Drag Race UK’s Anubis felt ‘like a stalker’ when she met Victoria Scone
Hold on to your knickers, girls, because the Drag Race UK rollercoaster is back in action.
Drag Race UK must be what the Tories meant when they told the BBC to make more “distinctively British” television, because genuinely, what is more British than a gaggle of queers camping it up and laughing at wanking jokes?
It’s been six whole months since Lawrence Chaney was crowned the winner of season two, and already RuPaul is back in the werk room with a fresh batch of queens. It was a glorious introduction to the new cast, but sadly one of them had to leave us. Brighton queen Anubis entered the UK chapter of the Pork Chop club, joining season one’s Gothy Kendoll and season two’s Joe Black. But wait! Joe Black was also from Brighton? We’re seeing a pattern here – and we aren’t the only ones, it seems.
PinkNews: How was it watching yourself back on the show?
Anubis: Oh goodness. Very, very odd, because we filmed that quite a while ago now. So it’s been swirling around in my brain, all the different possibilities of what it might look like – or if I’m really quite s**t. But I’m really proud of myself. I think it was a really fab start to the season.
What’s the response been like? Have the fans been behaving?
They’ve been so lovely. I prepared myself for the worst so I’ve been very pleasantly surprised. It’s all been very, very lovely, very positive, and people seem to get what I was trying to what I was trying to show the judges.
As you mention, you were trying to get a message across to the judges. It didn’t quite connect. Do you think their comments were fair, or are they full of s**t?
Well, interesting you ask… [laughs].
I don’t know I’ve said it before but I think drag is subjective and at the end of the day, it is RuPaul’s Drag Race, so whatever RuPaul says goes. I don’t think Ru connected to the looks, I don’t think the judges necessarily understood what I was trying to convey. And I do think they could have been elevated slightly, there’s always room for improvement darling. But I’m really proud of what I did, I wanted to represent Brighton, I wanted to represent Egypt and being non-binary and bisexual. I want to represent everything that I am well, and I hope I did that.
I know that you’re really proud of being bisexual and non-binary, is that something you’d have liked to have got into and discussed more as the show progressed?
Yeah, for sure. A lot of the of the viewers are within the queer community themselves, and they need to see people like them on television, they want to feel validated, they want to connect with someone and relate to someone. So I think it’s really important to have this conversations. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to do it this time. around. However, you know, if they asked me back maybe I’d return! We’ll have to wait and see.
Even though we all now know that I was the first eliminated – which is very punk rock – I still get to represent that regardless and I’m very, very happy with that.
You wore your Egyptian heritage literally right there on your sleeve.
Yeah, I think it’s just a really big part of me in general so it’s creeped its way into my drag naturally. I definitely take a lot of inspiration from the glamour and the campness and the eyeliner. I love it, I think it’s very camp, I’m basically the next Cleopatra babes. Just a lot younger.
Well you are so young, but you have all of these camp references. Where does that come from?
I really don’t know. I honestly feel like I was just born with a brain of a 65-year-old granny, I’ve always been a really old soul and I sound like a middle aged lady as well. It’s quite strange.
I had to grow up really fast with a very busy and chaotic childhood. So I feel like because I had to grow up at quite a young age, I’ve just naturally grown up really quickly.
What was your childhood like?
It was a childhood that was lovely and supportive with the majority of my family, but my my mum and dad’s relationship growing up, it was quite a tough time. I was constantly moving around, there was a lot of alcohol growing up within the household, and it made my childhood quite choppy. I was never static, I never could really find my feet. So I had to find myself, learn to look after myself at a young age. So even though when I filmed the show, I was a a teenager – I’m now 20 which is still very, very young – but I kind of feel like I’ve really matured.
Did you have a solid queer community around you?
Until maybe about three years ago I don’t think I really knew my queer identity at all. And it’s obviously constantly evolving. Things are always changing and terminology is always changing. I think it’s really good that we can have these conversations. Especially with the friends I’ve got in Brighton, all the other queens that I know, it’s allowed me to have conversations that I wouldn’t have been able to have in the tiny town just outside of Brighton that I used to live in. I think it’s really important to surround yourself with people that you can can relate to as well as people that are totally different so you can learn and educate yourself.
On the topic of your Brighton queens – how are they feeling about RuPaul right now?
No comment [laughs]. Brighton obviously doesn’t have the best track record on that show at the moment. However, I love Joe Black to bits, I’ve known him for quite a while now, fancy the pants off him, think he’s a great entertainer. I admire Joe very much. And I think I’m rather fabulous too, to be totally honest, so stuff it RuPaul! Put that in your headline!
But on a serious note, I really feel like Brighton has such an amazing array of performers. There’s so much diversity within Brighton with people of colour, trans people and non-binary performers, drag kings, there’s so much to choose from with Brighton drag. Hopefully next season, we’ll get somewhere.
One of the other big moments from the show was Victoria Scone’s entrance – what did you think when you saw her in the werk room?
I’ve known of Victoria for ages. I’ve always admired her, I’ve always looked up to her as an entertainer. I used to message Victoria fangirling, like: ‘I think you’re incredible, you’re amazing, I’d love to work with you.’ And then we got cast on the same season – I felt like a bit of a stalker! She’s an absolute star and I can’t think of anyone better to represent cisgender female queens. I think she is an absolute credit to drag in general and I think she’s potentially one of the if not the best drag queen I know.
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Maybe you’ve just answered this question, but who do you want to win?
I would love to see Victoria win for obvious reasons. Just based on what we saw in episode one, I really loved what Charity showcased. She’s super creative and she’s so out of the box. We haven’t seen that before on Drag Race UK. I’d also say my lovely home girl Krystal, she is such a star. Her makeup is on point, you know, she knows exactly how to put a look together she’s got such exquisite high fashion.
Are there any challenges you’re gutted to be missing out on?
All of it, to be honest, I was looking forward to all of it. But I got sent back in the first 60 minutes! I really, really wanted to do Snatch Game. I really wanted to do the acting challenges, the Rusical, I was really looking forward to pretty much every challenge apart from that first one. So cheers for that, Ru.
Will you tell us who you’d have done for Snatch Game?
As much as I would love to reveal that I actually can’t, because I do have a very exciting and special top secret project coming which will reveal who I would have done, as well as the other four back-up choices that I bought. I had five in total. You’ll have to stay tuned to my social media to find out!
More: Drag Race UK