The Boulet Brothers are without a doubt two of the most exciting names in drag. Known as Dracmorda and Swanthula Boulet individually, the duo have been bringing horror, filth and glamour to the drag scene for years.
Back in 2016, the doors were opened for drag monsters across the United States of America to not just showcase their talents to thousands in clubs, but to millions across the globe in a brand new drag competition reality series with a difference - Dragula.
Now in its third season, produced in association with OUTtv, Dragula has opened the eyes of drag fans who thought what they saw on RuPaul's Drag Race was the way to succeed as part of the art form.
To celebrate the groundbreaking series, we caught up with The Boulet Brothers to chat all about the show, including some of its most dramatic moments to-date. Find out what they had to say below...
For those who haven't yet seen Dragula, how would you describe the show?
I would describe it as "a lot to take in", but in a good way! I think it's something between a horror movie, a creative competition and a reality show. It's intense across the board: from the extermination challenges; to the interpersonal drama; to the journeys the competitors go through while on the show.
The series is completely different to Drag Race, and anything we've seen on TV; do you think the majority of the world is ready for this sort of drag?
I do - in some ways I think they are more ready to see this kind of show than something more mainstream. In our opinion, there are more people in the world that don't fit in than people that do, and so I think our show resonates with anyone that feels like an outcast. People love outcasts, people root for the monster because we all have a little bit inside of us that feels like they are that. I see more heterosexual men being into our show than other drag shows because they love the grittiness, they love the horror special effects and they love the exterminations. It's sort of a more badass version of drag than what they are used to seeing.
On a personal level, one of my favourite parts of the show is the campy elimination sequences at the end of each episode - has a contestant ever been so pissed off about losing, they've been a nightmare when filming their final scene?
No, and as you may have noticed the death scenes are a lot more brutal and less campy this year [in Season 3]. We really wanted to make the fans uncomfortable by taking someone they had started to really care about and connect with and just brutalise them on screen. It's all in the name of horror and fun, and just forcing the viewers to feel something. If you feel a lot of high-pinging emotions while watching a show, you're not going to forget it and that is what we were going for.
As far as the competitors, they are all in - they love it, and the more terrible the better. It's actually a lot of fun to film them with them all.
Is Israel Zamora as disgustingly beautiful in real life as he is on screen?
Yes, and he's a beautiful person inside and out. We are with him all the time in real life, and he's just the perfect companion - giant and muscled, good hygiene, smells good, smiles a lot, laughs a lot, and is obedient only to us. What more could you ask for?
What would you say have been some of your favourite, or most memorable moments in filming Dragula to-date?
I think the Wasteland Weekend episode was fun. That was an event that we had hosted for years and just being able to bring the finalists to that world and have them battle in the Thunderdome was a full circle moment for us personally. That is the world and scene that our drag comes from, and you just don't see drag like that represented anywhere. We didn't do the typical gigs, Hamburger Mary's and top 40 clubs and all that when we were coming up - we were throwing fetish parties and punk nights and it was just a whole other world for us, so it was fun to share a different take on drag with people. Just to be clear, we're not knocking the other way, we're just saying it's more what people think of when they think of today's drag.
How about some of the most awkward or intense moments?
Loris having (what we thought) was an allergic reaction in the desert during season one was intense, as was Melissa Befierce becoming enraged at the last supper.
Dahli's extermination on Season 2 was shocking because we all thought she was on track to make it through to the end.
On Season 3, all of the meltdowns were obviously awkward. People always say "yeah but it's good tv" which it is, but in the moment, we weren't expecting it - neither of the previous seasons' contestants lashed out like that, so it was definitely awkward. It was intense.
We're currently on the third season of Dragula - what advice do you have for those auditioning for future seasons? What do you look for in audition tapes?
Don't try to control your image or fake who you are - just be you and be authentic self because that's what we want to see. As far as audition tapes, be concise, be entertaining and be real. The last part where production asks you to go do something in public is super important. Two competitors this season did so well at it that it's what actually got them cast on the season. You better kill that part of the audition if you want to be on the show!
We saw a video where a reporter asked you how you felt about Yvie Oddly bringing horror drag to the mainstream, which was very awkward to say the least! Does it annoy you when you don't get the props you deserve for everything you've done, for this sort of drag, and the community as a whole?
No, we get plenty of recognition for what we do. That was just some kid at DragCon - he just doesn't know better yet, and sadly, that is all he knows about the world of drag. That's why we're here right? That's why we are doing what we are doing. People are starting to see there is much more to the story.