Season 9 of RuPaul’s Drag Race is revving up for its big launch tonight and people everywhere are already sashaying and “yes, gawd”-ing themselves up into a frenzy of drag anticipation.
But before the new batch of superstar queens are unleashed upon the world, we wanted to take a minute to Ru-cap one of the most adrenaline-pumping parts of the competition: the Lip Sync For Your Life.
We’ve assembled the ten most epic Drag Race lip syncs in her-story. Did your favorite queens make the cut?
10. Delta Work vs Manila Luzon (Season 3)
It was a blur of yellow and gold when Delta Work and Manila Luzon faced off after landing in the bottom after bombing the stand-up comedy challenge. Their song was “MacArthur Park” by Donna Summer, a complex number with a wide range of tempos and emotions.
Manila went all in, starting off slow and controlled before then ramping it up for the big pickup. Her performance was unbridled and, dare we say, almost scary. Delta didn’t move very much and seemed to dedicate the song to her bracelet, which she held up almost as offering spoils to the victor.
In the end, Manila’s wild eyes and kooky dancing earned her the safe spot, leaving Delta in the dust.
9. Raven vs Tyra Sanchez (Season 2)
You don’t come any closer to the crown on Drag Race than being put in the Top 2. That’s exactly where Raven and Tyra Sanchez found themselves in the season finale of Season 2 when Rupaul had them perform her own song “Jealous Of My Boogie” to determine who would walk away with the crown.
Both queens attacked the song in all shades of fierce, Raven in her immaculate black corset (the look that inspired Naomi Smalls‘ Black & White runway look in Season 8) and Tyra in a flawless teal and pink poolside fantasy.
While Raven relied on her signature sexy poses and twirls, Tyra took a more in-your-face approach, going right over to the judges’ table to give them a close-up look of her tight lip sync and unclockable beat. In the end, it gave Tyra that edge she needed to become America’s Next Drag Superstar of Season 2.
8. Tatiana vs Alyssa Edwards (All Stars Season 2)
In the most twisted and shadiest episode of All Stars Season 2, previously eliminated queens Tatiana and Alyssa Edwards came back to claim their Ru-venge in a comedy duo challenge, and nabbed the top two spots respectively to lip sync for a chance to re-enter the race.
Dressed in contrasting leotards and tall boots with big blonde hair, these ladies took it to 90 M.P.H. to Rihanna‘s “Shut Up And Drive,” each whipping their hair and their bodies in a showstopping dance off that had the judges’ mouths on the floor.
Once they came up for air, RuPaul made the shocking announcement that both queens had earned the right to come back to the competition, allowing for the departure of a severely less than thrilled Phi Phi O’Hara.
- Katya vs Kennedy Davenport (Season 7)
The iconic Hello Kitty challenge of Season 7 threw the queens that were left in the game for a loop (well, except for Violet Chachki), especially Katya and Kennedy Davenport who ended up in the bottom two after designing less-than-impressive looks.
With fire and gusto, the two flipped and split it out over Katy Perry‘s “Roar,” where both queens didn’t hesitate to show off their acrobatic skills along with their tight lip sync. Kennedy, however, took it one step farther, or should we say one step higher, when she jumped off the main stage and landed in a full split.
Katya followed up with her own well-times split moments after, but Kennedy took the plunge first as well as that shante spot while the season’s unbeknownst Miss Congeniality Katya sashayed away.
6. Raja vs Carmen Carrera (Season 3)
In what might be the sexiest lip sync ever filmed on Drag Race, two of Season 3’s “Heathers” went toe to toe in a scandalous showdown that had the guys who they dragged up in the week’s makeover challenge busting their tucks backstage.
Raja wasted little time stripping down to her skivvies as the beat of Paula Abdul‘s “Straight Up” went on, and you don’t have to tell Carmen Carerra twice to get naked. After tossing away her golden bottoms, the two got real close on the floor until it was something out of a late night cable movie.
With a level of sexuality never again seen in a Lip Sync For Your Life, Raja and Carmen’s sexy silhouettes laying on top of each other made herstory, sealed with a kiss that Raja placed on Carmen right at the end. Raja survived another day while Carmen sashayed away. Again.
5. Adore Delano vs Trinity K. Bonet (Season 6)
When you go up against the girl that has already sent a number of queens before you packing with her insanely tight lip syncs, the pressure is really on to step it up. That’s what Adore Delano went into her LSFYL against the fishy and fabulous Trinity K. Bonet.
Both queens worked it out to Paula Abdul‘s “Vibeology” (with her there watching in the judge’s panel no less). Trinity’s control and words were on point as always and Adore used her quirky sexy charm to give a lip sync for the books.
The song ended to a round of applause from all the judges and the queens who were safe, as well as a massive hug between the contestants. But in the end, Adore’s high energy and charisma won the bout and Ru declared her safe.
4. Chi Chi DeVayne vs Thorgy Thor (Season 8)
It’s always great to see a high energy lip sync to a song you love dancing to, but sometimes the best performances come from power ballads that just make you go “Hallelu!”
That’s exactly what we got when Chi Chi DeVayne and Thorgy Thor took us to church with “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” performed by Jennifer Holliday. Each queen took a different approach to lip syncing this legendary song, which couldn’t showcase their styles any clearer.
Thorgy was more controlled and assured while Chi Chi let lose an onslaught of emotion, not to mention the beads from her dress. And although Thorgy masterfully dodged them while executing a perfect cartwheel, Chi Chi’s raw and powerful delivery sent Miss Thor packing.
3. Laganja Estranja vs Joslyn Fox (Season 6)
If you live for those moments that looked like they were planned but actually weren’t, you know exactly why the epic showdown between Laganja Estranja and Joslyn Fox made this list, other than that they’re both fierce lip syncers.
They were given P!nk‘s song “Stupid Girls” after landing in the bottom two from the stand-up comedy challenge. Laganja and Joslyn started strong from the get-go, and neither of them were about to miss a single beat.
In one perfect moment, both girls jumped into a split at the exact same moment without looking at each other, ramping up the octane of this LSFYL to the max. Although Laganja’s death drops were formidable, Joslyn’s quirky charm carried her through and the colorful stoner actually sashayed away.
2. Sharon Needles vs Phi Phi O’Hara (Season 4)
It was a long-coming fight between good and evil when Sharon Needles and Phi Phi O’Hara landed in the bottom two and faced off under the umbrella of “It’s Raining Men (The Sequel)” by Martha Wash featuring RuPaul.
It was no secret that in Season 4, Sharon and Phi Phi were not exactly bosom buddies. They even were ironically wearing contrasting angel and devil outfits to further illustrated out their mutual animosity. They both attacked the song using their entire arsenal of lip sync tricks.
It was anyone’s victory at the end of the song, that is until Willam was called back up to the front where it was exposed that she had broken the rules of the competition, forcing Ru to eliminate her. The two rivals made it all the way to the top 3 before the tie breaker was decided.
1. Alyssa Edwards vs Coco Montrese (Season 5)
The showdown of all showdowns goes to none other than Alyssa Edwards and Coco Montrese, the longstanding adversaries of Season 5. All season we had been waiting to see them go head to head in a lip sync battle, and we definitely got our wish when they took on Paula Abdul’s “Cold Hearted.”
Wearing what Santino Rice called the ugliest dress in Drag Race history, Alyssa flawlessly used her years of dance experience to twirl, jump and drop all over the stage. Coco’s billowy-sleeved pantsuit was a perfect choice for the number, and she used every inch of fabric to make herself shine.
Even Ru was caught giving a “Wow!” to Michele Visage as the girls in the back cheered and applauded. When the dust settled, it was Coco who pulled through to the next stage, finally settling the score between her and Alyssa. At least until All Stars 2.
So how did we do? Sound off in the comment section below about your favorite LSFYL!
Article by Isaiah Cruz