One new thing I learned to fear this month for no apparent reason is something I never directly thought about until recently faced with it. For the longest time I just carried on with my life not noticing how secretly terrifying it is. I believe it to be a harbinger of doom and ask all 6 of you who read this, if the moment presents itself, to put an end to this blight of goodness and all things considered awesome. Of course I'm talking about the continued pussification of Vampires.
(I am not alone in this fight)
After exhaustive research, I have discovered that Halloween is indeed upon us (I checked a calendar, then an abacus for some reason, just to be sure).( I knew it!)
Halloween is a time of monsters, colourful explosions, serial killers hiding their skills with a blade by carving pumpkins instead of torsos, Michael Jackson’s Thriller video and slutty, slutty costumes. Needless to say, Halloween is awesome. However, when I think of monsters, a few big ones come to mind; Zombies, Werewolves, Frankensteins, Jessica-Parkers, Creatures from black lagoons (which is racist. I don’t care what lagoon you are from) and I guess….Vampires? I include them in that esteemed and terrifying list of creatures hesitantly these days. Unlike the other ones, their good name and reputation has been dragged through the mud recently, and THAT is something that I am afraid of. To clarify, I am not scared of Vampires, but scared of what they have become. They used to be sharply dressed, remorseless killing machines that could only come out at night. Teeth as sharp as their threads. And the lady Vamps wore corsets. All the time. I see nothing so far that is anything other than awesome.
But there has been a downward spiral for Vampires in the last few decades, and even though there have been a couple good portrayals in recent years (Daybreakers, True Blood, Half of Blade, you can all take a step back). The basics are all still there: bloodsucking, aversion to daylight, fangs, however they just don’t have the menace or swagger they used to. All the mystique and danger that once surrounded vampires has turned soft. Now it seems like it is far more important to make vampires sexy than it is to make them badass. They don't listen to Tool anymore. They listen to John Mayer.
What happened to you, Vampires? You used to be cool. Now you don't even get invited to the "Monster Mash" and you have to bitterly pretend you had better things to do that night anyway.
You're better than that, guys. Just look at the facts:
1. Vampires are undead warriors. If one bites you, you become one...sometimes.
b. Vampires are like zombies, but without all that excessive inbreeding that makes zombies all dumb like that.
3, The main way to kill them is by driving "a bit of wood" through their hearts.
A bit of wood? That’s awesome! How many people would just happen to have wood handy if a Vampire attack happened to them? 4? I doubt it. Not that many people whittle. Trust me, I know. Nobody joined my “I love whittling at night” facebook group. Don’t try to join now. Facebook made me take it down on the grounds that it was the most pathetic thing on the internet.
I think now would be a good time to mention that I DO NOT solely blame “Twilight” for the continued pussification of Vampires. They have done a number on their reputation though (written and directed by Frankensteins, probably) but Vamps were in trouble LONG before
they glittered. Ugh, just remembered they did that in the movie. The ONLY reason a Vampire should glitter is because they just drained a club skank who thinks "glitter is fun" when in actuality it is annoying and I cant get it off my clothes or skin if I come into contact with you. As Demetri Martin once said : “Glitter is the herpes of craft supplies. Once it‘s on you, it‘s there forever“. In fact, from now on, If I see a Vampire glittering, he better be holding a tiara and a purse full of condoms, just so I can confirm his glittering is due to making the dance floor and the world a better place.
To think of the earliest example I can recall of Vampires starting to be lame I’d have to take it to the street. The "Sesame Street" to be specific. As children our perception of Vampires was a terrifying one. However this was cut out at the knees the second we were exposed to one who only wanted to help us learn numbers and would sarcastically laugh at us when we got it wrong (that’s how I saw it anyway). Count Von Count, you betrayed your people and have brought shame to Vampires everywhere.
(The only thing you should teach children to count is the seconds they have left to live)
In Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video (which I will reference in every blog post this month, guaranteed) he turned into two monsters. If given the choice between Werewolf, Zombie and Vampire, which two do you think he would've selected. First two! In the film within a film that opens up the video, he is on a date with a girl and then he turns into a werewolf and presumably kills her (naturally). Then it cuts to him watching this as a movie, while on a date with the same girl. Let's just all take a minute and bask in this videos awesomeness:
Best thing to ever happen
Fuck I love that shit. Anyways, back on point, the guy is a total nutbar but even back then he decided that turning into a vampire would be lame. The guy who thought "Michael Jackson's Moonwalker” was a good idea turned his ever shrinking nose up at Vampires.
(at the end of the game, it asks you what the hell is wrong with you?)
Although Blade was a badass, remember he was only HALF vampire. The movie said it best “all of their strengths, none of their weaknesses”. Really? So if I were to stab him in the heart with a bit of wood, he would be totally fine? Cool then. There should be no weaknesses to exclude. I imagine when the character was created the conversation went something like this:
How about a sassy black vampire?
Vampires are kinda shitty. They can be killed by garlic bread. And my stupid kid learns to count from a puppet vampire. Not very threatening
Valid points. How about we make him part human? To balance out the shittyness of Vampires?
Hmm, interesting. How much do you think we need?
50% should do it.
BULLSHIT! This never would’ve happened to “Nosferatu”. 100% Vampire just doesn’t cut it anymore. That is the reputation they have. You need a badass vampire? Well you are gonna have to reduce his vampiric qualities by half for credibility. Also, hire Wesley Snipes. So now we are left with a dude who is half human, half vampire, half Wesley Snipes. I am aware that fraction doesn’t make sense, but as Wesley Snipes’ tax return will tell you, he is not very good at counting.(I wish I never did this blog post cause now I know his name isn't Wesley Snipes)
But at least Blade gets to do battle with a 100% Vampire right? That guy must be a pretty big bad ass if he is gonna stand toe to toe wi-
How else have Vampires reputation suffered? I have shown you Exibit A-H, I'm gonna skip ahead and present to you Exibit WTF:
("Vampire in Brooklyn", a thing that happened. World War II, also a thing that happened)
Don't think I dont see you hiding there in 1993, “Interview with a Vampire“. You aren't free from blame. Brad Pitt is a bad ass. Tom Cruise is crazy and looks like he would kill you at any moment. And the lead singer from Sum 41? Well I guess he was pretty scary looking as well. You mean to tell me a movie with these three dudes as vampires doesn't kick all sorts of ass? How?! Oh right, they make them look super feminine and then have them mope around the whole time. I sure hope THAT doesn't catch on. *sigh*. If it truly was an interview with a vampire, he'd get the job right away. He would be a valuable and non threatening addition to the workplace. Vampires should never qualify for employment.
(Starring Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, and Deryck Wibly from Sum 41)
I was going to turn my attention to The Lost Boys now, however I quickly realized that in addition to Kiefer Sutherland being part of the Vampire gang in that movie, so was Bill from “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure”. Lost Boys: You are exempt!
(The guy on the left went on a "bogus journey" through a wind tunnel)
Remember when I said they took the good 50% of Vampires for the Blade character (god, that was so long ago. We have all grown as people since then) You wanna know where they other 50% went? “Twilight”. No film, not even “Vampire in Brooklyn” has done more to tear down the reputation of Vampires than these movies have. The default view on vampires for a generation now is mopey, whiny pretty boys who can walk around in the daytime without issue and...sparkle. That last one there hurts so bad. It burns...like the sun should do to a vampires skin when he is going for an afternoon jaunt in the park. I could go on for days about the damage being done to vamp-rep by these movies but I do know 1 out of the 6 people who read this thing is a fan of the movies so I will relent for now. However due to the upcoming slate of “Twilight” movies I don’t know how long I can hold my tongue:
"Twilight” - released, unfortunately
“Twilight: New Moon”- released, unfortunately
"Twilight: Eclipse”- released, unfortunately
"Twilight: Breaking Dawn” - Winter 2010
Twilight: Gay Werewolf Orgy” - Spring 2011
"Twilight: Mummy Never Sleeps” - Summer 2011
“Twilight: Our fans have grown up? Shit!” -Winter 2011
"The Legend of Twilight: The Owls of Ga’hool” - Summer 2012
I will admit I have a bit more invested in Vampires’ reputation as badasses than others. You see, I'm a pale person. Back in the day, comparisons with Vampires were awesome. If someone were to mock my skin tone (or ridiculous lack thereof) I could always threaten to bite their necks and they’d leave me alone (although as I soon learned, concerned parents and social workers are NOT afraid of Vampires).
“Dude you look like a vampire. I'm not going to fuck with you for fear of my neck being bitten”
Has turned into this:
"dude, you look like a vampire...i bet you have a lot of feelings and shit huh?"
Where is the fear?! Imagine if someone looked like a werewolf (or imagine you saw Robin Williams shirtless) and instead of hearing "hey, you look like a werewolf, please dont maul me savagely" they heard "hey, you look like a werewolf....don't shit on the floor"
“Hey you look like a werewolf. Also “Bicentennial Man” was fucking terrible. What the fuck were you thinking?”
Granted, that last one would probably only be directed at Shirtless Robin Williams.
(Oh no, I made him cry. At least he can dry his eyes on his forearms)
In closing I just want to say if you want to see Vampires as they should be, check out “Daybreakers“, or the middle seasons of “Buffy”, or "True Blood"... or watch some “Angel”. Angel is pretty awesome. Dude was a vampire, cursed by gypsies, and because of the curse he can’t have sex or else he’d turn evil. It’s the excuse I use as well to justify cold streaks. Although I lean on the gypsy curse thing way too much.
Thanks for reading