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Vampires Are Boring, But I Love True Blood August 7, 2009

Posted by patrick.klepek in tv.
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I love movies dripping with blood. Horror is my bread and butter. When I don’t know what to watch, I flip on a horror film. Good, bad, doesn’t matter. I’ll watch ’em all. Vampires have never done anything for me, though. I’ve never found a way to articulate why vampires make me doze off. Maybe it’s because they’re so much like ourselves. Humans, but not. Dead, but not. At least a zombie is a shambling brain eater.

Yet I’ve fallen head over heels for True Blood, HBO’s sex-charged vampire series, currently in the midst of its second season. I’m working through the first season and anxiously hoping there’s enough time to finish the season this weekend.

I can’t yet articulate why I don’t like vampires, but I can tell you why True Blood is so damn appealing. In True Blood, the premise is that science has developed a synthetic blood drink that allows vampires to exist without feeding on humans. It allows vampires to go “mainstream,” as its labeled in the show, and potentially co-exist, albeit not during the day. Death by sunlight is one of the few vampire myths True Blood maintains.

But True Blood riffs on a very common human struggle with change and being forced to reconsider what you think is right, moral and what can and should be “acceptable.” There are obvious links drawn to the breaking down of segregation and the plight of homosexuals today. Except those looking for acceptance can’t even claim to be fully human. They’re dead, largely considered monsters by most written accounts. The reactions by larger society are largely no different than segregation or homosexuality.

It’s a timely, timeless humanity study wrapped in a serialized monster movie. Plus, True Blood strips vampires of their most eye-rolling traits (i.e. bat transformations) and distills them to their core characteristics and the reason they’re so unnerving to humanity. They are just like us, but…they aren’t. Where’s the line? Who draws it?

It’s a question worth asking, even if it is vampires.

(These are cross-posts from my Tumblr blog, which I mainly use for my own personal writing.)

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Comments»

1. Jessica - June 2, 2010

I’m right there with you! I attended the Ultimate Fan Experience last night and realized that I’ve totally gotten caught up in the True Blood insanity!


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