“We learn from failure, not from success!” writes Bram Stoker in Dracula, the 19th-century story of a vampire count. For The Boulet Brothers' Dragula, the gothic-inspired drag competition, this is especially true during for its most recent series, “Titans,” with a cast comprised of defeated artists from past seasons.
Thanks to this star-studded season of the show, spin-off The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula: Titans, the franchise as a whole has become the most-watched series programming on Shudder since the season premiered in October. With only three episodes left in this season until one crowd-favorite drag artist wins a cash prize and the crown of “The World’s Next Drag Supermonster,” as well as a headlining spot in a massive world tour kicking off in April, PAPER talked with Dragula creators The Boulet Brothers about their underground-style drag competition, filth, horror and glamour.
How are the stakes higher with this Titans cast in comparison to previous Dragula seasons?
Stakes are higher for returning competitors. If they come back and do poorly, then they risk redefining how the public sees them as a drag personality. As you will see, some people can be their own worst enemies.
What surprises does this spin-off hold?
Huge changes in the rules and format. People that you wouldn’t expect going home early. And some big personality clashes that you won’t see until it’s too late.
What makes a “Titan?"
Your drag skills have to have evolved since the viewers last saw you. You also have to be open to a new experience and have fun on camera — even if it’s messy. If you take yourself too seriously, it’s probably not a great fit.
What, in your eyes, is the most daunting physical challenge fans can expect?
The way competitors are eliminated from the competition through the trap door might be the most daunting physical challenge. For the record, we experienced it ourselves before anyone else did! It is not a good time. It’s much higher up than it looks on TV. And you have to stand in (almost) darkness with lights blaring in your face. It’s terrifying. The whole mechanism shakes and it’s shockingly loud. It’s not something I would recommend doing twice.
Being around such talented artists, how did you both grow in your drag artistry through this experience?
Our hands and style are reflected in every aspect of the series, and we grow as producers every season. Our wit, sensibility, creativity, design skills, craftsmanship and innovation influence every aspect of what you see on screen. We are constantly learning new skills and honing our craft as we go.
You can watch new episodes of The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula: Titans on Shudder every Tuesday.
Photo by Scott Kirby