A few years ago, right around the time that Buffy was going off the air, I thought it might be the perfect time to go out and start talking to people about creating a fresh Vampire series. I pitched some comic ideas, and was told by multiple people, in no uncertain terms , that vampires were “over”, and that it was going to be a while before anyone would want to see those bloodsuckers again. Ultimately those predictions turned out to be spectacularly wrong. And now we’re up to our necks in bloodsuckers, to the point where people are really tired of them this time.
The saddest thing is that it runs the risk of making vampires not scary. I will be glad when the glut is over. Maybe they will be scary again. I like my creatures of the night a little nocturnal. My next big novel was going to have a vampire. Now, I’m probably not. They are everywhere, they’re like cockroaches.
But I think we’ll never get tired of Vampires. That’s because, from the tips of their pointy fangs, to the bottoms of their cold dead hearts, vampires are fantastic metaphor for all the complexities of sex. Using an undead monster to describe the more out of control and frightening parts of the sexual urge is, it turns out, a lot easier when you don’t have talk about the actual sex part.
Blood, lust, death, desire, violation, need, chastity, innocence, corruption, ruin—vampires wrap all that up in a white-skinned little package with an immortality bow on top. And like sex itself, our Vampire fetishes change to reflect our culture. For a few years they’re half-demon monsters, cloaked in darkness, now they sparkle with the burning heat of chaste desires.
I can hardly wait for them to be “over” again.