RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under: Everything we know about the spin-off so far including premiere date

Drag Race Down Under cast

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK season two has hardly bing-bang-bonged its last, but the good news is that there is already a new international Drag Race to look forward to.

Brand-new series RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under was announced on August 26, 2019, and the official title of the show was confirmed on January 18, 2021 by RuPaul through World of Wonder’s social media.

Now, the premiere date of the new series has been announced, and the great news is it’s arriving so much sooner than we thought, so dust off your wigs and sequins.

RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under will follow the tried and tested Drag Race formula, namely, contestants will take part in weekly challenges and the bottom queens will lip-sync for their lives.

Ru herself has said she cannot wait “for everyone to see that Down Under queens have some of the biggest charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talents in the world.”

She continued: “Thank you to Stan and TVNZ OnDemand for providing a platform for these outrageous drag artists to share their heart, soul and humour.” Here are some other things you need to know:

When is the RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under series one release date?

RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under will sashay onto our screens on 1 May. This is great news, because we all have a Bimini Bon Boulash, Lawrence Chaney and Tayce-shaped hole in our life.

How can I watch RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under?

The show will be available in the United States and select territories on WOW Presents Plus, TVNZ on New Zealand and Stan in Australia.

Availability in the UK will be confirmed soon, hopefully. Fingers crossed the BBC will snap it up, like they did with Drag Race Canada. We’ll update this guide with the latest information as it comes in.

Who are the judges for RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under?

Down Under will feature RuPaul herself, as well as acerbic long-term sidekick and judge Michelle Visage. They will be joined on the panel by Australian comedian Rhys Nicholson.

“The first words RuPaul ever said to me were ‘welcome to the family’ and that’s exactly what it feels like. A family,” Nicholson said in a statement about the upcoming series.

“Ru and Michelle are my new mummies I hope the editors took out the bits where I’m just staring at them wide-eyed trying to comprehend sitting next to them.”

How long will RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under run for?

It will run for a mere eight episodes, like RuPaul’s Drag Race UK season one.

Who are the contestants?

There will be 10 fierce queens vying for the first RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under crown. They are:

Anita Wigl’it (31-year-old Nick Kennedy-Hall)
Art Simone (28-year-old Jack Daye)
Coco Jumbo (30-year-old Luke Vito)
Elektra Shock (27-year-old James Luck)
Etcetera Etcetera (22-year-old Oliver Levi-Malouf)
Jojo Zaho (30-year-old John Ridgeway)
Karen From Finance (Richard Chadwick)
Kita Mean (34-year-old Nick Nash)
Maxi Shield (46-year-old Kris Elliot)
Scarlet Adams (Anthony Price)

Two of the queens have already been hit by scandal. In March 2021, RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under contestant Scarlet Adams issued a grovelling apology for performing in Blackface after Aboriginal drag queen Felicia Foxx shared a slew of photos of Adams wearing costumes that stole from and disrespected various cultures.

Adams responded to the latest wave of backlash by re-sharing a year-old apology on an Instagram highlight entitled “Atonement”, writing that the use of Blackface when she was “young” was “ignorant” and “so f***ing stupid”.

Karen from Finance also issued a “remorseful” apology after it emerged she had a tattoo of a racist golliwog doll, explaining she made the “uninformed, ignorant and regrettable decision” having had a collection of the anti-Black caricatures from the age of two. She has since disposed of the toys and had the tattoo covered.

PinkNews will bring you all of the latest RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under news on our dedicated page here.