I didn’t realize how badly I needed a Matt Berry monologue about erotic topiary in my life until it happened. Bolstered by Berry’s hilarious cold open—I about spit out my Diet Coke when he proudly said, “my mother!”—this week’s episode of What We Do In The Shadows went by just as fast as last week’s, but felt more narratively satisfying. That’s probably because both of the week’s storylines wrapped up by the end of the episode—which is undoubtedly more traditionally sitcom-esque than previous installments of the series, but is preferable to yet another dropped Nadja storyline.
Also, out of all the vampires, it makes the most sense to send Colin Robinson out on a side quest, so to speak. Colin’s increasingly emerging as an agent of chaos on the show, annoying Nandor in his coffin and making an unexpected decision to dump his new officemate/vampiric soulmate Evie Russell (Vanessa Bayer)—which was a parting gift, really, given that she’s an emotional vampire. She can squeeze sympathy out of that for months, and she doesn’t even have to lie about it. And let’s face it, this show already has more supporting characters than it knows what to do with. So, as delightful as Bayer always is, a one-episode guest star arc was actually a welcome relief.
It’ll be interesting to see if we werewolves pop up again this season, given that they were one of the most delightful parts of the movie. The two werewolf packs are connected by their dorky earnestness and group-therapy structure; that being said, this pack had that uniquely Canadian blend of rugged and polite going on. I expected the werewolf effects to be intentionally terrible, after seeing that rubber Halloween mask on the werewolf the vampires caught on their lawn early in the episode. But the rest of the episode’s special effects were great—and well lit!
But although this week’s episode still felt like it was finding its way in terms of group dynamics and storytelling—where was Nandor throughout most of this episode? Catching up on Dark Shadows reruns, maybe?—there were a lot of amusing little touches that made it a livelier watch than last week’s. The rules of order of the vampire-werewolf truce were universally goofy and fun, giving us great lines like, “we meet on the roof of this abandoned Circuit City in accordance with the protocols of the Staten Island lycanthrope-vampire truce of 1993,” that really epitomize the comedic style of What We Do In The Shadows. There was also some very funny comedic acting in this episode; I especially enjoyed Colin trying and failing to squeeze between cubicles at his office, Nadja sticking her arms out in front of her to open the door to her crypt, and Nandor’s line reading when he clarified that “tonight is a good night for the other guy, not me, to die.”
- Hee hee, “bush manipulation.”
- Honestly, drop Laszlo and Nadja’s crypt down in the French Quarter in New Orleans, and you could make a killing selling exotic taxidermy there. Brooklyn or Salem, MA would also work.
- “I hate this goat.”
- When’s Guillermo going to get his Summer of George?
- Let’s keep expanding the vampires’ world! Just going out on the roof of that Circuit City was refreshing.
- A lot of vaginal references this episode! Along with Laszlo’s vulva garden and him and Nadja discussing his sister’s genitalia, there was also Nadja’s line, “she’s emptying her wolf snatch all over the bushes!,” which I will think about every time I go camping from now on. (Just kidding. I don’t go camping.)
- Also a visceral contempt for humans in this episode, especially from Colin—which, fair enough, since we are basically cattle to them.