What We Do in the Shadows is back as a TV series and it absolutely works. If you loved the movie, then you should enjoy the series version of the horror-comedy. Of course, the reason why is probably that both Taika Waititi and Jermaine Clement are still onboard. Season 1 will air on FX.
What We Do in the Shadows was originally a quirky little mockumentary from New Zealand. It was made by Taika Waititi and Jermaine Clement and became quite the cult movie. It’s actually a horror-comedy but shot in the style of a documentary – something that contributed greatly to the humor of it all.
Now, What We Do in the Shadows is back as a TV series and the plot works perfectly for this as well. Especially since both the humor and quirky approach to the characters remains.
Season 1 of What We Do in the Shadows airs on FX, so it’s one of those good old “one episode per week” series. Which is probably a good thing, since it is very binge-worthy!
From New Zealand to New York
The storyline in the TV series version of What We Do in the Shadows has moved to New York. More specifically, Staten Island, where four vampires live together. In that sense, it’s exactly like the movie which simply took place in New Zealand.
The four vampires in this New York story aren’t all traditional vampires. One of them is an “Energy vampire”. He drains people of energy by talking about very boring things or by being extremely annoying.
Recommended reading: Check out our “Vampire”-tag for all reviews of movies or TV series with vampires >
The three “real” vampires, who drink blood, also find him very irritating. As it turns out, not even blood-sucking vampires are immune to his energy draining ways.
The name of the energy vampire is Colin Robinson and he is always called by his full name. Just another thing that makes him stand out. Honestly, we all probably know a Colin Robinson type, which makes energy vampires seem a little too real.
Nandor, Nadja, and Lazlo
The three real blood-sucking vampires are Nandor (Kayvan Novak), Nadja (Natasia Demetriou), and Lazlo (Matt Berry).
Nandor is quite similar to the character played by Taika Waititi in the original movie. Similarly, Lazlo reminded me of the character that was played by Jermaine Clement. In the movie, their names were Viago and Vladislav.
Nadja is a new character in every way since there’s now a woman in the house instead of a younger vampire from the movie. Nadja is actually one of the older vampires – in fact, she’s the one who created Lazlo. She also has a mind of her own and tends to be a bit of a rebel.
Last, but definitely not least, we have sweet Guillermo (Harvey Guillén) as Nandor’s “familiar”. In case you don’t know what a familiar is, it’s a human servant who works under slave-like conditions while waiting for his master to turn him into a vampire. Guillermo has been a familiar for 10 years and is – very understandably – getting a bit impatient.
Once you see how he’s treated, you can definitely understand why!
Watch the TV series version of What We Do in the Shadows on FX
Just like the movie, this TV series version is also using the mockumentary style. Especially Nandor and Guillermo break the fourth wall quite a bit to be direct with the viewers. And not just during interviews with the documentary crew but rather just as reactions. Much like you know from The Office or Parks and Recreation.
To me, Harvey Guillén (Guillermo) is the character I enjoy watching the most so far. Which also tells me that I miss Taika Waititit’s Viago since Nandor (played by Kayvan Novak) just isn’t as charming and endearing.
However, I have to say I really did like the entire cast overall. And even though we don’t have Taika Waititi and Jermaine Clement in front of the camera, this is very much still their brand of humor.
Jermaine Clement is onboard as a writer while Taika Waititi is directing. We’re unsure of which episodes they’ve worked on since the screener we received didn’t include credits.
So far, we’ve watched screeners of episodes 1, 2 and 4 of What We Do in the Shadows, which means those are what this review is based on. Now we’re just excited to watch episode 3 along with the final six episodes of Season 1, which consists of 10 episodes.
Season 1 of What We Do in the Shadows will premiere on FX on March 27, 2019.
Directors: Jason Woliner, Taika Waititi
Stars: Kayvan Novak, Harvey Guillén, Natasia Demetriou, Matt Berry, Mark Proksch
A look into the daily (or rather, nightly) lives of four vampires who’ve lived together for over 100 years, in Staten Island.