On Edge: Anticipating RuPaul’s Drag Race UK


With RuPaul’s Drag Race now in its tenth year, it’s finally ‘crossing the pond’ for its first ever UK season, set to air this October on BBC Three. Staple-judges RuPaul and beloved Michelle Visage travel with the show and are joined by new judges and gay icons Graham Norton and Alan Carr. Alongside the season’s set panel, a gag-worthy list of special guest judges brings further hype for the show’s release, including Cheryl Cole, Maisie Williams, Sharon Osbourne, and rumours that even Khloe Kardashian may join the exciting lineup. Staying ever-relevant with current trends, AJ and Curtis Pritchard (3rd place in this year’s of Love Island) will be sashaying onto our screens to choreograph the UK queens – fingers crossed for yet another iconic Rusical. 

Despite recent seasons of Drag Race lacking its earlier flair and unpredictability, with the long-standing UK north-south divide, Scottish fireceness, Irish charm, and Welsh softness, some classic workroom drama is sure to erupt. Plus Michelle and RuPaul will be shocked to learn that not all Brits speak with a dodgy cockney accent, whilst struggling to translate and comprehend the numerous accents and slang words which is sure to add some entertainment value. Judges and guests will certainly be put to good use attempting to bridge this language barrier! Even if the show keeps its stagnant layout, the new setting, fairly unheard of queens and British banter should make it more enjoyable than the recent season eleven of Drag Race USA. 

Typical challenges/mini-challenges set in Drag Race tradition include multiple acting challenges (a few too many in recent seasons), reading challenge (which may end in tears with British banter far harsher than American), a Rusical, lip-sync/singing challenge (either in groups or to a new RuPaul single), design challenge and of course Snatch Game, to name a few. This long list alone shows how predictable the show has become, but hopefully the BBC will inspire World of Wonder more so than VH1 have been doing in late. Although Drag Race challenges have been similar throughout its 10 year history, as time has moved on the more obscure challenges have become near-extinct. Think season two’s infamous bride episode where Tyra faces a near-death experience from Tatiana’s glares, the stripper and rocker chick challenges. Season three’s ‘Queens in Space’, and four’s ‘RuPocalypse’. These are some of the weird classics that Drag Race UK will hopefully ru-vive. 

Challenges and judges aside, with Michelle Visage now announced as a contestant on this year’s Strictly Come Dancing, the best treat fans could receive would be seeing Michelle join Curtis and AJ in the choreo challenge, whatever that may be. If the prospect of this happening isn’t an exciting enough reason to watch, then think how a variety of potentially incomprehensible languages, fresh challenges and a host of new queens sure to explode in the workroom. After all, us Brits can only stay polite for so long before we say it how it is. If nothing else, then at least tune in to see Michelle and Sharon Osbourne have some classic nutty convos.

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK will be released on October 3rd and available to watch on BBC Three via BBC iPlayer.



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