RieView: What We Do in the Shadows

Bats flying on white background

Having had a chance now to watch both the original movie and both seasons of What We Do in the Shadows, I am well and truly smitten.

The mockumentary genre can be very hit or miss. Sometimes, it works; sometimes, it doesn’t. I would say, in this case, it is about 90% spot on. There are a few scenes that make you wonder about the size of the film crew that must be involved…but it generally works.

Looking first at the movie, the geniuses behind the “script” (according to the IMDB site, it was mostly improvised around an outline), Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi also directed and starred in the film, along with Jonny Brugh. The three vampires walk the film crew through a few days nights in their undead lives. It’s a fun romp, but I think the dynamics of the household work better in the TV series because of the introduction of a female perspective.

The introduction of Nadja into the house gives a lot of new possibilities to the action. The relationship between Nadja and Lazlo is really interesting to watch. Natasia Demetriou is delightful, and I always love Matt Berry. I had never seen Kayvan Novak before, but I like his style. I think having the familiar be part of the household is also an interesting twist.

The call-back to the movie in the episode “The Trial” is also nice, having the original vampires be part of the Vampire Council, as well as some other familiar faces, was a lot of fun.

Part of the charm of the franchise is the discovery, so I don’t want to give away too many details. I would definitely recommend both the movie and the series, and give the whole franchise 4 Bats.



GUEST POST: Crymsyn Hart — Forest of Bones

Today, we have a guest post from author Crymsyn Hart about some of the influences behind her novel Forest of Bones. Having edited this book, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.


Forest of Bones Inspiration

I love vampires in all shapes and forms. I’ve written a lot of vampires over the years and lost count on how many books I’ve read about the undead. I know how hard it is to create a vampire that is just a little bit different than the norm.

My vampires live in a world of magic. However, if they were human and turned into a vampire, they lose their magical ability. Sun and silver still hurt them, but they are different in the way they were created. Forest of Bones is a story about stopping the overall bad guy from destroying the world, but it’s also an origin story. Vampires are different in how the species were created. Let’s just say it involves a little bit of magic, a spell gone wrong, and the secret ingredient–which you have to find by reading the book. LOL.

Forest of Bones was born out of a couple of things. I had this dream about the main character, Kaya, while she was sitting in a tree overlooking this camp. They were the enemy and she was getting intel on them. I wrote that scene and I wanted to make her different. The vampire aspect of the book was more of a “Hey, what would happen if I threw vampires into the mix?” idea.

I hadn’t written a total fantasy novel with vampires so I wanted to figure out how that could work. From there, I thought it would be interesting to make Kaya the only hybrid of her kind. Of course, I had to discover how vampires and Kaya being a hybrid worked into the story. Throwing vampires into a world of magic, I learned there had to be consequences to how the magic worked on the vampires and the environment.

Forest of Bones is a great world I’d love to find more stories in. It’s not just about Kaya and her story. What happens after? Or what happens before her story? The vampire race is thousands of years old, so what other creatures or tragedies happened? I’ll guess I’ll have to find out.

Crymsyn Bio:

Crymsyn Hart is a multi-genre author of Horror, Urban Fantasy, and Romance. Her years of experience at Boston’s oldest psychic salon doing readings and her encounters with the supernatural have inspired many novels. She’s a lover of all things dark and goth. Vampires, grim reapers, and other paranormal creatures tend to end up in her books no matter how hard she tries to keep them away.

She currently resides in Charlotte, NC with her hubby and their two dogs. By day she is conquering the world of Commercial Insurance, but by night she listens to the voices in her head telling her which rabbit hole to go down to find the perfect plot bunny.

Find out more about Crymsyn:

Website http://crymsynhart.com,

Twitter: @Crymsynhart

Facebook https://facebook.com/crymsynhart

Amazon http://amazon.com/Crymsyn-Hart/e/B002BMJ1Z0.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/crymsynhart

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/crymsyn_hart/



Things that Go Bump in the Night…

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Everyone is afraid of something…whether it is walking alone down a dark street at midnight or losing one’s job. These fears are real and tangible. They are depressing and often out of our control.

Perhaps this is why we gravitate to horror so readily. The monsters in a novel or movie aren’t usually real. Pennywise is not going to pop out of the sewer. Dracula is not going to swoop into your bedroom window. But the thought of these iconic creatures in our lives gives us a scare we can control–we can put It down, or pause Dracula if it gets to be too much. Campfire stories fade with the light of dawn.

When I was a kid, I would rush home for Dark Shadows. I was so in love with Barnabas Collins. Of course, fifteen years later when I watched it again in reruns, it was so cheesy and badly filmed I just laughed, but it was one of my first introductions to the horror genre. (And I still think Jonathan Frid was amazing–though Barnabas was almost his only role.) Did the camp of the series impress itself in my head even then? Is that why I like to write humorous horror most of all? Maybe.

Dracula Has Risen from the Grave was the first time I remember feeling all tingly over a vampire. He was so sexy and masculine…to the ten-year-old watching it on the couch at a friend’s house. There is just something so alluring about a cape…

So, horror can affect us in many ways. It isn’t always terrifying. It can be compelling, or attractive as well. And, while vampires and werewolves might be things of legend, I find some of the scariest horror deals with people who could live next door.

For example, Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes trilogy. Especially the first book. This story could happen tomorrow down the road. Similar stories have happened. And the only monster here is just an evil man.

This flavor of horror is almost too real. We can dismiss the supernatural as unlikely to interfere with our lives. We can’t dismiss the evil that men do so easily…

What scares you? Do you like monsters better or the wickedness of the world? What do you recommend watching or reading if someone likes to be scared in a way they can control?

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