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Dani ‘Tracy Beaker’ Harmer says watching Drag Race helps with her depression and anxiety

Lily Wakefield March 11, 2021
Dani Harmer in the CBBC revival series My Mum Tracy Beaker

Dani Harmer stars in the CBBC revival series My Mum Tracy Beaker. (CBBC)

Tracy Beaker star Dani Harmer has revealed that she watches RuPaul’s Drag Race to help with her depression and anxiety, and feels she “needs” to be a judge.

Harmer starred in the original CBBC show The Story of Tracy Beaker from 2002 to 2005, and this year in the revival series My Mum Tracy Beaker.

Speaking to the podcast Pop Cult Digest, Harmer revealed that she is a Drag Race superfan, and that it has helped her deal with some serious issues.

On her “obsession” with drag, Harmer said she was “definitely a drag queen in a previous life”, and explained: “I think I found it at a time when I just needed a bit of escapism, I needed to get out of my own head for a minute.

“I suffer with depression and anxiety, and I kind of go up and down with it all the time. I discovered RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix, just per chance, was like, ‘This is exactly what I need, I need some joy’… Straight away, I was in.”

Asked whether she would like to be a judge on Drag Race UK, Harmer gushed: “Don’t. Don’t. I think about this all the time. I need it. I need to be a judge. I just do.

“I feel like I know everything now that I’ve watched every single series ever, I’ve seen so many live drag performances it’s ridiculous, I would be a really good judge.

“But oh my god, that would mean that I would actually have to sit next to RuPaul, and I’m not sure I could do that without collapsing. If Michelle Visage spoke to me, I might wee myself.”

Dani Harmer is celebrating the “victory” of seeing Tracy Beaker’s adoptive mum Cam marry a woman.

The original series featured a queer-coded depiction of main character Tracy Beaker’s adoptive mum Cam, played by Lisa Coleman, but the character eventually married a man.

However, the revival series My Mum Tracy Beaker finally put right the historical injustice, by bringing back Cam and this time featuring her wedding to new wife Mary.

Dani Harmer recalled: “When I read the script, and I got to the part where Cam gets married, I was like, ‘Oh my god, finally!’ She gets to be her true self.

“It was so frustrating in that original series not being able to even mention Cam and her personal life, and anything about that. It sucked, and then they went and married her off to a man! And we all knew that was rubbish. We were like, ‘What the hell? She’s a lesbian, let her be a lesbian!'”

“Finally, at last, we’re telling the story that should have been told all those bloody years ago,” she added.

On the importance of representation, Harmer said: “I’m very privileged, I see myself portrayed on the telly all the bloody time… I can see myself, a white, straight girl, all the time, whenever you switch it on.

“Representation is so important, and we’ve got such a long way to go, but it’s really nice to celebrate these little victories.”

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