Author Topic: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)  (Read 13495 times)

Offline kyranthia

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Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« on: January 18, 2013, 07:57:11 PM »
Me personally...I never was a horror fan.  I never got into the more traditional lore stuff.  I personally always liked the more comic stories of supernatural beings.  Like, i remember as a kid, there were a couple of cartoons with a bunch of monsters who go to camp or school together and they all were quirky, but not scary.

I think that may be why I have a slant towards the comic stories of supernatural creatures.  But I get why some folks would be more into the more traditional scary stuff.

So what about everyone else?  Are zombies and vampires, etc. supposed to be scary or is it okay for them to be goofy?  (Or are you cool with both?) 

Offline GrahamRocks!

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 08:04:39 PM »
I'm fine with both, as long as they are written WELL!

Offline KatieHal

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2013, 09:00:40 PM »
If they're both, more power to the writers!

But yes, I'm fine overall with both. I will say I am getting a little sick of monsters not actually being MONSTERS. I think it's great when they both have their teeth and claws, and have depth and personalities. I'm really digging the show Being Human right now (the US version, haven't seen the UK), and I love that their vampires and werewolves are still monsters and terrifying and people die, and it's awesome.

Likewise for True Blood. The monsters are legitimate monsters, but still interesting, funny, with great development...

ah, what can I say? I want it all. :)

It is kinda hard to give depth to zombies, though. Zombies generally aren't characters, they're just plot tools (see walking Dead, Zombieland, etc).

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Offline kyranthia

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2013, 09:56:49 PM »
It's been awhile since I've seen Buffy episodes, but I kinda remember Spike being able to walk that line of being dangerous but at times funny too.  That worked for me.

I guess I just really don't get the attraction to the dangerous supernatural character that the girl knows is dangerous but for some reason, still wants to be with him.  It's like to me...'okay honey, you know he's killed a lot of people and doesn't seem bothered by that.  So...why do you want to date him?'  That just seems...like Lifetime movie logic to me.  (I get more the attraction to the reformed bad boy type who in the past did horrible things but is trying to reform himself than to the bad guy who really has no interest in being good.)  But maybe that's just me.

For me, I would want to write more the comic supernatural character.  I have a couple in the works like Terrence here (well, a drawing of him:  http://sketchbook.rcsipublishing.com/bound-sketchbooks/sketch2-p109.png.php).  He's more the guy who got transformed against his will into a vampire and his personality is more on the lines of 'So...lemme get this straight.  If I can't die, does that mean I'll never retire?!'

I get that the monster personality is more true to their original lore, but it's just not my cup of tea. 

Regarding zombies - in most works I've read or seen, they are usually pretty personality less.  They are usually more the bad thing that keeps the world a scary place for our heroes.  I think as said earlier, that is probably since that look pretty creepy.  A vampire can look mostly humanish, but a zombie is a stumbling being of rotting flesh - not exactly something attractive.

Offline darthkiwi

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2013, 12:49:31 PM »
Quote
I guess I just really don't get the attraction to the dangerous supernatural character that the girl knows is dangerous but for some reason, still wants to be with him.  It's like to me...'okay honey, you know he's killed a lot of people and doesn't seem bothered by that.  So...why do you want to date him?'

*Sigh* This is why I hate Twilight.

I assume I don't need to go into too much detail - this anti-Twilight line has been argued ad infinitum on the internet - but look, in Being Human (the UK version really is smashing, watch the first series at least) we have characters who are trying to be human and hold down jobs and pursue relationships but they have these problems, viz. they constantly crave blood or they turn into a vicious beast every full moon. And like Katie says, people die. There is an understanding that while these people may be human beings too, and deserve a chance at happiness, they are also horrific monsters and that if they aren't careful - and, spoiler alert, they screw up a few times - people they care about die. And the characters beat themselves up about this and try to go on and we have to deal with the fact that they're simultaneously the loveliest people in the world - I love those characters! - and incredibly, horrifically deadly to be around.

Deloria put it nicely when she said to me that in Buffy, we have a girl who has a life and is trying to balance that with being the Slayer and she also happens to fall in love with a vampire. In Twilight, Bella's entire character is just "girl who falls in love with a vampire".
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Offline KatieHal

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2013, 01:40:21 PM »
I can at least say they carried that theme over to the US version perfectly, then! And well-put about how that's ALL Bella is.

Also, in Twilight? There are no consequences and that these people are "vampires" is pretty irrelevant. A "vampire" in that world has no downside--they're beautiful, strong, fast, immortal, don't even have fangs, they can go into the sunlight, bloodthirst is clearly a negligible issue, and they're filthy stinking rich with a perfect happy little family.

And no one makes any sacrifices, everyone gets what they want without having to give up anything, Edward is an abusive and manipulative person (but then, so is Bella). The series, pun intended and also on intended, has no teeth whatsoever.

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Offline MikPal

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2013, 03:25:49 PM »
Why no love for the Shirime?

Offline kyranthia

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2013, 09:15:37 PM »
Quote
but look, in Being Human (the UK version really is smashing, watch the first series at least) we have characters who are trying to be human and hold down jobs and pursue relationships but they have these problems, viz. they constantly crave blood or they turn into a vicious beast every full moon. 

I only saw a little of the UK Being Human. And I just remember that Lauren character gets transformed into a vampire and wanted to kill her parents off the bat.  Unless we find out later they were horrible people or something, but that just made me go, 'wait, what?'
 
Quote
And no one makes any sacrifices, everyone gets what they want without having to give up anything, Edward is an abusive and manipulative person (but then, so is Bella). The series, pun intended and also on intended, has no teeth whatsoever.

That's kinda lazy writing then, I think.  I mean, heck, even in comedic pieces, there are consequences for being something other than human.  A character gets killed off in Hotel Transylvania for being misunderstood and that's a kid's movie.

Quote
Why no love for the Shirime?

Wow, I never knew about that creature until now...

Offline LadyTerra

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2013, 02:54:01 PM »
Thankfully, my memory of the Twilight series is getting fuzzier, but I'm wondering: did Edward actually kill anyone that wasn't a vampire trying to kill Bella?  Did he ever drink a human's blood?
I have my cake and eat it too, until it's gone.  Then I can't do either.


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Offline KatieHal

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2013, 04:49:30 PM »
In the movies, no.

In the books, he mentions having gone off on his own for some stretch of time, basically his "dark period". It's implied but never stated that he drank from humans during that time, so that would've killed them.

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Offline snabbott

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2013, 10:47:02 AM »
Terrifying supernatural creatures: clowns! :o The book is much scarier than the TV mini-series.


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Offline LadyTerra

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2013, 05:20:41 PM »
Though not as funny as the movie.
I have my cake and eat it too, until it's gone.  Then I can't do either.


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Offline GrahamRocks!

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2013, 05:25:19 PM »
Clowns aren't supernatural. They're just humans in makeup. When will you people understand that not all clowns want to kill you, and that some just want to make you smile? It's becoming rediculous how many "Evil Clowns" there are these days! The last time I saw a "Nice Clown" was Ronald McDonald and Boffo the Clown from AT4W.

Offline kyranthia

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2013, 06:53:35 PM »
Usually the evil clowns are either psychopaths or some sort of demonic creature in disguise. 

I think the evil clown thing took off after It though.  I know sometimes in haunted houses, they have the demonic clowns about.  Or at the Monster Mini Golf places.



I always though the idea came about from someone's bad memory of a clown.  Maybe their makeup was a bit off or maybe their attitude was a bit creepy.  Thus, the childhood nightmare of an evil clown came to be?

Offline Numbers

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2013, 02:44:46 PM »
A clown that wants to kill me, or a clown that just wants to see me smile...not sure which is creepier.
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Offline Blackthorne

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2013, 10:12:19 PM »


I rest my case.

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Offline crayauchtin

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2013, 11:51:17 AM »
For me, there are two genres that I will pretty much invariably love.

One if sword and sorcery, as you all know.
The second is modern day supernatural stuff (though once it seriously crosses the line over into horror, I'm done, cause I don't like to be scared :P)
The sole exception to this, to date, is Twilight which I hate with a fiery passion because it's terrible writing, acting, and it ruins everything AND WHY IS IT SO POPULAR IT MAKES ME SO ANGRY.
Also, I've never watched any episodes of The Vampire Diaries so I just don't know about that one.

But I like books in this genre, TV series, movies and comic books. Personal favorites are Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Supernatural, and Doctor Strange.

...I wasn't really going anywhere with this post, I was just excited. :P
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Offline darthkiwi

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2013, 04:55:10 PM »
Question: do you think vampires just represent a fear of death or things that go bump in the night? I mean, the whole blood-sucking thing is a pretty direct metaphor for having your life-essence drawn out of you.

Or do you think they represent or were born from some other kind of fear?

Obviously there are different kinds of vampires, and a vampire in different cultural contexts will have different meanings. I remember reading an article that argued the vampirism of the Cullens basically just makes them really efficient capitalists. After all, they don't need to sleep or eat or really do anything - they can just work. I guess. I don't think you can just explain all of Twilight with "BLAAGH IT'S ALL CAPITALISM" though. :P

I personally think that the vampires of the 19th century - so, from Polidori (author of the very first vampire novel) to Dracula - are about both the power of the nobility and the base desires within all human beings. These vampires are all immaculately dressed, often come with their own castles and always, always make a splash at society functions. This is often how they operate: Polidori's vampire is basically a Europe-wide parasite, seducing fashionable young ladies and feeding off them. Once he has them in his clutches, of course, he reveals himself as a bloodsucking beast.

I think it's about the feeling people had that the nobility looked amazing and shiny and sleek on the outside, but were actually exploitative, metaphorically sucking the lifeblood out of their peasants.

It's also interesting that this figure was only made possible - at least in literary terms - once that power began to decline. This is probably not true of early 19th century vampires - Polidori's was written in about 1820 I think - but by the time Dracula came out (1897), perhaps there was a feeling that the nobility were losing ground to the middle classes? In any case, Dracula is very much a creature of decay: his castle is ruined, his lands are kind of ruined and the plot of the book is essentially his attempt to get back in the game and update his activities to the modern era.
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Offline crayauchtin

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2013, 10:58:26 PM »
Ooh ooh ooh!! I know this because one of my mom's best friends teaches about this sort of stuff at a college and she was on a History channel special about vampires like ten years ago!

It depends on who you talk to and what mythos you're looking at but, in general (although not all of the time), vampires can be categorized into two areas:
1) Puritanical fear of sex -- that's why vampires are usually deeply attractive and seductive (and yes, noble-looking), usually biting people of the opposite sex, and usually in the neck or thigh (it's because those areas are often sensitive areas sexually... which is partially because of the big blood vessels there :P)
2) Fear of upsetting the natural order. So much of vampire mythology is actually about the trade off of living forever instead of dying (which is one reason I HATE Twilight so much, there is basically no down-side to being a vampire). You live forever, but you have to kill people in order to do so, in most mythologies you lose your sense of taste for real food so no delicious foods, and you never get to see the sunrise or sunset ever again because daylight will kill you. It's an intentional de-glamorization of immortality.

Again, a lot of it depends on who is telling the story, who the audience is, etc. There's a lot of other symbology that can be worked into it.
One reason, for instance, that vampires and werewolves are so typically enemies is because in these situations they symbolically represent opposites. Werewolves are life, vampires are death. Werewolves represent nature (wolves being natural), vampires represent the unnatural (immortality being unnatural).
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Offline Deloria

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Re: Supernatural beings (zombies, vampires, werewolves, etc.)
« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2013, 04:26:28 AM »
I don't necessarily see what (if anything) is wrong with being a fashionable young lady conquest of someone with a castle, even if it turns you into an undead monster. :P Clearly this is just Christians going crazy as usual.
 
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