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JulyDiaz

Episode 145 - Vampire Academy (w/ Michael Showalter, Aisling Bea)

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The Moroi have a normal human lifespan although they are immune to illness and any diseases, the Strogoi (bad vampires) don't age which is why some of them choose to become Stragoi.

 

Well, not all illnesses and diseases. Sadovky's Syndrome sounds kind of shitty...

 

I guess they're just immune to human diseases, and instead prone to unexplained, and just as deadly, vampire diseases? Once again, being a Moroi just seems to blow.

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So...a quick question on the cafeteria.

 

We're told that these people are people "obsessed with vampire books and shows" who volunteer to be fed on for a year, at the end of which, they have their memories of the last year wiped away. Okay, I'm willing to bet that when Twilight was at its height there would have been plenty of people willing to do something like that. My question is, prior to the publication of Anne Rice's publication of Interview With the Vampire in 1976, and thereby ushering in the era of vampires being quasi-benign creatures of sexual attraction rather than straight up monsters, where exactly did they get their "volunteers?" From what I gathered from the film, the Moroi don't exactly have much to offer--not even the memory of the orgasmic ecstasy you felt as your blood was drained from your body. They can't turn you into one of them, and even if they could, it's not like they'd be granting you immortality or eternal beauty or something.

 

So before vampires became all the rage forty years ago, how exactly did they convince people to be cool and let them suck their blood for a bit? Why do I have the sinking suspicion the answer lies somewhere between orphaned street urchins and vampiric compulsion....

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Maybe they mined people who were fans of Bram Stoker, or maybe even Stoker himself? The popularity of the Dracula stage adaptation in the 1920s, starring Bela Lugosi, led to the 1931 film. So.... I guess Art Deco-looking theater geeks from the Roaring 20s were getting sucked by Moroi in vampire cafeterias? After that, maybe just desperate poor people made homeless by the Great Depression?

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There is something vaguely racist about how half-vampires must be subservient to full-vampires. We're told They Come First, but we're never told why; the implication is that it's because moroi can do magic, but dhrampir get super human strength and speed, which seems p. dope tbh. The whole situation is not helped by the line about the noble familes, which comes after a scene of pasty white kids doing magic, where Rose explains that "some are more special than others."

 

 

Re: Strigoi: So theres apparently a vampire academy wiki (http://vampireacadem...emy_Series_Wiki) where I found that strigoi are not able to walk on holy ground, so I guess we're working in a 'hell and religion are real'-style-vampire-universe. This makes the whole religion thing a bit complicated. What's powering their magic? Common vampire origins of the religion-as-real setting include demon-human-hybridization, the devil, or (in Russia) people who had rebelled against the Russian Orthodox Church in life. That would mean that there is an Original Sin (Remix) sort of thing happening with the dhrampir/moroi, where they try to pray away their demonic tendencies.

 

In that case St. Vlad is like the vampire Jesus, the one demon-tainted vampire who became the opposite of a strigoi: a vampire that gives life. Since Lissa can also do life-magic, is she the second coming of vampire-jesus? If she can only bring things back from near-death, not full-death, is she more of a saint? So many questions. Can vampires make it into heaven? Do they stay vampires in heaven, or are they cleansed of their demonic side? If vampires go to hell, are they rewarded? How does god feel about this whole vampire situation? The devil? Are there vampires of other religions?

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My unsubstantiated theory about all the church stuff:

 

The Harry Potter and Twilight series were condemned and boycotted by evangelicals, who say that they promote satanism. Perhaps the shrewd makers of Vampire Academy, in an effort to avoid similar controversy and retain the largest possible audience, made sure to communicate that these are christian vampires. No need to picket, folks. Your kids won't be corrupted or possessed by watching this movie. They're all good christian vampires.

 

Again, just my theory with nothing to back it up. Maybe Blake Harris can ask someone about it?

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I was confused about the Vladimir mythology.

 

The movie presents him as "vampire Jesus," the school is named after him, there's the statue of him in the courtyard, the priest talks about Vlad in his sermons, and it would seem that everyone is really well versed in all things Vlad...

 

So how is it that it takes hours of research poring over dusty volumes in the library to discover things about Vladimir that should be basic common knowledge? Like the fact that he specialized in "spirit" magic and that he had a special bond with his Guardian - the most important person in his life who, inexplicably, isn't mentioned anywhere in his narrative.

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just watched this pile of stinking garbage .. this could be a contender for the worst movie ive ever seen .. i completely lost interest in any of it ... i was kinda hoping EDI would come down and just close the academy down permanently ...

 

and it's this kinda movie that causes things like this to happen ...

 

35jwo04.jpg

 

... her mother shagged a duck!!!! ...

 

gonna leave the podcast till tomorrow ... i'm exhausted

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A few things:

 

1) I feel sorry for Joely Richardson and Gabriel Byrne. It seems they feel slighted or missed the train on being the only British (Irish) actors who weren't in Harry Potter so they made a grab for another potential franchise.

 

2) During the training we see that the students wear chest protectors at practice, why don't the Stragoi all wear one of these? Good luck killing us now!

 

3) The obvious sequel which was set up has a failed Indiegogo campaign.

https://www.indiegog...-academy-film#/

Sorry, the $10,000 part with a line is gone and so is the campaign which only gathered up $250,000 of a $1.5 million goal. Wikipedia says they were going to try and make a cheaper sequel.

 

4) How could these people be computer literate (I changed your screen saver!) and also not know what a IPhone is? Is the internet connection that bad in Montana? It seemed to work just fine for Rose or did she just get all her knowledge before being placed in VA?

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Like if I had never seen Pretty in Pink and then someone called me "Duckie" I would question the shit out of it or at the very least make a confused facial expression.

i havent seen it in years so i cant really remember anything about pretty in pink but when i heard "Duckie" i thought it was a shout out to Lea Thompson calling Howard "ducky" in Howard the duck

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i lost so much interest in this movie that i spent most of it, like the gang did, just saying "oh, thats like twilight .. and thats like harry pottter" or "hey, he looks like that guy and she looks like that girl form that other thing"

 

2 stand outs for me ...

 

155o0pl.jpg

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couple of things:

 

it was shot in Pinewood studios in England and the movie with the drinking blood from rats was interview with a vampire

 

... is that still a good watch? only saw it once around the time it came out so .. maybe i'll watch it this month ... it's october so it's time to start the horrors me thinks. i've been stocking up. recently bought some in the hope we get another halloween episode this year ... i got ghost ship, 13 ghosts, supernova and, after a previous discussion on here, queen of the damned ... vlad help me

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and finally (sorry for the multiple posts) i cant express how cool it is to hear an irish accent on how did this get made that isnt this guy. i really enjoy Aisling's sense of humor so i really enjoy this episode.

 

An-mhaith Aisling Ó Súilleabháin, bualadh bos agus an bhfuil cead agam go dti an leithreas

 

Leprechaun-in-the-Hood-420x215.jpg

 

whenever i see she's in LA i suggest (beg) on twitter that paul has aisling on as a guest so i cant believe its happened. next time i see david o'doherty is over there i'm gonna big him up .. fingers crossed.

 

edit: oh and maeve higgins people of new york .. go see maeve ... her mind is beautifully weird and hilarious

 

 

ive been asking even longer for HDTGM to come over to Ireland cause there's no way im ever going to get to travel to see a live show. maybe squarespace could host a podcast festival in their dublin offices sometime ... get on it squarespace

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Long time lurker, first time poster.

 

I will say, unashamed, that I'm a huge fan of these books. They're cheesy at times, but they're some of the better YA vampires books out there. I was sad when they decided to do a movie because they were just trying to cash in on the Twilight/Hunger Games craze. Plot-wise, there are many things that affect the first book/movie that are explained in later books. What Lissa's powers are and mean, what happened in the accident, a lot of motivations, etc. They just took the first book, added bits from the second and third (nothing good), and made this.

 

After all was said and done, only two things really upset me: the accents and the ending. There was no reason for the British accents. They are all American in the book. There are moroi and dhampirs from other countries that show up later. I'm guessing it was just some way to distinguish between the two groups, as though fangs wouldn't do that? The final speech never happened. I PAID to watch this in the theater with my friend. We were willing to accept everything until that ending. It felt like their way to wrap it all up, knowing they would not be making another movie.

 

I also paid for the bluray with a digital copy, bought & read the sequel series, have the three graphic novels, and even bought merch.

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Random question: what was the podcast Paul recommended at the top of the show? It sounded like he said "Tennis" but that doesn't seem to be it...

 

EDIT: Found out thanks to Reddit-it's called Tanis: http://iTunes.com/tanis

 

Paul, can you please spell the names of things when they sound very close to other things? :)

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This is a very strange movie. It's like they took all of the necessary scenes, threw them into a blender, and assigned them at random. Every scene seems to have almost nothing to do with the last. As nonsensical as some of the pop-culture references were, all of the lampshading the screenwriter did with this very silly concept is the only thing that makes it at all watchable. At least it's attempting a campy tone, rather than taking everything deathly seriously.

 

Anyway, I had some thoughts about Natalie (Sarah Hyland's character). Paul notes that it was strange to have the other characters make fun of her for wearing glasses, like this is something out of the 1950s. By 2014, it seemed like thick-rimmed plastic glasses had become downright fashionable among teenagers, so at first this does seem like a weird throwback trope and an example of lazy writing. But then I realized that at this school, Natalie appears to be the only person who needs glasses. That includes students, teachers, administrators, the royal family, whoever. No one else wears them. Given that the Vision Council of America states that about 64% of the population wears glasses, it seems noteworthy that only one person at this school appears to need corrective lenses. Perhaps there is something about being a vampire (or half-vampire or whatever) that is supposed to eliminate the need for vision correction, but Natalie missed out on it and is forever outcast for that reason? That might go a long way towards explaining her bizarre psychosis.

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Random question: what was the podcast Paul recommended at the top of the show? It sounded like he said "Tennis" but that doesn't seem to be it...

 

EDIT: Found out thanks to Reddit-it's called Tanis: http://iTunes.com/tanis

 

Paul, can you please spell the names of things when they sound very close to other things? :)/>

 

You might struggle to get Paul (all hail Paul!) to increase his precision when it comes to names...

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Throughout the movie, Dimitri is constantly telling the audience that Rose is nothing more than a "novice"--that she's not a true Guardian. We even see this for ourselves when we first meet Ducky, as the first thing he does (besides tell a group of his peers that "Dimitri is a God") is totally hand Rose her ass. At this point, the movie is pretty much telling us that, due to her yearlong absence, her fighting skills have atrophied to the point that even Ducky, a student who was (maybe) at best her equal at Dhampir-ing, has now far outpaced her skills. Furthermore, based on the running gag of Rose trying to catch Dimitri off guard, we are shown that Rose's innate battle instincts tell her that the best way to catch your opponent unaware is to yell for a full ten second as you slowly charge at them and jump on their back like a goddamn Muppet.

 

 

dabney-coleman-and-animal-in-the-muppets-take-manhattan-580x419.jpg

 

 

I only bring all this up to point out how gloriously inept the Guardians she takes out at the beginning must have been. Not only do they immediately give themselves away, but about five, fully trained, adult Dhampirs let an untested and out of practice teenager kick all of their sorry asses. Dimitri would have been better off just having Ducky bring them in.

 

Also, a bit off topic, but just a quick tip for the lovelorn, if you ever finding yourself referring to the rival of your love's affections as "a God," you might as well just go ahead and throw in the towel. That's a big fat "GAME OVER," bro.

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Late to the Vampire Party but finally got to the movie, then caught the podcast yesterday. Sweet merciful Vlad, that was a mess.

 

There's so much to say and so much of it has already been said above - a few things that really tickled me...

 

- While I was saddened to see Gabriel Byrne in this thing - it took me a few seconds to thankfully realise he hadn't aged that much, it was just makeup - I liked the reminder of the 'benevolent figure who turns out to be a bad guy' twist in The Usual Suspects. Yes, I know Dean Keaton wasn't Keiser Soze but there's a moment where Verbal Kint makes us believe he is, and the reveal in this reminded me of that. I had some memory of Vampire Gabriel wearing a fedora at some point but I can't find an image online. Maybe that was what made me think of it.

- Aisling Bea's impersonation of Dimitry's 'learn English by being in a movie' was the highlight of the week for me, although are we agreed that she made a mistake assuming Dimitry (Bobo long-hair Ashton Kutcher to me) was 16,000 years old? Yep.

- How about the on-the-nose-ism of the credits track 'Bela Lugosi's dead'? Maybe vampire movies generated feedbag fanboys to bridge between Cameron's Bram Stoker theory and Anne Rice?

- The book's called 'Vampire Academy', as is the film. Yet in the movie, Lissa says 'Don't use the V word' (or words to that effect). Usually 'vampire' is thrown around by Rose, in a way that she is either clueless about its offence (not likely) or is trying to be offensive (jerk move). Maybe the title to the first book was a marketing decision, and it just stuck? They make it clear that 'vampires' are fictional creatures; Moroi and Stragoi only resemble vampires in certain ways. SO WHY IS IT CALLED VAMPIRE ACADEMY?

- Favourite line (and new post signature): They may call Dimitri a god... but I'm an atheist. An atheist with a big-ass gun."

 

I'm sure there's more, but I have to go teach. Will check back in later. So much to say about this thing.

 

Also: this was the first HDTGM film my wife has watched with me, bemusedly. I'm happy to say, three days later, our marriage appears intact. There were moments during this thing that I truly wondered. And then Rose punched Mia in the face, my wife laughed out loud, and i settled in.

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Throughout the movie, Dimitri is constantly telling the audience that Rose is nothing more than a "novice"--that she's not a true Guardian. We even see this for ourselves when we first meet Ducky as the first thing he does (besides tell a group of his peers that "Dimitri is a God") is totally hand Rose her ass. At this point, the movie is pretty much telling us that, due to her yearlong absence, her fighting skills have atrophied to the point that even Ducky, a student who was (maybe) at best her equal at Dhampir-ing, has now far outpaced her skills. Furthermore, based on the running gag of Rose trying to catch Dimitri off guard, we are shown that Rose's innate battle instincts tell her that the best way to catch your opponent unaware is to yell for a full ten second as you charge slowly at them and jump on their back like a goddamn Muppet.

 

 

dabney-coleman-and-animal-in-the-muppets-take-manhattan-580x419.jpg

 

 

I only bring all this up to point out how gloriously inept the Guardians she takes out at the beginning must have been. Not only do they immediately give themselves away, but about five, fully trained, adult Dhampirs let an untested and out of practice teenager kick all of their sorry asses. They would have been better off having Ducky bring them in.

 

Also, a bit off topic, but just a quick tip for the lovelorn, if you ever finding yourself referring to the rival of your love's affections as "a God," you might as well just go ahead and throw in the towel. That's a big fat "GAME OVER," bro.

 

Yes! All of this! She says 'it takes five of our best to take down one of their worst', and the one at the beginning she 'freezes' in front of, that appears like a Big Bad but is ultimately just a nameless peon, is the first Stragoi she has ever seen. Like, what? Surely in all her years they've run across a couple from time to time? And is St Vlad's somehow magically protected from Stragoi like Hogwart's is from the Death Eaters (for most of the time), or Camp Halfblood is from Monsters (we really need a decent Percy Jackson reboot)? They are all pretty relaxed for a group under constant threat: and whose enemies live in the cave up the way. Particularly since any malcontent Moroi just needs to suck on a fanboy feedbag for a minute too long and they'll turn into an embedded incendiary device that none of the students are equipped to fight. Even Modern Family was tough to put down, and she's tiny. Gah, this movie.

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Pro tip for undercover Stragoi hoping to infiltrate Moroi hotspots: sunglasses. They won't know what hit 'em.

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Pro tip for undercover Stragoi hoping to infiltrate Moroi hotspots: sunglasses. They won't know what hit 'em.

 

And normal natural color contact lenses just in case someone ask them to take the sunglasses off

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i sent this tweet after watching this movie because its so stupid ... it was more of a reaction to it's awfulness really ... that was a few days ago but today this happened ..

 

bgofp2.jpg

 

i don't know if it's a bot or a real person but it just makes me hate the movie more

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Did anyone else notice that on the horrible Netflix poster it looks like they originally had Rose with her hands on her hips, then decided to have her holding a stake instead, but apparently forgot to remove the hands on hips afterward? Anyway, it made me laugh.

 

 

cf49664efd95ba031775494c10e57e145ea43146.jpg

 

That's hilarious!

 

My Netflix basically used this image Photoshopped onto a green background:

 

c0aa96c60ac48f38af7cc7f8aa56004f.jpg

 

Which is fine, I suppose. I guess this is just Netflix's way of saying, "Spoilers don't exist when the film is already this rotten. You're welcome."

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Did anyone else notice that on the horrible Netflix poster it looks like they originally had Rose with her hands on her hips, then decided to have her holding a stake instead, but apparently forgot to remove the hands on hips afterward? Anyway, it made me laugh.

 

 

cf49664efd95ba031775494c10e57e145ea43146.jpg

 

 

fixed it

 

2q8v95c.jpg

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This movie was an hour and forty minute run-on sentence. It was exposition at an incessant pace, so much was being thrown at me the entire time. It was like they got Zoey Deutch got into an ADR booth and said, "hey we have 45 minutes to get through everything, go!"

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