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Dragula: Titans Episodes 4 and 5: Dungeons, Drag Queens, Basic Bitches, and Zombie Cheerleaders

Hi uglies, and welcome back to Horror Obsessive’s weekly Dragula: Titans coverage. I missed you all last week! I was out of the country and foolishly didn’t consider that I wouldn’t have access to the new episode due to geo-blocking. To try and make it up to you, I’m going in for some double trouble this week and covering Episode 4 along with Episode 5 in a little rapid-fire recap. Next week, I’ll be back to business as usual (i.e. meticulously outlining every stupid boudoir fight for your reading pleasure.) Let’s dig in!

Episode 4: Slut Dragula/Nerd Dragula

Previously on Dragula: queen of the people and MC of the season, Kendra Onixxx, was sadly sent back to hell.

In the boudoir, everyone’s mad at Abhora (for good reason!) They talk about it for a million years and then, surprise surprise, Abhora’s back again! I miss Kendra.

This week’s challenge is Dungeons and Drag Queens, which was introduced all the way back in season 3 to mixed results. Contestants having to roll with randomized D&D characters? Great! Contestants bringing extreme theater kid energy to the acting challenge? Cringe! (But also, I kind of love it, I’m not gonna lie.)

Dungeonmasters Dracmorda and Swanthula roll for the contestants’ races and classes with the following results. I am once again including commentary from my partner, J, as she knows more about nerd sh*t than I do.

Abhora – dark elf druid

Victoria – elf priestess

Koco – elf barbarian (“That’s a hard one but she’s probably gonna look super hot.” – J)

Erika – gnome rogue

Astrud – human bard (*hysterical laughter* – J)

Evah – human paladin

HoSo – dark elf ranger (“Oh, they’ve given her a beautiful gift.”- J)

Melissa – human barbarian

On one hand, it seems like way too many humans. On the other, at least the results make it seem like these choices truly are random? The Boulets split the contestants into teams, with Astrud, Victoria, Melissa, and Erika on one team and Evah, Abhora, Koco, and HoSo on the other.

The Fright Feat is a little silly this week, as our ghouls essentially just play tug of war in their teams over a pool of gore. So many puddles of viscera in these Fright Feats! Where are the needles? Where are the paintballs? When are we going to see someone buried alive? I would like to see a little more range, please.

Koco Caine falls into a pool of gore
Me if they have another gore challenge next episode

Team Astrud/Victoria/Melissa/Erika wins, which gives them the choice of script. Due to Vicki and Melissa’s fears about memorizing their lines, they choose the simpler story. Astrud explains D&D to everyone at length, which is funny for a few different reasons, but particularly because there’s no way at least half of these ghouls don’t already know the rules. Then, Evah takes everyone through some acting exercises, which ends up actually being pretty cute. Koco seems super into it despite herself, which I’m charmed by. Melissa and Abhora have a nice little heart-to-heart, with Melissa proving that considerate directness is probably always the best way to handle interpersonal issues.

Fast-forwarding to the challenge, Team Astrud/Victoria/Melissa/Erika is even more stilted and awkward than I expected them to be! Everyone delivers every line in almost the exact same way and they sort of feed off each other in a hilarious downward spiral until finally, they’re all just screaming things at each other. A beautiful, terrible train wreck. Team Evah/Abhora/Koco/HoSo is…good? Like, actually good? Like, I enjoyed watching their segment good? For a reality competition acting challenge, this is truly the highest praise I can give. Shout out to Abhora, also, whose plan to perform well in a way that uplifts their teammates works out great here.

HoSo as a dark elf ranger

Oh, also, Evah has a weird meltdown for whatever reason. We’ve all been there, but also: lol.

Onto the looks!

Abhora

I adored this look. Distinctively Abhora while remaining spot-on for the challenge. I particularly loved the shoes and the color palette. Super interesting and fun take on a druid.

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Astrud

It was fine! It looked right for a human bard. I don’t really know how to judge this one because it didn’t really do much for me, but at the same time, it was a tricky assignment and I have no idea how I would change it to be better. Maybe it would have worked more if there were more characterization, like how Priscilla Chambers really brought to life her elf bard in season 3.

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Erika

This just didn’t work. I feel for Erika’s frustration that her drag never seems to be good enough for the competition, but it’s also hard to get on board when so much of her work seems to be unintentionally unpolished or unfinished. I don’t have an issue with Erika’s drag style at all and I think she absolutely deserves to be on Dragula but I wish she had taken more time to refine her technical skills before coming on Titans.

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Evah

So, unlike Astrud’s character, I do clearly see how this one could’ve been a lot stronger. I didn’t get Evah’s instinct to go Disney with this one. I wish she had gone full holy warrior with it or at least drawn on some cool, gnarly Medieval influences. This fell flat for me.

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HoSo

Great, wonderful, exactly what I would want for this character. HoSo really shines when she gets a chance to highlight her rangy, kinetic physicality.

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Koco

This was the best look of the night for sure. As expected, Koco looked sexy as hell, but she also brought a level of comedy, care, and charisma to her look that was lacking in many others. From the toenails to the massive, vine-covered axe, the whole effect just worked. When Koco was announced as a contestant this season, I was excited but a little apprehensive. Season 4 had just aired and, during her initial run, she seemed to struggle to let herself go and feel free to experiment. I don’t know what changed for her between seasons, but I’m happy it did because she seems much more at ease this time around and her art is all the better for it.

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Melissa

As you all know, I live for Melissa, so I cannot believe I’m going to say this but: I liked this one less than the judges did. Was it great to finally see her face? Yes. Was her performance great? Of course. Did this look blow me away? No. I would’ve loved to have seen her get weirder and grimier with it, especially given how much freedom the barbarian class gives to go big. Not her best week but very glad she brought it with the performance and will be sticking around.

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Victoria

Speaking of “not the best week,” this was a rough one for ole Victoria. It was so…basic? Almost like a high-end Halloween costume. She looked pretty, I guess, but that’s about all I can give her.

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Victoria as an elf priestess
Victoria, I love you but the basic bitch challenge is next week

Judging! The guest judges are Eric Graise, one of the only good actors in the terrible Queer as Folk reboot, and Misha Osherovich, who I hadn’t heard of before (presumably because I’m old) but seems sweet. Unsurprisingly, Koco’s team wins with Koco taking the top spot. You go, Koco! Though Astrud gets chastised for talking over the director, it’s also unsurprising that Victoria and Erika end up at the bottom. The least surprising of all is that Victoria (who does not seem to be worried even for a moment) is spared and Erika is sent back to hell.

Koco as an elf barbarian

Goodbye Erika! Fright Feats truly will not be the same without you!

Erika as a gnome rogue

Episode 5: Tiddy Baby

Previously on Dragula: see above.

In the boudoir, Astrud is being…challenging. Melissa gives both Evah flack for her meltdown during the challenge last week and Astrud flack for being difficult to work with. While Evah seems to take this criticism in stride, Astrud claims that Melissa can’t take responsibility for her own actions while also insisting that she, Astrud, did absolutely nothing wrong the previous week. I am going to stop writing about this conversation because I’m probably as bored writing about it as you are reading it.

Victoria makes a stank face
Same, girl

Anyway, this week’s challenge is a mash-up of two of my favorites from season 1! There will be two floor shows, the first being the “basic bitch ball” that I’ve been dying for them to bring back. In their second performance, the ghouls will be transforming their basic bitch looks into horrible zombies for a zombie prom. Love it.

So, what’s this week’s Fright Feat? Are they going to go skydiving? Mud wrestle? Get tattoos? Nope! They’re eating more gross sh*t! This is truly getting to a point of diminishing returns. Although I will say that the brain-eating challenge is one of the only feats I might actually fully refuse to do because of a deep-seated fear of prion diseases.

Anyways, they all eat enough of their brains to pass to the challenge, with Evah winning a rare chance at immunity. She says she’s going to take this chance to try and have more fun with the challenge, which is a relief. Evah’s a funny one because as soon as she starts to get uptight, her whole drag persona seems to change for the worse.

Also, oops, I lied when I said I was going to stop talking about petty drama, but I’ll try to keep this part quick. From what I can gather, Astrud asks HoSo to go to the prom with her, then Victoria asks Koco, Evah asks Melissa, and Abhora admirably rallies from this pretty gentle slight and asks “Boudoir Mannequin” as their date. Then, somehow, it becomes a huge f*cking deal where HoSo’s upset on Abhora’s behalf and Astrud’s upset that HoSo’s paying attention to Abhora and Abhora seems sort of overall stressed.

Koco yells, “I have to pee!” and escapes to the cauldron to kiki with Evah and Melissa. I like this group because it’s almost certainly the three who will be fighting it out for that third spot in the finale alongside Victoria and HoSo (unless Victoria or HoSo truly whiffs it in the next few episodes.) All three agree that the love triangle is tiresome and Astrud is getting on their nerves.

Before we go to the floor show, there’s a funny moment between Astrud and Victoria where Astrud asks Victoria who she sees ending up in the final three. To her face, Victoria says that she can see Astrud there with her, but in a confessional she says, “Is she in my top three? No, but how do you tell someone that when they’re sitting across the table from you?!” Shady lady… (I love it)

Onto the floor show!

The Boulet Brothers

Abhora

A mess! I personally kind of loved it. I feel like Abhora wasn’t even trying to miss the assignment; she just heard “high school” and went with it. Her cheerleader look isn’t great, but the zombie version is delightful. Just tits flying all over the place. Fantastic.

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Astrud

A mess (derogatory)! It was fine but didn’t love it. The beat on the basic bitch look felt off and the zombie look was almost as messy as Melissa’s. One thing I will say is that I initially thought she sewed her lips together in the zombie look, which I would’ve loved and made me long for a contestant to do some more extreme body sh*t in performances.

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Evah

Basic bitch look was great and fun and the zombie look was solid! Really good, gross facial prosthetics. Sort of an elevated middle-of-the-pack week for our favorite cool mom.

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HoSo

I actually enjoyed HoSo’s Trixie Mattel-inspired basic-bitch makeup, though I do agree that she could’ve taken it more basic. It’s almost funny (and maybe even admirable?) how much she refuses to incorporate her IRL beauty into her drag character. I thought the “anti slut shaming” thing on the back of her zombie look was corny, but I really enjoyed the look overall, especially the exploding ribcage.

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Koco

Another strong week for Koco! Her basic bitch look was lovely and I thought it was a very smart move not to wear the enormous breastplate that’s become a signature for her drag character. I was slightly less enthused about her zombie look but thought it was solid and I loved her performance, particularly when she was fondling her exposed bone (which sounds erotic but was in fact very gross in the best way.)

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Melissa

Another “eh” week for Melissa! Basic bitch was, of course, great. I loved the sash. Her zombie was pretty sloppy, though, and only salvaged by a typically fantastic performance. Drac’s advice to her to not try and do something someone else is an expert in was solid. While I love seeing her push herself out of her comfort zone, we are getting too little time to see her doing what she does best.

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Victoria

Mother Black is really outdoing herself this season. Again, I initially really wasn’t sold on her coming back, and again I’m eating my words. She’s truly upped her game, which I wasn’t sure was possible. Her technical skills have always been impeccable, but her designs have become wilder, weirder, and more specific to her vision. I love everything I’m seeing from her. The zombie look was one of the best she’s ever brought to the show. Just absolutely stunning.

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Our guest judges this week are Barbara Crampton and Tananarive Due. So, horror A-listers. Both are just as gorgeous and brilliant and delightful as you might hope. Victoria, whose prosthetic hilariously causes her to drool through the whole discussion, is heaped with praise and naturally takes the win, while Koco is named as runner-up. Victoria’s “yay” when she wins sounds exactly like Toad, I swear to god. Astrud, Abhora, and Melissa all receive some negative critiques, but the Boulets change it up this week and allow the prom queen to choose the bottom two.

Victoria as a zombie prom queen

Back in the boudoir, everyone pleads their case, though it seems like Victoria already has her mind largely made up. Melissa wisely points out how much the love-triangle drama has been affecting the vibe of the workspace and we’re treated to a flashback clip of Victoria getting very gently fed up with all the squabbling.

Unsurprisingly, she chooses Abhora and Astrud for the bottom two, which is a smart move given that it’ll break up the love triangle no matter what. More surprisingly, it’s Abhora who’s sent back down into the underworld. I’m sad to see her go, but it didn’t seem like she was long for the competition. While they’re a phenomenal artist, the Dragula format doesn’t seem quite suited to Abhora’s process. Still, I’m sorry to be a hater, but I’m disappointed they went before Astrud.

Abhora flinging her fake tiddies around
RIP

Alright, everyone, that’s it for this week! I’ll see you next week for a regular-flavor recap of Episode 6. As always, sound off in the comments if you think I’m a genius or an idiot. Just remember: recapping is art and art is subjective.

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Written by Saskia Niesiolowski

Saskia is a writer, ceramicist, horror freak, and queer creature. Find more of their stuff at siramuks.com or at @cronebro on Twitter and Instagram.

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