Dragula's second season concluded this week with Atlanta queen Biqtch Puddin crowned as the next drag supermonster. The second season of drag, horror, filth and glamour reached a much wider audience than the previous season -- the first episode has been viewed nearly half a million times. Dragula may be distributed by World of Wonder on YouTube, but it is still incredibly refreshing to see a drag TV show without RuPaul, and Dragula could very well usher in a new crop of drag programming free from the confines of the RuPaul-mandated rules of being a queen.
But while the show's second season was terrifying terrific at times, there were several problems that I could very well see turning off viewers. Dragula is truly unique, and gets so much right -- the Fear Factor-esque exterminations, the death scenes of each eliminated queens, the beautifully-shot floor shows, guests judges who are actually working queens -- but there's also a few things that could be improved. With the third season already are confirmed, here are a few suggestions for how Dragula could be streamlined and elevated.
1. First and most importantly, the pacing and editing of the show is often painful. In the last several episodes, especially the first part of the two-parter set at Wasteland Weekend, the need to fill time was so obvious. Almost the entire episode was spent with the queens as they got ready and it was boring.
2. The "short film" openers where the Boulets commit a series of creepy crimes and spooky tomfoolery need to go, or at least be made a hell of a lot shorter. Two episodes in I simply started skipping them entirely.
3. Please license better music for the queens to perform to. At one point there was a song that was so clearly a rip-off of Le Tigre's "Deceptacon" it was painful. Sure, you don't have the budget to get big pop songs, but why not use tracks from up-and-coming queer artists?
4. I understand the need for Dragula to establish itself as an entity separate from Drag Race, but it would also be interesting to at some point give these girls a chance to acknowledge that they are on a televised drag competition that isn't Drag Race, if only to emphasize the power in that. It's amazing that Dragula exists when Drag Race is such a huge juggernaut yet doesn't really spread the drag love around when it comes to other shows.
5. Dragula does an incredible job with what must be a very meager budget, but it feels like the money is being spent in the wrong places. Use the coins you're spending on those awful canned intros to film some better confessional interviews. I heard a rumor that all the interviews were shot in a bathroom, and the video and sound quality certainly belong in a bathroom.
6. Bring back Willam! problematic as she may be, he advice to a contestant to "quit drag" was honestly the highlight of the season.
Whether or not Dragula updates its formula for season three, so many of us are huge fans of the show. It's inspiring to see queens working outside the strict lines of RuPaul-mandated drag and reaching the audience that the show has built. These monsters truly slay.
A previous verison of this article incorrectly stated that Dragula is produced by World of Wonder. Dragula is produced in associaion with Out TV.