Most TV shows would be better if they were about vampires
Photo-Illustration: Vulture; Photo by NBC
Either the words vampire at ao3 does not mean anything to you or you are sick in your head. For the uninitiated, ao3 stands for ‘Archive of Our Own’, a very large virtual dumpster where people share their fanfiction. As with a real dumpster, you can sometimes dive for treats, but only if you are brave and have low self-esteem. At stands for alternate universe, which means fan fictions that are not limited to the established facts of fictional worlds and their characters. Search for “ao3 vampire” and you get tens of thousands of “what if?” Â»Storylines about beloved fictional characters and actual members of a group of vampiric-stricken boys. This automatically raises the stakes of literally any story: characters must resist or succumb to temptation, hide their sexy magical secrets from the world or from each other, and fight the boredom of eternal life, all the while touring in a K-pop group or fighting Thanos. These can be incredibly cringe (“My Immortal”) or really really good. After all, what is Only lovers will stay alive if not a Jim Jarmusch AU of his own body of work? A lot of TV shows, if not most, would be improved if they were about vampires rather than people. In honor of Vampire Week at Vulture, here are a few of those shows.
This works largely because sexuality on Succession works similarly to sexuality in vampire stories: its energy is transposed into other signifiers and interactions. Each character is libidinous and horny in everything they do, but there is little to no kissing and almost no sex. When one character makes romantic overtures to another – think Tom in Shiv or Connor in Willa – it’s wrong; perverse, even. Control is paramount to a vampire and a Roy, and the obscene wealth of the family already allows them to operate with impunity under any deadly law and approach the rest of the world as their prey. Imagine the Roys as a mighty vampire clan with Logan as their father, not only getting rid of the world in your standard billionaire way, but also in a bloodsucker way. The ruthless is there. Logan is preparing Kendall to become a “killer” – and Kendall’s struggles with addiction – fit too well into that setup. Is Greg a new vampire? A walker of the day? Does Roman have an inverted setup in which his familiar Gerri is his domme? Does Tom slowly realize what he got married into?
Frasier and Niles are already stealthy creatures of the night. Disjointed aesthetes of time and stunned by their own existence in a time that is bad for them, the Crane brothers spend their weary nights at the opera or the theater, disconnected from the real humans of the real world. They inhabit a rainy and cloudy town (the better to go out in broad daylight, my dear), their wealth is vast and unexplained, and Niles lives in what appears to be a Gothic castle. Obviously, they were transformed by vampire queens Lilith and Maris, and Frasier uses his centuries of experience to give psychiatric advice on his radio show. I mean their dad is now a retired vampire hunter instead of an ex-cop, but that doesn’t mean Frasier and Niles are former rococo princes or whatever. We will go over this part again. Imagine the love of vampire Niles for innocent mortal Daphne Moon under these impossible circumstances. Imagine Frasier and Niles wearing 100 percent more capes.
The feats accomplished by Olivia Pope are basically only possible if she is a vampire. It feeds on “red wine” (blood) and is known to don a cloak. His dynamic with Fitz would be so much hotter. Cyrus may be a former evil vampire trying to maintain Draculan authority in the White House through the puppet presidency of a mere mortal. Mellie, meanwhile, comes from a long and illustrious line of DC area vampire hunters, and she’s upon them. Kerry Washington is already the best actor in the world; let’s put some fangs in there.
Self-explanatory. Just like the way in which I chose to interpret the work of Julia Ducournau Raw as a coming-of-age vampire film, the cannibalism is immediately less evil when it comes to vampires on humans. Plus, Hannibal and Will already have an extremely Dracula-and-Jonathan Harker relationship, which means it’s for sure sexual, babe.
Listen to me. The show’s draw is already to see this cursed gang transform over the years, doomed to feed each other in their private purgatory on Earth, the Paddy’s Pub. They never learn, they only act on identity and impulse, they cause harm to everyone they interact with, and there isn’t a soul among them. The Reynolds twins are the most overtly monstrous of the bunch, with Dennis often stumbling across genuinely creepy territory. Charlie is a bit wild and underground and half-rat, a self-proclaimed nightcrawler. Rickety Cricket is their Renfield. Lots of opportunities for new fun projects. This is how we continue the series for fifteen more seasons.
Vampires and hospitals go hand in hand like health insurance and fucking. Of course, there’s Carlisle Cullen, who uses his powers to give back to society as a medic, and Jeffrey Wright as the blood guy in Only lovers will stay alive. Thereby Grey’s Anatomy is a natural fit to be vamp-ified. (Note: I stopped watching after they killed my ****** boy in 2009, so my contact details might be a bit wrong here.) In the early seasons, much of the show follows doctors working long hours at night. ; even when it’s daytime, they barely come out. The main characters also die a lot (Seattle Grace / Mercy West has to be America’s most dangerous place to work) – that is, to the perilous way of life of vampires. They could nap in coffins instead of those little bunk bed rooms, and they could do other things in coffins as well. What if Izzy Stevens transformed Denny Duquette before his heart gave way? We would have been spared the plot of ghost sex. Instead, we would have a much better vampire-sexual intrigue. (Addison would obviously be the Vampire Queen – don’t get me started.)
What did The real housewives of New York such a tragicomic masterpiece has become a show about older women behaving in ways that we rarely get to see explored on television. They are tangles of contradictions: vicious but pitiful, amoral but fun, rich but totally devoid of purpose or role in the world. None of them is even a housewife; they live alone in their high-rise graves with only their familiars – toy dogs, helpers, Sonja Morgan’s unpaid interns – for company. But last season was downright depressing and not particularly fun or good; he would have benefited greatly from being a vampiress clan. Drug addiction storylines would be frightening metaphors instead of disappointing documentaries; Dorinda might have fangs; Luann’s cabaret is said to be a vampire nightlife hotspot. Imagine how high the stakes would be when they attracted unsuspecting men to their vacation homes.
I’m not looking Bridgerton. Few things strike me as less appealing than a Maroon 5 song played on the viola. But if Bridgerton was about vampire boning in the 19th century, I’d be his biggest fan.
Jessa transforms Shosh and doesn’t see how it was a “total pass”. Literally nothing else on the show changes.