Episode one recap: How is Dragula: Titans different from Dragula?

The Boulet Brothers' Dragula: Titans - Courtesy Shudder
The Boulet Brothers' Dragula: Titans - Courtesy Shudder /

Now that we are two episodes into the first season of The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula: Titans, we are starting to see the ways in which the competition differs from its source material, Dragula. It’s certainly not the first time that eliminated contestants have been welcomed back into the fold, that’s what Resurrection was all about.

But, almost immediately, the Boulets threw the first curve ball at our queens, who are considered to be the best competitors that didn’t make the final cut. There would be no elimination challenges after the floor shows. Instead, those challenges would be given to ALL contestants before the main competition for each episode, in the form of a “Fright Feat.” Refusal or failure to participate in a feat would result in the contestant’s immediate elimination. Should that happen, the most recent ugly eliminated would return in their place.

And let’s talk about those formerly-known-as-elimination challenges, shall we? Shortly after each of our Monsters sashayed in and met/verbally sparred with one another, they were called in to meet with the Boulets. They were told they would now be competing in their first Fright Feat…and it was a messy one.

Each of the participants was decked out in glorious horror-inspired finery (especially my favorite, Victoria Black, who looked especially elegant), including elaborate wigs, but that mattered not. They had to kneel in front of  galvanized steel buckets and bob for apples that were among pig’s heads, entrails, blood, etc. Suffice it to say, they were each a hot (and literally gagging) mess by the time the feat was finished.

Astrud appeared to be the winner, but upon review, it turns out that Melissa was actually the first to collect all of her apples. As Astrud’s reward, they got to assign the roles each of the uglies would play in the first big challenge: a Halloween House Party. The challenge was to create an inventive twist on standard Halloween costumes.

Most of the costumes were pretty great, although Koco’s “toilet paper mummy” look was a bit underwhelming, and it wasn’t at all clear what exactly Abhora was supposed to be. She later claimed her outfit was alien-inspired, but it honestly looked somewhat witchlike. *Note: I thought she looked like Witchiepoo from H.R. Puffnstuf.

My girl Victoria definitely stood out in her creepy/glam pumpkin costume, which combined a disturbing latex pumpkin mask (complete with a top that was removed to show pumpkin guts and seeds) with a truly high fashion hoop-type skirt and pumpkin-inspired boots. The Boulets and guest judges Cassandra Peterson and Justin Simien agreed, because she was named the winner of this challenge, while Abhora and Erika received the harshest comments.

Enter another twist: The Boulets informed the Dragula: Titans contestants that they were not going to choose who would be up for elimination. Instead, the uglies themselves would vote someone out.

Dragula: Titans
Dragula: Titans – Courtesy Shudder /

This resulted in high drama, of course, but the uglies ended up agreeing that they would each vote for one of the two who scored lowest. That would mean that Abhora and Erika were both in the running for elimination.

The two girls were made to walk up a very steep “staircase of souls”, and as the Boulets uttered the word “Abhora”, a trap door suddenly opened beneath her, sending Abhora back into the underworld.

The suddenness of her departure was truly shocking, and the looks on the others’ faces made it evident why Dragula: Titans is being referred to regularly as “Gagula.”

It must be noted that the contestants are extra-spicy on this go-round, and I laughed out loud multiple times as they snappily lashed out at one another. The best line of the entire episode was uttered by Kendra, who pronounced Yavska’s entrance outfit as “Teletubbies on a toilet bowl.”

As a fan of the regular seasons of Dragula, I am really enjoying the whiplash-inducing twists that have come up so far in Dragula: Titans, and I can’t wait to dish on episode two!

Next. Shudder brings us holiday fear and more originals in November. dark

How do you feel about the first episode of Dragula: Titans? Give us your critique in the comments section.