#MeToo and Vampires
Here is some editorializing, courtesy of Julie Pleck, who was showrunner on THE VAMPIRE DIARIES, commenting on the impropriety of vampire romance in the current atmosphere of the #MeToo movement. Said Pleck: “…you could look at it back through the lens of say the #MeToo movement and object to what may be a little bit of a glorification of a rape culture, but what we were working with at the time was a gothic romance with a fine line–a very fine line–separating it…I used to get in arguments about it being a gothic romance and not wanting to censor the sexuality of the characters, even if it felt a little questionable at times, like specifically Damon and Caroline in the first couple of episodes. Because that’s what vampires represented, and that’s what vampires were. And the culture has just shifted enough that you’d have to think twice before you dove in that boldly now, I think.”
No. You’d have to think twice if you were to present such a situation and, as she said, “glorify” it. That’s the problem with trying to turn vampires into romantic leads. I’ve reported before on TWILIGHT being put under the microscope by psychologists, and how it actually depicts a highly dysfunctional, unhealthy, and toxic relationship. It simply doesn’t work to try to make your vampire a teen heartthrob. Vampires are PREDATORS. They are DANGEROUS. Barnabas Collins, the one who started it all, the first vampire to be humanized and depicted in a wholly sympathetic light, worked as a character because the writers never gelded him, never took away the danger. He suffered guilt, yes. He hated his nature, fought against it. That’s completely different than portraying your vampire as sweet, as perfect boyfriend material, as a Ken doll with pointy teeth who just happens to drink blood. It’s no different than trying to depict a serial rapist as a romantic lead. It’s a dangerous message to be sending to young people. And if the #MeToo movement manages to put an end to it as a side consequence of its primary goal, I say it’s about damn time.
#Time’sUp for “romantic” vampires.
WAYNE MILLER is the owner and creative director of EVIL CHEEZ PRODUCTIONS (www.evilcheezproductions.blogspot.com, www.facebook.com/evilcheezproductions), specializing in theatrical performances and haunted attractions. He has written, produced and directed (and occasionally acted in) over a dozen plays, most of them in the Horror and Crime genres. His first novel, THE CONFESSIONS OF SAINT CHRISTOPHER: WEREWOLF, is available for purchase here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/734763
MORTUI VELOCES SUNT!