Friday, May 8, 2009


On my way to the dentist today, "Fresh Air" replayed an interview with Alan Ball. I studied his play "American Beauty" in an undergrad film class, and am interested in his work. Ball's latest project is an HBO series called "True Blood," which is about vampires who come back to life with the help of a synthetic blood created by a Japanese company.

Sounds pretty weird, right? But wait til you hear more.

The vampires are second-class citizens in this future society, and are fighting for their rights, looking for love, and seeking out what life has to offer. The series focuses on a non-vampire waitress, and the relationship she starts with someone who has overachieving bicuspids.

Sounds more interesting, right? It does to me, at least.

Usually, I don't like genre stories because they're stories about the genres themselves, rather than the characters in the genres. If you can write a convincing person that I invest emotionally in, then the story can take place inside a carburetor; I don't care.

Last night, Bryan said he's heard great things about the new "Star Trek" movie, and wants to see it. I said that sounded like a great idea, and that he should invite his friend, Tim, to go with him. This turned out to hurt his feelings a bit, because he'd assumed we'd go together. I didn't beat around the bush in telling him I had zero desire to see the movie, but did offer to accompany him and bring a book.

I know there are people who are nuts about this sci-fi story empire, but I just don't get it. I don't find their plight that interesting. And why aren't there more female characters? Everything seems so serious, no levity, no achingly real, human emotions.

So, vampires: yes. Klingons: no.

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