Despunking the World, One Slag at a Time

"Slag Wars" competitor Gustavo Ernesto Escobedo.
Instagram/ @slagwars

It started with a viral video. Back in late 2018, Twitter was abuzz with the latest overnight sensation: two British pornstars named Sophie Anderson and Rebecca More. In the video, the two performers look at each other and smile before Rebecca says, “Do you know what we are? We’re fucking cock destroyers, aren’t we babe?”

To which Sophie replies, “Cock fucking destroyers.”

Yes, you read that correctly. Cock. Fucking. Destroyers. Don’t be scared, it’s a term of endearment.

The video continues with Sophie and Rebecca bantering back and forth before they break out into a fit of laughter. The clip was an instant hit — it has now been watched nearly a million times — launching the two to a level of fandom they had not previously experienced.

What made the moment so memorable? Was it the pair’s British accent? The enthusiasm with which they spoke? Maybe it was the phrase itself? Some combination of the three?

Cock Destroyers Sophie Anderson and Rebecca More.Instagram/ @SlagWars

Whatever it was, the Cock Destroyers didn’t fade away from the cultural zeitgeist. The two continued to release viral videos together and separately. In one particular video, Rebecca can be seen having sex with an anonymous man, looking at the camera to say, “Today’s meant to be Sunday, a day of rest, but not for meeeeeeeee!”

You get the idea. So did the rest of the world.

Shortly after their first viral video dropped, genderqueer performing artist King Princess incorporated the term Cock Destroyer in some of their lyrics. In 2019, Sophie and Rebecca were featured in a promo video for Netflix’s “Sex Education,” in which they give a down and dirty lesson on the importance of sex education. (“We’re fucking Cock Destroyers!” “No babe, no! Today, we’re Sex Education Destroyers!”)

Truly, Sophie and Rebecca’s plan to “despunk” the world was well underway.

This year, the Cock Destroyers released their new passion project, a sex-positive reality TV show “Slag Wars: The Next Destroyer.” Produced by Men.com, the show was filmed over four days in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic and brings together seven contestants — a group of attractive gay, trans, and non-binary up-and-coming sex workers from across the world — in a secluded house in the English countryside, where they compete for the title of Cock Destroyer.

“Slag Wars” follows the traditional reality-show format — think “RuPaul’s Drag Race” for porn stars and adult entertainers. In each episode, there’s a new “foreplay” and “passion” challenge that gives the slags — and viewers — a glimpse into the different aspects of the sex work industry. There’s also a runway portion of the show where contestants strut down the runway — again, much like the Ru girls do — and there isn’t a bad look in all four episodes. At the end of each episode, the weakest contestant of the day goes home.

Helping Sophie and Rebecca judge the slags are adult performer Matthew Camp, hilarious commentator Chase Icon, and a slew of guest judges — including “Leave Britney Alone” Internet celebrity-turned-pornstar Chris Crocker, erotic photographer and performer Sam Morris, and “RuPaul’s Drag Race UK” alum Baga Chipz.

Non-binary contestant Tyreece Nye.Instagram/ @SlagWars

Like every good reality show, there are plenty of surprise twists throughout “Slag Wars.” No spoilers, but rest assured that emotions run high, with drama both on and off screen, and surprise eliminations and redemptions. And tears a plenty. I’m talking about mine — I got very emotional several tirms during each episode. And I’m a Sagittarius.

As the show’s name suggests, there is also plenty of raunch — albeit safe for work — with challenges that include pole dancing, recording sexy ASMR, posting for kinky photoshoots, cockriding, and so much more — all climaxing to a music video starring the Cock Destroyers and the competition’s finalists.

While there is a winner crowned at the end of the all-too-short season, I am not being cheesy when I say that all of these slags are winners. And all jokes aside, watching each slag become more confident in their performances week after week is really inspiring. Their journeys feel more authentic than most mainstream TV this year.

There has been a lot of high-profile queer media this year, like Hulu’s “Happiest Season” and Netflix’s “The Prom.” Such shows inevitably spur debate in the queer community about whether or not we still need to tell coming out stories or the ever-infuriating back-and-forth about straight actors playing queer roles. “Slag Wars” distinguishes itself by offering viewers a refreshingly authentic snapshot of the modern queer experience. The cast, while not perfect, is more diverse than most, and each character gets their moment to grow without any added or produced drama. There is no villain edit in “Slag Wars” — only winners getting a chance to do what they love.

I hope there are more seasons of “Slag Wars” to come, and I hope other shows, reality-TV or otherwise, learn from this one and see the joy that comes from sharing diverse queer stories.

Just Who Are the The Slags?
Seven contestants may show up to the competition, but there can only be one winner. Who are these contenders?

Nicky Monet is the sassy, loud-mouthed trans woman who isn’t afraid to show off her assets. She’s the only contestant from the US.

Tyreece is the non-binary person of color who sashays into the competitions with more death drops than seem humanly possible.

Gustavo is the Mexican performer who is always hungry — literally eating in almost every scene. It helps that he is quite the snack himself.

Cain is a London nightlife performer brings brains and body to the competition.

Levi & Cameron: This couple is here to spice up the competition. They may perform together online, but they compete separately.

Kevin, hailing from Scotland, is the only slag who is not a professional adult performer going into the competition. But don’t worry — he has since started an Only Fans.

All four episodes of Slag Wars are streaming for free on slagwars.com.

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