As RuPaul has made abundantly clear with the “Pork Chop Loading Dock” at the top of this season of Drag Race (the Emmy-winning series’ 13th regular stint): Sashaying away from the competition is not the end of your story. In fact, thanks to the ever-growing audience for the series and an increased focus on social media, queens can continue to show off the best of their drag well after leaving the Werk Room. And for good reason; prior to filming, contestants are given an idea of runway themes to prepare for (with the exception of design challenges), and spend good time and money putting their looks together before they pack them in their bags and head off to L.A. In other words, when a queen is eliminated, they’ve still got a season’s worth of gag-worthy fashion we didn’t get to see on the runway.
But in this era of Drag Race dominance, the queens are media savvy, and it’s basically a given that—after the episode airs—they’ll take to Instagram to show their fans what the judges were missing out on by sending them home early. Sure, it’s a fun moment of what-could-have-been fantasy, but it’s also an opportunity to recognize how hard everyone worked to get on the show, and it allows the queens a chance to shout-out the designers, makeup artists, wig stylists, photographers, and more who helped bring their drag dreams to life.
For the Drag Race super-fans at The A.V. Club, it’s always a thrill to see the queens’ creations—but we’re completists and found ourselves longing for a log of all the gorgeousness, gowns, and other gag-worthy moments that didn’t make it on the show. Hence, our guide to what you didn’t see on the runway; each week, we’ll update the feature with the photos the eliminated queens shared of their prepared looks—toot-worthy fashions that deserve their moment in the spotlight. If you’re not keeping up, you’re only getting half the story!