loved that moment,” Art said. That was indeed funny. Art asked Dearis Doll about the catchphrase she, B Ella and Petchra came up with for their close group and how did their group came about. “Sas-dee-kha!” Dearis replied. She explained that she initially didn’t like the two, but since none of the other seven contestants want to be her friend so she befriended them instead.

Do you really believe that you’ve gained friendship from this show?“— Pangina Heals

Dearis further explained that she indeed are friends with B Ella and Petchra. They would help her out and give her advice if she got stuck in a challenge. And said some of the other girls too also helped her.

So when you’re stuck in a corner, they shove you harder into that corner.”— Art Arya

Petchra was being cute with Dearis, said jokingly that she really didn’t want to be friends with her. To which Art said, “she’s aiming for a cut of that prize money.” Natalia Pliacam, who sat quietly and so composed was up next. Art started off by playing on Natalia’s ego about wealth about changing a common saying about “living within one’s means” into “If you have lots spend a lot. If you have less spend a lot. If you have nothing spend a lot anyway.” It was funny at first, but then it was all about that … richness. Fishing for applause from the audience who wanted to be rich like her, and even for more applause by dropping the name of the richest woman in Thailand, Miss Sumanee, who was in the audience.

Sidebar: Hard earned wealth is admirable but there’s something to be said about modesty and staying grounded. There was none of that in her moment, it was all ego and brown-nosing with influential figures. The audience and judges seem to love it, perhaps this is a cultural thing. After all, Thailand is a newly industrialized country, the second richest country in Southeast Asia, with a poverty and wealth inequality level hovering in the low 7 percent as of 2015! Still though, you don’t hear Oprah bragging about how much money she got every chance she gets. In previous episodes, some of the contestants said in their confessionals that they were tired of hearing it. This is by no means a jab on her personally. I don’t know her or how she was raised. But it’s off-putting. I have to blame cultural differences. Maybe I’ll get used to this kind of behavior moving forward.

Année Maywong was the last interviewed. Pangina asked how she felt about being given the title, “Queen of the Runway” and how she managed to win consecutively. She said she’s happy with the title but said she only won three main challenges where she aimed for seven. Both hosts looked at each other and weren’t having it. “Let’s leave,” Art said, jokingly, as they both stood up and pretended to leave momentarily. They returned to their seats, with Pangina crossing her legs with her sharp heels pointing to Année’s rib cage. So severe and brutal! lol “Be careful, darling,” Art cautioned Pangina. “There are plenty of cameras here.” “Oh, sorry,” Pangina apologized and crossed her legs the other way. She then asked her what she’d say to her fans who were rooting for her. “I want them to see me as an example,” Année said. “If you want to do something then prepare and focus on doing the best you can. And that’s how you win runway challenges.” At this point the other Queens have become emboldened, freely chiming in. Art was not having it.

Will someone turn off these ten microphones for me? I’m not letting them speak now, it’s my turn.“— Art Arya

Critique: Other than B Ella and Année Maywong who gave some really good takeaway lessons, the reunion didn’t tackle anything substantive aside from giving screen time to all contestants. The banter was fun, but I thought it was a missed opportunity. And with that, the reunion was over. Art explained she didn’t just invited all the judges to stare at her, she needed them to do some judging, and laid out what’s to come. Mini Challenge Both hosts returned for the next part of the show … except for Pangina’s huge lashes. The last mini challenge for the finale was a surprised lip sync. It meant to test to see how good they were at problem solving. The top three finalists were not told what song they were going to lip sync to. And were going to do it together. Art reminded the judges to keep score and observe how each Queen tackles the challenge. The song “It’s Not Hard” by Thailand pop sensation Christina Aguilar was selected. dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge Art called the finalists back on stage, who now has changed costumes. It was more edgy with a touch of leather. Natalia was carrying a long stick that glows on each end. Music started playing and they free-styled. Natalia first danced her way downstage center to claim the spotlight. She took a few steps down the steps and did a little bit of choreography. Dearis Doll was dancing in the corner of the stage. And Année Maywong was walking down the aisles interacting with the audience. She and managed to grab a tip which she handed over to another audience. Dearis then took center stage and did some cool squat-bounce choreography. Année returned to the stage on the mark. She did a a spin, followed by a high kick, then worked the steps and did a split. The three tried to cover a lot of ground, working the audience. While taking turns dancing on center stage. Natalia laid down on the floor, got up on her knees and pointed at the audience, and got  up. Dearis walked over, grabbed her long blue wig from the top of her head to reveal a second wig. Unfortunately, her second wig came off as well. Fortunately, her real hair was not so bad, but that was a fail. She tried to make up for it with some intense choreography. dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-2 At this point, the center LED wall parted and Christina Aguilar walked onto the stage singing. Meanwhile, Natalia had her back facing the audience she put on a mask. Année, who was still oblivious about the surprise guest, took of her jacket and tossed it towards the audience. Aguilar who was now standing center stage and took command of the performance. Things got a little chaotic from there. Dearis did a split, Année did a jump split and pump her split on the floor, and Natalia .. well, she walked with a hunched shoulder dogging Aguilar around. Yes, she was not dancing, she was walking … and standing, and staring at Aguilar. While Dearis and Année were doing their best to dance beside Aguilar like backup dancers, Natalia stood in front of the singer, blocking her view from the camera. dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-5 Then she jumped and dropped on the floor, messing up her hair exposing her sideburns. The stunt took Aguilar by surprised. The trio (Aguilar, Année and Dearis) danced away from Natalia towards left center stage. Année momentarily was blocking Aguilar’s path but she quickly backed away and ushered her way through. Natalia then walked towards them and again blocked their view from the camera. She stood there attempting to work the audience. dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-1 The trio then moved back to center stage. Natalia walked downstage center, and again … blocking the singer’s view from the camera. She extended her arm, clapping her hands. dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-3 She made her way downstage right, clapping her hands. Perhaps she mistook the song for Lady Gaga’s “Applause?” Then finally she joined the trio center stage, she walked towards Aguilar, stood in front of her, stared at her momentarily, squat and did the prayer stance. That. was. a. hot. mess! dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-4

Sidebar: Remember in RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 2 when India Ferrah and Mimi Imfurst was lip syncing for their life and Mimi was constantly blocking India on stage? Yes, it felt just like that with Natalia. She was serving some authentic Mimi realness.

Natalia was not dancing at all, she didn’t demonstrate situational awareness, and she didn’t try to work with the surprise star! Dearis lost both her wigs, but she made up for it with her choreography. Année did one misstep, but both of them managed to work with Aguilar.   dragraceth1.8-mini-challenge-6 Judges Critiques: Judges Opal Panissara, Gene Kasidit and Nhong Wasan were asked to give their assessment, it was a unanimous, “could be better” and “nerves” got the best with some of them. Critique: Année Maywong fared he best, Dearis Doll had a wardrobe malfunction but she managed to stay on point and work with the singer, Natalia Pliacam failed in the second half – she didn’t dance, didn’t work with the star, and was a problem on stage. Done! Maxi Challenge The top three were required to produce a stand alone show based solely on their own vision and direction, with resources provided by various parties; choreography by Harlem Shake Crew, art directions by Tue, Cake Company, and clothes from Hook’s by Prapakas. They were to pick their own music, costume, makeup, hair, backup dancers, choreography, background graphics, style and themes. The order of performance was determined by ballot. An introduction video rolled prior to each of the contestant’s performance, giving the audience and viewers an inside look of their life outside the show.

    • Dearis Doll Realness

 Dearis Doll performed first. Her intro video showed a video of her in his family’s shrimp farm, where she works. It tells a story about her family pride as a shrimp farmer, and how she became a drag performer. She named her show, “Dearis Doll Realness.”

dragraceth1.8-maxi-dearis She picked a live concert version of Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies” for her music. She opened her number singing live. She sang a song paying homage to her roots. She actually sound fantastic! She was covered by giant fan feathers arranged to form a heart. She then emerged from it for her reveal. She was wearing a nude bodysuit, strategically covered by gems. She looked amazing. Her choreography borrowed a lot of elements from the songs official music video, but it was high energy and spot on. Her lip sync was spot on too. dragraceth1.8-maxi-dearis-2   Her four gorgeous male backup dancers were great. Although, it took away some of the attention away from her. There was at least one of the dancers I was eyeballing. LOL. Yes, just one. Her outfit could’ve been more grand or her backup dancer’s wardrobe more inconspicuous. Her background graphics was a blinking array of amber lights. For her performance’s last act, she dropped her mic on the floor, one of the backup dancers walked off stage and tossed a giant cooked shrimp at her which she manage to catch. dragraceth1.8-maxi-dearis-3   The shrimp was fake, its’ size was bigger than her leg. I don’t think shrimp that big exists. Art and Pangina joined Dearis on stage after her number. And immediately, they poke fun at the shrimp prop.

“It looks like it’s being cooked.”— Art Arya

“It’s grilled shrimp.”— Pangina Heals

Judges’ Critiques:  Cris-toris Horwang started a trend among the judges about obsessing with the background LED. It’s almost like the performance didn’t seem to matter as much. She praised her for the choreography, and said that it was fun and that he loved the ending.

Sidebar: Has he even watched drag shows lately? Background set aren’t that important. It’s the performance! Unless you’re performing in Divas Las Vegas, chances are, your background is a brick wall, a shiny curtain, or a DJ’s table. Drag queens don’t need a set to put on an exciting show. They can do their show between tables in a restaurant and still wow the audience.

Maebanmeenuad was fixated on the male backup dancers. She cautioned her about picking sexy dancers who might steal the spotlight.

Sidebar: Unless you’re a horny audience, that’s all you’ll ever going to pay attention to. It is common for drag queens to pick hot and sexy backup dancers. Nowadays, it’s kind of a must. Have they not even watched any of Drag Race’s season finale, where the finalists do solo performance with gorgeous backup dancers? Hot backup dancers are not a problem because drag queens are larger than life. Granting I took a quick look at one of Dearis’ backup dancers, my attention was mainly on her, because her costume was bright and her backup dancers were wearing dark colored costumes. “So Nuad is saying that, only choose twinks as your dancers instead of buffed men?“— Art Arya

Tue was more gracious but didn’t gave Dearis high marks. He said it “was not bad, it was good.” He liked that Dearis mixed her own culture into the show. He encouraged her to keep doing her thing. But he thought the dancers didn’t support her very well, and that some transitions didn’t go smoothly, and that they were not as cohesive and he’d hoped. He also thought the background graphics didn’t look so great.

Darling, you’re lucky she had nice things to say. She only say mean things when she’s on the other shows.”— Art Arya

None of the judges even commented about Dearis’ singing live. Pangina had to tell the judges about it. Her singing alone should’ve earned her high marks because it was great! By the way, Beyoncé’s background for the song was plain black. And notice the shrimp, it has blue lashes and what seems to be googly eyes … fancy. dragraceth1.8-maxi-dearis-4   The Video: Art asked Dearis why she chose to impersonate Mum Laconic when she first started doing drag. Dearis explained she used to only sing, but one time a performer at one of her gigs who impersonates Laconic failed to show up. She was encouraged by one of her co-worker to take on the role as a substitute, and the rest is history. With that, they showed her a video of Laconic praising and encouraging her. “Oh, I’m going to cry again,” Dearis getting emotional. Art responded…

You have our permission to cry, this show needs more drama. I prepared that video to create drama and you’re not going to cry for me?“— Art Arya

To which Dearis replied, “Oh, lemme go get B Ella and we can stand here and cry together.” Ha! Classic Dearis Doll. “I thought it would be easier now that I made it to the finals,” Dearis confessed. “It’s even harder compared to the previous seven episodes.

I’m changing this show’s title from “Drag Race Thailand” to “Surprise Drag Thailand”.”— Art Arya

    • Natalia Pliacam – Queen of the Night

Natalia Pliacam’s introduction video gave the audience a peek into her business life, where she sells caskets and funeral services at  a local China town. It’s the business that made her wealthy. She said she’s proud of herself for making it to the top three, “Ah, this old man still got it.” She chose a remix of “Queen of the Night” by Whitney Houston for her music. She wanted her costume to be avant-garde, and she want gimmicks. She wanted to create a show that fits her brand … lavish, opulence and extravagant. She wants to be the Queen of her last night on the show. In her closing remarks, she said, “I’ll show them, even though I’m old, who cares?

dragraceth1.8-maxi-natalia-1 She opened her performance with a dim lit stage. Silk canopies on the floor reflecting soft blue lights were raised up by two backup dancers. Blue beams crisscrossed. LED backdrop display flashed flames of various color. Then the middle LED backdrop parted, revealing Natalia in a shiny armor costume reminiscent of Whitney Houston’s in the movie “The Bodyguard.” Her headdress had long horns with dangling long blue fringes. A long black train was attached to her waist. dragraceth1.8-maxi-natalia-2 The backup dancers were wearing LED head gear that made their face virtually cloaked. The rest of their wardrobe complemented Natalia’s but their top was a simple black tank top. The stage was mostly dim, and with the spotlight mostly illuminating Natalia from waist up. The backup dancers were reduced to dancing silhouettes and lights – almost like iLumninate dancers of America’s Got Talent. The song was a great choice. It’s loud, booming and very powerful. Her choreography was not great. What she lacked in dance moves, she made up in gimmicks. dragraceth1.8-maxi-natalia-3   For the song’s instrumental portion, she and the backup dancers huddled, and with the lights even dimmed further, they project green laser lights from their fingers. Her backup dancers then scattered upstage. And one by one she aimed the laser at them, where they pretend to get shot by her laser. I thought it was very neat. Then her name in big bold pink letters and white background flashed in the middle of the screen, a high impact juxtaposition of the entire set. It was a great subliminal messages. Then two backup dancers on hoverboard lifted her for the climax. I thought that whole number was spectacular. She didn’t do a lot of choreography. What she did was very tamed, in fact. And that thing she did with her feet and lips at the end when she was lifted up, well,… it was awkward, but she made up for all her weaknesses with gimmicks, great song choice and elaborate props and background. Her costume’s breastplate was to die for. She’s surely knows how to compensate.

It’s hard to believe, but pigs can indeed fly.”— Art Arya

Art asked her how she managed to have her backup dancers to lift her up. She replied, “I paid them a lot of money to carry me.” Art quipped, “I thought you had lost eight and got lighter.” Natalia replied, “I actually got fatter, but if you pay enough, they can carry you.” Judges’ Critiques: Sinjai said Natalia did so well. She thought it was rich, beautiful, and it felt so right. She said her “dancing was a little soft but there was power.” She goes on to say that her daughter is a fan of hers. But then Natalia asked, “what about your son?” Ha ha! Her son is about to be ordained, but Natalia kept pressing on with questions, so Art interjected, “No, you’re being noisy now.”

It’s not the time to start begging for points.”— Art Arya

Ananda Everingham started off by thanking the show and Art. He marveled saying, “this crazy show is so much fun!” Art snapped back, “We’re not crazy, we’re normal people!” With a freakin’ boat on her head and Pangina’s resembling a big whistle, she continued, “We look completely normal up here.” At this point I was already crying. Stop! Her! lol. Everingham felt a little under-dressed with all the drag queens in the panel of judges, and said he’ll be in drag for season two. “Wait! For your critiques? I forgot!” Art replied. Everingham thought Natalia was fantastic from the get go. He thought everything was spot on, and that she did great. But he said he’s sorry for the dancers who had to pick her up. lol, “They were willing, I paid a lot of money,” she reassured the judge.

We’re not crazy, we’re normal people! We look completely normal up here.”— Art Arya

Pye Pattriya said she was not disappointed by Natalia’s performance, in fact, she never disappointed her. She said she was going to give her full ten points. Art reminded her to watch the rest of the performances before giving very high marks. For her defense, she said, she might give the other Queen a score of eleven, if she’s better. She continued, “I want to say that money alone can’t make this happen, your heart has to be in it too.” Correct!

Why are you being so nice? You haven’t seen the other performance yet.“— Art Arya

Then this portion of the critique was followed by a banter about Natalia’s lashes, a product of Pattriya, between Art, Natalia and Pattriya. The end result was Pattriya promising on television to give Natalia a year’s supply of eye lashes. What’s the moral of the story? Brown-nosing, or sucking up, can win you freebies. Because of the product plug, Art said, “I’ll charge you extra for that later.” lol.

I’ll charge you extra for that later.”— Art Arya

The Video: Art asked Natalia why she choose Miss Sumanee – who was sitting in the audience – as her character for the Snatch Game. Natalia went into full brown-nosing mode. She said she’s been following Sumanee’s life for some time. She thought Sumanee has great taste, fashionable, eternally beautiful, humorous, and she adores and love her. Not just because they’re both rich but she’s also a great single mother who intends to share her wealth with others once she’s gone. “I want to lead my life with her as role model of a rich lifestyle,” Natalia concluded. Sumanee was so pleased to hear what Natalia had to say, she was clapping and giving Natalia two thumbs up. dragraceth1.8-maxi-natalia-4

Sidebar: I think Natalia deserves five Grammy’s, ten Oscars, three Emmy’s and a Guinness Book of World Record for elevating fawning to a whole new level. It’s the most intense display of brown nosing in the history of brown nosing on television. Ick. “Okay, okay, that’s a good answer. But you might finish your answer until tomorrow.”— Art Arya

For herself, in a previously taped interview, Miss Sumaneehas said, “I love saying this now, “who cares?” Which made Natalia very happier. Ok, we’re done here. Next.

    • Année Maywong – Let’s Get Loud

 Année Maywong wanted to do a ballroom dancing performance. She want her final number to be entertaining and full of fun. She wanted to bring joy to the judges and everyone watching. For her song, she picked Jennifer Lopez’s “Let’s Get Loud”  In her closing remarks, she said, “So tonight, I’m here to slay once again.” The backdrop spelled out her name in big bright yellow fancy letters superimposed on falling red petals against a black background. It was pretty cool to watch and not overdone.

dragraceth1.8-maxi-annee-1 She wore her hair short, her tight ballroom dance outfit was simple but appropriate. She had three backup dancers who were as tight with the choreography as her. dragraceth1.8-maxi-annee-3 She engaged the audience. She did a split, she cha-cha, she spun, she got pulled through the legs, and she tumbled and flipped onto one of the dancer’s shoulder, got spun around while doing a split, and dismounted … with precision, poise, and energy. dragraceth1.8-maxi-annee-2 And to top it all off,  she spin to reveal a white dress … a stark contrast from her black dress! Then executed a flawless fast tango, if I’m not mistaken. The petals in the background where on fire, as were her’s and her partner’s feet! dragraceth1.8-maxi-annee-4 She was sung, she did another split, and all that good stuff. The raw talent she demonstrated was so breath taking to watch. There was a lot of raw passion and talent in her performance. Even her bow was on point! She was fabulous!  Judges’ Critiques: Jai Sira said Année is a “dancing diva.” She was impressed by her performance. “What you can do is perfection,” she said.  She compared Année’s performance to other dancing drag queens in the international arena, and thought she’s on that level. She further asserted her claim saying, “you might be the only one in Thailand capable of doing this.” And said she was able to get viewers’ attention and remain focused on her. She thought it was fantastic that her male backup dancers weren’t able to take the attention away from her. However, she thought the background graphics was too still, that it felt more like romance. She wanted it to be more fun and vibrant, like her performance. “But otherwise, everything was perfect,” she concluded.

I think this lady can’t wait to let the dogs out. Mod, go ahead.”— Art Arya

Madame Mod opened her critique by saying that the performance reminds her of herself, “perfect in every way,” which got Année laughing. “You’ve always said that you are beautiful and you are,” Mod said. “But there’s more to you than just your beauty, and that’s your talent.” She thought Année made it feel like she was owning the stage. “It was so good,” she said.

Be it beauty or talent, I’m sitting here and I”m thinking I’m the prettiest one here. But I didn’t want to bring it up and upset anybody.”— Madame Mod “You’re letting the dogs out to bite them, right?“— Art Arya

Metinee said the opening sequence was on point. She thought her show was perfect and she loved it. She said the backup dancers were great, she knew how to pick them, and that they weren’t able to steal attention away from her. She also thought Année knew how to use the stage. And that she liked the lights but wanted to see more on the LED background, or even to have fire on stage, “that would’ve been amazing,” she said. She also like the costume change and how it was “subtle with a big bang“. “It was good and so much fun,” she said. Art summarized Matinee’s critiques for Année, saying, “she said that you made good choices. It was subtle but full of impact. It was classic but also cool. High fashion.” Matinee was extra hard on Année when she impersonated her during the Snatch Game. Art, surprised by the change of heart, said, “Wait, I think I’m on the wrong show.” lol The Video: Art asked Année how she end up becoming a dancing queen. Année explained that all her family works for the Thailand government, with her father being a pilot. She said he wanted her to follow in his footsteps, but after she started taking ballroom dancing classes, she decided to do something else, saying, “I would rather do something I want to do and be who I am.” She continued,”and I’ve proven to him that I can do it all; I finished school, I have a great job with a lot of responsibilities, and I’m a good person overall.” “So you chose to be a good person no matter your gender or sexual orientation,” Art, motherly and supportive as she is, concluded. “But there’s someone who wants to say something.” And the video rolled showing Année’s father. Shocked, Année screamed and was reduced to tears. Pangina, who has been mum since the reunion for some reason, embraced her. In the video, her father narrated how when Année was only five years old when she found a pair of high heels and walk around in it for fun. “So I knew from that moment and I understood,” he said. “But we never spoke about it.” Année got very emotional, she looked down, still leaning on Pangina, as she covered her face with her hand, visibly crying. Art stood close to help console her. Her father looked directly to the camera to address Année directly, “Mai, I may not be there on the show but I’m rooting for you,” he said, using her family nickname. “I wish you success. I’m very proud of you, Mai.” Année was fighting back tears. The audience erupted in loud applause. Her father, who got emotional on the video, choked up and fought back tears, said, “And no matter who you are, I simply want you to be a good person.” By this time, the judges and audience were all teary-eyed. It was the most emotional and touchy moment of the finale. “Oh, my daughter just lost it. I’m sorry,” Art feeling apologetic. I didn’t mean to let this happen.” Année, now standing apart from Pangina, still trying to fight back tears and regain her composure. “I wanted to encourage you,” Art trying to reassure Année. She turned to the audience and said, “the producers of Drag Race Thailand understand that when it comes to family, often times, your family won’t accept you when you are different from the norm,” Art said, echoing a common struggle by in the LGBT community. “But tonight, all the Queens, not just Année, are showing everyone that there are challenges we must overcome.” A stream of tears was still trickling down Année’s cheeks, makeup still intact. Art turned to her and said, “And you’re one more person whom we feel we could bring a little bit of happy ending in your life.” She asked Année how she’s feeling. “I’m very happy,” Année replied. In her follow-up question, she asked, “What would you like to say to your father. I’m sure he’ll be watching LINE TV.” Année explained that she never discussed the show – and the things that she do, including being gay – with her father because her father isn’t the type of person who talks about it (gender). She said, she never had the chance to talk to him about the show. So when she left their house that morning for the finale, she said to her father for the first time, “Dad, it’s the finale tonight.” And her father’s response was, “You better win tonight or you can’t come home.” She felt very happy to have seen her father’s confessional video. “And now you’ve successfully crossed that barrier between him and you,” Art concluded.

Let’s give her a big hand. However, at any rate, does anyone have room for Année? In case she doesn’t get to go home. I’m only kidding.”— Art Arya

Critique: I thought this was the show’s most redeeming moment. The video message was amazing! It was about acceptance, humanity and being good. It touched real issues that affects a lot of people in the LGBT community. And for her performance, there were no gimmicks, no tricks, no distractions … just rising above the pack and demonstrate raw talent. It’s like comparing a true singer versus one using auto-tune. Her performance alone was razor sharp with great precision. No one needs a damn fancy LED background, because the audience’s attention was on her. It was breathtaking to watch her show-stopping performance. The background was great, it didn’t became a distraction. She commanded that stage and she utilized it very well. Her backup dancers were able to keep up with her, who was able to work well with her all through out. There was zero missteps, from start to finish. She was the highlight of the show. Final Runway While the votes where tallied, the eliminated Queens did their last walk on the runway. They all look fabulous in their new costumes. Bunny Be Fly was amazing, Morrigan too, but why was she walking in hurry? Amadiva’s futuristic take on Ursula was fantastic. Petchra and Meannie Minaj decided to go with standard pageant look, but were both good.

JAJA who wore a cultural dress was great, but her delivery was even amazing! She started by standing perpendicular to the stage, then slowly turning towards the runway, as if she was on a turntable. And her walk would make Naomi Campbell happy … watch out for them swaying hips! Even with Queens crisscrossing the stage, with Amadiva and Petchra blocking her path, she manage to make her walk very lighthearted and memorable … especially with her pointing at her missing tooth at the end of her walk.

B Ella looked fantastic in her red elephant-inspired costume, however, the huge layered wings attached to her back was knocking everybody on her path.

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The top three made their way to the runway. Dearis Doll’s futuristic costume was jaw dropping. Année’s red dress, and exposed shoulders, was regal. And Natalia Pliacam’s white structured gown with matching train was immaculate.

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Hosts Art Arya and Pangina Heals also changed costumes but still stuck to black and white theme. Art was covered in a shapeless oversize white fluffy cloak from shoulder to foot, with matching giant feather headdress and extra long black latex gloves. Pangina was serving modern pop Queen realness in her asymmetric Thai print costume and cape, with matching thigh high high-heels boots and headwrap with long pheasant feathers.

I’m so scared that this might set my but on fire. I’m a little poofy, I apologize.“— Art Arya

Top Six Best Runway Costumes Picks: Dearis Doll, Natalia Pliacam, Année Maywong, Morrigan Xaster, Bunny Be Fly and Amadiva.

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Best Final Runway Costume: Bunny Be Fly

The show is about to end and finally Pangina Heals has found her mojo again.

I’m very excited so excuse my stutters.”— Art Arya

If you’re interested, see me in the parking lot later. Wait until you see my boy drag.”— Pangina Heals

Closing Remarks

Art passed the floor to Tae Piyarat Kaljareuk, Katana Group Vice President. “A lot of people ask,What’s the point of bringing Drag Race to Thailand?”,” Tae began his speech. “I want to learn along with everyone what it means to be a drag queen.” He wanted to learn more about drag, along with viewers, other drag queens and the new generation who are interested in the art form. He said he has had created competition shows for men and women, has opened those to transgender contestants, and drag was the next logical step. It took them three years to cast brave souls and find partners to join them in their journey to make Drag Race Thailand a reality. He thanked the cast for their bravery to open up their lives to the public and “for giving a voice in order for our society to widen their point of view (about gender issues),” he said. “And creating a new standard for artists, to bringing joy, and become professionals.” He thanked Art for being the heart of the show, and Pangina for working tirelessly. He presented trophies to each of the cast, courtesy of RuPaul herself – gold and silver trophy statuettes in RuPaul’s likeness in drag. They played a pre-recorded video message from RuPaul, to the audience’s delight, congratulating the cast and eventual winner. “Okay, girls. Now you realize that this isn’t simply a show just for fun.”Art said. “We do have real prizes all the way from America.”

And The Winners Are

Miss Congeniality

I don’t think it’ll be Petchra.””— Pangina Heals, LOL

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B Ella took the title of “Miss Congeniality.” Her title also came with a voucher worth 100,000 Bahts from an aesthetic clinic. As the other contestants shook B Ella’s hand while making her way downstage she was hitting everyone on the face with the wings on her back. “She’s hitting everyone,” said Pangina. Natalia narrowly escaped it. “Don’t turn around!” Art shouted at her. After taking her bow, B Ella was making her way to the back to the line-up. She turned around to the path where she came from, between Dearis and B Ella, but it was blocked. She looked over and found a gap separating the Queens and hosts, between Pangina and Dearis, and proceed to walk through it. B Ella walked straight through the gap hitting Pangina on the face. lol. “I couldn’t dodge it in time,” Pangina screamed. B Ella, grinning, made and about face to apologize to Pangina. Pangina screamed at her, “go away!” lol

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Every time she turned I thought there was a stampede.”— Art Arya

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For some reason, JAJA made her way to the front of the stage, with extended arms and stooping trying to dodge B Ella’s wings. LOL Was she trying to claim the award too? Crazy JAJA.

Drag Race Thailand Season 1 Winner

I’m excited but I also need to pee.”— Art Arya

Art received the envelope containing the name of the winner. She and Pangina opened it. They look at each other, looking stunned and baffled.

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Art turned to Tae, who was sitting along with the other judges, and said, “Is this your choice, Tae? How come?!” And I’m like, “FUCK!” I had a bad feeling.

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Tae explained the decision. “I’d like to say that I originally wanted all three of you to win this debut season,” he said. “Each of you, like the judges said, are all great in your own ways. But we had to make a decision and choose who performed the best tonight.” And he said, it was pretty clear … and declared Natalia Pliacam the winner. Natalia in tears and jumping.

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The camera cut to the judges, who where already standing. Some seemed to looked confused, surprised at the decision.

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Condragulations gurl!

And with that, Art said, “And now I’d like to thank our wonderful sponsors. Natalia, take your time! Go ahead and prance, darling! This is your stage now!

Final Word and Ranking

The top three finalists are all fierce competitors and all deserved their spot. This is not meant to take anything away from the winner, what’s done is done … their show, their rules. The producers may have great plans for making their decisions, and that’s great. This is only about what was aired and how it came down.

Now, based on the outcome of the competition, it felt as though we were watching two different shows. I believe Art Arya and Pangina Heals should’ve made that final decision, alone, with inputs from over two dozen guest judges. Why? Because they are the only ones who were there to witness the contestant’s growth and struggles from start to finish. I don’t know about the other judges or the show’s VP who made the call, but when it comes to the show, Art and Pangina are the best authority in drag, they are in-touch with the drag industry with the experience to match, therefore, they’re the best individuals to determine the winner once EVERYTHING is considered. The other guest judges where only able to witness a portion of what the contestants could do, they were only invited to help assess a particular skill. I don’t think it’s right to pick a winner solely based on one episode, their track record on the show should also matter because it’s part of their journey and accomplishments. That is in fact how the real world works, and that’s why we have resumes.

If we were to rank the performances of each finalist for each portion in the finale (best=5, good=4, just okay=3, 2=not good, 1=awful), it’s a follows:

  • Opening number: It was overall weak. The set and choreography could be better. It’s the finale after all. But Dearis Doll did the best, Année Maywong was good, and Natalia Pliacam was not good, did anyone else saw her sub-par dancing and mistakes?
  • Mini Challenge: It was chaotic. In fact, it could easily be worst than the opening number. But Année Maywong did the best, she mingled with the audience, did great choreography, and she worked with the Aguilar and Dearis Doll. Dearis Doll was just okay, because she had a wardrobe malfunction – she lost her wig. But she made up for it by putting on great dance moves and she actually worked with Aguilar the best. Natalia Pliacam was not good at all, all she did was pull multiple stunts. She wasn’t dancing, she was walking, falling, standing, squatting and even staring awkwardly at Aguilar. And she was blocking the camera and just walking around, as if she was doing her own separate act. She became a distraction when Aguilar joined them instead of working with her. Just no situational awareness.
  • Maxi Challenge: This was the highlight of the finale, and it was a lot of fun to see them perform individually. Here we have a tie for the best spots for different reasons. Natalia Pliacam is one of the best. She relied on theatrics and gimmicks to put on a spectacular show, and it worked! Her choice of song was fantastic, and the set, lighting and backdrop worked well together. She didn’t interacted with the audience enough (or at all), well, because it was dark, … her choice. Even though she didn’t dance well, and the last part was awkward, she manage to put on a great show just by walking around. Année Maywong also put the best performance. She engaged the audience. She didn’t allow the set or backup dancers to take the focus away from her. It was all about her, her talent and what she can do. She displayed an amazing performance that was flawless … literally, from start to finish. It was so precise, even her reveal was amazing … a contrast from black to white, even made her more visible as she finished up her number with a very fast and elegant dance performance. It was breathtaking. She deserved roses thrown at her! Dearis Doll was good. She showcased her singing talent and it was amazing. The set was appropriate for her number. Her choreography was pretty good too. It was fun and energetic with a little bit of camp.
  • Final Interview: Année Maywong did the best. She showed a lot of humility and grace, she was able to recover and regain her composure even after such an emotional video message being played for the world to see. Follow your dreams, be who you are, be a good person … these are great messages the show could ever give to the viewers. They also touched on a topic that is very real, that is very relevant within the LGBT community. They did a great service for everyone in the community in Thailand and around the world. Dearis Doll’s interview was good. It was a good backstory for her. It was fun and lighthearted, even with her stroking the giant shrimp non-stop. Natalia Pliacam’s interview was not good. It was all about boasting, bragging, sucking up and acting arrogant. It was funny, sure, as she kept kissing the feet of big names while on television. It was tacky with no substance … just ego. What moral value can anyone get from it? What kind of message was she trying to send? Yes, we know she’s rich, so what? Who cares?
  • Finale Look: Natalia Pliacam had the best look with her intricate white gown and train. Her hair and makeup were fabulous. There’s this rule about not wearing bright colored clothes if you’re heavy because it will even make you look heavier. The way her gown was structured negated the rule. It was simply fantastic. Dearis Doll’s final look was good. It was futuristic and high fashion. If her gown was a little bigger it would’ve swallowed her up. But it was just right. Her headdress and the layers on the gown were well constructed. Année Maywong’s final look was just okay. She looked a lot more amazing in past episodes. Her gown could’ve been more sophisticated, and her hair could’ve been more bigger. The whole look wasn’t bad though.

So how did the three finalists fair?

If we take into account their their positions for all episodes (episode one to eight) — and say, giving both Année Maywong and Dearis Doll “High” marks as runner-ups with Natalia Pliacam as Winner, obviously — the final result pegs Natalia at second place at 73%, Année in the #1 spot at 76% and Dearis third at 63%. Yes, EVEN WITH NATALIA’S WIN … Année still takes first place!

If we rank the top three based on how they fared only in the finale; Année is significantly in the lead at 88%, Dearis Doll at second place with 80% and Natalia at a distant third at 64%!

If we combine the scores in the finale with their official positions from episodes one to seven; Année is at a very confident first place with 78%, Natalia at a close position with Dearis at 68% and the latter at a striking distance of 63%.

Objectively, no matter how the finalists are judged, based on measurable criteria, Année Maywong places first. So, with all due respect, the decision was… wrong.

Never mind about being old or heavy. That is not an issue here. It never is. The show is not about representation, it’s about skills and talent. It’s about being worthy of the title based on a set of criteria. Merits should only be based on measurable results.

It is disappointing, because for one thing, we had high hopes that Drag Race Thailand would break away from Hollywood’s tactics of relying on controversy and rewarding bad behaviour for the sake of attention, ratings and press. We were hoping that this time, this will actually be played out legitimately as a real competition where skills, talent and grace mattered. At least it was the case up until episode seven. The fact that the show concluded this way, it pins itself as just another run-of-the-mill reality show. So why watch something that has already been done, where the creme of the crop is still going strong, and stronger? Would it be worth watching Drag Race Thailand Season 2? We don’t know. But this we know, unless they make some changes concerning the competition’s mechanics, credibility will become a hard sell.

Some will obviously disagree with this and that is to be expected. All the receipts are available, just watch the episode.

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In any case, it is what it is. Natalia is a true and fierce top three contender. She’s one of our predicted top three picks after the third episode. The show can pick whomever they choose to win, regardless. And we wish all the queens the best of luck as they continue to pursue their drag careers. We are especially ecstatic about some queens in particular; Dearis Doll, will she release and English EP? Année Maywong and Meannie Minaj should tour the USA, maybe guess perform at Divas in Las Vegas; JAJA, B Ella and Amadiva are Queens with great characters whom we hope to see excel in some acting gig; and Petchra, Morrigan and Bunny Be Fly … we can’t wait to see what they’ll do in the future.

Elephant In The Room

Now, let’s talk about the real elephant in the room. No, not B Ella, we’re talking about Pangina Heals. Why was she all a sudden so quiet in the finale? Did she lost her tongue after she took off her ginormous lashes? What’s the tee? This is the real controversy here. :)

And yes, as you can all see, Art Arya stole the whole show with her witty remarks and shade … and that boat… girl, that boat!

 

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