Monday, July 9, 2012

Face Off: What Vampire Legend Should Not Be Messed With?

Urban Fantasy Vampires have evolved a lot over the years, as the old horror stories and myths they were based on slowly changed to be the genre we now know and love. But along the way, a lot has changed - that’s not necessarily a bad thing, after all changing them from evil villainous monsters to potential protagonists is a major leap in and of itself.

Still, there are some changes from the roots that we’re not pleased with, which always make us frown whenever they appear. There are some parts of the vampire legend that shouldn’t be messed with: so this week’s Face Off, which change of the supernatural legend bothers you the most?

Vampires in Daylight
I don’t mind how you do it - maybe they have to sleep during the day, maybe they burn during the day, maybe they’re weakened by daylight, maybe their eyes are sensitive to bright lights - whatever the reason, vampires should not be sunbathing. Vampires and sunlight shouldn’t mix, this is one of my inviolate rules. At some point, a vampire should stare up at the day star with fear. Enough of these vampires dancing around at noon!

And, above all, they should not sparkle. No, no they should not.

Vampires Eating Food.
I can’t even say why this bothers me so much, but it does. I can handle a vampire drinking (to a degree) but the idea of a vampire getting a Big Mac and Fries just kind of ruins the whole mystique. Quite apart from the whole issue of what goes in must come out at some point - c’mon, can you maintain the supernatural mystery imagining a vampire buying toilet paper?

Eating is just too human, too mundane, too mortal for my undead lords of the night to be doing

Self Loathing Vampire
The self loathing vampire has become extremely commonplace in urban fantasy.  From Louis de Pointe du Lac, to Edward Cullen, to Bill Compton, they are absolutely everywhere.  They spend their time moping in a constant depressive state while elevating everything human.  The worst part about it is that these vampires are boring and make me want to send them into some sort of group therapy.  

Vampires and Teenage Girls
Paranormal YA  has made it quite commonplace to have ancient vampires dating teenage girls.  In most cases, these young women are absolutely vapid and yet they are continually held up a special little snowflakes that these ancient vampires cannot live without. What do these two have in common?  It is always framed that the only difference worth talking about is the fact that they are two different species.   What I want to know is why no one is talking about the elephant in the room. What could a centuries vampire possibly have to discuss with a teenage girl beyond the time of day or the weather? If anything, these relationships read closer to paedophilia than romance.

Vampires Drinking Blood.
This is the defining trait of a vampire. If a vampire doesn’t drink blood, then it is not a vampire. It’s just a long lived guy who needs some sunscreen. Admittedly, this one is very very rare, but I can see it happening - I want my vampires fanged and going for the throat, thank you. Yes, and I want them to have fangs. Yes, I know, other legends have vampries with sharp tongues or even elongated thumb-nails - but my vamps need fangs!

So what about you, readers? What Vampire Legend do you think we shouldn’t mess with? Which change is a leap too far? What is your vampire canon that the authors shouldn’t mess with?