Vampires vs Werewolves

I’m sure some of you remember that classic joke that the Twilight series is about a young woman’s choice between bestiality and necrophilia. It’s a silly joke, I’m sure I giggled at it when I heard it, even if I never quiiite agreed with the premise. Like, Edward is a vampire, but he isn’t dead-dead. He’s still like, moving around and thinking thoughts and doing all the staple “alive person” things.

Werewolves and vampires being positioned against each other is something we see in a lot of popular media. Twilight is probably the most famous, my cup of tea was a show called Being Human which had a werewolf and a vampire and a ghost as roommates, although I don’t know how many people saw that one. But my point, anyways, is that today I have a very big hot take: between werewolves and vampires, I always thought that vampires were more zooey than werewolves.

Treason! Heresy! Werewolves are very hot and very hairy! I know, I know, believe me, I noticed, and I’m not saying that I disagree with that. When it comes to burying your face against a werewolf or a vampire, yes, I’m very sure that the more tickly furry dog-smelling one will feel a lot more familiar. But on the level of THEMES and CONFLICTS inherent to werewolves vs those inherent to vampires, I think that werewolves are maybe more therian, and vampires are more like being the human in a zooey relationship.

For example!

Intelligence! Vampires are often depicted as smarter than humans, and more high-society, more elite: they have had decades, maybe centuries, to cultivate knowledge and sophistication. However, we still so often see them fall in love with humans, and take these “lesser” humans in as equal lovers. I think there is a very strong parallel to be made between that, and my partner getting his leash stuck around a tree and me having to use my supernatural human intellect to untangle him, or my partner popping a red juicy boner while sitting and begging for a guest’s food, and me needing to use some human-to-human rapport to cover for him in what he did not realize was a bit of a faux pas in human society. But by the same token, the vampire always learns something from the human too, like maybe how to looooove.

Lifespans! Yeah, the sad one, but the most relatable one. Vampires are ageless, and in the natural course of things, they will outlive a mortal human partner ten times over. It’s tragic, but it’s a very, very relatable genre of tragedy. I feel for the vampire and for the human who have to go through this, because I know, I’ve literally been there.

Monstrocity! A vampire will fall in love with a human, but there is also inherent conflict there, because of the whole thing where vampires feed on human blood. What turmoil! And, it’s also pretty on-point with zooey relationships, sometimes. I don’t eat meat anymore, but I did eat meat growing up, and it might be a little bit of a poignant moment if I was ever intimate with a cow having grown up eating cheeseburgers. Sorry lady, it sounds like cold comfort but I really didn’t know better, hope we can move forward.

Those initial days with Magreb nearly undid me. At first my euphoria was sharp and blinding, all my thoughts spooling into a single blue thread of relief—The blood does nothing! I don’t have to drink the blood!— but when that subsided, I found I had nothing left. If we didn’t have to drink the blood, then what on earth were these fangs for?

-Excerpt from Vampires in the Lemon Grove, by Karen Russell

Overall, I understand why animal attracted people get more flustered when it comes to seeing werewolves. And to be fair, it does depend a lot on the lore of the world too: if the werewolf is able to spend most of their time in a four legged wolf form, and like, does that, maybe you didn’t even realize until a while in that they were anything else other than a wolf, then yeah falling in love with that werewolf would be pretty zooey. But when it comes to the themes and conflicts, maybe the vampires aren’t as hot, but I always thought that the things they went through resonated with me more.

But in either case, Bella’s choice was really between bestiality and bestiality all along.

Article written by Alissa Dogchurch (March 2023)

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