36 thoughts I had watching Drag Race season 16, episode 5: ‘If she goes home, it was rigged’

Image shows four Drag Race queens on stage doing the girl group challenge, wearing flamboyant costumes. One is high kicking

RuPaul’s Drag Race season 16’s fifth episode is full to bursting with drag classics – including girl groups, Monét X Change inspired looks and Amanda calling Plane a “c**t”.

Last week, Drag Race season 16 aired the most heartbreaking elimination yet, and if this week is anything to go by, they’re trying to top that with another fan favourite getting the dreaded axe (despite definitely not losing the lip sync).

Plus this week on Drag Race season 16 we saw the competition heat up even further, with more Plane and Amanda drama – with Plane deciding to sprinkle the love/ antagonism beyond Miss Meating (and BTDQ); directing some towards Q, too. 

A girl group challenge produced some unlikely winners (well, three of them) from the cast of now 12 girls, and Nymphia is definitely in her master strategist era.

Here are 36 thoughts I had watching Drag Race, season 16, episode five:

  • So Mirage has gone to the Hall of the Slain (Slay-n), and I’m fairly sure that we can still hear her sobbing along with Pangina Heals and Rock M. Sakura. That was tough to watch – and judging by the girls discussing the elimination in the Werk Room after, it wasn’t much better in person.
  • Geneva Karr, you should be at the hotel right now. 
  • So Plasma won last week, meaning Loosey – sorry, Jan – sorry, Q missed out on a win for the third week in a row. And she’s taking it really well!
  • That was a lie, she starts crying and moaning about how hard it is not winning. Worst possible thing she could have done in this situation, to be honest.

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  • To quote Xunami, “Plane’s such a c**t.” And she’s not wrong, but Plane also has a point, because she fully gags Q and says she’s not going to be upset at being in the top.
  • Back in the Werk Room the next day, Plane again attempts to come for Amanda and it deliciously backfires once more.
  • I have nothing to say about this mini-challenge. They’re all just being silly and goofy! Sapphira wins, which is what I’m going to say at the end of this season.
  • Maxi Challenge is Girl Groups! The teams are as follows: Sapphira, Dawn, Q and Morphine and Geneva, Nymphia, Mhi’ya and Megami, which leaves Plasma, Xunami and yes, that’s right, Amanda and Plane on the same team!
  • The girls are writing their verses and – you guessed it – Plane and Amanda are at each other’s throats. We’ve not had a rivalry this iconic since WIllam and Phi Phi.
  • Megami cries over being picked last and then promises she’s going to smash it, which presumably means she’s going home.
  • Plasma starts choreographing her group and it’s like being in an audition workshop for A Chorus Line. Also, Amanda is munching Plane – and everyone else – up, but she’s also super helpful. Amanda Tori Mother.
  • Mhi’ya’s choreo is so funny, because it’s being delivered at the volume of a very, very shy child.
  • I’m not sure about this group… next three to go I fear (not Nymphia obvs).
  • Morphine calls herself the Abby Lee Miller of Drag Race, which is very kind to Abby.
  • So to recap on the rehearsals, Q spent most of the time clomping around and Nymphia is secretly very good at choreo after claiming she’s not.
  • The girls are painting, and Q decides to address the drama with Plane over Q crying over being safe from earlier in the episode. Weird choice, but ok. Get that screen time.
  • Plane, for no reason, responds to Q with: “I have more respect than I do for Amanda,” to which Amanda pops up like a very angry, very gay meerkat and yells, rightfully, “Why are you such a c**t?” Get her, Jade!
  • I can’t help but think that Plasma is who I’d be if I could sing. A very sobering thought.
  • It’s Girl Group time! Morphine, Dawn, Sapphira and Q are performing a remix of “Star Baby” and if the stiffness of Q’s performance is anything to go by, she’s going to have something real to cry about this week!
  • Sapphira mothers, obviously. Dawn and Morphine are cute.
  • Plasma, Xunami, Amanda and Plane perform “Courage to Love” – and I think Amanda is doing great, but they cut to Michelle looking unimpressed, which is always the editor trying to get you to go: “Oh, they’re bad!”
  • There is just nothing to Plane’s drag apart from being a slut. Like… where’s the twist?
  • Nymphia, Megami, Mhi’ya and Geneva are performing “A.S.M.R. Lover” – and immediately, this is the most personality I’ve ever seen from Mhi’ya. She really was out flipping with her cousins one day.
  • Nymphia is doing great – but in all fairness, I don’t feel particularly strongly about any of the other girls.
  • Mirage would have murdered this challenge.
  • These runway looks are so fun. Amanda has a BIRD’S NEST on her head? And her head is an egg? That’s drag.
  • Nymphia Wind has never not eaten on this damn runway. A Quadruple wig reveal?
  • Sapphira and Plane decline to use their immunity potions, which makes me wonder why Ru asks them to decide on this before the critiques? Because he then announces Megami, Nymphia, Mhi’ya and Geneva as the winners of the challenge – which is not what I would have said. And so everyone else is up for elimination, which is a little bit of a gag.
  • Once again, so impressive that Q makes everything she wears.
  • I’ve just clocked that we may be getting a Plane and Amanda lipsync.
  • Ru is not featuring Plasma’s banter or Amanda’s runway look. But I feel like the outfit reads fine on TV?
  • We get the Who Should Go Home Tonight And Why? question and everyone says either Q or Amanda – apart from Luxx, who says Loosey.
  • Q and Amanda are up for elimination. I feel like this season’s eliminations are all in the wrong order. We can’t lose Mirage and then Amanda when (no offence) Geneva, Mhi’ya and Megami, who really haven’t given us much in comparison, are still in the competition?
  • If Amanda goes home, it was rigged.
  • Yeah, it was rigged. I was so sure we were getting this Amanda/ Plane arc for the rest of the season. Furious! Furious! Roople you will pay.

RuPaul’s Drag Race season 16 continues on Friday on MTV in the US and on Saturday on WOW Presents Plus internationally. You can read last week’s ‘thoughts’ recap here.

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