This Netflix Original reboot of the 1996 Robert Rodriguez vampire flick is a gem. Earlier this year Netflix began releasing episodes of a stylish new installment to Rodriguez’s vampire universe weekly on Netflix UK. This horror series is neither a prequel nor a sequel, it is a straight rehash. The characters and plot are the same as the original movie. The one main difference however is that scenes which unfold at the beginning of the first movie are stretched over a 45 minute episode. However, I found that this added to the show as rather than only developing the back story of the characters, instead we know nothing about the Gecko brothers and know most of the two police officers trying to bring down the main characters. This meant that the shootout was particularly tense as you almost root for the enemies of the main characters. For once in a TV show the enemy of our main characters are good guys.
Throughout the shootout we were left wondering what exactly is wrong with Zane Holtz’ character, Richie Gecko. This character is haunted by hallucinations of vampires, demons and various other creatures taunting and goading him, driving him insane. His ‘ brother and fellow bank robber is forced to try to force him into line, constantly trying to prevent him from compromising them with his lunatic antics.
As the series unfolds we learn more about the Gecko brothers and why they are on the run, we are introduced to new and interesting storylines including an RV driving vampire hunter who is dragging his grandchildren along on an adventure which at first appears to be due to a break down ,until the kids realise that there is more to this world than first meets the eye. Every episode is visually amazing, not to mention incredibly well shot. Each installment looks like a movie with a budget just as big. Long conversations between characters and flashbacks are punctuated with uncomfortable and creepy moments where Zane Holtz puts on a genuinely unpredictable and terrifying performance. This role was originally filled by Quentin Tarantino, Zane Holtz does the original justice with a performance that is both unnerving and uncomfortable. He appears genuinely unpredictable and dangerous. When the vampires appear they are truly terrifying, they are evil, frightening and disgusting. When they attack they appear almost like a leech, they are a creature not a person with superpowers. The vampires in this series are the perfect antidote to the attractive, moral vampires that Hollywood try to force on us. Luckily this show reached the US version of Netflix earlier this month. Hopefully it will be well received by the greater audience and will warrant Netflix releasing more episodes.