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The 15 Most Controversial Eliminations From 'RuPaul's Drag Race'

Updated November 27, 2019 7.1k votes 758 voters 5.9k views15 items

List Rules'Drag Race' fans: Vote up the eliminations that made you question RuPaul's judgment.

As RuPaul and her children often remind us, RuPaul’s Drag Race is the Olympics of drag. The competition is a test of endurance, skill, and patience. These attributes don't even begin to scratch the surface of charisma, uniqueness, nerve, and talent. To survive is difficult, and to rise above the rest is nigh impossible. 

Well, in theory. If we’ve learned anything from watching the Olympics of drag, everyone knows all of these metrics are thrown out the window when RuPaul gets into a mood or the other queens have a score to settle. In addition to showcasing their skills, the queens also need to be likable and able to appeal to Ru’s sensibilities. 

The audience only gets to see a highlighted selection of events that transpire in the workroom and on the runway, leaving the questionable editorial decisions up to mass speculation. The internet flies into a frenzy, wild judgments are made, threats are sent to whichever queen sent home our favorites, and everyone cries out in unison: It’s rigga morris, girl.

In a way, there has been a secondary shadow competition this entire time - who got the most robbed? 

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  • 5

    Raven - Season 2, 'All Stars' Season 1

    Raven has developed a legacy for being robbed not once, but twice. One of the most popular queens of all time, a feat especially impressive for an earlier season queen, Raven’s performance was unremarkable in both of her seasons, but she remained consistently safe and was a more polished performer than the majority of her fellow competitors. 

    While her loss to Chad Michaels in All Stars Season 1 was more agreeable given Chad's widespread appeal and undeniable skill, fans did not take well to her harrowing loss to Tyra Sanchez in Season 2. Though Tyra did better statistically, her lack of polish and poor attitude did not sit well with the fanbase.

    • Age: 42
    • Birthplace: Victorville, California, United States of America
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  • While the first season is a distant memory for the few who even watched it in the first place, those who did remember how fierce Ongina was. Her heartfelt HIV status confession during the Mac Viva Glam challenge set the emotional timbre for the entire franchise, and her bald femme realness was ahead of its time in the 2008 drag atmosphere. 

    The odds were stacked against her during the makeover challenge, and she was sent home after her first loss in the bottom two. Many fans despaired when RuPaul chose BeBe Zahara Benet over her in the lip sync match, and they are still holding out hope for an All Stars redemption.

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    • Willam entered the competition with showbiz experience and a rack of designer shoes, which did not exactly endear her to the other queens. Her irreverent sh*t talking and bragging was obnoxious and hilarious in equal measure, but her impact is undeniable. 

      Immediately after her shared win with Latrice Royale in the "Frenemies" challenge, Sharon Needles and Phi Phi O'Hara lip synced for their lives. As the music came to an end, RuPaul called for Willam. Unbeknownst to everyone, Willam had broken her NDA by inviting her boyfriend to her hotel room for a "conjugal visit" - all queens are sworn to secrecy and isolation for the duration of filming, and she was disqualified for her transgressions. She remains the only queen to be eliminated in this fashion.

      • Age: 39
      • Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
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    • Pandora Boxx built the mold for the likable comedy queen that brought heart and soul to the RuPaul's Drag Race franchise. Her Carol Channing impression in the first-ever Snatch Game changed the trajectory of the show forever. While she was not known for her runway looks, Pandora was a persistent fan favorite throughout her original season and in the years following, making her a possible front runner for the new All Stars series. 

      Unfortunately, Pandora was one of many queens who was wronged by the short-lived team formula. After being paired with the notoriously difficult Mimi Imfurst, Pandora emotionally checked out of the competition and Team Mandora was eliminated in the next episode.

      • Age: 49
      • Birthplace: Jamestown, New York, United States of America
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