- We review all the keys of Drag Race España, who follows in RuPaul’s footsteps according to his own standards.
- The first episode premieres this Sunday, May 30 at 8:00 p.m. on ATRESplayer.
- Why RuPaul’s Drag Race is the best reality Netflix (and the world)
“If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you going to love others?” With this vital teaching -that we should burn ourselves- RuPaul Charles ends each of the episodes of his RuPaul’s Drag Race, the reality from drag queens most famous on the planet. And that message, which also carries the Spanish version Drag Race España, talks about the very essence of the program: the drag (or transformism, as it has been called in our country for decades) is an art that helps to connect with our most intimate and creative self, to blur the barriers of the genres that have been imposed on us and to learn to express everything for which words are not enough. Sometimes it takes a good lipsync.
“The most political thing we can say in this program is that whoever you are and how you identify yourself, we see you, we celebrate you and you are not alone”, tells ESQUIRE the director of the program, Steve Kelly, who is already preparing engines to present to the world the first generation of Spanish queens of the franchise, among which are very different styles and personalities that promise to give us moments throughout the season. But above all, there are ten contestants who are not here to ask for forgiveness or permission. “The best way in which this program can change some mentalities in Spain is that it is fun, honest and that it never apologizes for what it is and what it says,” he says. Therefore, we recommend: put it on your children. Enjoy it together. Now more than ever. As the presenter of the Spanish show, Supremme de Luxe, tells us: “This is a plea for diversity and freedom and for each one to do what they want, which is what I think we should aspire to.”
With Javier Calvo, Javier Ambrossi and Ana Locking as jury, Drag Race España lands this Sunday at ATRESplayer encapsulating all the magic of the format and mixing it with the Spanish personality. Reasons to see it? There are many, and we tell you about them from the hand of their creators. Important: leave your prejudices out and hold on to your wig, because they will blow it up.
If you are uninitiated in the universe, let us tell you: RuPaul’s Drag Race It is one of the funniest shows on American television. And you have it available in its entirety on Netflix, in case you want to start catching up now that we finally have our own Spanish version. The idea is simple: imagine the typical contest of supermodels who have to pass tests every week and present outfits on the catwalk, but transfer it to the art of drag with a sense of humor, hooliganism and a diversity of disciplines, from dancing to singing, through Oscar-worthy performances and heart-stopping makeup skills.
The outfits, yes, but above all creativity. The image matters, yes, but above all the personality. It is important to take it seriously, yes, but at the same time knowing how to laugh at yourself. After the tests of each episode, two queens are nominated to leave, but their fate is not decided by the viewers’ SMS (what are we, in 2002?), But a duel of lipsync in which they have to perform a song in playback. The most convincing, will stay (shantay you stay) and, at least, he will go home (well, he will have to sashay away).
How is such a format transferred to Spain? “The format is very versatile: there is a lot of space within the classic elements to transfer the character and originality of any country to each version of the program”, explains Steve Kelly, who acknowledges that “Spain obviously has its traditions and various styles of drag very powerful and marked “, in addition to” a sense of humor very his and a very particular culture. ” Well we know. “We have been faithful to the structure and spirit of the original but with a cast of contestants from all corners of the country with their regional styles, challenges with a very Spanish flavor and, of course, music by Spanish artists to create the soundtrack of the program “, reveals the director.
As the most dedicated fans of the program will know, in this edition there will be moments like the Snatch Game, where the contestants have to imitate celebrities and try to be the funniest of the group, or the makeover, in which external guests enter the set to be draggeados from top to bottom. “In this program, the contestants not only have to sing, dance, sew or act: they have to do whatever it takes to advance to the next episode,” Kelly advances, pointing out that “the representation of the different colors of the rainbow was also important. community”. And it is that, as we will see, the drag it is inseparable from the struggle for demands.
Politics, vindication, representation
As RuPaul would say, just putting on a wig, some heels, and walking the streets is already a political act. Existing with pride in the difference and outside the regulations is already vindictive. “Just being on this show is a political statement that the LGBTI + community is here, is visible and is not going anywhere,” defends Steve Kelly, making it clear that the contest format will continue to contain important conversations. Their incredible possibilities have already been shown to us in the past: in the work room of RuPaul’s Drag Race there has been talk of parental rejection of a child queer, of the stigmatization of AIDS, of homophobic terrorism, of the progressive integration of the trans community in the world of drag, of the relations between religion and sexual identity, of racism in the United States, of police brutality, of the chosen family, of insecurities …
Everything is a topic of conversation in front of the mirrors of the work cream while they are getting ready to hit the catwalk. And Spain will be no different. “It is a discourse that we have incorporated,” says Supremme de Luxe. “The program does not have a political and vindictive approach, it is an entertainment program, what happens is that, by doing certain artists, it implies that you position yourself in certain things in life,” adds the presenter, who advances that there will also be painful confessions in the middle of the catwalk, both from the contestants and even from the invited jurors.
“We are entering the homes of the world through this show in a way that is filled with pride in being different,” says Kelly. “Obviously, each person has their own personal story and it is very important for us to tell these stories honestly and hopefully reach viewers who have been through the same difficulties in their lives,” he adds. Keyword? Representation. What we will see in Drag Race España It may be recognizable to fans of the format, but it is something new and important in our country. A window open to lives that normally do not have access to products mainstream. Now, as the director points out, the vehicle to be vindicated is entertainment: “The best way in which this program can change some mentalities in Spain is for it to be fun, honest and never apologize for what it is and what it says. … After the year we’ve all had what the world needs is humor more than anything. ”
A reign with ten monarchs
“I see that in the American editions it has attracted attention that one with a beard or bald came out, and here we have had it all our lives, and it has been the most normal thing in the world”, says Supremme de Luxe, master of ceremonies, defending that in Spain there has always been a drag incredibly varied and heterogeneous. And it is that many think that this art consists simply of a man dressing as a woman and creating a feminine illusion, but that is just one of the many styles that can be found in the community. “If I like the proposal that I see I do not start to question whether it has to go one way or another, I do not care if it is more woman, more monstrous or more bald,” defends the presenter.
We see that variety in the cast of Drag Race España, where we find comedy queens such as Arantxa Castilla La Mancha (Badajoz), Pupi Poisson (Madrid) and The Macarena (Cádiz), the queens fashion victims such as Sagittaria (Barcelona) and Dovima Nurmi (Barcelona), the representative of hyperfemininity Carmen Farala (Seville), protest proposals from the base such as the indigenous-futurism of Inti (Bolivia), the representation of the very special and unique drag canary with Drag Vulcano (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria), the multidisciplinary character of Killer Queen (Madrid) and the unclassifiable artistic aesthetic (and name) of Hugáceo Crujiente (Valencia).
“Within that there could be much more variety, because in Spain I already told you that here each one belongs to her father and mother and that has always been the case, one of the points in favor here is that the casting is very varied and with very different personalities “, says Supremme, who is not betting on a specific type of drag, but on the coherence of the artist with his proposal to the world. “Drag is very diverse, fortunately, and hopefully it will continue to be,” he wishes. For his part, Steve Kelly does not rule out that in possible future seasons there could be more diversity: “Our casting is open to whoever wants to present, and getting the widest possible representation will make the program relevant, interesting and constantly evolving. “.
Of course, the Spanish version of the show could inspire many viewers and viewers to take the plunge and join the party. But Supremme de Luxe does not forget what lies beyond the borders of Drag Race: “It is good that you conquer a space mainstream, but without neglecting the underground, that all the drag is not what you see here: this is a part of the drag. and it is very good that it is there, but we must not forget the day-to-day work, which is hard and many times it does not look as good as it should because of many limitations, not from the artists, but from the barriers that are encountered “.
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The secret of success?
A Drag Race Without its creator, RuPaul, it can also be a success, as countries such as Canada and the Netherlands have recently shown. The secret? Finding what makes each country, each edition, each group of contestants special. Knowing how to balance fun with politics, camaraderie with rivalry, fashion with comedy, aesthetics with substance. In addition, “it is a unique program, with people and stories that have never had a place on TV before,” as Kelly points out. “There is something and someone for everyone, although, if there is a secret to success, it is that he is authentic and faithful to the community he represents,” he continues.
It only remains to see if Drag Race España becomes a phenomenon beyond the established fan community of the show. Might. Should. The reasons have been clear here, and only one question remains: Why should you see it specifically with the smallest of the house? Well, because all these messages of inclusiveness, struggle and representation are important. And because they are going to have a great time. Teach them as soon as possible that, as the great song of RuPaul says, we are all born naked and the rest is drag.
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