Dragula: Gender and Monstrous Performance

Hey guys, check out this promo for the drag competition Dragula. There are some suggestions of blood, gore and violence (someone staples their head around the one minute mark, so if you’re hesitant on that kind of stuff just a heads up).

I think it’s pretty cool to see how these drag artists not only perform gender, but also take on aspects that are monstrous to them and bring to life their monster creation.

One that stood out for me is the clown. The campiness of this character through the bright colours and fuzzy pom-poms, doesn’t seem as scary as it should be. However, some people have fears around clowns. I think this really ties in well with the idea of the uncanny – something so familiar to us has the ability to bring up repressed emotions.

Revealed during smaller segments of the web series, the contestants talk about how they themselves are “monsters.” They discuss things such as body modification, or their style of drag (e.g. wearing horns, fangs, etc). It’s been awhile since I’ve watched it, but I believe they also discuss their sexuality. Most of the contestants are gay men, and have talked about their experiences on being excluded or being made fun of. This ties into what we as society deem as “normal.” That we see something as other/ monstrous because it doesn’t fit into our normalized ideologies.

Let me know what you guys think!

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