I'm trying to pin-point exactly when it changed for vampires. One moment they are vile creatures if darkness scaring wrinkly old vicars to death in Hammer horror films, the next they are doe eyed stud muffins with a queue of women inserting straws in their jugular veins to save them the effort of biting their necks.
As a kid I used to brick myself about the undead. Werewolves were terrifying monsters, not buff American Indians looking like Foxy Bingo. Witches were green and tried to set light to puppies called Toto. And vampires? Personification of evil. Lords of darkness! Not guys with big eyelashes who twinkle in the bloody sun.
So when was the transition point? When did vampire chic start?
It can only be in 1987 when the great Frog brothers waged the war against the blood sucking creatures of the night! Yes, the Lost Boys. Vampires became cool (in the same way karate did 3 years earlier with Daniel-San) in a wish I could live forever with a mullet and dangly earring way. We all wanted to hang from bridges, drink wine/blood with a chick called Sky in front of a picture of Jim Morrison (before he got fat and beardy.... Ironically like Jason Patric did), fly about a bit and annoy Mister Merlin (the grandfather). Even in the last scene in the house when the dude from Bill'n'Ted gets it through the ticker we still cultivated a desire to be one of the 'boys'- and why not? They had a spike haired Jack Bauer in command and surely he is the bastion of cool lad-ness we all secretly aspire to.
So what makes me love Lost Boys yet snort at Twilight or Vampire Diaries? Obviously nostalgia helps- I was maybe 17 when I saw Lost Boys and thought it so utterly cool. Now I'm 40 and proper grumpy. But I think the key thing is that the Lost Boys is a lads' film. The latest spate of Hollywood vamp films are all angsty girlie efforts where they stare morosely into the middle distance and lament how an immortal may love a human. The Lost Boys was a what would happen if a bunch of young lads got vamped and could spend the rest of their days partying and hanging out. And despite it's utter Eighties-ness it just seems to resonate that bit more for it.
So for those that prefer gelled up vampires and Echo and the Bunnymen doing the Doors to twinkly vampires, raise your glass of... it's wine, Michael.