The 1980s had Evil Dead. The 1990s had Scream. The 2000s had Shaun of the Dead. But what is the defining horror-comedy of the 2010s? With a medium amount of respect to Velvet Buzzsaw, there’s really only two options: The Cabin in the Woods and What We Do in the Shadows. We already know the former isn’t coming back, with director Drew Goddard noting that he and co-writer Joss Whedon “both felt strongly that we didn’t want to do it just to do it,” while the latter is being turned (because vampires) into a TV show on FX. The odds are stacked against the show — again, look at the number of successful mashups of horror and comedy — but if anyone can make vampires cool again, it’s Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords) and Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok).
Like the movie it’s based on, the What We Do in the Shadows series is a documentary-style look at vampires who have been roommates for hundreds of years. In Staten Island, of all places. What a nightmare. The group is led by Nandor the Relentless (Kayvan Novak), a great warrior who “has taken the helm of the group despite many of his Old World tactics resulting in what some might politely refer to as bupkis,” according to FX. There’s also Laszlo (Matt Berry), “a bit of a rogue and a dandy and a fop,” and the seductive Nadja (Natasia Demetriou), whose “wisdom and provocative tales from times past allow us insight into the many ups and downs of living an immortal life.”
Also cohabiting in the vampire household is “Guillermo” (Harvey Guillén), Nandor’s familiar (a.k.a. servant/protector during the daylight hours), who wants nothing more than to be made a real vampire just like his master. Also lurking about is “Colin Robinson” (Mark Proksch), an energy vampire and day-walker of sorts — he feasts on humans, but not on their blood. A frequent visitor is Nadja’s new friend, “Jenna” (Beanie Feldstein), a student at a nearby community college. She loves LARPing, boys, and art history, and has been rather confused lately as to why it is she so ravenously craves the flesh of the living. After an unexpected visit from their dark lord and leader, “Baron Afanas,” the vampires are reminded of what they were initially tasked with upon their arrival in Staten Island over a hundred years ago – total and complete domination of the New World. But what exactly is the best way to go about achieving said domination? Our vérité camera crew follows along as the vampires set out to answer this query.
The first of What We Do in the Shadows‘s 10 episodes premieres on March 27.