Apr 26 2008

Good morning, patriarchy!

There were a couple of tornadoes swirling around the Texas Hill Country last night, so this morning, upon springing from the TempurPedic like Morning-bright Apollo, I fire up the Weather Channel to assess the probability that I will find my horse Stanley stuck in a tree when I nip off to the barn later today.

But the teevee isn’t tuned to the Weather Channel. Instead, the first image to contract the Twisty irises this morning is a guy in a puffy shirt with a canine overbite embracing a statuesque blonde supermodel.

“To hell with foreplay!” he snarls. His fake dental prostheses clamp onto her throat. Blood spurts. Woman screams.

That’s right. It’s a gothsploitation film called “Way of the Vampire.” At 8 in the morning.

Vampires. What a load of misogynist BDSM catholicbag cornball crap that is.


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  1. Karley

    I never understood why vampires are considered to be so “romantic”. They’re anthropomorphic ticks with puffy cravats, for fuck’s sake.

  2. PhysioProf

    Trolling for vampire aficionados!

  3. Lara

    This is why I don’t really watch TV. The Food Network is all that I can tolerate. I would spontaneously combust if I watched a “regular” channel on TV for more than 5.6 seconds.

  4. TP

    Vampires – the insecurities of sex in adolescence manifest. I could draw a tenuous link between amping up the sex factor in teen life through fear-based media and training us in misogynistic sex responses, but I won’t. I’ll just wait for the porn-based scientifical study to prove the opposite. Then, as I regard the dudes hi-five each other over their predetermined outcome, I’ll know to believe roughly the opposite.

    It’s one of the billions of little ways they train us to accept misogyny as sex. They being our megatheocorporatic patriarchal culture.

  5. Lt. Rev. B. Dagger Lee

    As a child, I had a bad experience with a vampire movie at a drive-in in Mexico, and since then I’ve never really cared for them.

    But now that you mention it, I suppose all of the signs and symbols of the big P were there: extreme violence, papistry-type godbaggery, scapegoating, fake-lesbianism for boys, and the super creepy hetero-romance thingie.

    I always liked the Creature from the Black Lagoon. In fact, I believe he’s the only boy I’ve ever had a crush on.

  6. j.

    I love your desciption of vampires.

  7. j.

    By the way, I’m playing a videogame right now in which you play as a christian vampirehunter dude in a skirt who fights Dracula with a whip. It’s considered a hardcore and macho game among pale male nerds.

  8. Pinko Punko

    A 1.5/10 from IMDB voters and no one I’ve ever heard of. I MUST TAKE A SCREENING OF THIS FILM!

    I can’t even commit to being serious about the above. It looks too bad.

  9. octopod

    “Vampirehunter dude in a skirt who fights Dracula with a whip”? Hawt.

    Also, anyone want to talk about the “lesbian vampire” trope? (See everything from Carmilla on.) I just heard of it and am agog — why vampires? Why not, I dunno, werewolves? Purely by chance?

  10. Calixti

    “[Y]ou play as a christian vampirehunter dude in a skirt who fights Dracula with a whip.”

    Castlevania’s considered macho now? It’s one of the few game series I DON’T get shit from male nerds for obsessing over!

  11. norbizness

    I think Bell County got the worst of it, both tornado- and vampire-wise.

  12. Izzy

    “This is why I don’t really watch TV. The Food Network is all that I can tolerate.”

    I totally agree! Every time I try to watch a sitcom, it’s downright insulting and I gave up on the news ages ago. IBTP.

  13. j.

    Yes Calixti, the oldschool Castlevania games are, but not the newer ones with “girly” designs by zomg a woman.

    Back on topic: I never understood what was supposed to be erotic about vampires attacking young women and stealing their lifeblood. Oh wait. The patriarchy likes stuff like that.


    When a pal of mine was deep in the throes of gestating a new human being, she had the EUREKA! momenbt of realizing that all these vampire themes are REALLY talking about BAYBEEZ.

    Yes, the BAYBEES, who suck our lifeblood literally out of us, before and after birth, killing our autonomous dreams and making us into their ZOMBIE SERVANTS.

    Think. About. It.

  15. Veronica

    Twisty, I had to come out of years of lurking just for this post because you managed to crystalize perfectly a ridiculous argument I had with my Fucking Pedantic Asshole roommate last night. He plays a paper-based RPG that seems to revolve solely around porntastic fanboy illustrations of vampire chicks, and the entire point of the game is that you, a dudely vampire, must create as many more of these pointy-teethed pornbots as possible through predatory behavior.

    He was completely unable to grasp how something that (to him) exists solely in the realm of fantasy could possibly have real-world ramifications for real-world women, despite the long history of literary vampirism serving as nothing more than an extended allegory for society’s fear of women’s sexual autonomy. But then again, he generally reeks of male privilege and Axe body spray, so why be shocked?

    Sorry for the long post. So, thank you for your entire body of work. If I had never managed to stumble across your blog while still in high school, I shudder to think what sorts of feminine shenanigans I’d still be giving myself a free pass on. You’ve done more to help this novice blamer and spinster-in-training to articulate her long-standing feelings of rage than anything else.

  16. Cass

    Germaine Greer argued that the original Frankenstein monster (Mary Shelley’s, that is) was about having children. Zombies, of course, are about slavery, and the alienation of soul from body that comes from your body belonging to someone else. Maybe vampires, then, are just zombifiers of women. Is there a better description, for example, of the typical Republican (female) spouse than “bloodless” or “lifeless”?

  17. Absotively

    I recently read an anthology of vampire stories by women (Night Bites) which included a couple stories where the vampires were the protagonist’s children. I really liked it, and as further recommendation, the first editorial review on Amazon is quite negative because “although all the stories have a vampiric element, the true emphasis is on feminism.”

    It occurs to me now that “paranormal romance”-type vampire stories are very often transparent patrairchal propaganda: sure, the vampire is harming the protagonist, but that’s ok because it’s just his nature. And besides, he loves her. Of course she doesn’t mind.

  18. Nine Deuce

    I once had a stalker that called himself Lestat. I couldn’t put my finger on it at the time, but it looks as if the whole BDSM, vampire-loving goth scene is just a bunch of romanticized misogyny.

  19. sonia

    thanks for not missing the catholic symbolism tied to all vampire movies and most horror movies.

    you rock.

  20. Alix

    Maybe vampires, then, are just zombifiers of women.

    I always thought vampires were a pretty good metaphor for predation (and not always sexual predation, although it’s been that from the Victorian era on; a lot of old vampire folklore involves the vampire mooching off the family, or sort of serial vampirism where a family member dies, resurrects, kills another family member, and that one resurrects…). But the Victorian/modern vampire has always struck me as a fairly explicit metaphor for rape – especially in things like, say, Dracula.

    (Okay, so pathetic geekery is not the best way to drop out of lurkdom. Hello!)

  21. Ivy

    Hays County has far worse vampire problems than Bell; never go to H-E-B on a Saturday night with a waxing gibbous moon.

  22. Cass

    What can you do? In East Texas, you get eaten alive by mosquitos, here, its the vampires. I just wish I could negotiate the Shoal Creek bike trail every morning without being periodically overcome by the smell of bat shit.

    Here, by the way, is the Greer essay.


    I completely agree with her, by the way, that “Frankenstein” is a crappy book, and to this day I don’t understand my favorite professor’s liking for it. (I was too love-struck at the time, I’ll admit, to seriously dispute her opinion on anything.)

  23. Azundris

    Alix, the predator penetrating one’s body certainly always looked like a rape metaphor to me. There even seems to be a weird parallel between turning the victim into a vampire, and rape resulting in pregnancy: both are violations that result in unwanted lasting change to one’s body, and a sick “bond of the blood.”

    Nine Deuce, «the whole BDSM, vampire-loving goth scene» — some but not all goths fit that bill — not sure if you were naming the specific subset or aiming for a tautology. When I was a teen goth nobody ever mentioned vampires, but non-goth men on several occasions gave me Anne Rice books. Needless to say, they were rather surprised I hated that rapefest rubbish. And yes, I know that “Sleeping Beauty” is supposedly much worse.

  24. CD

    seriously, there needs to be an anti-patriarch anti-imperialist female villain– it doesnt make sense that all famous horror tales represent the already-represented–but i guess it just goes to show that these are the “deviants” and thus are more interesting and scary. dr. j and mr. hyde for example. imagine that, a white man going insane? never on gods green earth.

  25. amphibious

    Absotively – try Ray Bradbury’s “The Tiny Assassin”

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