Netflix brings us the best of queer comedy in its new original cartoon, Super Drags! Originally in Brazilian Portuguese, the English dubbed version stars a glittering voice artist line-up made up of the best in drag, most of whom are alumni of RuPaul’s Drag Race. The voices of Ginger Minj as Lemon Chiffon, Shangela as Scarlet, and Trixie Mattel as Champagne will really shine through to fans of the reality tv show.
Lemon, Scarlet, and Safira, the three superhero drag queens known as the Super Drags, embody the diversity of the queer community, coming together to save all their wonderful fellow fans of legendary pop icon Goldiva from the evils of Lady Elza and the frightening forces of Shade. Though silly and kitsch with abundant penis imagery, running beneath the perky Powerpuff Girls aesthetic is a real and disturbing acknowledgement of the threat to LGBTQ+ people, even today. The grotesque orgy monster as the final boss for the first episode is stomach-turning in the same way as so much of the best queer media, showcasing the glamorous and the horrific side by side in a way reminiscent of John Waters.
There is a clear nod to the show’s canonical heritage in the scene where the three heroes must clean the warehouse of the department store where they all work, so that, Cinderella-like, they can go to their dream Goldiva concert. On the wall behind them are stacks of boxes marked “V.F.D.” – a nod to the campy horror of A Series of Unfortunate Events – more boxes simply labelled “FU ‘16” along with an upside-down American flag, as well as a poster for 3%, the iconic Brazilian Netflix drama of the past few years.
If you like RuPaul, especially the improv challenges, and all the oversaturation, occasional banality and hilarity that means something, then this show is for you, as it is more or less one of these exact sketches stretched out for five episodes. And animated.
Mostly, though, I’m glad that the LGBTQ+ community finally have their own cartoon stoner comedy.