Drag Race Down Under season two premiere

Drag Race Down Under is back! And unlike the disastrous season one, it’s actually great

Season two is bursting with talent, personality and immaculate vibes

Cast your mind back to April last year and you may remember reading my weekly annihilations of the disastrous premiere season of Drag Race Down Under. I spent one day a week during that season regretfully having to paste that season into the ground. I wholeheartedly believe it is the worst season of Drag Race ever made – and that goes for globally across the franchise, not just the worst Ru-fronted season. The riggory, the production agenda, the return of Art Simone and the racism made it a bleak and really quite unforgivable watch. I headlined one of my final pieces on the season “Crown Kita Mean or don’t even bother with a season two”. Well, they listened – and season two is here. Thank the gay gods –  if the Drag Race Down Under season two premiere is anything to go by, the show has learnt its lesson.

The cast feels instantly wonderful

From the get-go, Drag Race Down Under season one felt rough. The set looked rough, the main stage looked rough, the casting felt rough. Nobody gelled, and it was clear from very early on that the producers were convinced we would want Art Simone, Scarlet Adams and Karen From Finance in the final. The latter two who had a history of racism – Scarlet performing numerous times in racially insensitive costume and Blackface, and Karen having a golliwog collection and a tattoo of one (She has since had it removed, but the damage was obviously done.)

If that wasn’t bad enough, Karen was simply not that great a competitor and was clearly being led to the final thanks to Trixie and Katya saying her name on their YouTube show a lot. Art Simone went home on Snatch Game and then just wandered back in for literally no reason. Production seemed to think we would love these queens, but we wept and wailed as we watched our actual favourites go home for shit reasons. Justice for Anita, Electa and Etcetera!

With Drag Race Down Under season two, the premiere makes it clear that these queens will be a much more endearing and dynamic batch. In one episode, we see the alliances being formed and the age-old drama of new queens VS old scene legends lines drawn. It’s engaging and great reality TV.

Early faves?

It’s early days, but so many of these queens feel so damn likeable and it’s just a joy to be around them. You’ve got the respected legends like Minnie Cooper, Hannah Conda and Kween Kong – who the newer queens in the Werk Room are clearly threatened and a bit in awe to be competing against. Then you’ve got the savage confidence of Beverly Killz, a newer queen who is extremely polished and unafraid to speak her mind on any runway looks that don’t tickle her pickle. Also, Yuri gobbled the runway. Even if she couldn’t walk!

No matter what side you’re on, the drama is dramaing and it feels like Drag Race Down Under is going to hit its stride.

The season feels destined to follow in the trend of season two greatness

There’s a trend with Drag Race that I’ve clocked, and that is that season twos normally absolutely slap and knock season one out of the water. Season two of Canada’s Drag Race? A godsend. Season two of Drag Race España? Probably the most talented batch of queens I’ve ever watched. Season two of Drag Race UK? One of the best seasons of all time. SEASON TWO OF ALL STARS? Shaking, crying, throwing up.

I’m not quite ready to say from the premiere of Drag Race Down Under season two that it’s in those leagues yet, but hey, it’s a bloody good start. My engines are started and I’m EXCITED.

Watch the premiere of season two of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under on BBC iPlayer

Featured image courtesy of World of Wonder.

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