23 September 2009

Vampires Suck

I don’t like vampires.
I think the whole genre, fiction novels, films, fanciful costumage, is contemptible. Much of this stems from my political leanings. However, even before I was politically inclined, I hated vampires. In my mind, vampires are the fantasy fiction equivalent of the affluent elite. From Bram Stoker to Vampyros Lesbos, vampires are the cream of the bad undead.

So, vampires have never interested me. I don’t care how the rich live, or how hard it is, or the “emptiness of living forever.” Mostly because I don’t believe it. Vampires are an extreme case of accumulated differential advantage. The affluent subsist on the toil and sweat of others, the surplus labor of a million unsheltered who feather their nests. It goes the same for the Nosferatu, taking from those others materially, intellectually and viscerally for their own benefit and survival, perpetually and forever.
And yet the myth of accessibility leaves the rest of us thinking we have and want access to all of that, but in truth the elite always resists infiltration. This is why vampires never want to make another vampire, not because it’s actually hard being a vampire and they don’t want anyone else to suffer. No it’s because they don’t want to share the wealth. It’s why rich mommies and daddies don’t like it when their children marry commoners and why the Gecko brothers can’t get a fair shake, and why you will never actually get to be one of the Lost Boys.

Vampires are an excuse for death to be tragic and glamorous all at the same time, why we fear and understand Gary Oldman’s lust for Wynona Ryder. They are tailor made for Goths, hence the term “goth”, derived from an hyper-idealized overly dramatic architectural style traditionally associated with vampire lore. Vampires are dramatic because there are few things more interesting to the ticket buying public than a rich person suffering hardship. And why not, they have it all, but their lives are ever so tragic. Or so we are led to believe.



Let’s face it, vampires are all about fake drama, and as Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt have taught us affluence is all about emphasizing drama where there isn’t any. The affluent can’t deal with drama because they can afford to shield themselves from it if they want to. Drama is the tired parasite of the average man because s/he lives on a razor’s edge of have/have not, you can, or you cannot. There is no drama in yes or no if it is an everyday question, only when one or the other is unusual. That’s why the affluent and vampires have to create their own thin veneer of tragedy and drama. It's the importance of dressing the part to prove you are Goth enough to verify your emotional agony.

Yeah, I get it, the oligarchy rules us all with tragic flamboyance. The distraction of our submerged desire to be one of the cool kids masks our revulsion at the abandonment of temporal value. We know we dismiss our humanity by achieving privilege. Because in our compulsion to protect it we must distance ourselves from the covetous masses lest that privilege be diluted.

Vampires are the barely-fictional personification of extreme social elitism, and hence, I have no sympathy. 200 years of fancy talking and arrogance in costume doesn’t dull the metaphor for me, give me the proletarian zombie any day.