Is there any redeeming value in the current vampire craze?

Vampires have long been a fascination to many, and the wildly popular “Twilight” book series by Stephenie Meyer–which features a vampire-based story about the growing love between a young woman and a vampire–has heightened interest in the genre. The vampire craze has generated a number of new TV series; most taking a much darker look at the material than Meyer does.

Meyer, who is a Mormon, wanted to create a story where the young people remained virtuous while their love grew stronger. She has stated that the reason she used vampires as part of the story was to simply make it more interesting and readable, while maintaining the core values of abstinence while waiting for marriage.

Authors and the entertainment industry have produced vampire material for years–most of it amounting to not much more than blood, gore and depravity.

As a result of the popularity of “Twilight”, a wave of TV series are hoping to cash in on the general vampire theme itself–not the more wholesome story written by Meyer.

Even Disney’s “Wizards of Waverly Place” is jumping on the bandwagon by introducing a vampire family which just moved into the neighborhood.

The one recurring theme throughout this particular vampire revival is the vampires aren’t totally preying on humans, and the humans then start to get into romantic relationships with the vampires. Whether it’s presented in a wholesome or dark way, this is the underlying common thread which is the same throughout the new vampire shows.

One of the darker vampire shows is “True Blood” on HBO, which refers to a drink the vampires use to replace the need to drink on human blood.

It’s ‘R’ rating is well deserved. Unfortunately it dwells on the perverse far too long and consistently, and interferes in the story too many times, and is more gratuitous than anything else. It seems to be included only to shock, rather than add anything to the characters.

Past vampire stories always had vampires having to drink the blood of humans to survive; not only killing them, but then turning them into vampires themselves by their actions. This is the equivalent of a parasite, and so that is of course negative toward what a fictional vampire represented. So to have to survive at the expense of others, while then turning that person into what you are, is completely negative, and has no redeeming value.

As far as the new direction for vampires, which has them finding different solutions to quench their craving and need for blood, I find it even more troubling from the point of view of Christ, who has taught us through the scriptures we are only to marry with those that believe in Christ.

The idea of the new vampire theme is to not allow the differences between you keep you from romance, or any type of interaction with one another, and that isn’t how Christians are taught to live.

Obviously with believers and unbelievers we live in the world together, and so there’s some interaction we must have, but we don’t live as they do, and we definitely aren’t to intermarry with them. There’s a line of demarcation between Christians and non-Christians, and that line comes from the Lord.

This is why the scriptures teach us they’ll think we are weird because we don’t go and partake in the things they do. This doesn’t mean we don’t help non-believers, just that we do it on the conditions of Christ, not on their terms.

The new vampire idea is to throw aside all differences as if they weren’t important, and just do whatever you feel like doing with whoever you want. That’s just not how it is if you’re a Christian, and we must not allow ourselves to be seduced or coerced into believing that false idea.

As far as watching entertainment including vampire themes, if your an adult, it’s probably harmless, as any backdrop for a TV series or film will always include what the world is, so we have to be discerning.

Obviously the majority of vampire-related stories aren’t appropriate for children, as most include a lot of violence, at minimum, and the recurring sexualized focus that always accompanies the genre.

While I enjoy watching any good story, we still need to watch with discernment. Stories with vampires in them are just the latest assault, but I don’t think they’re worse than any other. It’s been taken into a new realm of trying to influence the culture, and that is very different concerning vampire stories in contrast to the past.

 

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  1. EternalLizdom said:

    I found myself reading this with a raised eyebrow and somewhat dropped jaw. Not because I’m shocked… more befuddled. I’ve long been confused when Christian groups come out opposing some piece of literature or work of art or whatever. As a Christian who is strong in my faith, I am beyond capable of recognizing basic entertainment value without having it influence my faith base. I’m intrigued by Harry Potter, vampire stories, ghost hunting, and so on. Does that mean I’m going to dabble in witchcraft, drink blood, or mess with the “undead?” Nope. It’s entertainment. If my kids want to read HP when the time comes, fine by me. If my kids want to read vampire or other fantastical fantasy stories when they are old enough- fine by me. They love stories with talking animals and fictional living beings as it is (Backyardigans- just what is Uniqua anyway? Or how about Goofy? Cow, dog?). The current fantasy realm is at their level- animation and such. And as they grow and their imaginations and levels of creativity grow, they will expand into new types of entertainment, literature, theatre, arts. I’ve never been one to believe that the arts and such are the work of the devil or whatever. I don’t believe for a moment that fictional books or movies or whatever will somehow corrupt my children or take them away from the faith base we are building for them. My husband spends his time creating a real life Dungeons and Dragons game for a big gaming convention that comes to Indianapolis every August. He and his friends are of the strongest moral fiber. Yet there are those who are in strong opposition to things like D&D… Fantasy is called fantasy for a reason. “The creative imagination; unrestrained fancy.” As long as I continue to do my job of teaching my kids the difference between imagination and reality, it’s all good. If I start banning vampires and werewolves and witches and wizards and whatever else, I’m giving a lot of power to something completely imaginary. Pretty silly.

    July 21, 2009
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