Boulet Brothers Dragula interview: Dahli and Saint discuss season 4

The Boulet Brothers' Dragula. Image courtesy Shudder
The Boulet Brothers' Dragula. Image courtesy Shudder /

Anyone who has watched the fourth season of Boulet Brothers Dragula on Shudder knows what a great cast this has been. 1428 Elm had the privilege of speaking with two of the finalists, Dahli and Saint.

Boulet Brothers Dragula interview: Dahli and Saint discuss season 4

1428 ELM: First, I want to congratulate the two of you for becoming finalists. It’s been an amazing season for The Boulet Brothers Dragula, and I’m personally happy no matter who wins.

SAINT: That’s a really good place to be.

DAHLI: Exactly.

1428 ELM: One of the most exciting things for me to see was that in this season of Boulet Brothers Dragula, Dahli, you seemed almost Zen. You just seemed very comfortable and secure for the most part; obviously, excepting the termination challenge that you had to endure. What do you think made you feel more settled in?

DAHLI: You know, I’m still not 100% sure. I wish I could say that it was based on my past experience on the show. However, I didn’t really make it that far in my season as we remember, and production was a lot different back then as well. Dragula Resurrection was filmed in a very different format, with a very tight crew working with us during the pandemic.

So, it was honestly like working with people that I already knew. But, I’m not sure where this cool-headed content comes from. I think I’m just finally happy in my own skin, and it’s been a long time, it’s been like 30 years, so…it took me a long time to be comfortable and secure, and I’m glad it comes off that way.

1428 ELM: Well, that’s a very good place to be, and it definitely showed.

DAHLI: I just didn’t want anyone to think I was disinterested or anything just because I wasn’t involving myself in some of the arguments that were going around.

1428 Elm: Oh, no, you didn’t come across as disinterested at all.  In fact, you were kind of a calming presence when things started to get dramatic. You also seemed to avoid some of the biggest Dragula drama, and you smoothed some of those situations over. How difficult was that for you?

DAHLI: Not really difficult, just because I am friends with a lot of big personalities in real life, so if anyone is going to at least open their ears for a moment of an opinion from an outside view, and have me be able to talk them down off the ledge. If they’re receptive to it, then it’s not a problem, but some people, when they get to a certain extent, they don’t want to hear anything, and that’s when I know not to push it. I’m not gonna be able to help you right now, because you don’t want to help yourself.

Boulet Brothers Dragula
The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula. Image courtesy Shudder /

1428 Elm: I think your presence was very calming for the other competitors. I always want to call you guys teammates, because it does seem like in the end you all do work together, even though there’s some drama going on initially.

SAINT: That’s a fair assessment.

DAHLI: Yeah.

1428 ELM: I just watched “The Last Supper” episode of Boulet Brothers Dragula, and things got very heated for a while, but at least it seemed like some things got smoothed over, and some misunderstandings were cleared up.

DAHLI: Yeah, that was really nice to see.

1428 ELM: So, Saint, I’m going to ask you this question too, so be thinking about your answer. What is the biggest challenge for you personally in doing non-traditional drag (for lack of a better description)?

DAHLI: I think trying to realize that I don’t need a spot to fit in necessarily because alternative drag is kind of like an umbrella term. Even under that umbrella, there’s still a lot of limitations and boxes people want to put you in. You have to get tough skin to not be able to conform to what other people want you to be. That’s difficult.

It’s not easy to block out those voices that tell you that what you’re doing is not valid, or what you’re doing isn’t considered drag. It hurts at first, but then it kind of…for me, at least, that kind of stuff feeds me a little bit. Back when I first did drag, and I would do something a little spooky, they were like, “You look ugly, I don’t like this.” So I was kind of like, well, I’m going to start being more ugly, just to f***ing spite you. I live for that, I live to spite people [Laughs].

1428 ELM: Well, coming from my perspective, I’m a huge horror fan and I enjoy drag. I live in Orlando, and there’s a lot of decent drag around here. So, it was kind of like a marriage of two of my favorite things. I think it really appeals to the horror crowd. On the flip side of my last question, what is the most rewarding thing for you in doing this alternative drag?

DAHLI: For me, it’s a lot of the people who reach out on a personal level. They’re like, “I want to do it because of you”, or “You’ve inspired me”, or “You’ve given me the strength” or whatever, the courage, the cojones to just go out there and do whatever I want, and if people don’t see eye to eye on it, it doesn’t matter. It’s still what you wanted to do, and that doesn’t make it any less art than the rest of it.

1428 ELM: Saint, you’ve basically spent the last, what, two and a half years as part of Boulet Brothers Dragula?


1428 ELM: And now, even if you don’t win the crown, you will still be part of it by virtue of the World Tour. During “The Last Supper,” you indicated that you would not want to return a third time if you did not win.

SAINT: I don’t think it was more of I wouldn’t want to return. It was more like there was a multi-layered moment and I didn’t really get a chance to explain it. It’s not that I would never return, I just feel like right now, if I was to return anytime soon, I wouldn’t have anything new to present.

1428 ELM: You need a break.

SAINT: Yeah, I feel like people have been able to grow with me, they got to see my growth kind of playing out in real-time. So, it’s like, I don’t have anything else to show you all if I was to do another season. You would still get these stellar looks and stuff like that, but I want to come back with something a little bit more to offer; to be able to take the time that I’ve had, and all of the new things I’ve been able to consume and show you what’s happened over these years.

And on top of that, I’ve been doing this for the last three years, it’s like watching a season go by, and knowing what’s happened, but not being able to say anything, and getting ready for promo days to drop. And this time around, it wasn’t that it wasn’t exciting, it was just the feeling of the day the promos dropped and stuff. It wasn’t as BIG as it was the first time when people got to see my name.

Fans have had years to get to know me and to see me, so when they dropped the trailer, it was like people weren’t responding as much to me, because they got to see me for so many years. And I was just like, “Oh, no!” But they ended up coming back around. But I need a break, just a break.

1428 ELM: Yeah. Now, it’s been a while since I watched Dragula Resurrection, but I remember some of your looks just being so stunning, so beautiful. That’s one of the things I loved about this season, that each of you had your own look, and your own style, it was so varied. I don’t know how to explain it to people, it’s almost impossible.

DAHLI: That’s a good thing.

Boulet Brothers Dragula
The Boulet Brothers Dragula – Courtesy of Shudder /

1428 ELM: Much like Dahli, you seemed to be able to avoid being in the middle of the worst of the drama during this season’s Boulet Brothers Dragula, was that a conscious decision on your part this time around?

SAINT: Yeah, because after doing it for so long, I remember from season three, when somebody would say something negative to me, I would take it so personally. Now, the season three cast is like my family. They’re my friends, I talk to them all the time, I get to see them all the time.

So, knowing that a year from now, we’re just going to sit together and laugh about this, it offered me so much forgiveness for moments. Like, I remember at one point, Zavaleta completely came for my throat, and it was just like one of those things I was able to shrug off easily, because I was just like, you know what? We’re gonna be friends.

DALHI: Yeah, exactly!

1428 ELM: That’s a good way to do it, I think, especially if you’re going to be on the road with them on occasion. It’s always better if everyone can get along. And I imagine it had to be a lot different for both of you from Dragula Resurrection, because you were pretty much on your own for Resurrection, right? You didn’t really have any interaction with the rest of the cast.

DAHLI: None. We had no interaction, we didn’t even know who we were competing against.

1428 ELM: Oh, wow.

DAHLI: It was also kind of a little bit easier to navigate in my opinion, just because we didn’t have anybody to like…not that any of us would compare each other to ourselves, but when you’re in a competition, you can still be threatened by somebody who’s putting together this amazing piece, it can make you second guess yourself a little bit. So not being able to see those contestants or have those interactions, it was just like I’m going to do my best and hope that it works out for me.

1428 ELM: Saint, I’m gonna ask you those same two questions I asked Dahli, what do you think is the biggest challenge involved in doing non-traditional drag?

SAINT: For me personally, I think the biggest challenge is playing nice with other people. I find it hard to play nice with people who have a fixed idea of what drag is supposed to be, when someone is like, “No, you’re not supposed to do it that way.” Then I’m like, “How do I say this nicely to you? How do I correct you nicely?”

And I think the most rewarding part is definitely having people seeing me not playing nice, and they’re like, “Thank you. I have always wanted to say that to that person. I’m happy you’re here to set the world straight with the drag that you do.” So they feel comfortable just doing what they want, and being who they want to be.

If you haven’t kept up-to-date on Boulet Brothers Dragula, you still have time to catch up before season five hits next year.

Next. Unwrap horror for the holidays with Shudder in December. dark

What did you think of this season of Boulet Brothers Dragula? Give us your critiques in the comments section.