Anyone who is generally familiar with Robert Rodriguez’ work knows what to expect from his new TV series From Dusk till Dawn: The Series. To be sure, there is plenty of violence, sexuality, and gore in this vampire action-horror story, but the show isn’t quite so comparable to the grindhouse flicks Rodriguez is known for making when given complete reign of a project, such as Machete or, indeed, From Dusk till Dawn the movie. Gone are the grainy visuals and the black comedy deriving from the comically extreme situations of exploitation films. This series takes a more serious approach to vampire-hunting.
Yes, it’s still violent and still gory, but there’s a lot more weight to the storyline and the backstory. It’s no longer a cheesy good-vs.-evil storyline. The characters are more rounded and there’s a lot more explanation of the supernatural. The vampires are now serpentine in their features in order to fall closer in line with Mexican mythology which is more appropriate for the setting in the Sonoran desert.
The comedic moments of the source material are also effaced from this iteration and now it’s a more serious fight for survival by the main protagonists. The series is taking its subject matter as seriously as True Blood, Twilight, or many of the other supernatural series’ that have been successful on cable TV in recent years. It is perhaps not what fans were expecting, but it certainly more mainstream and consequently helps its chances for survival.
The mysterious El Rey network, Rodriguez’ brainchild and home of From Dusk till Dawn: The Series, maintains a sense of mystery by not keeping Nielsen ratings, so numerical information on this series’ power to hold the attention of audiences remains shrouded in secrecy. It must have done well, though, as season 2 was quickly renewed and season 3 was also renewed as season 2 was wrapping up. If all goes according to habit, it looks like season 4 will be announced in the near future, as season 3’s first run is almost up.
Critical and audience buzz online is strong, though. Metacritic pegs it as having a 61% approval rating among critics, which is higher than any of the movies which preceded it. 85% of people like it on Rotten Tomatoes and it has around a 7.0 on IMBD, which is pretty good considering the synopsis of the show makes it sound like nothing more than a lot of blood and guns.
Fans are also excited, on message boards. It turns out that the casting of Eiza González as lead vampiress Santánico Pandemonium was a master stroke as she has quickly become as strong a sex symbol and audience draw as was Salma Hayek in the original movie. Other than that, Rodriguez’ work always has a strong cult following and this shows on message boards as well. People who love violence and people who love vampires agree that this makes for good watching and good discussing online. Chances are good that Dusk till Dawn is going to see the light of
What are your opinions on the show? Do you think the heroes will be able to rid the world of the culebras? Do you think they’ll be able to defeat Amaru by the end of season 3?
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