I've been pretty much insulated from the "Twilight" movie and book craze, largely because I'm a guy and I'm not 14 years old. So I can't criticize the films/books (or ideas behind the films/books) from any experience, but from the buzz around it it seems the idea is that vampires are brooding emo goth hipsters with moused hair and sparkly skin who fall in love against their will.
In other words, vampires are totally lame.
This is a terrible trend--the best vampires were the ghoulish, Nosferatu style tall white freakish blood suckers that glide through the dark and haunt our dreams. The sort of things that you'd lose your shit over if you saw them in your closet or basement. Why turn them all lame and mopey?
Some theories exist that the vampire legend is based on observing people reacting to having rabies--the legends apparently spread in the same times and places as major rabies outbreaks. Rabies symptoms--aversion to water and light, insatiable thirst, aversion to pungent smells (like garlic?), crazy behavior and a need to attack and bite people--are not unlike the symptoms attributed to vampires, and rabies, like vampirism, is spread through the blood. What does rabies NOT do to you? Turn you into a sullen teenager who wears black and has moussed hair and doesn't want to fall in love!
Envelopes – Essential Buyers Manuals
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