Sunday, October 5, 2008

Vampire TV Show Rundown!

I did something similar to this about 5 or 6 months ago, but I thought I'd update it to accommodate the newest addition to the Vamp TV family. They go in chronological order, according to when they aired. So here goes my brief rundown for each show. I've also added a "Girl Power Rating" because I think it's interesting.

1. Forever Knight
When it was on: 3 seasons, from 1992-1996
What it is: Forever Knight follows an 800-year-old vampire named Nick Knight, the original vampire detective, along with an ME who knows his secret (Natalie) and Nick's human partner, Detective Schanke.
Why I love it: I giggle every time they say Schanke's name (pronounced like "Skanky") and the characters are all well-developed.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Give it some humor. Schanke provides the only comic relief.
Girl Power Rating: 4/5 Natalie speaks her mind; Nick's fellow vampire Jeannette really comes into her own during the second season, but Nat tends to end up in "save me, Nick!" situations. Still, overall very good for early '90s (pre-Buffy, no less!)

2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
When it was on: 7 seasons, from 1997-2003
What it is: Buffy Summers is the Chosen One, a girl with superpowers that allow (and require) her to slay the vampires and demons and crawling-from-hell things that invade her California town of Sunnydale. She's backed up by a rotating cast of sidekicks, including witches, a werewolf, vampires, and a British guy.
Why I love it: Amazing storylines, kick-butt action, and characters you really grow to fall in love with.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Have at least one love story that ended well. Joss Whedon (who is amazing) loves to take the characters we grow to love and kill them violently and tragically.
Girl Power Rating: 5/5 Buffy kicks some major bad-guy butt; basically, all of the women are smart and resourceful and never give up to wait for THE MEN to save them

3. Angel
When it was on: 5 seasons, from 1999-2004
What it is: Angel, Buffy's vampire-with-a-soul ex-boyfriend, moves to LA and gets his own show. More demon-fighting, world-saving action, with trademark Whedon humor and tragic endings.
Why I love it: More great characters (another British guy!) including several Buffy crossovers, and a demon named Lorne who runs a karaoke bar.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Not kill off half of the main characters in Season 5. What's up with that??
Girl Power Rating: 5/5 Cordelia, better known as the airhead rich-girl snob from Buffy, really comes into her own after inheriting psychic visions; Fred, who in a "typical" show would be vampire chow in the first ten minutes, is another resourceful, intelligent woman who can, in her own way, be a formidable evil-fighter.

4. Blood Ties
When it was on: 22 episodes (either 1 or 2 seasons, depending on who you talk to) from 2007-2008
What it is: Vicki Nelson, private investigator, teams up with (exceedingly hot) vampire Henry Fitzroy to fight the powers of darkness.
Why I love it: Kyle Schmid (who plays Henry), some great storylines, Kyle Schmid, lots of humor, Kyle Shcmid, great chemistry between the characters...Kyle Schmid. Two random facts: Christina Cox (who plays Vicki) is left-handed (like me!) and the series is based on a series of fantastic books by Tanya Huff.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Make it more consistent. The characters always had great chemistry, but the individual storylines were either great or awful.
Girl Power Rating: 4.5/5 Vicki is always kick-butt fantastic, but Coreen tends to end up as a hostage. Of course, that could be because Coreen tends to go looking for trouble; and when she's not getting captured, she makes some valuable research contributions.

5. Moonlight
When it was on: One season, 16 episodes, from 2007-2008
What it is: Vampire PI Mick St. John solves crimes, with the help of his undead buddy Josef and Mick's possible-girlfriend Beth.
Why I love it: The best soundtrack I've EVER heard in a TV show, sizzling chemistry between the characters, and a love story that played like an extended romantic comedy (right up to the happy ending).
If I could change one thing, I'd: Give Beth some fight scenes. Come on, people, this is the twenty-first century! Girls can slay the dragons too (Just ask Buffy. Or Willow, or Cordy, or Fred, or Vicki, or...)
Girl Power Rating: 3/5 (see above)

6. True Blood
When it was on: New show! It began fall '08; this week is episode 5.
What it is: In a world where vampires have revealed themselves to the public, the show is set in the small Louisiana town of Bon Temps. It follows telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse, vampires Bill and Eric, and (SPOILER ALERT!) shapeshifters and other supernatural creatures (who haven't come out into the open).
Why I love it: Also based on a book series, this time from Charlaine Harris; they're staying very faithful to the book--always a plus--as well as developing a lot of the minor characters. I particularly like what they've done with Sookie's friend Tara.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Re-do the vampires' fangs; they're on the wrong teeth, too close together. They all look like Bunnicula. If I could change two things, I'd put it on a network other than HBO (one that would not allow the softcore porn scenes).
Girl Power score: 4/5 Sookie fights; Tara is a wonderfully dynamic character. At the same time, women are sometimes objectified and the season arc follows the unsolved murder of several women who were sleeping with vampires.

There was also Dark Shadows, which was way before my time, and another show from the nineties called Kolchak; I've never seen those and so will reserve judgment.


Vickie said...

Don't forget The Kindred. It now shows on SciFi channel every once in a while as an all day marathon.

Monica said...

I'll have to track it down. Thanks!