Since this week’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race was a rerun—not even a clip show! A straight-up rerun!—I took last night to ponder the endless wonders of Alyssa Edwards’ face. She is the gift that keeps on giving, and the GIF that keeps on GIFing.
Join me as I stare into the void and it stares, squints, shakes, sasses, and shimmies back at me.
First, let’s acknowledge the hard work involved in becoming a Cosby-level facial contortionist. You can mock Alyssa for her mirror routine, but without it, she wouldn’t be where she is today. Our girl can convey a surprisingly diverse and complex array of emotions through the unbelievable articulation of her facial features. Some examples:
Starting with the basics: you can’t call yourself a drag queen unless you can throw shade.
And Alyssa will start and end a sentence with “bitch” just to make sure you know that you have been thoroughly put in your place.
But that’s entry-level stuff. Anyone can use words to express meaning. She can get the message across without making a sound. For instance:
“Oh, you’re really going to come for me? Wearing that lip liner? No, ma’am.”
“You other children think you’ve got something, but I own this party.”
“Did she just put her hand on someone else’s husband? Girl get me my phone, this is going on Instagram.”
“So when she wasn’t looking, I filled her conditioner bottle with Nair.”
“My stalker ex just showed up. I’ll now be making a glamorous but hasty exit.”
“And you’ll pay me how much? I mean, my landlord did just raise the rent, and I guess it wouldn’t take that long, so… No, you know what? Still no.”
“I heard what you said about my BFF. You have crossed the line. There will be no survivors to tell of the destruction unleashed this day.”
“It’s Saturday! I’m having wine for breakfast!”
“I acknowledge that your effort was strong, but remain secure in my total superiority to you.”
“It’s completely OK that you denied me this loan because your parking space is labeled and this bank has surprisingly little surveillance. But I’m sure you know a reliable mechanic.”
“They finally called our table for brunch! Eggs benny and a criminally large Bloody Mary, please.”
“And there it is. I have said everything that can possibly be said. You’re welcome.”
That, children, is what we call mastery. It’s amazing she still feels the need to use spoken language at all. And the skill doesn’t end there! She’s even able to assume new forms, like a shapeshifter. Here are just a few of the personae this chameleon can adopt:
Don Knotts in The Incredible Mr. Limpet
Ducky from The Land Before Time
Alyssa truly is every woman—and even some men. Don’t be jealous of her boogie. To close, I’ll defer to Alyssa, who will express her magnificence better than I ever could, using body-oddy-oddy language.
Well said, Miss Edwards. Well said.