There have been a lot of questions about how this season's RuPaul's Drag Race finale would work, but VH1 finally revealed that the lip sync battle for the crown will go virtual this year. The decision means fans won't have to wait until it is safe to film a live show again to find out who Season 12's winner will be, and the added twist makes this season's finale unlike any other in the show's history. The RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 virtual finale will feature the final queens of the season lip syncing against one another from their homes rather than in front of a live studio audience.
Ahead of the Friday, May 15 episode of RuPaul's Drag Race, VH1 announced what fans can expect from both the upcoming reunion episode and the season's grand finale in a press release, per Variety. As with other reality shows filming during the coronavirus pandemic, Drag Race will employ virtual hangouts for Season 12's reunion and finale to allow RuPaul and the cast of queens to film from home. The reunion episode will have a sleepover theme and is set to air on Friday, May 22, followed by the finale's lip sync for the crown a week later on Friday, May 29. According to the release, the lip syncs for the finale were shot using “innovative technology that highlights the creativity of the queens.”
A lip sync battle between the top four queens of the season has been the structure of every Drag Race finale since Season 9, but due to a disqualification, Season 12 actually has a top three rather than a top four. The penultimate episode revealed that Sherry Pie had won a spot in the top four, but she was disqualified at the beginning of the season's airing after admitting to several allegations of catfishing. That leaves three queens to battle it out for the crown [spoiler alert]: Jaida Essence Hall, Gigi Goode, and Crystal Methyd. Some fans are wondering if Sherry's disqualification will open up a spot for the fifth-place queen, Jackie Cox, to compete for the crown, or if the show will rework its finale structure for three queens instead of four.
The finale episode will also feature appearances from Season 11's winner Yvie Oddly to crown her successor, as well as Season 11's Miss Congeniality, Nina West, to announce the most beloved queen of the recent season. The release confirmed that Sherry Pie will not appear at the reunion or the finale.
The RuPaul's Drag Race Season 12 reunion will air on Friday, May 22 at 8 p.m. ET on VH1, and the season finale will air on Friday, May 29 at 8 p.m. ET on VH1.