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Graham Norton talks about BBC Three’s RuPaul’s Drag Race UK vs The World

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We’re back and now we’re global for the first time in Drag Race herstory! How was it to see queens from around the world together in one competition?

It oddly felt like a big family reunion even though we’ve never met. I’m a proper Drag Race fan and watch all the international versions of the show so I loved getting to know these international drag superstars.

What are the main qualities you think it takes to be Queen of the World?

To be crowned Queen of the World you need more than just the looks and the talent. They have to have the sort of personality that transcends language and culture and these queens all have that.

How was it to meet some of the queens you hadn’t met before from other iterations of the show? Did they exceed your expectations?

Drag Race contestants always exceed my expectations. I always go into the competition feeling like we must have seen the best already but then the bar gets raised again and again. I think people will be blown away by the looks and the talent that these international queens bring to the main stage.

How do you describe your judging style?

Pointless. Honestly, I’m just there to have a front row seat and make up the numbers. The queens only want to hear what Ru and Michelle think and who can blame them?

What has been a particular highlight of yours across the previous series of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK?

I loved all the Snatch Games. Baga Chipz giving us her Margaret Thatcher and Bimini Bon Boulash doing Katie Price were both real highlights for me.

RuPaul’s Drag Race is a global phenomenon, why do you think the show has taken the world by storm?

Apart from the obvious appeal of fabulous costumes and wigs, I think the show has enormous heart. In the end it is the emotional connection that we make with the queens that keeps the show special.

How important do you believe it is to showcase the best of world drag to new audiences?

I love that drag is finding a new audience and main stream acceptance. Listening to the stories that many of the queens tell about their struggles in life, it is truly joyous that when they step out on to the main stage, they don’t just find that they are safe and accepted. They are celebrated! That is still a powerful message to spread around the world.

Do you have a particular country’s drag you enjoy the most and if so, why?

Well, I love the UK for its humour and creativity, while America blows me away with its polish and glamour.

What can viewers expect from this series?

Viewers can expect the best of the best. It has all the sparkle and laughs you expect from Drag Race but also more drama and emotion than I have ever seen in one of these competitions. Enjoy!