The vampire mythology is used to comment on the current bogey of climate change. While it’s a compelling idea, the show leaves you as cold as a hungry vampire.
Directors: Brad Turner, TJ Scott, Kaare Andrews, Marita Grabiak, Bobby Roth, Ian Somerhalder
Writers: Jonathan Maberry, Sam Beck, Charlie Cleven, Glenn Davis, William Laurin, Bernard Keogh, Seamus Keogh
Cast: Ian Somerhalder, Adrian Holmes, Jacky Lai, Kimberly-Sue Murray, Peter Outerbridge
Streaming on: Netflix
Climate change is turning humans into vampires
V-Wars, based on the comic series of the same name by Jonathan Maberry, starts off with a visibly terrified man walking out into a snowy landscape and then shooting himself.
Dr Luther Swann (Ian Somerhalder) and Michael Fayne (Adrian Holmes) are sent to the Arctic to investigate why they’ve lost communication with a research scientist stationed there. They discover that the scientist (the man who shot himself) and his assistant are missing, and that they have now been exposed to a deadly virus.
It turns out that a pathogen released from glaciers due to climate change leads to some humans turning into dangerous vampires. These are people who have a certain gene. The scientist who shot himself was turning into one right before he pulled the trigger. Humans who don’t have the gene stay human.
Fayne has the vampire gene, while Swann doesn’t. Fayne now gains super human powers such as super sight, sharp hearing and immense strength. He feels invincible and considers this development to be the rise of a new species, while Swann looks for a cure. The vampires christen themselves ‘Bloods’.
The vampires go on a feeding frenzy
The Bloods unite and start killing their way to good health; like all vampires, they need to feed on blood to survive. Mayhem ensues and the government looks for ways to control the mutants, pitting Swann and Fayne against each other. Hired by the department of national security, Swann attempts to find a solution to the crisis. On the other hand, Fayne, who is Patient Zero, heads the vampire community, Blood Nation, which is growing by the minute. At the direction of a well-meaning senator, Swann and Fayne meet to negotiate a deal.
A promising story is let down by bloodless performances
V-Wars offers a topical premise – the man-made crisis of climate change forcing human beings to destroy each other. Unfortunately none of the actors, including Ian Somerhalder, carry the show. For example, when Somerhalder is forced to kill a loved one, there’s hardly any remorse. When he witnesses his best friend turning into a vampire, his reaction is pretty mild. The performances seem forced and there’s none of the gravity you expect from a serious vampire drama.