Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Why are Vampires so Delicious?

        For as long as I can remember I have been fascinated by the idea of the vampire and according to popular culture I am not alone, not even a little bit. For me the fascination began when I was small and my mom let me watch the 1931 adaption of Dracula starring Bela Lugosi before Halloween. Then some time when I was in my tweens I remember watching Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 adaptation Bram Stoker's Dracula starring Anthony Hopkins as Dracula, also coincidentally just before Halloween.
Bela Lugosi as Dracula, 1931
        Then when I was in grade eight that book that we have all loved to hate, Twilight came out and I was entranced. I was besotted with Edward long before he ever sparkled, these days I think the fact that he snuck in Bella's room just to watch her sleep and then left before she awoke is a tad on the seriously creepy side but back then it merely represented how powerful his love for her was. When I read Twilight it felt like an epic love story, the man had to restrain his inner animal to be with the woman he loved. However, in hindsight I must admit every subsequent book in the series got a little bit worse and the movies were pretty bland, though the soundtracks were amazing.


        Twilight may have been the first vampirey book that I fell for, it certainly was not the best. Sometime after my falling out with twilight I chose Interview With a Vampire by Anne Rice for a Grade 10 book report and fell in love with vampire literature all over again. Not only did Rice's book encapsulate the romanticism of the vampire but it also emphasized the deeper, darker side of the vampire who hates his murderous self. Shortly thereafter a new t.v. series came out, The Vampire Diaries and I was poofskies all over again for the story time vamp. Though I have long since fallen out of touch with The Vampire Diaries the romanticism of the vampire has never really left.

       The sheer amount of material that came out about the vampire during my teen years tells me that I am certainly not alone in my love of the vampire, but the question still remains, why? I think that perhaps it is because of the fact that in today's day and age most of our society feels that everything can be scientifically explained. Or perhaps its an internal revolt against the centuries in which the state was tied to the church. Now that our Western world is secular we are able to explore those aspects which are ancestors very well could have been burned for researching. Then there's that age old fascination with forbidden love, and then again maybe its the romanticism of the night or perhaps more truthfully its because deep down inside us we still believe that there are monsters lurking in the shadows and the best way to address this as adults is to bury ourself in "fiction" about vampires.


       Whatever the reason maybe it is undeniable that the vampire holds a certain allure in our society. The creature that can't be tamed, leads to forbidden romance and fills the shadows with a certain mystery. What is your relationship with the vampire? Love it or Leave it?

Some Good Vampy Books:
Dracula by: Bram Stoker
Interview with the Vampire by: Anne Rice
Angel of Death by: Karen Dales
(Angel of Death is probably one of my all-time favourites definitely worth a read!)
Shadow of Death (The Sequel to Angel of Death) by: Karen Dales
Twilight by: Stephanie Meyer (If you're about 13 its a good book)

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