Friday, October 19, 2012
Galleycat presents some musical riffs from their Varney the Vampire remix
As some of you know,I took part in Galleycat's first Literary Remix and rewrote a section of a Horatio Alger novel called Joe's Luck. It was a lot of fun,so when a new remix contest was announced,I put my name in the hat for another chance to mix up old school,as it were.
Plus,they chose a vampire tale this time around,a Victorian potboiler entitled Varney the Vampire and resisting such ghoulish goofiness would be as possible for me as it would be for a pack of felines to turn down a mountain of catnip.
Entries are beginning to appear at Galleycat's Tumblr page and the first one up is a musical rewrite based on Lady GaGa's "Telephone",which is pretty well done,I have to say. As it turns out,my entry is also musical related as well but I doubt all of the participants will be doing that.
However,it won't surprise me if a few more of them are sinister song fests. There's just something irresistible about blending vampires with musicals;an oddly acquired taste to be sure,like that milk and Pepsi combo from Laverne and Shirley. Granted, it sounds awful tasting but if you get the mix just right,it can be a funny yet flavorful comedy concoction.
My first encounter with vampires and music came from 1979's Love at First Bite,in the scene where the Count shows his true seductive skills to cynical Cindy Sondheim by twirling her about on the dance floor.
It's a great moment to watch but sadly,the home video version takes out their song "I Love The Night Life"(due to a dispute over the rights)which really makes that dance work as well it does,in my opinion:
The yen for vampire musicals has grown over the years,with a Broadway version of The Vampire Lestat hitting the stage,along with productions based on Nosferatu and the Fearless Vampire Killers and of course,the now classic Buffy episode where Spike got to sing his heart out.
However,the best use of this strange little sub-genre has been in the humor realm as Forgetting Sarah Marshall proved when the most popular parts of the film were centered on the leading man's desire to put on a puppet musical version of Dracula. Frankly,I'd like to see that on stage and wish Jason Siegal had done that instead of making that revamped Muppet movie(no pun intended,I swear!):
Most of the satirical stakes and arrows these days in this area are aimed at Twilight,for it's popularity amongst teenagers preferring a more romantic friendly edition of broody bloodsuckers(not to mention their moms).
As a Twilight fan myself,I've found that it's best to have a sense of humor about these things and some of the jokes are on point at times. Part of the appeal of vampire lovers is their deadly dating habits,after all.
Times and tastes do change,especially when it comes to horror so I'm sure that this trend will settle down enough to placate the fans of traditional vampire lore yet not entirely deprive us of a lovable emo vamp now and then:
Once all the entries are in,a winner will be chosen and the entire set of rewrites will be published in an e-book,courtesy of Smashwords,that will available as a free download. Good luck to all of my fellow participants and I look forward to seeing how creatively silly this vampire saga gets.
As for my musical number,I really went old school there. A very guilty pleasure of mine is the official video for "Everybody" by the Backstreet Boys,with it's transformation of the boys in the band into classic movie monsters(including a rather London After Midnight look for the vampire)and how I worked that into this story,well,you'll just have to wait and see,friends and fiends:
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