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Canada’s Drag Race Season 4: Sashay Q&Eh With Luna DuBois

IN Magazine talks to Toronto’s Luna Dubois, the third queen to be eliminated from Canada’s Drag Race season 4…

Luna Dubois served shade and some stunning looks on the runway before she became the third queen to leave Canada’s Drag Race during season four’s fifth episode. (You can read IN‘s recap of episode four “Snatch Game” right here). Luna chats with In Magazine about finally making it on the show, the importance of representing queer Nigerians on a world stage, and being in the room while CDR history was made.

I’m so excited to be talking to you today! Let’s start from the beginning. Obviously getting to compete in Drag Race is a huge deal. It puts your art on such a large platform. What was your reaction to getting the call you were going to be on Canada’s Drag Race Season Four?
Honestly.. It was mixed. It was like 1) finally! And 2) great, I don’t have to do this again, because I had made the full-on tape four times in a row. And fun fact that not a lot of people know, I was an alternate for season one, so it’s been a constant battle with me and the producers and actually, I jokingly threatened one of them. I was like “this is the last time I’m doing this”. I think I ran into them at a party like, “if you don’t put me on I’m done”. Because the process is just so… intense. So it was excitement that finally, I didn’t have to do this again. And if I do have to do this again, I won’t have to audition, I’ll just get a call, you know if I ever get to do All Stars.

Why was it important to you to be able to represent not only the Toronto drag scene but Nigeria on this stage?
Because there’s not a lot of queer Nigerian representation in the media to be honest. It’s not at their own fault because we come from a country that’s very homophobic, and being a queer person is punishable by law. You can be in prison for 14 years if you’re caught in any homosexual or queer practices. It’s hard for a lot of us to put ourselves out there and you’ll notice a lot of Nigerians that are openly queer tend to live in the western part of the world, like myself. That’s because there’s freedom and protection here. 

What was part of being in the competition that you found to be more challenging than you thought it would be?
Snatch Game was really fuckin’ awkward. It does not go by as fast as you see it on TV. There’s a lot of pauses, you have to wait to answer, it’s quiet, and then you have to wait to answer the next question. You’re not really on a roll to keep that banter going, so you’re in character and then you’re not, and then you’re in character again, and then you’re not. Did not love that, but now that I’ve done it I know what to expect if I ever go back. Also the beaver! Did not like her. But that’s how Drag Race is and you know… we’re making good TV. I think we’re the most-loved season in Canada right now, so I’m happy with that. 

The Golden Beaver element surprised me too. It’s a very All Stars twist on a regular season.
THAT’S WHAT WE ALL SAID! We said “this is not fair”. We all just got here, we are fresh queens on this set while we’re getting thrown all of these crazy twists. Like, I love a twist don’t get me wrong, but an All Stars style twist was just a little bit too much. We’re baby Drag Race girls, let us ease into it before throwing us into the pit like that to fight each other on TV, as you saw recently. 

If you could go back and change one thing about how you played the game, what would it be?
I think I would have been nicer to everyone! I knew a lot of the girls, but I was not friends with them. I knew them from Instagram, so I didn’t have a rapport with any of them. I was jealous of Girlfriend and Venus, like they were makin’ out the first day. I was like “Oh my god! I can’t even…I don’t even want to hug any of these people”. It took me a while to warm up to the girls. If I ever did again with a group of girls I didn’t really know outside of Drag Race, I’d open myself up to being much nicer because…alliances are important. 

That’s so interesting you say that because I know the famous saying “this isn’t RuPaul’s Best Friends Race,” but do you think it’s still important to build friendships within a competition like Drag Race?
Well yes. Once you’re voting each other out, absolutely. You have to fake nice with people and I’m not the kind of person you meet for the first time and instantly become besties. I have to be drunk for that to be possible, and that’s even rarer. When I’m fully sober around a bunch of people I don’t know that well, I’m just unbothered and silently reading and observing everyone. I’m an observer. Especially if I’m around a lot of huge personalities, I don’t like to be the loudest girl in the room. I will wait for it to be silent before I open my mouth, I’m that kind of girl. 

What was a challenge you were really nervous about doing?
Snatch Game for sure, and I’m not sure what it is with our Canadian TV laws, but a lot of the characters that I was good at, that I did with my tapes I couldn’t really do. So the Snatch Game that I did, I know this character, but I didn’t really master her properly. I tried my best and I don’t think it was the worst of the night, but Snatch Game made me nervous because I didn’t know this person like I knew the characters I wasn’t allowed to do but you know what? If I ever get to go back I guess I’ll just have to prep for that. It would suck to be in the bottom again if I got to go back.

Snatch Game has got to be one of the hardest, if not hardest challenge in the whole season.
It’s really hard and honestly, you can ask my friends. In my friend groups like, I am funny. And you’ve seen it on the show. Did I not make you laugh? I think when it comes to improv and when I have to come up with material I think I freeze up a little bit and then I’m not comfortable with the character I’m supposed to play. It just goes downhill from there. Thank god the things that happened on set did not air too much because there was a lot of craziness going on around me and I was just like “let me lip sync and try to save myself because this is crazy”. Because some girls were yelling and jumping but, it was a nice edit and I’ll give that to all the girls. Thank you to the producers, it was a nice edit and it did not look bad. But a lot went down that you did not see.

Your runway this week was so gorgeous. You walked out and I was like “oh she’s glowing, she’s beautiful”. What was your favourite look you got to wear this season?
I think “steampunk” was definitely one of my favorites. I knew the girls were going to come with gadgets and things like that. I had my cute little mask, my goggles, and my hat and I was like “you know what we’ll give the vibe”. Everything I do, I always want to give fashion and a little sex appeal if I can. My friend who I went to fashion design school sketched this and I said “this is perfect and it’s going to have two long sleeves that are mopping the floor”. The colours were on theme and it was still steampunk and sexy at the same time. And like I said…I’m the madame of the whorehouse (laughs), and that’s what I wanted to give. 

It was like Steampunk and the Fenty Runway show had a baby and it was your look and it was stunning.
Exactly! Exactly! That’s exactly what I was going for and you know, Traci called me Megan Thee Stallion and I took that as a compliment. I think Megan has walked in a Fenty show if I’m correct, so it makes sense!

If you could pick one challenge to do that you didn’t get to compete in, which one would it be?
Bloody hell! The next one! The lip sync slayoff! I really thought we would only see a LaLaPaRuza in the American franchise but they brought it here. I’m upset I didn’t get to do that because I think I would have been a great contender. Also, the Rusical.

What was something unique you brought to this group of queens?
I think I brought my quick-wit, not a lot of it aired to be honest, but I was keeping the girls on their toes. The producers can testify, when the girls were being so nice to each other I was like “girls…we’re here to make television”. But also that’s just how I am as a person. If you’re friends with me, my friendship is reading you whenever I can and it’s back and forth, having fun friendly banter. I think because I’m Nigerian, Nigerians insult each other so easily as a joke. I think it comes from the whole culture of British humour because Nigeria is a British colony, so all of that kind of intertwines with itself.

If you could go back and give pre-Drag Race Luna some advice for competing, what would it be?
Honestly, I would tell myself “be louder than Melinda” because GIRL! She sucks the air out of the room. The last episodes were intense and watching it back I was getting the feeling. In episode four I was sitting right beside her and she was yelling and I kid you not, her saliva was flying on my legs because I had slits in my trousers! I didn’t really want to come at her because she was in my ear, and I wanted to let her have her moment. That’s the only thing, what I would tell pre-Drag Race me is just, open your mouth more and don’t give the other girls a chance to talk, because the girls could TALK.

I don’t think a scene like that has played out to that extent in Canada’s Drag Race history. What was it like being in that room while history was being made in the moment?
It honestly was reality iconic. The only thing I didn’t really like was because there was still quite a few of us and there’s things I had in my mind I needed to say. But everytime I would try to say something, another girl was cutting me off. You saw at the beginning of this episode, Aimee was trying to come for my look. I was ready to break her down. I think there was a moment that didn’t make it in with Kitten talking about my suit and she said “you made it really nice”. Like, yes! I took apart a full suit to make that outfit by the way. And those trousers? They were tailored to me but they were four sizes too big for me. That was a lot of work, and for Aimee to come for me like that I was like “No no no, we’re not doing that today. You got your save, you stay in your little corner and let me do my thing. No, I love all the girls and being in there and making history…when I left the show I thought “nobody is ready for this”. 

What can fans expect to see next from you?
Lot’s of content on Instagram. I think I’m going to be a podcaster real soon, in the next year. A lot of people have been telling me recently that my voice is soothing to listen to and I clearly love to talk shit. That’s what I did on the show and I want to take that off television and put it into being a podcaster. Hopefully I’ll be back on your screens for whatever TV show. If you’re a producer…Put me on TV! I think it’s my calling (laughs) entertaining people on screens. 

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