First there was high fantasy… elves, dwarves, orcs, goblins, and the race of man… people saw it and were pleased. (1970s)
Then came the aliens craze, starting with horror, and moving into action and urban fantasy. People saw it and were pleased… (Late 70s-1980s)
Then came angels. They were sensitive, romantic, and powerful. Drama lovers saw it and were pleased. (1990s)
Now… well…

So as many of my followers know, I’ve been trying to find a new fantasy to read. My writing has regrettably dried up a little recently, so I’ve tried to turn my attention back to reading and hopefully give the creativity engine a little time to refuel. So I decided to trek out to Barnes and Noble with a gift card that I’d received for Christmas. I spent quite a while trying to figure out what to do with it as I don’t do much reading (admittedly), but I was determined to find something.

Well I failed…

Let me preface the next part by saying that I can’t STAND the vampire craze. I don’t even really consider it a vampire craze per se, especially given some of the more recent… euphemistically phrased ‘interpretations’ of that fantasy species.

In the beginning, I thought that the entry into dark fantasy would be a good thing. The angel craze of the 90s was all but dead, the marvel explosion was in its infancy, and everyone was looking for a new focus. Vampires were cool, and at first, the Vampire craze lived up to that. The Underworld series was enduring, Buffy the Vampire Slayer was awesome (until the last few seasons), and Blade is to date one of the best action movies I’ve ever seen… but then sh^t got weird.

With the complete bombing of movies like the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and Van Helsing, it looked like the Vampire craze was to be short-lived… then Twilight came out… I saw the movie in theaters (and I still miss the $9 I spent), and I hated it, but I thought… ‘Okay, maybe this is just a one-time thing but it’ll give new life to the craze…

Well… it did, but not in the way anyone who had previously liked vampires wanted it to. Soon, new interpretations of Vampires came about. Suddenly vampires were no longer the unholy horrors most of us fantasy gurus grew up with. They were sensitive, sparkly, pale creatures hiding in plain sight. They had become sex symbols (True Blood), leaving the rest of us going… WHAT THE F***!?

But I digress…

I went to the book store to pick something up, being the old school, hard-copy, guy I am. I immediately hit the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section and… ugh… There was one huge section of Game of Thrones, one huge section of all things Tolkien, and then shelf after shelf of Vampire books! Yes, there was the occasional dragon vs. knight, pirate, viking, or other misc fantasy in the mix, but for the most part, it was all vampires! Every book had the cover of either a sexualized women licking her lips with blood flowing, or a metro-sexual male with his fangs hanging out in a tux with either a gun or a sword.

It doesn’t end there either… vampires have invaded comic books, including series that have NOTHING to do with that sort of fantasy, video games have upped the anti on this. Heck, even high fantasy seems to have accepted both the werewolf and vampire species into their mix of human/elf/dwarf casts.

Speculation was that, with the release of series like the Hunger Games, that the Vampire Craze was going to give way to the strong female lead in a Post-Apocalyptic World Craze, and while that style of fantasy still seems to have a pretty strong following, it now seems to be in open competition with the Vampire Craze… and given the mixed reviews of the latest set of movies… it appears that the trend which the Hunger Games started… is losing that fight.

The Vampire Craze has outlasted every other craze thus far and, despite the fact that no major motion pictures appear to be slated for release, it has found a way to sink its claws into every other medium it can.

This isn’t going away people… not any time soon at this rate…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: