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Entries in vampires (52)


The "Dark Shadows" Family

Entertainment Weekly has the first promotional photo for Tim Burton's Dark Shadows which I am duty bound to post because La Pfeiffer is given such prime placement, closest to the camera, even though the photo isn't as hi-res as one might wish to justify being excited about its "first" and "official-like" status.

From left to right
: Helena Bonham Carter (Dr Julia Hoffman, the psychiatrist...who also needs one), Chloe Moretz (Carolyn, a moody teen), Eva Green (Angelique, a witch who hates this family with a long history with Barnabas the vampire), Gulliver McGrath (David, a troubled boy who believes he sees the dead), Bella Heathcote (Victoria, the new governess), Depp (Barnabas the vampire... ancestor of this family), Ray Shirley (Mrs Johnson, the ancient maid), Jackie Earle Haley (Willie the shady groundskeeper), Jonny Lee Miller (Roger, David's father), and Michelle Pfeiffer (Elizabeth Collins Stoddard, the steely matriarch under seige by witches, family troubles, and the arrival of Barnabas).

I noticed some time ago while tinkering around backstage on the site, that I tend to post a lot about Tim Burton movies before they arrive only to be mildly (Sweeney Todd) or wildly disappointed (Eyesore in Wonderland) once they arrive. The wild haired auteur always finds at least one element to keep me interested... in this case his reunion with you-know-who who gave his filmography its very best performance (Catwoman!) give or taken Martin Landau in Ed Wood.




What'cha think of their looks?

I must say that Colleen Atwood's costuming -- always an Oscar threat -- is a little more sedate than usual which I count as a good thing. I especially like Pfeiffer's belt although I think giving Helena her Red Queen coloring all over again is probably not the best move.




My Missing Whedon: "Angel"

This morning I read all 3,040 words of "Angel by the Numbers" an essay by Dan Kerns, who started on Joss Whedon's vampire series Angel as Best Boy and worked his way up to Gaffer. I discovered the article through Whedonesque and I heartily recommend it. During the reading I consumed ½ a cup of coffee (I've successfully narrowed down my daily consumption to 2 cups!), ignored the urge to pee twice, and thought of 4 other television shows: my beloved Buffy the Vampire Slayer (which sits comfortable at #1 of my all time favorite tv shows), one-of-a-kind Firefly, fascinating but uneven Dollhouse, and the non-Whedon series Dexter because "Darla" (Julie Benz) was mentioned and I just watched the first three episodes of Season 5 and it's just not the same without her... (and maybe it's the kind of repetitive series that should've wrapped with Season 4?)

Buffy, Angel and Faith.

Before I move on to work on 4 pending articles, I feel the need to admit that I've only seen 19 episodes of Angel, despite seeing literally every other episode -- even the unaired ones including the aborted Buffy pilot where Willow was not Alyson Hannigan (!) -- of every other Joss Whedon series and all of his movie work, too! Hell, I've even seen that animated sci-fi bomb Titan A.E. (2000). I've never understood why I couldn't work up much interest in Angel as a series but perhaps it was the procedural stand-alone nature of the early episodes which are the bulk of what I saw. Maybe I was just angry that Buffy received only 1 spinoff and not 2 (At least twice a year I impatiently dream of a 4 season run of "Faith the F*cked Up Vampire Slayer"). Of the 19 episodes I remember only about 6: the one where Oz visits to give him the Ring of Amara, the one where Willow drops in to restore Angelus soul, and any of the times that Eliza Dushku stopped in for a little big city ass-kicking. You get the picture: Crossovers! I tried again 2 times in later seasons and could not understand what the hell was going on.


True Blood 4.9 "Let's Get Out of Here"

Run Alcides, Run. This episode finally gives you weres and shifters some room to move. Take advantage of it.

Joe Mangianello as Alcides.

"Let's Get Out of Here"
But, alas, Alcides isn't fast enough. Bill snatches Sookie from his arms to rescue her from certain death in the pre-titles opening. [Editor's note: Certain death in television series means that tense space in time between the cliffhanger of the previous episode and the first three minutes of the current episode]. But his pre-credits run is telling; this episode is speedy and we'll dash through this post, too.

The run for your life plotting makes Antonia's next move extra distressing. She magically slams all the doors shut on the Moon Goddess Emporium, like she's Carrie White at the prom. Her former friends are now prisoners and coerced coven members. 

Is she planning to wipe them out once she's done with the vamps? CLICK FOR FULL POST.

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Review: "Fright Night"

Colin Farrell has something of a wolf's reputation as a celebrity and it serves him well in Fright Night, a remake of the 1985 vampire comedy, while playing a shameless monster. Yet, for all his rabid dog violence as vampire Jerry -- "a terrible name for a vampire!" --  the most adorable moment in his performance is positively kittenish. While stepping around a beam of sunlight during one action setpiece he hisses at it with instinctual annoyance. You can't scare sunlight away, dumb Jerry! It's a silly bit of actorly business but the new Fright Night soars whenever the cast or director are having a bloody good time.  Good times at the movies are as infectious as vampirism, though thankfully more common.


I'm eager to see the original now that I've seen this. (Yes, it's true. I never have)


True Blood 4.7 "Cold Grey Light of Dawn"

She hurts him to save him. Unless they're silvered all the vampires will walk into the sun.With Sunday night's episode, fang-bangers are now past the hump. This season's witchy storyline is now on its way to resolving itself. The halfway mark also suggests that from here on out we might have droppings that set things up for Season Five. 

Cold Grey Light of Dawn
We begin where we left off with Marnie (Fiona Shaw) wreaking havoc. Controlling vamps, as it turns out, seems to be getting easier and easier for her. With a whisper of "Resurrection" her former rapist Luis (Peter Macdissi) stakes himself with Bill's silver weapon after a scuffle. One vampire down, all the rest of them to go. Marnie wants them all to meet the true death. After the burst of action that opens the show (Tara also narrowly avoids death at Pam's rotting hands), things slow down considerably. We stop in on unhappy couples (Alcides and Debbie) still shaky couples (Sam &) and new ones (Sookie & Eric). Meanwhile, Tara dumps her lover and signs up with Marnie's vampire slaughter plans, Jason tries to avoid Hoyt "I'd rather be cooking then talking anyhow" and realizes (again) that he's hot for Jessica. Most oddly, Bill tells Jessica the Antonia story which seems like a really strange storytelling move. We've heard and seen this storyline via Marnie and Luis so many times now it felt like a "previously on..." in the middle of the show.

But any scene with Deborah Ann Woll's Jessica gives us great visuals. Such a screen face [spoiler image after the jump]

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True Blood: "Me and the Devil" & "I Wish I Was the Moon"

So get this. I offered up True Blood reviewing duties to the entire Team TFE last week when I was out of town and noone bit. What's up with that? No fangbangers in this house? Which means we've got two episodes to chat up today. Ratings for True Blood are strong this season and deservedly so. We're only halfway in but -- at this point -- it's much stronger than Season 3. It also isn't as repetitive as Season 2. We definitely approve thus far.

"Drink now."

4.5 "Me and the Devil"
Here we have a perfectly titled episode as everyone is battling their personal demons (Tara and Eric specifically) or actual demons as the case might be (Arlene & Terry who hold an exorcism of sorts in their house, still worrying about their spooky baby).

This is also another terrific rangey episode, with fast pacing, surprises and character bits. It kicks off with a violent family squabble (Tommy vs. his parents), moves expertly through tense comedy including the aforementioned exorcism, Bill glamouring his latest fling to "scream" and run whenever she sees him, and Lafayette's post Pam-cursing reaction to Marnie's 'who? me?' act.

That's some catchy shit for your headstone!"

Despite the abundance of actual plot there's graceful tightening of story threads as Sookie's finally braids to Marnie's when the women meet under the false pretenses of a reading. It doesn't turn out how Sookie or Marnie OR the audience expect.

Best Sookie Moment

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True Blood 4.3 "If You Love Me..."

Another Monday, another day spent thinking about last night's True Blood eppy. My favorite B story thread this season is definitely Arlene's devil baby so we must begin with my single favorite shot in the episode. The little monster slobbering all over Jessica's Capital C Creepy family heirloom doll.

He's so cute. Don't you just want to procure victims for him and grind them up into mushy baby food?

"If You Love Me, Why Am I Dyin'?" is a solid episode but can't help but feel like a smidgeon of a comedown after last week's instant classic in which Eric was robbed of his memories by the new witch coven led by Marnie (Fiona Shaw). This week's episode provided several fun moments and some promising future-implications but the plot mostly was little beats in which characters were trying to decide how to deal with the major events of the previous episode: where should Sooki hide Eric? is Tara getting sucked back in for good? will Lafayette's fear of Eric continue to get everyone in trouble? who is Pam going to eat if she gets too angry? exactly what is Marnie channeling?

Cheers: True Blood is giving both Lafayette and Tara more subtle emotions to play this season.

The major B story his season appears to be Jason's stud captivity in that redneck nightmare village (they mean to use him to sire new werepups). Someone rescue him!

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