You are on page 1of 30

Vampires, or The Vampire in our midst: Legend and reality, Why, in our quest for the virtualization of reality,

while ignoring happiness and truth, we desire more and more to resemble the blood-hungry undead.
BLOODSUCKER Break it all down! We're too mesmerized to break from this vampire, America.
Joseph Ceravolo references http://fs.oxfordjournals.org/content/63/1/90.extract on the Abb Calmets book on revenants http://books.google.com/books? id=ju3_Ei6jclcC&pg=PR1&dq=revenants+abbe+calmet&hl=fr&ei=_kddTcr fA4efOozFkNMK&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CDg Q6AEwAg#v=onepage&q&f=false which comments the book above http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=at3Mnw1kjSg vampires du fisc Les Inconnus les

http://www.google.fr/search? client=safari&rls=en&q=bloodsucking+for+capitalism&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF-8&redir_esc=&ei=kFxDTaatNofOhAf42-GTAg Michael Sims Dracula's Guest: A Connoisseur's Collection of Victorian Vampire Stories

Paul Barber 'Vampires, Burial, and Death' for more on how vampire legends arose in folklore, and how the signs of vampirism are related to processes of decay and decomposition. http://yalepress.yale.edu/yupbooks/book.asp? isbn=9780300048599
http://www.amazon.com/Vampires-Vampirism-MontagueSummers/dp/0486439968/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpi_2 http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Read-Vampire-MetaphorContemporary/dp/0812216288/ref=sr_1_5? s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1300981359&sr=1-5 Brian Aldiss,

Joan

Gordon,
1

Veronica Holliger,
http://chronicle.com/article/All-the-Dead-Are-Vampires/65829 http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2011/01/28/AR2011012802776.html? nav=most_emailed_emailafriend Glen Beck calls Soros a bloodsucker, Washington Post editorial comment

Manuela Dunn Mascetti Vampire: The Complete Guide to the


World of the Undead [Paperback
Douglas V. Gnazzo Vampires of the New World Order (2006), http://www.safehaven.com/article/4285/golds-hidden-secret-the-moralhazard-of-fiat-money

Katherine Qunot Le Livre Secret des Vampires, Desinge & Hugo & Cie, 2011

Course Proposals
Vampires: A Modern Metaphor
If you had any doubts as to the existence of vampires or if you simply refused to believe they function in our world I invite you to watch the Academy Award winning documentary Inside Job. Here we have intimate portraits of present-day vampires whose depredations are responsible for everything from massive unemployment worldwide to gutted businesses, poverty and the sort of suffering and deprivation that drives those on the edge to a place of no return. These vampires are responsible for widespread loss of life and life energy, sucking up the vitality and dynamism of whole sectors of the population and then discarding these near lifeless husks of what were once thriving humans onto the garbage pile of no-history. From Farah Harriche: The financial worlds characteristics match with a large majority of those of vampires. As vampires are nocturnal creatures, traders and other financiers essentially live by night since they work all day longThey dont seek out the blood that keeps their victims alive; instead they desire more than everything their monetary and financial life that will give them the power of money! This vampiric phenomenon is not recent and has characterized many societies at many periods in their history be they slave or capitalistic. What is striking about its latest incarnation or disincarnation if you prefer is that the modern breed functions in the light of day ( - we are not speaking of the Twilight series vampires who go so far as to glitter in daylight - ) though the light of truth is just as fatal to them as the infrared (sunlight) variety is to their noctambulistic (night wandering) brethren. In other words the great light of truth and frank revelation causes them to flee, to clam up, and to spout absurd disavowals that further weaken them. They do flee the light. This remains a certain revealer of sorts of this evil spawn. In fact one of the vampires featured in Inside Job is now the economic policy guru for Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney. We are talking about the dean of the Columbia University School of Business, Glenn Hubbard. He is mightily attracted by the glow of the dollar but flees the light of diligent investigative journalism. Vampires came into Western culture in the early Eighteenth Century from the Balkans where they had existed more or less time since human immemorialthanks to the Abbe Calmet who documented their appearance as an expression or pageantry, as a fad, a fad that has held on and cemented itself into Western consciousness over these last 260 years. Another temporally precise moment came when Lord Byron, his personal secretary Dr. John Polidori, Mary soon to be Shelley, her half sister and her husband to be, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, all gathered on the shores 3

of Lac Geneva one June night in 1816 for an evening of intense literary creation. http://exhibitions.nypl.org/biblion/outsiders/frankenstein/essay/essayfrank ensteinsmoon On the 13th of June a spectacular lightning storm had lit up the lake and those bolts surely helped Mary Shelley come up with Frankenstein while John Polidori created the vampire Lord Ruthven, less than loosely based on his beastly master Byron. Both are credited with the invention of a genre, the science made man for Mary and the vampire in literature for John. Vampires at the end of the Nineteenth and early Twentieth Century were women who vamped men. A species of pre-Marlene Dietrich Blaue Engel types leading men into penile-servitude and eventual doom and destruction. Famous spies played by Theda Bara imitating the real-life Mata Hari are prime examples. As Marc Sokol noted, vampires are not interested in assimilation. They go for blood which is used as is to maintain the organism. There is no digestion, nothing to ruminate, little to think about. There is no mediation, there is not meat. There is not even a meeting. Blood is instantly transformable into the substance that makes them up. The delusion some have that money brings happiness, as if dollars could replace their organic molecules and bring them satisfaction resembles this condition. Vampires do not excrete, they neither urinate nor defecate, and many versions have their heart just hanging there, vulnerable to destruction, but emitting nary a beat. Isnt that an interesting consideration? A vital, beatless heart. Do vampires have rhythm? This would be another consideration altogether. As toxicologist _______ says, poison is something that your body assimilates more easily than what it is nefariously replacing. Carbon Monoxide for oxygen, and all the poisons including refined white sugar that goes into everything and ever so quickly into you, which is why it is in everything. The world of business wants you permeable, vampires are impermeable. Blood is life, nothing bloodless lives, at our level anyway, therefore vampires are immoral make that immortal, if we follow a little Dodgsonian (as in Lewis Carroll) logic.

A popular genre
Vampire writing has boomed and is booming. There are dozens of authors with multi volume epics in which vampires are brought into play respecting every imaginable vampire trope in any one of their multiform combinations: vamprisim as a virus, a a genetic tare, as a virally aroused genetic predisposition, as a disease, as a family tradition, as a cultural heredity, but alas the original curse from God seems to have entered the dreamless sleep of underemployment. Our curse words no longer effectively employ her, God that is, obscenities are obscene and blasphemy carried no damning weight. Vampires themselves are variously sensitive to light for their photophobia is justified by everything from being vaporized explosively, to gradually

grilling of the exposed body to a fatal weakening. Sometimes it is the ultraviolet extracted from the light beam that does it (Ultraviolet and 40 days of Night). They may be immortal but seem to turn to stone in Twilight upon having their heads wrenched off, as is done to the domestic robots in Woody Allens Sleeper, others perish to a wooden bullet wound to the heart, being cut in half, and certainly being on the receiving end of practically all of the weaponry disposed of by our modern soldier, bullets designed to explode within the body and exit flesh with maximum mayhem.

Films
Nosferatu, Dracula, Let the Right one In, the Twilight trilogy, Conversations with a Vampire, The Fearless Vampire Killers and literally thousands of others. In legend, in literature, in film, on TV and in culture in general, what has proved more deathless than the vampire?

Let The Right One In


A masterpiece in any genre. The young brunette is the vampire in Tomas Alfredsons 2008 Let The Right One In.

Books, graphic novels


Sheridan LeFanu Mircalla, Bram Stoker Dracula, the Twilight trilogy, Conversations with a Vampire Vampires are a harbinger of things desperate, deathly and unattainable. They live forever but they dont have much fun doing so and have major constraints on the company they keep and the time they have to keep company with. Their plight is reminiscent of contemporary obsessions with longevity that skirts the issues of the quality of life, and whose life you have to sacrifice to lengthen yours. Vampires are also a metaphor, for the capitalist system for example, where the bloodless ruling classes suck the blood and marrow of the oppressed worker, bleeding him/her dry. The expressions which pepper the language: bloodsucker, coldblooded, driving a stake through your heart, and our fondness for garlic are all traces of this obsession. A vampire needs to be invited into your home. What this says about our host and hostile times, about accepting and refusing sheltering others, needy or not, is worth developing.

Youth and immortality


Youth Culture importance cannot be overestimated in the fascination with vampireseveryone mythic is getting younger from James Bond to Dr. Whoalso in French advertising at least, the women are getting more and more powerful and the men more and more effeminate. In the British series, Dr. Who, which is 40 years old, (Odysseus age when he returns to his Penelope in Ithaca) and has run with few interruptions, at each reincarnation of the series the hero rejuvenates. All the aged stars 5

have dropped out of their films; from Woody Allen to Clint Eastwood, no one wants a memento mori immortalized on screen.

Vampire courses
Threetitle suggestions: Vampires, real and imagined. Why we have come to resemble the undead and why we are so drawn to them The Vampire: helping us find out who we are in these virtual times Virtual Man and the Undead: The Vampire among us The Vampire: bringing back blood to bloodless times With this in mind we will also have a little fun. Vampires exist in literature, film and drama and we will be looking at examples of all of this from 1750 onwards. This course will explore the metaphor as well as some of the cinematographic examples that have enlivened or begloomed our screens these last hundred years (one of the earliest being one of the best, F.W. Murnaus Nosferatu). Are we our own worst vampire? Yes, vampires are unalive and well, and they have taken over much of our life by way of the virtual world with which we surround ourselves. In this work we will seek to bring our increasingly virtual existence to bear on this issue while attempting to answer the following:
Are we our own worst vampire?

A Supelec vampire scenario with no electricity


The vampire of the future or rather of the present since all the other ones are already old while ours will be freshly conceived and perhaps not so averse to immortality. Now the vampire of today, the one created through our attachment to the virtual, the one who is the great distracter, distraction and destruction being almost the same state and the result being even more seriously destruction, that vampire has terrifying power as limitless as our networks, as profound as the depth of our inattentivenessRemember that the real, the analog is easy to lose, damage and destroy, while the virtual appears invulnerable and immortal. So what would control and destroy it at least for the time being should it seek to possess us? I refer to episode eight of the first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer . Here a demon, Moloch, the symbol nowadays of the tyrannical state, is captured and reduced to print in the 16 th Century. It is then given life by

being scanned into a computer. And once in the computer it soon rules over the world of the Internet. Which has become our world. A lovely idea however badly it may have been developed. In ages past, vampirehood was a punishment for an evil life, an immoral nature. We, on the other hand, have the choice to fashion our true existence by facing the curse that descended on us soon after birth: Lack or partial access to our souls, because we are souls but we must work to access this soul or risk remaining mechanical animals, a state that will worsen since the overriding mechanicality that is the incarnate expression of our intelligence, eventually triumphs over everything animal in a body that is after all animal, turning it into a dry, sad, and twisted little thing. What triumphs? A Frankenstein procedure to create a vampire. Bringing in all the diverse currents and elements and puissances and desires and lusts and things that we so easily fall victim to. I found an excellent breviary, Le livre secret des vampires, it is written in the form of a dictionary or mini encyclopedia and one of the entries is : Apptit de vivre, which the author got from le Dictionnaire des symbols, Jean Chevalier and Alain Gheerbrant, Laffont/Bouquins, 1982: Le vampire symbolise lapptit de vivre, qui renait chaque fois quon le croit apais et que lon spuise le satisfaire en vain, tant quil nest pas matris. En ralit on transfre sur lautre cette faim dvoratrice, alors quelle nest quun phnomne dauto destruction. Ltre se tourmente et se dvore lui-mme tant quil ne se reconnat pas responsable de ses propres checs, il imagine et accuse un autre. Lorsque au contraire lhomme est pleinement assum, quil exerce pleinement ses responsabilits, quil accepte son sort de mortel , le vampire svanouit. So the contemporary vampire would take what form , and what could you responsibly do to make sure that you do not become one ?

Vampires in the media The metaphor of the capitalist as vampire is not a new one, such cries rang out in the late 19th Century as the American worker saw in the ruling economic classes maleficent forces draining them of their essence. A recent tiff had Glenn Beck, formerly of Fox News, make a vampire out of Jesus claiming: "Jesus conquered death. He wasn't victimized. . . . If he was a victim, and this theology was true, then Jesus would have come back from the dead and made the Jews pay for what they did." (After complaints, Beck clarified that "the Romans,
7

not the Jews, put Jesus to death.")He also did a three-night series where he attacked financier George Soros as "The Puppet Master," and added: Then came Nov. 9, which -- by sheer coincidence, no doubt -happens to be the anniversary of Kristallnacht, a precursor of the Holocaust. Beck chose that day to launch a three-night series attacking Soros as "the puppet master." Puppet master. Unscrupulous banker. Bloodsucker. These are hoary anti-Semitic stereotypes. The Malaysian leader's words cited by Beck came from remarks describing a Jewish conspiracy against Muslims. And Beck wasn't done. He called Soros "a collaborator" with Nazis who "saw people into the gas chambers," and "a Jewish boy helping send the Jews to the death camps." In fact, Soros's father had hidden the boy from the Nazis by placing him with a Hungarian man assigned to record belongings of Jewish families that had fled. "It is not appropriate to accuse a 14-year-old Jew hiding with a Christian family in Nazi-occupied Hungary of sending his people to death camps," the 400 rabbis wrote in their ad on Thursday. In this recent news story we have the classic tropes of animalizing or making monstrous that which we would destroy. Beck wishes to destroy Soros so he describes him as a murderer of his own people and a capitalistic vampire to boot. TV series in the US and in the UK
The American TV series Bewitched, Ma Socire bien aime in French, as a precedent for all of this, since this was the first show that gave us witches, and plays off the anti-feminist stereotype of the woman obliged to sacrifice what is exceptional about herself to please her husband, who in this instance is a clod, well meaning but a clod, an excellent foil for the hopelessly superior world of witches and warlocks. Generally the witches are also hopelessly racist and suprematist. Samantha, our witch, is exceptional, exceptionally humane and loving. Not at all like Anglique in Dark Shadows. The husband hasnt got a clue. Why does this woman love him? And furthermore, it seems that she might well be hundreds of years

old, and can maintain her youthful deliciousness forever. They eventually have a child, who of course inherits her mothers abilities.

True Blood
In the US series True Blood (2012 will be its 6th season), we have the American South as weve imagined it, hopelessly decadent, surprisingly human, and replete with violence, almost all of it senseless. Into this setting the screenplay writers have brought changelings, vampires, and werewolves, and even fairies, organized them into cadres, posses and kingdoms and pushed the humans out among them like so many helpless and often hopeless pawns. In TB, the immoderate importance we give statements in day to day American life is given the lie. In this world everyone is making statements of every sort and retracting them soon afterwards In Being Human S1 E1 after the bizarre pilot where 2 of the three main actors are unknown to the rest of the series, there are long confessional exchanges on the difficulties of being vampires, werewolves, 26:15 S1 E1 29:13 Where he tells him he is off the wagon and the other one calls him mental and say that he is a shark. A shark is a shark this hearkens back to Eli as a predator, the vampire as a predator S1 E1 I remember looking at it and being offended, that thing in this world 41:50 The humans are obliged to live with vampires in their midst, especially their nightly midst since if we are to respect the fundamental tenets of the creed, the true vampire cannot go out during the daytime or rather they can in some variants but are relatively powerless. Vampires are not creatures of light and they have no sentiments. They do have feelings that usually manifest as forms of Schadenfreude, a ghastly joy in reaction to the suffering of others, or ferocious anger. Their abilities minus their intelligence are generally super human, their physical abilities far beyond ours, and their lovemaking unspeakably violent since their sexual credo appears to translate into: what doesnt kill you will get you off. Of course if the vampires cannot die, or only with difficulty, the humans have much difficulty going about the business of living. The vampires live far more intensely than we do, make love more intensely, are describably more violent, more strongly bound to codes, mores and habits than any of us. Part of their exceptional presence is the result of their limitations. Since they must drink blood, they must stay out of the daylight, they must be invited into homes and they cannot partake wholeheartedly of the sacred and the carefree. Truly the uncharted and putatively very long time allotted them would be a chore indeed if it were not so closely regimented. These vampires are extremely successful business people; they have learned something in their centuries of living in the shadows and the darker places and times of this earth. Their acumen however can run afoul

of local tax laws, which appears to be the case in this show. Their acumen in sales and feel for the client is matchless, they even sermon humans on their debilitating attachment to ego (episode 4 season 3 35:17, Eric and in sportscar). And, most importantly, they need human intermediaries to help them run their businesses. But they are addicted to momentum, though they are not alive, they have learned to accelerate, the swerving gives an illusion of life. And they are awash in blood. Which they splatter everywhere, over themselves and the furniture and do not bother to clean up. Our capitalist world which bleeds us dry and has led us to believe that our work is quantifiable in time and money while depriving us of the right to value existence as a mirror to their world. This is sweeping yes, and we do enjoy each others company in the thrill of accomplishment and the exchanging of banalities during coffee breaks. The attraction of the human in all this is that the human is the only being that can truly risk anything. The human must rely on ingenuity and inventiveness because strength and powers are not going to do it, because they dont have them. Work is sucking the life out of me, says Stackhouse trying to be a policeman to whom only a desk job is given. The peculiarity of being human is squeezed out the fruit like a drop of oil through cheesecloth. All in contrasts as we listen to the humans spin the yarn of the story they intend to live. The vampires have eternity to dabble through while the humans must find a framework for their history and attach of much of their life to it as they can. When something good happens it is the trigger for the invention of the future. The human truly believes that this Godsend will lead to a predictable life of satisfaction. And he begins to spin a tale thereon. The punctual, short-lived resolutions woven within human histories are those moments when we are pleasantly returned to our human earth: brother reconciling with brother, . We know that at best these moments are fleeting, the duration of fleeting varying for each of us and with the depth of our ability to livingly persevere. The humans can explore the metaphysical truths of the now. There is no forever for us, says Crystal to Stackhouse. Everything is now, now is perfect. The vampires and other monsters (again the etymology is puissant, the Gods are showing us what is going on with us humans, the monsters, monstrare, are there to do that, that is their angelic function). However the writers couldnt have given us just a human for a heroine, she has to be able to read peoples minds and has an amazing repulsive power, she doesnt understand, thats the human grain of sand left in the otherwise monstrous machine. Assuage their fears about vampires running wall street. Episode 6, 34:50, The American Vampire League, as if the whole cohort were fully integrated into American life, the right wing of course cannot accept them. In episode seven, the vampire King of Mississippi speaks of taking the 10

world back from the humans who have destroyed it, he means it ecologically I suppose, but the intrigues between vampires are suspiciously human. Suspiciously human are the vampires, at least human as we remember humans to be before our essence was sucked dry and our existences virtualized. The vampires (episode 8 season 3) care much more for the well being of their human loves than the possibility of a relationship. They are wise enough to understand that any relationship with their beloved would lead to the beloveds demise and the impossibility of the beloved having anything resembling a normal life. So they wait to come to the eventual rescue of the human since they have already dragged them hip deep into this muck. The human is in love with the vampire as well, there is a relationship, and the human is not as reasonable. The human is mired in romanticism and sentiment while the vampire is fiercely realistic. Also the homosexual couple, the Hispanic Jesus and the Black Man Lafayette manage to converse and to cross the usual obstacles to male to male communication. In other words trust, and openness since they are both double outcasts, minorities racial and sexual. And in fact there is a fair amount of homoeroticism in this season, Jesus/Lafayette, Merlotte and the vampire, Eric and the Kings boyfriend. But relationships are violent and brief and even seven hundred year liaisons seem to have given them no wisdom no patience just passion and desperation, I suppose the longer you live the longer you will have to do without once you lose someone dear. When Russell Edgington kills the newscaster in episode 9 thereby declaring war on the human species and claiming irreconcilable species differences between the beings he lets forth the litany of the destruction of the earth and how we are all concerned, but that deep down vampires need human blood to survive and that therefore there can be no entente. Or rather on second thought that there must be an entente.

Humor in True Blood


S2 Ep3 This is so embarrassing Id die if I wasnt already dead quote from the young vampire Jessica. The more open my mind gets the more evil I see, Sookie to Bill S05 E0? When Jessica explains to Sookies brother that vampires dont take dumps (go to the bathroom), another advantage of being dead, no toilet paper expenses. They do like to bathe, however. Tron imagery , and here when Tara says I wish I could just reboot Sookie Things are getting too weird too fast The most personable member of the cast is not quite human, Sookie, some sort of angel more or less above the fray. Mais non les frais. She is in fact part fairy, mostly human , but an ancestor may have been raped by a fairy. I suppose this could be said about many of us. 11

TB: Getting into relationship, and getting down with your dark side
The humans who love vampires, despite who they are and what they have done either or both the humans and the vampires - , can be thought of as getting in touch with their dark side. Our wanting to get in touch with vampires could be thought of our canting to get in touch with our dark side, but not too much, this corridor of madness is one we dont want ot enter. In True Blood it is blind love, with a creature that looks human and can have sex and dresses up but otherwise Conversations between vampires and humans, I dont know if people change even when they try in answer to when this is over lets begin again well be new, the vampire as the voice of unreality .In CWAV the seductive introductory speech is given by Lestat to Louis, and the promises are the usual for immortality: to remain young and to be free of disease, and even human cares. 9:53 of the film, Ive come to answer your prayers, life no has no meaning anymore does it? There is a difference of course, since the immortalists want to pick and package life like a commodity while the vampire sees no sense in the life that has been lived till thenand it would be for all time and sickness and death could never touch you again. Louis and Bill in BH do not want to kill humans What would be like if we were normal? Its hard even to picture it, the vampire is being used as a foil to our pretended normalcy. In TB they have come out of the closet and wish to be integrate into our world therefore they are doing their best to imitate normalcy. Using vampire blood as a stimulant an untraceable stimulant for athletic performance, for miracle cures as an aphrodisiac, the ultimate life prolonging and protecting elixir, Blood is everywhere, which of course is inimical to the virtual world, when she loses the unwanted child there is blood, and she is happy So the only way to destroy them is to entice them into the light, thinking that they can overcome even this fundamental stumbling block, unlike the puerile silliness inflicted on the medium by Stephenie Meyer et co. whose vampires simply look unnaturally sparkly in the light. The light conceit is in fact from Nosferatu (according to Vampires, trope website, excellent) and that Stokers Dracula was weakened, losing many of his powers but not destroyed by sunlight. This conceit has been taken up by True Blood, but not by the more successful TV series, (at least in 2010) The Vampire Diaries. It is in fact more interesting to have them weakened but not destroyed since those who do evil can be reduced and revealed but rarely destroyed, and the elation, the euphoria inducing vampiric blood running through their veins being a drug for all. From Season 1 episode 2 of TB, 29:25, Bill cannot come into Sookies house because he has not been invited, she knows about the silver and the daylight but not this.

12

TB 3, 16:22 Season 1, details the differences between vampires and humans, the fact that the former are dead, and so the question arises, what animates them, in the broad sense of the term. In this case they are not bound by human morals, of course the point Sookey makes is that neither are humans The use of the grandmother, the purpose of God is everywhere, amazing scriptwriting, pureness in perversion, the grandmother is wise and she sounds it, the music is themed to the place creates and leads, A lot of killing a lot of brutality and death, The cleverness of the screenplay writing, in the USA the vampires have come above ground and are trying to slum it with us humans, most of them thanks to Anne Rice are malicious, stupid, childish and violent since deathful immortality removes perspective and worth from everythingso Taras drug dealing cousin Lafayette is busy selling V, or vampire blood and in the spirit of the finest sommelier and their wines can tell from the taste; a slight sip, which corner of the vineyard/graveyard it came from and of course what year it was bottled, whether an old vampire or a young one, winetasting, bloodtasting, ingenious TB Season 1 Episode 7, He goes through the myths that vampires created about themselves so that they wouldnt be identified as such, except that wooden stakes in the heart do kill them, this he does not talk about, silver immobilizes them, and they cannot stand daylight for long since it burns them. Holy Water does not disturb them, nor the cross, geometry he called it, and they do cast an image in a mirror. Great lines it aint possible to live unless youre crossing someones line S 1 Ep 7, 27 mins S1 E10 50:45 when Bill makes Jessica, sex S1 Ep 8 Vampire Bill has a long perspective on lovemaking and can tell a woman that she is nothing like anything he has experienced which should mean something to her since seeing as they are going to outlive you means they are likely not trying to sweettalk you. Proof that he has been around because he has a perspective and an experience that only time can form and he is able to express it. Russell, the three thousand year old vampire, is rather unbelievable taken from this vantage point. I mean he is such a psychopath. This says a lot about America, i.e. being a psychopath is pay dirt in the long run, since this boy has 3000 odd years to accumulate stupidity and its discontents you might assume that he has not grown careless or overweening so in America we believe if you are a psychopath you will surface in the end. Reasonable and dignified people are fools and their genes will vanish from the pool. S1 E9 When Amy and Jason kidnap the poor old gay vampire and imprison him in Jasons basement the weakened vampire has the time to wax 13

philosophical. In this setting he lets loose with just how mechanical he discovered his existence was because it took a boy insulting his son, saying that the father was a faggot for him to realize the mechanical, i.e. automatic and unthinking nature of his existence. So he was determined to become a vampire as the means to attract other men. TB, S2E2 Bill and Sookie in bed when she makes it clear that the only reason she stays with him is for what human there is left in himwhen a vampires as new as Jessica is , she has no humanity, once you become a monster you have to gain perspective to get back something human, not necessarily from your past experience. S2E7 Hugos vampire mistress explains to Eric why she is attracted to humans, because they can feel so much more strongly than us, because everything is so much more urgent to them, indeed, they only live so long. But there is a terribly patronizing or matronizing attitude about all this. We are talking about two distinct species after all. Speech of Hugo imprisoned with Sookie, that the vampires dont want to be equals with humans, 37:43 they just want to exploit them. There are vampires, among the most ancient, who wish to coexist with humans, the elegant scene where Godric asks who will die for this pastor (and his cause) and no one steps forward, and he states that he does not wish for unnecessary bloodshed nor for violence so he tells everyone to go home. That he was born before Jesus Christ but missed him. S2 E8 you have had hundreds of years to better yourself and yet you are still a savage. Godric to Lorena, and it is indeed the story of us humans in general. We have had thousands of years to better ourselves and yet we are so often savages Godric is that saintly persona, that knows that no action is free of karma, though he does indeed kill the evil jailer, which is so true of us all, no matter how much work we do we still have our nastiness, our reflexes to violence, our infinite atavisms snapping back into control to throw us to the ground, and ground us under. Season 2 episodes 8 and 9 are really instructive because we have one vampire who has grown outside his condition, and for whom immortality is a burden and empty of interest. He is interested in peace and cooperation between species and goes into the heart of the enemy to prove his point. The enemy is fanatic humans and so his plan backfires sadly and furthermore he has already made up his mind to do exactly what his human captor intended to do to himin the first place, face the sun for the first time in 2200 yearsa glorious and moving death , asks about God and Sookie tells him God is forgiveness and he states that to be accompanied at the end by a human and by human tears he is truly surprised and this after all these years. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-i2pLSQ3czg where Godric meets the true death. Since it is entertainment it gets out of handthe Maenad telling us that 14

you are what you believe and hysterical that she is based on some new age persona when in fact she is a chthonic atavism from hell. Fascinating conflict of tropes. In Dracula his blood is a disease which leads to the victim being transformed into vampire while in TB Vampire blood is a healing substance, since it has a life force. US vampire lore makes no distinction in the immortality of the undead and the stupendous energy of a drugged up football player. Dracula blood is life in death while vampire blood in the US is life from death. Peculiar. Problem with American series, they keep on destroying the personnel, the grandmother by far the most coherent, eloquent, and intelligent of the lot sixth episode of the very first year already brutally massacred so far at least four murders. They are churned and spit out like so much charred and badly butchered hamburger meat, or exploded into chunks of clotted blood as if the vampire receptacle deemed unworthy of its sacred fluid charge vomits it out into the world. During the season ending episode for Season 5, vampire Bill, the Southern gentleman and Civil War veteran, turned against his will, has gone whole hog fanatic into the mythology of his race. The mythology being that the woman Adam rejected, Lilith, because she did not like the missionary position and refused to cook him tuna fish casseroles, became the killer of newborns and the mother of vampires. Bill drinks her blood and becomes the ultimate vampire, stronger than even the thousand year old specimens he had had to knuckle under to before. The others flee because despite being vampires they sense that one hundred per cent essence is a lot more dreadful than the vampire with admixtures of regret, recognition and efforts at empathy. Bill becomes irredeemable, terrifying, an embodiment of the vampire God/Goddess and like all savage Gods, not amenable to negotiation or even being reasonable. Beyond politics and the politic.

Being Human (BH)


in Being Human (UK), there is an attempt to fit in but the vampire nature causes them to lose control, though not as utterly as werewolf nature. The vampire can end up killing a friend for blood lust, but they can also survive in the light of day. Those hunting them are quite inquisition like in their single minded sadism. Much like the American Right depicted in True Blood. The werewolf against her will Nina feels she has left her humanity far behind, because she has these compulsions to rip flesh out of her loved ones face, he being a werewolf could of course understand these things, but being forced outside the human pale has led her to consider the distant place she now finds herself in, and she does not like it. The monsters and here richly enough we have them in their original meaning, they are showing us where our humanity has gone, want desperately to keep things from spinning out of control, meaning from showing too much, 15

being seen; being real. The metaphor gone literal would be more than most people could handle. But the monsters are searching for conscience while the humans are living unconsciously in it. In BH the vampires have a considerable white trash contingent, or monsters that cannot resist their blood lust nature and even exult in it, upsetting the balance for those fine and reasonable vampires who would like to prolong the species by lying low. Of course in these shows there is sooner or later the tail biting, not Ourobouros, the cosmic serpent that swallows its own, but simply certain elements of the plot swallowing other elements. Someone nice is secretly someone very bad, someone bad usually stays bad; but they become necessary to the plot thanks to lack of imagination in scriptwriters who feel we need constant surprises and these being generally in the sad direction. SAM, surprises a minute, DPM deaths per minute, and MPE or Mayhem per episode could be three useful acronyms giving the ever thrillstarved American and eventually world audience an idea of just how exciting their evening fare will be. On the MPE index True Blood scores high as well naturally enough on the DPM since the two often but not always go together. Often when the MPE/DPM indexes are high the plot reaches alarming levels of complexity with subplots, simultaneous doings on split or closely followed screens which appears to give the lie to the Warhol/Vidal claim that Americans have only at best a 45 minute attention span. Make that a 45-50 minute attention span with the intervening week between episodes being ravaged by undefined cravings for excitement, continuity and sense. In BH it is amusing to human institutions , AA own difficulties except nature. AA to stop them see the monsters take on, adapt to and create for example, and put them to work to solve their that their difficulties are inherent to their very sucking other peoples blood.

George the wolfman in BH wants to have a normal life but Mitchell the vampire explains to him that this is no longer an option Just-transformed lady werewolf in BH: Just a week ago I was worrying about whether or not a vegan diet had enough protein You have to feed the monster or else the panic creeps in, you have to keep the ball in the air, its not like withdrawalin BH, the other vampire with Mitchell who says they have gone through the looking glass as per Alice in Wonderland and in so doing lost all their human qualities, mercy for example being such a commendable quality, they know what it is and choose not to exemplify itA vampire is the only truly free man, it doesnt change your personality it liberates it (sort of Nietzchian nest-ce pas?) great lines: that little scratch of conscience, thats a lie. The world will not forget and therefore forgive our being who we were, or who we showed ourselves to betrying to force the vampires to do his bidding BH Y2S5, youre like a dog thats been switched to a diet of dried food The good and evil debate is given an amusing turn, since the humans in

16

charge are ever so much more evil than the monsters, at least the monsters have this monstrous violence in their nature, its inviolate, the human keepers of other humans should know betterwhat a better mirror for good and evil. Because we think or we know we are monsters we refuse to allow ourselves to perform at anything close to our potentialand we can display our foibles and our questioning through the behavior of the monster trying to be us because he once was, some of us become monsters, what would a being be that could not become a monster but is monstrous by nature? Are our times the perfect receptacle for the monstrous? BH S2 ep 6 Ivan: We all lead long and appalling lives and Ive got my Daisy, everyone deserves a daisy. 54:14 one vampire attempts to commiserate with another, who has fallen in love with a woman, a doctor no less, bent on helping a sadistic religious fanatic who lost wife and child to vampires eliminate the monsters.

Films
In (2008) Lt den rtte komma in (Let The Right One In, LTROI, Tomas Alfredson) the hero is out of touch, he cannot fit into the adult world because he is too small, strange and already has their intelligence and far more maturity. For this he is tortured by others of his age, while being left unprotected by the adult world. From Anne Rice, the third volume (Interview with a Vampire, IWAV) the Vampire Lestat, the Queen of the Damned) she does address the question of longevity which is picked up in BH that someone who is evil when he becomes a vampire will have a long time to become truly evil while someone else, who has the patience of wisdom will use that time to become wisethe message of BH would have us believe that the fundamental bloodlust of vampires makes the search for wisdom impossible, which is why the Gods the Angels and divinities of every stripe and disincarnation envy our human condition that we have no fundamental starting marker, clear species point of departure and can work on ourselveswhile they, the more or less immortal, are shaped, defined and cast from the start or from the middle since one does not obligatorily become a vampire at birth, in fact rarely so. Anne Rice has made a major opus of the subject running through thousands of years of history with the putative Babylonian origin of vampires Enkil and Akashacreatures that can empty our minds of any memory or image we might have of them. What controls them? Holy relics, holy objects, or representations, also the need to be invited innot operant in BH apparently except that they are 17

not reflected in mirrors The challenge is to stop wasting my time, it has been a long time since I have created, or rather created the reproducible object, why am I so angry? The vampire in Interview AR is angry until he stops going against his nature , since he is outside our moral circuit he must kill, he is not human, despite the trappings, he has lost, forfeited his human ascendance to satisfy his blood lust. But then again, in our history there have been numerous men called leaders whose actions led to the deaths of tens, hundreds, thousands, millions of other beings. What did they forfeit? Was it in their nature to lay waste to so many human lives? The point made in LTROI, she became undead while still barely pubescent, like Claudia in IWAV she shall never grow up. Another trait of our virtualized times, since we have no functions, since we are not part of a vital living matrix seeking to reconnect the body with its being, with life, we are socialized cogs in a virtual machine. We cannot grow up, we can only grow old. We only grow away. We do not fight, our machines and drone missiles do it for us. We do not think or calculate, our computers do that, and we do not speak, our texted messages suffice, and we certainly do not communicate face to face, cell phones are everywhere. How few vampires have the stamina for immortality, Armand and Louis in Paris in IWAV, its the non belonging, the sacrifice of their humanity We must be powerful, beautiful and without regret, Anne Rice inanity, The advantages of being a vampire in the far northern, far southern climes, the long long nights, but the scarcity of humans LTROI, she has long nights, which allows Eli to blend in more easily with the human populace. The American remake, Let Me In, a bare two years after the original, should take a look at their pale choices. Not nearly as fine as the original, America is too bright and shiny . Check out Japanese Cosplay imitation of anime characters and vampires and the obsessive otaku, The Japanese being the most robotically inclined and virtualized people on earth with virtual pets and dressing up as someone else. Gadget sophistication before which we pale Sex in all this, scenes from Coppolas Dracula, sensual and erotic, Bram Stokers Dracula by Francis Ford Coppola A very entertaining rendition of the book. There is the strong and iconoclastic personality of Dr. Van Helsing who despite being a scientist is conscious of and stresses its blinding limits. Science makes us into scientists and closes us off from the evidence of our senses. This is the debate he has with his former student who has called him to the bedside of Ms Lucy Westenra. So despite being turned into a monster for reneging God and Church, the 18

love he had for his wife Elisabeta brought her soul metempsychotically back to him and she was able to end his evil existence, the scne where she beats him is magnificent. He asks her to do so. In fact his departure for London and Carfax Abbey was nothing more than casting himself into the maws of the end. The end of his immortality and of his overweening quest, his unrequited love for Elisabeta. Todd Brownings Dracula, on the other hand, shows our non-man as a monster. Interested only in his perdurance, his survival and continuance with absolutely no attenuating circumstances involving love or relationship. This should very much remind us of the ultimate capitalist, the one who throws himself out the window when the stock market collapses or his factory fails. His entire life was wrapped around ever accelerating financial gain and whether or not this involved the bestial exploitation of others was of no import whatsoever. Truly the only way to kill a modern vampire is if he kills himself, like German billionaire Adolf Merckle whose speculative moves on Volkswagen stock went awry.

Literature John Polidoris the Vampyre (Speaking of Lord Ruthven) There was one circumstance about the charity of his Lordship, which was still more impressed upon his mind: all those upon whom it was bestowed, inevitably found that there was a curse upon it, for they were all either led to the scaffold, or sunk to the lowest and the most abject misery. At Brussels and other towns through which they passed, Aubrey was surprised at the apparent eagerness with which his companion sought for the centres of all fashionable vice; there he entered into all the spirit of the faro table: he betted and always gambled with success, except where the known sharper was his antagonist, and then he lost even more than he gained; but it was always with the same unchanging face, with which he generally watched the society around: it was not, however, so when he encountered the rash youthful novice, or the luckless father of a numerous family; then his very wish seemed fortune's law -- this apparent abstractedness of mind was laid aside, and his eyes sparkled with more fire than that of the cat whilst dallying with the half-dead mouse. In every town, he left the formerly affluent youth, torn from the circle he adorned, cursing, in the solitude of a dungeon, the fate that had drawn him within the reach of this fiend; whilst many a father sat frantic, amidst the speaking looks of mute hungry children, without a single farthing of his late immense wealth, wherewith to buy even sufficient to satisfy their present craving.

Tropes list
Sex, sexiness, seduction, revealed flesh, innuendo are among the most common features of even the most benign vampire shows, Buffy the vampire Slayer, with the ridiculous vampire scurrying down manholes. She dresses provocatively all the time and is an object of perpetual desire and untouchable of course. .Monsters use seduction to achieve their goals, the insect woman among them S1E4 Everyone practically is stupid around her, 19

it makes the plot go forward. The seduction of Eric by Godric, the former on his deathbed who is invited to become immortal by the latter who couches it most elegantly, S2 E5 42 :33, since what Eric truly wants is life, we will do anything to live, including destroying our lives. S2E4 25 :01 the sexy barbecue scene is one of the most amusing and sexy and fits into the context, of another form of seduction, immediate and temporal with the Sammy Kershaw Louisiana Hot Sauce as the musical accompaniment. Buffy Season 1 Episode 7 34:40, the explanation given is that Angel the heartful vampire who slays his own had his soul restored in a gypsy curse after killing a romani girl (beautiful, dumb as a post). So that in this Judaeo Christian scheme the only way to roll is for the creature to get in touch or simply get a soul be that person Godric, Bill or Angel. But this would seem to be an American invention. In America we are all born humanly equal, even vampires and therefore they can get back in touch with their red blooded human souls. The love story between Bill and Sookey is inspired by this relationship. Buff S1E11 Angel returns and regrets not seeing his image in a mirror. He is squarely in the evolved vampire camp, those who regret their bloodlust (TB Godric and ) and have fallen for a human, carrying a double melancholy wherever they go. S1E8 is about a demon invading the internet, the demon Moloch, who from that vantage point infects all users. We are infected now without even having to make use of the services of a demon. BH S1 E5 8:08 Not everything about being human is about being nice. You bring together the two ends. The monsters as essential, invariable monsters and the humans saddled with choices. Why are the fight scenes and the escape scenes so amateurish, like the Mario Bava Mask of the Devil 1960? Is it because this clumsiness is so much closer to reality than the American unadulterated massacre, speed and explosion, which are not the wont of all scrapes and escapes. The Behavior of Eli in Let The Right One In shows us something about ourselves, that we have moved away from what it means to be an honorable, moral human being to resembling far more a primitive animal and since we have moved the animal appears to have moved closer to us. In Polidoris Vampyre the man is so honorable that he sacrifices all he loves including himself to keep his word, he is honor bound and nothing else, the vampire of course appears and is wholly evil, destructive and unforgiving. Todays vampire is the same animal, perhaps not delighting or seeming to delight in the degradation and suffering of others though this is often shown and leaks of all kinds have shown the vindictiveness and out and out sadism, hubris and arrogance of those financially in power (Lay of Enron, Madoff of the Ponzi Scheme, the Indian trader and others who expressed their wholly unsympathetic viewpoint of their fellow

20

humans) but seen through a different set of lenses. Since we are lesser the vampire seems more, since we have sacrificed our humanity on the various altars of lucre, amusement, convenience and outright busyness, those whose existence was intended to tempt and debase ours have come through looking much closer to us in our degraded state, and the effort they need to put out to accomplish their single minded mission of dragging us to the depths has become easier, for we are lower, and closer to them. Sloth and the list Baudelaire makes lennui describe us well.

Who has been sucking your blood? Consider your life, your recent existence, and that going back, as far back as memory, your uncertain memory allows. What is your first memory of losing will, heart, energy, emotion? Your first dull sensation of coming up against a wall? Of being walled in evennot just discovering the world was not yours to command and reap from but discovering, brutally at times, that your wishes, words and expectations, suddenly carried no weight, no force, no conviction and that this seemed to back up all over your very everyday existence, like a stopped up drain or a blocked toilet. As if existence had spewed and shat on you Besides the very high likelihood of our having most unreasonable expectations, that which is responsible for your condition might also be considered to be nothing more nor less than a vampire, a vampiric entity that thrives when faced with your visible frustration and defeat. Those other humans that make their constant demands, that hem and close us in are often knowingly or not - vampirizing our energy and determination. Those that counter us at every turn, that correct and unceasingly criticize or reproach us for what it seems is the simple fact of our existing. There are entities that are insubstantial and there are entities that have entered a human host to do their work. Most of the entities preying on us have, in true vampire fashion, been invited in. Invited inside the sanctity of our minds and our treasured inner life. We live with them in what is essentially a parasitic relationship for they exist through our bidding and persist simply because they have convinced us that this is the only way we can be. Though we sense in our very flesh that this is not so. (Le Prince de la nuit, graphic novel in six volumes, psychoanalytic perusal of the vampire myth). Being food for a vampiric entity, be they desirous of blood, soul, mental energy or presence and any combination of anything human we might draw up, requires our cooperation. We have to have let in the entity, through weakness, inattention, or deformation from the early and tormented throes of our childhood. In a real sense, our parents are simply passing on their entities to us, those they were never able or willing to recognize and to shake off.

21

Dont forget the Fearless Vampire Hunters The films Blade and the Lost Boys Thirst work with the same trope, the vampire state as a transmissible disease, the vampire condition akin to a plague state. The change is instantaneous in the manner of one of those terrifying African viruses Marburg or Ebola. The humans are drawn to this vector of infection through the lures of sex and just beating off the path badness. The head vampires in both Blade and Lost Boys (third film in the series) is a driven , brilliant disk jockey, handler of masses and controlling them through their addiction to mechanical rhythms and drugs. A disease transmitted by an organism that changes the blood (Dracula or True Blood come to mind) or simply transforms the victim on the spot. Lost Boys: I create a place where all the lost souls of the world can come together, DJ Axe in Lost Boys before he kills the man interviewing him, and the author who hires Frog has spent her literary career glorifying vampires and making them sexy, they are, until they kill you, death is sexy until it destroys you, through obsession or dissolution (the Prayer Mat of Flesh, Jo Pou Tuan, La Chaire comme tapis de prire). Popular culture, popular contemporary youth culture is generally what is most threatening to the established establishing or dominating order, therefore it is admittance to all threats and perversions. The established order gives it very bad press and generally it does things (sex, drugs, mechanical rock and roll) that do not belie its reputation. Turns holy water into holy slaughter, great lines from the Lost Boys and the follow up The Tribe, and now I want to drink blood do you know how disgusting that is for me? Im a vegetarianvampires always look for a place of human suffering. And the fact that the young surfer lad despite his sisters dire condition lets the little lovely into his home because she basically drops the laundry. They hadnt finished what they had begun. Then he impales her on deer antlers. Anne Rice was the first (except of course the tradition that even Paganini had traded his soul to the devil to play as well as he did, to Robert Johnson who met Satan at the crossroads, and fell down on his knees) one to use the vector of music raves and such to show the young intoxicated and led by a hypnotic vampire, in this case Lestat, the whole history of rock on a large scale and the torch singer to a clubfull of men and women, a sort of a pied piper, Der Blaue Engel, where they are being led away from their everyday to follow their senses and desires is in this vein. What is that most unbearable to the established order than an invitation to debauch and lack of control, couched seductively, called freedom among other things, what better revolutionary space than the dance floor? From Tango to Flamenco to the Twist, to the Maenad in True Blood whose shimmering invocation drives everyone to uncontrollable human animal lust. Tragedy being itself but another dance, this one involving a goat. Krishna and the Gopis, the Dance of Shiva, destroying universes, as the natural order of things, but the established order is never terrified by anything so much as the natural order of things. The only natural order is the one they feel they can preserve. Pure hubris from Anna Wintour to Steve Jobs, the greater 22

their temporal power the stronger the itch to believe that they can control the Fates, fate in general and the immediate animate and inanimate world. The natural order of things arises, now. We are always after hoping to fix up that which is to come. The 1986 film, The Lost Boys by Joel Schumacher is a fine piece of work. In fact the only unconvincing aspect is some of the fight scenes. One of the theses endorsed by the film is that the blood of a vampire can get you started on the path to the vampire state, and you can be fooled into drinking it and feel yourself fettered to that evil course but only a willing and conscious blood kill kicks you fully over into the camp of the undead. Though you may have benefited from several of their powers, including a full vampire set of canines, you are still an untested model until you actually attack someone and drain their blood. Then your soul is irreparably damaged and you have become one of them. In The Lost Boys The Tribe , the vampire Sean , former champion surfer, gives an introductory salvo claiming that the mortals fear of death is his strongest impediment to salvation. Coming from a Buddhist that would carry some weight but considering the terribly vulnerable state of vampires, they can be stuck impaled beheaded shot and watered to death with ease , in fact they seem to die in ever so many more ways than humans, the speech is unconvincing. They must live in stricken fear for everything that has come before the moment of their being dispatched has been an uneventful wait for the advent of eternity. What have we done that is so peculiar with the monstrous? what have we done this last century? I think the 20th Century more than any that preceded it can be characterized for having rendered the monstrous human, or making the monster more human. Make that late 20 th Century perhaps but then again Mary Shelleys Frankenstein is an example. The vampires of the last 20 years are positively more touching than the humans they bleed. Is it to bring us closer to them or them closer to us. BTVK S1E8, an excellent story idea that the demon Moloch is written into and imprisoned in a book where he can only be freed by being read and he is accidentally freed five and a half centuries later (1418) when he is scanned in a library. He then proceeds to wreak havoc with records and stored data, convincing the online that he loves them or can give them infinite power. The demonizing of the Internet. Underworld, an interesting schema to base a story on, a man who survives a plague and whose three children are the forefathers of wolfmen, vampires, and a human who holds the potential. The vampire son is bitten by a bat and then saves a lord of whom he demands allegiance while the wolf son is an uncontrollable animal; bitten by a wolf, while the father becomes an immortal and in those eight centuries a wealthy and powerful man still tied up in sentiment despite the fact his two sons are monstrous monsters. The sentiment for one so world wise is

23

hard to believe but is used to explain why he does not rid the world of his sons, theyre his sons, grown ghastlier with time and far less hesitant in his case for the vampire son Marcus kills his father to get the means to free his twin brother, William, the Wolf. The lycans are ferocious and stupid with exceptions, especially poor Lucian, the son of a wolfwoman who can shift his form to wolf and back. He becomes the lover of the vampire kings (Victor) daughter who had spared him as an infant. He exposes his own daughter to the sun to prevent her child from being born, hysterically considering him monstrous as if her were himself the picture of normalcy. The violence, the lack of mediation for creatures so ancient with so much experience, the decimation and brutality the termination of the fathers life by his son, whose access to the father seemingly caught unawares happened so simply is all wasteful and incoherent. A bunch of psychopathic humans with evil yearnings and lack of respect for existence is what I see. The ruling vampire, Craven, is totally unconvincing before his destruction by Marcus in the second film. The loving couple Selene and whose lovemaking is clumsy and unconvincing, only the violence is done faultlessly, are attractive and endearing and not quite as pathological as their brethren. The Underworld series is an oddity. The vampire heroine, most fetching, soft snow blue ice eyes and so many lingering glances, seems virtually invulnerable. She was turned into a vampire fully 800 years earlier and has spent all those centuries killing the breed that were said to be responsible for her familys death werewolves or lycans. In fact family seems to be the super glue in action here. The immortal father cannot or rather will not kill his two monstrous sons, fathers of the lycans and vampires, and the monstrous brothers, the vampire forefather and the lycan ancestor, cannot do without each other and appear to make mincemeat of everyone and everything else. While the monstrous vampire exposes his daughter to sunlight when he learns she has been made pregnant by his pet lycan, Lucian. It is not clear what the monstrous brothers have in mind except mayhem. The wolf brother is utterly uncontrollable which is why he was closed up in the first place. Selene, the vampire, survives all manner of abuse, notably being stabbed through or impaled Tepes style with the bat wings of Marcus, the vampire Godsire, which she then snaps off and uses to kill him with, this after having killed the other vampire sire with his own sword no less. Her companion, Michael, a most personable descendant of the monsters father, he being descended from the third son who was not immortal, simply human, now has the traits of both vampires and lycans and can control them both. Neither he nor Selene however can do without blood, food is toxic to them. Both are utterly outside the fetters of the animal impulses of either vampires or lycans, they are quite noble really, and make use of the monstrous only for its strength and in their cases, apparent invulnerability. A charming result of their final triumphs over the monstrous brothers is that both become human again. Selene can stay in the sun for the first time in 800 years and Michael is just another charming hunk. The idea of killing your ultimate maker freeing you from what they transmitted you is interesting. 24

In Fright Night the tropes are given a running through the paces/ a run through. A vampire can only be invited into a dwelling with the express invitation of the spaceholder, or rightful owner. The weapons such as crosses and holy water only work if the user is a firm believer, truly believes in them and in no other situation. The seducer vampire is handsome and irresistible and foreplay of the most blatant sort precedes the vampire attack. Sex and vampiric transformation or at least a strong invitation to bonding or friendship are inseparable. You have to invite him or her in. Unlike the True Blood vampire who attacks the man she let into her home, inverts the trope. A man should not enter the house of an unknown woman, even consequent to her invitation. Near Dark, Kathryn Bigelow, is beautifully filmed and Tarantinoish in the violence of the protagonists. The hero is unwittingly transformed, he is a young fool and falls for a beautiful stranger. All the tropes, anything you might do by yourself such as walking in the night, hitchhiking, helping others apparently in distress reveals their down side because its the vampires trap to feed, soullessly exploiting our humanity. How does the young man react when he accidentally reins in his father and sister who were hunting for him ever since the vampire coven kidnapped him after one of theirs transformed him. Every temptation hides the devil, a beautiful young girl alone, someone who picks you up while hitchhiking and the scene in the bar worthy of Tarantino for its utterly gratuitous violence. But it ends happily; the fathers blood saves the son who had just won entry into the coven of vampires that changed him. The son had disappeared because after being bitten by the lovely May he can no longer live in the world of humans or risk being burned explosively to a crisp in his new deathless but horribly vulnerable vampire condition. Their blood is no longer warm for their heart no longer beats. But in Bigelows trope good human blood, the family blood, will cure you of that infectionand in the end when May sacrifices herself or tries to in succeeding to save Sarah, our heros sister; she is saved with a transfusion from the man she loves and who loves her, deeply, deeply enough to make blood count. There are no religious symbols but there is one more ancient and more pervasive, that of the blood of love and paterfamilias. The coven tries to kill the hero when he goes after them to recover his sister they have just kidnapped. This is their fatal mistake because there are already divisions within themselves, the young vampire is smitten with the heros little sister, a tough and resourceful cookie, who was already instrumental in freeing her brother once by simply opening the door to the trailer and letting the sun in. Never figure out why vampired insist in hanging out in the American West where the sun blazes so brazenly and so long. The young woman vampire who turned our hero loves him still though is mortified if this state can occur to vampires to discover that he has been returned human, following a blood transfusion from his father. She smashes her way out of the coven car with Sarah in tow and begins to combust in the sun. The hero manages to ssave her but the boy vampire is consumed while running after Sarah. The couple who rule to roost try to pursue but are overtaken by the sun and they have lost the psychotic member of the group who perished in a semi rig explosion accidentally 25

engineered by the hero. They lose the psychotic and their ensemble begins to fray, their relationship to the world is psychotic and without him they have lost their edge. In the Vampire John Carpenters Vampires, another legend, another extremely powerful six hundred year old vampire who cant stand sunlight. One thing that is being brought out, over and over again is how devoid of powers humans are. No siddhi. We have none and cannot cultivate them. All exceptional beings, that are not human, have exceptional powers, the super hero motif extended to the realm of the evil, night spawned creatures. In the virtual age where everything is outside of us, our powers, our force, our intelligence and especially our memory, it is unsurprising that super creatures, not human or no longer so and innately evil, would have these non virtual qualities. In many of these films the vampire is ridiculously powerful opposite the humans but absurdly fragile when it comes to a variety of substances and situations, sunlight for some, religious paraphernalia for others. Two further considerations about American attitudes towards groups clans families and longevity and immortality Man of these films display clannish and tight knit associations and when you become one you are joining a group, a coven, an assembly of the exceptional. A group whose coveted immortality is a very fragile thing indeed, sunlight and stakes in the heart (though the latter does not seem to work in Carpenters Vampires where only sunlight has an effect). Immortality puts you into a select club but it is a highly potential immortality. 30 days of night, (Directed By: David Slade, Written By: Steve Niles and Stuart Beattie 2007) horrifying bestial vampires speaking a language I do not recognize, who take advantage of the thirty day night month of December January to destroy isolated communities in the far north. The few survivors at the end of this period need one final sacrifice to ensure the survival of the others. The asthmatic policeman whose ex had missed her plane because of an unfortunate car accident saves those still alive the day before sunup by injecting himself to transform himself into a vampire in order to fight their leader, whom he kills, scattering the others. Dawn rises and incinerates him. These vampires are like the monsters in I am Legend, once human and now ravening beasts. But they do have a language, guttural-sounding, foreign, and their only theme, survival Gripping and horrific, Before it was the dead who became vampires, "All the dead are vampires, poisoning the air, the blood, the life of the living, contaminating their body and their soul, robbing them of their sanity." Marie Hlne Huet but now the living play this rle. From June 13, 2010 All the Dead Are Vampires A natural-historical look at our love-hate relationship with dead
people.

By Michael Sims

26

In being human BH S1E5 where Mitchell is trying to convince an old lover (she has grown old, he has remained vampire young, English vampire young, he can go out in the light) that she should become one too and cure the cancer she is dying of on the spot. She is put off by this because being human means being mortal. You cant rob people of that. A distinction to be made between those who were born vampires and those who were transformed into vampiresthe possibility that the transformed might remember a shred of their past, a corner of their soul, might be able to climb back in that direction, so as to reclaim, reestablish or even discover the humanity they never knew they had. Meanwhile those born vampires, (Underworld original? Polidoris Vampyr, Dracula (?) ) or perhaps those irremediably evil humans who became vampires, have either the option or the obligation to remain fundamentally evil or at least permanently nasty. From John Carpenters Vampires to True Blood there is a wide ranging panoply of all the methods by which we can become a vampire. The oldest was to be important and then to blaspheme, either a king, Vlad Tepes, or a priest (traditional and Carpenters film). Remember that before then vampires were simply former humans who did not have a proper death, who continued living beyond life, in their vampiric deathless condition. Then there is the viral vampire, a simple bite infects the victim, this is evidenced in Fright Night, Vampires (John Carpenter), and Let the Right One In and there is no intermediary, ritual or whatnot, in a period of days the transformation is complete and the victim becomes a vampire. In true Blood the bite is indeed viral but appears to require a ceremony of burial and emergence. Twilight, the desire of Bella to become a vampire, to be turned as they call it, to be above this mortal coil and if truth be known be prisoner to an altogether different one, is reminiscent of the American obsession with immortality. Since in this life there is no immortality, in fact it is antithetical to this existence, we secretly desire one compatible with the immortal state. To be immortal is to not be mortal living along the usual run of things, but the immortal state attracts its share of threat and destruction. Again the Twilight Vampires are definitely top of the line models, powerful, attractive, ageless immune to all the conventions garlic, holy relics, daylight, invitation, they even shine in the light. And they do not lose their powers. Their one sacrifice to maintain immortality being simply obliged to subsist on an all-blood diet. The good ones settle for animal blood which they hunt in the woods, and the bad ones, who include the Volturi, a super group of ancient and exceedingly powerful vampires who hunt humans. They are so thoroughly repulsive as the Cullenses seem so thoroughly angelic that the whole piece comes through as caricature or teenage romance, which it is, and which the author candidly admits.

27

The vampires appear as a concurrent species to humans, they arose from humans, but as in Harry Potter some have been vampires/warlocks for so long that they deny any human ascendancy. Denying that sort of ascendancy opens the doors to a great deal of nasty behavior. In other words one is no longer bound by human conventions and the morality of it all. There is among the intolerant vampires a nerveless exression of superiority to the benighted and mortal human race. It is tangible and makes even generous gestures seem like charity: One superior race stooping to help the dawdlers. It is pleasant to look at and humans are soon shunted into the background, only appearing to be transformed against their wishes or as relatives of the heroine. Ultraviolet is a fascinating British series about a vampire infestation and those who escaped it to form the police force now intent on rooting it out and destroying it. Vampires here fear light but not the religious paraphernalia. They are highly organized and intent on transforming the human race into a captive blood bank. Their condition is viral and transmitted easily through a bite or through death. They can only be killed using a certain form of carbon which acts as an explosive and leaves nothing more of them than a fine powder. The debate as to the rightfulness of their existence, their claiming to work for coexistence, when as the last episode (6) reveals, they are there to eliminate humans and become autonomous thanks to artificial blood. The word vampire is never used except in the credits, and the letter V outlined in the title of the shows opening sequence. Contrast with the V in True Blood, a successfully developed blood substitute distributed in blood types and intended to allow the vampires to coexist with humans while the British series which predates the American show proposed artificial blood to no longer depend on humans. What is being driven at more or less metaphorically is the simple truth of being carried forward at superhuman speeds into a present that cannot do with our humanness. Our genes need improvement, our bones need to be replaced, our brain chemistry needs constant fine tuning to contain moods that incapacitate us and prevent us from functioning in the society that is transforming us into itself. So as we progressively lose what we have come to recognize as our humanity of these last ten thousand years we seek other models into which we can conflate our desires and ensrhine our life spark. The valpire with his or her immortality is an excellent vehicle. Except that like technology, he turns out to be astonishingly vulnerable. Just as in technology where pulling out the plug has devastating consequences, or as Plantu in Le Monde put it, Nuclear Power is danger free but should there be a strike everything blows sky high, for the vampire the light of the sun in some versions, religious artefacts, silver or a bullet in the heart, admittedly also uncomfortable situation for most of us, is devastating and instantly annihilating for him. Nightfall by Katherine Bigelow, is a fine piece of work on many levels. The

28

camera is magnificent and caressing, the actors more than appropriate playing youth far from its mind, close to its passions. Daybreakers, by brothers Michael and Peter Spiereg, with Ethan Hawke and Willem Dafoe is another viral vampire spinoff where the vampires have in fact taken over and are trying to both control both the virus that turned them and sometimes transforms them further into truly bestial batlike monstrosities and the humans whose blood is their only sustenance. A sympathetic vampire, Ethan Hawke, turns the tide in favor of the humans. The series Ultraviolet is quite brilliant. The writing, the acting, the story line. They have cleverly avoided going over the top by never calling a spade a spade, the vampires are known as leeches. They are heavily into finance, they are well organized and their state is transmitted virally with a bite. They do drink blood and are mortally sensitive to UV . and or sunlight, they do not show up in mirrors, tv screens or even voice recordings, they are virtual to the virtual, they can be destroyed though, not only by the light but by wood in the right places. They want to destroy us as soon as they have synthesized an artificial blood that can fully substitute for the original, up till then they experiment on us with radioactivity, viruses, they study blood diseases not for a cure but to see how to keep their supply pure and they have been around for a long long time. They are immortal, they do not age, but once they have been damaged by light they remain in pain and cannot heal. And they cease to exist though this is not dying in a most explosive manner. A truly violent explosion of disintegration, though the disintegrate can be brought back to life, clothed unfortunately, perhaps fabrics part of the illusion. The vampires though they are never named as such insist that everyone was a willing sacrifice to the vampire cause. Once again you have to invite it in, you have to allow this death into your lifeThese vampires are violent, irascible and devoid of interest in anything outside their circle. There is the claim that they have already been responsible for historical calamities, e.g. the Fire of London Reevaluation of The Vampire Diaries. Though we have the usual difficulty of believing that creatures that have lived and survived rather well for so long remain so craven and conveniently careless, there is a love story here that takes 10 episodes to gel that is very well handled. The metaphor being when we love someone we love or at least accept even the vampire in them. And we love them above all because while the vampire in them will never desert them they have, in other words this penchant for rapine and massacre is kept in check, sublimated elsewhere and faced off. The disquieting problem with this and other series (Heroes come to mind) is this astonishing American propensity to present a psychopath on stage opposite his benevolent counterpart and though the evil one wreaks unimaginable and unforgivable horror he/she is not forgiven but assimilated into the plot as essentially as the hero and finally, brusquely to some sensibilities, gradually to others, becomes dynamically indispensable to the story. Even worse his crimes become abstractions, and though he is 29

not forgiven, since it must be clear that his crimes are well beyond forgiving, he is treated like just any other supernatural joe. This is the case with Damian who kills with disdain and selfless immorality and yet is spared time and again, remaining in the story not just as a foil but as a major mover...How do you go about your business, vampire or not, with your evil twin at your side countermanding your every effort, and your abysmal frustration, that because of your refusal to partake of normal vampire fare, humans that is, your evil twin is more powerful than you? Since he has followed his essential nature and you have deviated from yours, remaining a respectful distance from humans, his vampiric 'purity' makes him considerably stronger than you. And your girlfriend is torn between the two of you. Is it the American fascination with charm and good looks? Fabrice Midal in his book on Auschwitz notes that one element of the story is rarely addressed and that half of the news media quit the trial when that element, the accused, was the only one left in the dock, the witnesses having all deposed. Eichmann is the object of our consideration here, for what was he lacking that let him do what he did? Arendt's solution, unconsciousness, let's Western Civilization off the hook that it had itself fashioned and reduces the actor, Eichmann to a sort of pathological expression of amorality. I'm impressed by cruelty, whether we call it gratuitous or not, and cruelty partajes of gratuitousness in a rather binary fashion, gratuitousness implies awareness, or even the possibility of being informed. Compassion, true compassion that is, accessible to a holy few, can look very much like cruelty. Midal cites Shakespeare's Richard IIIrd for whom doing evil was second if not first nature. If you consider deviated or excessive or overimagined desire I can phantasize about a woman as simply an instrument of my sexual satisfaction, I do away with her as a human, if I can consider human beings as punch cardable entities, beings that can be catalogued and filed away then of couse disposing of them is simply another one of the options on the punch card list of categories... Why do we allow our entertainment to take us in this direction? In other words if not forget then behavior would certainly indicate tolerance if not forgiveness. Documentary The Act of Killing," a documentary by US director Joshua Oppenheimer...where the executioners of hundreds of thousands of so called Communist Indonesians in the 1970s live side by side with the families of those they devastated. Since they are on the winning side they are tolerated and find it easy to justify their actions, somewhat in the sense that prisoners in a jail will sometimes say they are innocent, and only incarcerated because of some judicial mistake. Shawshank Redemption treats this nicely.

30