The vampire invasion

By Jacqueline Smith

To view TimeOut's full PDFs of the 'Twilight' bloodlines, click on the links to the right of the article. Graphic / NZ Herald
To view TimeOut's full PDFs of the 'Twilight' bloodlines, click on the links to the right of the article. Graphic / NZ Herald

Beware the covens of bloodsuckers who are flooding our screens, big and small, this week. Or should we should be saying beware of their fans?

Two years ago Robert Pattinson was cast as a vampire named Edward Cullen who glistened under the sun in a film remake of Stephenie Meyer's hugely popular novel, Twilight. He had red eyes, copperish hair and statue-cold skin, and he stole the heart of Bella Swan, played by Kristen Stewart, as well as females around the world.

When the novel's sequel, New Moon, was released as a film at the end of last year, fans fell in love with the ripped werewolf Jacob played by Taylor Lautner. Fantasy fever had set in. Girls were either team dreamy vampire or burly wolf.

Maybe the lusty cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (both the film and movie) started the craze in the 1990s, but as of 2008, vampires were officially no longer associated with hook-nosed, pasty castle dwellers who vanted to suck your blood.

Those who wanted their vampires and wolfies to have a little more grit then turned to HBO television series True Blood, which premiered in New Zealand in March 2009.

The series is also based on a set of novels The Southern Vampire Mysteries, first published in 2001, and follows blond Southern girl Sookie Stackhouse, played by New Zealand-born Anna Paquin. She falls in love with a vampire Bill Compton, played by Stephen Moyer, who just happens to be her fiance in real life, too.

The third series starts on Prime this week and opens with Bill's disappearance. Unlike Twilight, which is really rather prudish, this series has a dark, twisted plot smattered with near-nudity.

For those who prefer their vampires less raunchy and in an earlier weekly television slot, there's The Vampire Diaries, from the writer of Dawson's Creek, which premieres this week on TV2.

It's also adapted from a trilogy of books by the same name, first printed in 1991 - the actors make no secret of the fact it was turned into a television series on the back of the success of The Twilight Saga.

The Vampire Diaries follow a nice girl named Elena who falls for Stefan, the new guy at school, who just happens to be a thirsty vampire.

Also coming up on Prime later this year is Being Human, a BBC drama which follows a vampire, a werewolf, and - here's the difference - a ghost.

LOWDOWN

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse
What: Third part of the film series.
When: Opens in cinemas on Thursday, July 1.

True Blood
What: Third season of the vampire series starring Anna Paquin. When and where: Wednesday, 9.30pm on Prime.

The Vampire Diaries
What: New television series.
When and where: Tonight, 8.30pm, TV2.

- NZ Herald

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