As heated as the vampire genre has recently become in the mainstream (True Blood, Twilight, the upcoming Underworld prequel, et al, plus a Vamps usurping Goths episode of South Park), its place in the web video canon (except in terms of comedy) has yet to be mined.
Created by actor Doug Hutchison and produced by Dark Water, Vampire Killers is tailored to build a following, and keep that following sated with bite-sized bits of lingerie, latex, and lipstick lesbian-laden entertainment. The six roughly 2-minute webisodes proffered on the show’s high-concept website amount to a season pilot, and establish the 4 Killers who will commence their crusade in the coming season.
The series has an industrial, downtown loft district vibe, with ample servings of black, leather and flickering alley lights. The larger context is that of L.A.: population 3.54 million, 526,000 vampires and only 4 vampire killers, so the not-so-ominous intro tells us. Of the half million undead, the vampire crew highlighted in the series is composed of model-esque women of the night (literally) clad in tight dresses or undergarments, oozing sexuality with ample nubile appetites.
Hutchison and his co-writers Tim Baldini and Marco Mannone are to be given credit for having the vampires (at least the two that have spoke thus far) speak Russian, as opposed to Romanian, striking down at least one cliche and challenging our expectations. The fact that there are no male vampires (in this world they’re like an endangered species) is another twist on conventional mythology (so perhaps describing the ladies as ‘lesbians’ is a bit misleading…still, there’s girl-on-girl action).
The Gurlz (aka the Vampires) are all about bringing more over to their side, of course, and the ‘pilot’ climaxes around the fate of one such convert, who happens to be the girlfriend of one of the Killers.
Bitten by the Queen vampire in a botched chase to shuffle her immortal coil, would be Vampire Killer Katrina must be brought down while she’s still vulnerable, but boyfriend Johnny has his qualms about doing so. A fellow Killer winds up slaying Katrina for him. And so begins the hunt for revenge, with maybe a little civil duty thrown in for good measure.
If you’ve come for the fangs, you’ll be quite satisfied: the makeup is high-end. The acting is passable, if a bit ham-fisted, and the drama packs no real surprises. The draw, it seems, must come down to fetishism, not only of and for vampires, but exponentially so if you’re into mild bondage and hot chicks with sharp teeth and tiny clothes.
As involved as the back story is, Hutchison is clearly betting that, ultimately, it’s the teddys that will sell the series.
Beyond the videos, the site is nothing if not thorough. The “Vampires Among Us” section provides elaborate treatises on Myth vs. Science, Attributes and Destroying Vampires, among others; not to mention full in-depth profiles (including height, weight, origin, danger level, body count, as well as back stories) plus photo spreads of the 13 Gurlz, for those who have a thirst for such knowledge.
Vampire Killers is also one of the lastest victims of YouTube’s new regulation policies. Episode 2 was banned from the site due to “graphic violence,” but you can still check out that installment, and the whole series, at VampireKillers.tv.