Vampire Mania - Answering the question posed by Manthy
Why is there such a sudden bombardment of Vampire movies & TV shows?
Question asked by Manthy.
I loved seeing this question as I have wondered the same thing myself. Personally, I love a good vampire write and think perhaps the reasons I love them may be the self same reasons they are so popular currently. First, there is the obvious reason that vampires, by definition, exceed the human condition and are not bound by the downers of mortality.
As humans, we are destined to part from this plane of existence at some point on our journey though time and space. You may call it death, passing, ceasing to be, taking a dirt nap, sleeping through time, recycling your soul or any of many, many other names but the bottom line is that you will no longer be you as you know yourself right now nor will you be here. Contained in the concept of “death’ are three main points to focus on. Many other sub concepts are contained within the enormity of the idea of death but let us not digress.
First, “death” is seen as a stopping point in the linear progression of life on this plane of existence. There is no more tomorrow, no more fun to be had, no more pain, no more ice cream, no more romance, no more anything that was part of what a soul has known since it entered this plane. For most of us, that is all we have ever known… what has happened to us, what we have felt, thought and experienced since the day our journey here began. The idea of all of that simply ending and being replaced by we don’t know what is more than a little unnerving.
At this point, many of you will be thinking of religious teachings that tell of what will happen upon leaving this plane. I too think of such teachings and believe in them. However, we are human and while we may have faith, we are still weak. We still wonder. We still fear. We still want, long, need something concrete to cling to. Faith is by it’s very nature the opposite of concrete, I.e. an abstract.
I contend that this one lone concept is the foundation of the popularity of the rash of vampire movies, TV shows, plays, books, poems and all around vampy mania. Vampires have a get out of jail free card when it comes to the whole idea of death in most vampire lore lexicons. Even the ones that do encompass the idea of death for the immortal vampire do so in such a way as to make it seem either so far off as to be a non issue compared to a human lifespan or such a violent act as to be avoided by the infinitely stronger than human dark creature.
Secondly, the next sub concept contained within the idea of death is one that is somewhat subtle in nature but I feel valid none the less. It is the idea of halting change. Halting the change of one’s process of ageing, the onslaught of wrinkles, decay, lagging strength and health and possibly a decline in one’s mental faculties. Our American culture has glorified youth and in doing so made ageing seem like a dirty process to be avoided at all cost. Look at the multi billion dollar business that makes and markets products to mask the signs of aging if you do not agree. When one is young and strong the idea of turning old seems so far off, but everyday it gets closer. One day we all wake up, look in the mirror and ask ourselves, who are you? What happened to that person I used to see every morning.
This idea of the constant change our bodies go through is paramount to the appeal of the vampire. Vampires do not age in most vampire lexicons. To the best of my knowledge, the only one that shows vampires aging is J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series, which is by the way one of my personal favorites. In her lexicon of vampire lore after about seven hundred years or so the vampire ages and dies. To those of use who tend to live less than one hundred years the idea of being young, strong, good looking and in total control of our minds for so long is appealing to say the least.
Third, and last among the points to be made on the subject of avoiding death, is the thought that when we leave this plane of existence we can no longer affect anything here. We can no longer help our families and friends. We can’t wipe away a child’s tears. We can’t smile at a friend in need. We can’t see the next step a loved one will take in their own journey through this craziness we call life. We become a non entity with zero say in what happens.
Perhaps we will leave many things undone. The chance to finish that story will be gone. The few more hours we needed to get the garden just right will be forever lost. The tiny bit more love needed for that child to finally stand on his or her own will not be given by the one who leaves. I think the thought of getting the chance to “finish” what we humans inevitably leave undone is a large part of the appeal of the myth of the vampire. Such creatures may change from being mortal into something seen as much more or much less than human depending on how you look at it, but, they get a chance to hang out and affect the lives of those they wish to affect. They get to finish their stories. They get to keep learning. They get to have another romance, to share, to love and feel pain, to go on experiencing and affecting whatever or whomever they chose.
Every day our human world becomes a little more scary and uncertain. If you watch the news, read the papers, bounce about the internet or just plain interact with others, chances are you have some important concerns about the fate of humanity. Wars pop up daily and go on for undetermined amounts of time with countless souls being claimed on both sides. Violent crime is on the rise. Unemployment and failing economies are making it harder for many people to simply feed the mouths they are responsible for and keep a roof over the heads they care for. The ever changing and increasingly intense weather patterns of our mother earth are further wreaking havoc on humanities tenuous clasp on what we call safe and normal.
How often in tales of vampires do you hear of such things having a life ending effect on the immortal in question? Chances are you will have to answer this question with a “not very”. I can think of one example in one of Brian Lumley’s tales of the Necroscope where a vampire died, indirectly, as a result of war. He was in his manor when a bombing occurred and became trapped during a fire. He was pinned under enormous weight that even he could not move. In the end, he had a human kill him so that he would not burn to death. Off the top of my head this is the only instance I can think of where a vampire was so effected by the concerns we humans are so plagued with.
In the human world disease is a major threat. Vampires do not get HIV, Hepatitis, or even Ebola. In the human world hunger is a terrible thing. A vampire is seldom hungry unless he or she chooses to be so. There are many, many walking happy meals throughout the planet and said vampire only has to pick one and bite as it were. In the human world, sadly, economic issues, such as the lack of enough money is an issue to be dealt with. In most vampire tales the being in question has been around long enough to acquire a great deal of wealth. In the few instances where one has not, he or she can simply lift whatever money, jewelry and other valuables are upon his or her next meal. In the typical human existence we are often at a loss for enough time to do everything we want to do. Vampires have centuries upon end to reach their goals.
In conclusion, considering what has flowed upon my keys, I am more enamored now with the concept of vampires than I was before. What a lifting of the burdens of mortality it would be in some ways. Would it come with a price? Of course it would, everything does. Would said price be worth paying? I don’t know. Somehow I think probably not.
The Esteemed Hubber Blake4d has an interview with a real vampire hub in which the interviewed vampire stated that any human wishing to become a vampire is a stupid human, if I remember correctly. I think he must be right. Yes, becoming a vampire might allow one to live forever. But what good is it to watch all of your friends and family die before you? What good is it to watch the world you knew change into a culture so far removed from your own as to seem alien? While you might have the time to finish so many things do you really believe that you would run out of new projects to start? And what if you did? How boring would existence be if you had done everything there was to do, learned all that there was to learn? How appealing would the idea of a new romance be if you knew you would have to watch that person wither and die while you remained the same? Worse, what if you changed that person into what you were? Would they remain the soul you feel in love with? How could you ever know?
Note: Check the date here. Perhaps it is telling that I write of one who may live forever on the day so many died nine years ago. I can not be sure one is related to the other, then again I can’t be sure they are not.
My Fave. Vamp write I have done though not the highest scoring for sure
- Innocence The Vampire
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Blake's Interview with a Real Vampire
- Dark Art - An Interview with a Modern American Vampire on being Human, Immortal, and the Practice of
It is not the darkest or coldest of evenings, in fact it is springtime and the Arizona desert is just perfect for this time of year. There is a new moon, and a slight drizzle is cooling the air nicely, it is...
Vampire writes I have done
- Vampire - Blood Slave Part Two
~~~~~~ Link to part one: http://hubpages.com/hub/Vampire-Blood-Slave-Part-One ~~~~~~ A ringing hum echoes pain with each beat of my heart. I feel the hurt. My brain wont start. The fog...
- Vampire Blood Slave - Part One
The glaring light hurts my eyes like a blinding sunrise. The screaming buzz of the halogen bulb is like fingernails raking down a chalkboard in my mind. ~ Where am I? What is this...
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