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Interview with the Vampire: Is My Very Nature That of a Devil

“One of those inconceivable moments, where who you were before and who you would be forever after is marked in time.”

As uneven and mildly toxic the relationship between Louis and Lestat has been so far, this episode shows that their relationship is already doomed.

We've come to the question at the heart of Louis and Lestat, whether Lestat's protestations of eternal love are real or simply another thing he likes to pretend is real. That might be the fundamental difference between Louis and Lestat, how they feel. I'm not just talking about love, it is more about everything. Lestat is a lonely being, haunted and afraid to endure the centuries stretching before him alone. Louis may not fully grasp immortality, but he is young and vibrant and full of love and hate and rage. A balm for an immortal for sure, but is that heat and passion lasting?

Louis is also a bit of a selfish lover, mostly concerned with his own world and his own desire. He wants to retain whatever vestiges of humanity he has left, including the tenuous connections he has with his family. He has kept his distance with his family, and as the years have passed, the strain that distance has pulled his connection to his sister and mother to the breaking point. It does eventually break in a moment of violence, when Louis loses his temper and reveals too much of his nature. This effectively alienates himself from his family once and for all, and the final blow is his mother calling him a monster. That simple word guts him like a knife, and pushes him to act on his vampiric impulses. Possibly accepting that as much as he wants to be human, he isn’t anymore.

Lestat on the other hand is not very good with either patience or jealousy, and despite his own mercurial nature he cannot stand to share Louis with someone that actually matters to him. It is a strange parallel, but it works because the flaws in each of them contribute to their basic problem. Lestat cannot be completely monogamous or in any way human. Whereas Louis cannot dabble in excess without going to extremes, acting inhumanly despite his desperation to hold onto the man he once was.

This is why the Storyville subplot works so well. We have the rich white men in charge dispensing with even more fuckery, and the Alderman enacting law after law to basically shut down Louis’ business. That business had been Louis' bridge to his old life. No matter how successful, it was temporary, and Louis didn't realize it – from suggestive rules that Louis worked around, to the downright unfair and racist ones that shut down the Azalea. It pushes Louis to the point of desperation, so when the Alderman starts lording over Louis, it is for the last time. Unfortunately, the gruesome result of Louis giving into his monster plunges the quarter into chaos.

It is one of those cause and effect moments where little things keep poking at the characters, forcing them to move and shift and change, and then make bad choices which lead to more bad choices and eventually things boil over into something grand and horrible. It’s not the first time we’ve seen this kind of slow burn storytelling, but it is oddly effective for this version of this story, which is wildly different from the book at this point, and deals heavily with themes of race and inequality.

It would all seem rather bleak except for that last moment. As Louis is speaking of his regret and horror over the consequences of his actions, of how he couldn’t save his brothel or the street that had once been his entire world, a new focus for his life appears. A scream for help, a voice, a girl, a daughter, named Claudia. For me, just hearing her name brought a tear to my eye. She will be the heart of the story, and the character I have been waiting for.


I loved Daniel calling out Louis on inconsistencies and the odyssey of recollection. Just a wonderful truth, how our memories are shoddy and rarely consistent. A story told can be layered with holes and flaws and how it both matters and is completely irrelevant.

Louis is fond of the word ‘articulation.’ He has used it a number of times in his story, but only in the present. I don’t know if that is an intentional writing choice, but it shows that even an immortal can be stuck with a mental tick such as using a word again and again.

I almost cringed when Daniel threw away the tapes and Louis burned them, but if we are thinking of the story told in the 70’s as apocryphal, then maybe they don’t matter. That being said, Louis setting fire to them was a bit startling. His powers are impressive.


Lestat: “The Louisiana purchase was signed here. Penny wise, franc foolish.”
Louis: “Say anything about how they used to take runaway slaves, cut their heads off, and pike 'em on the iron gates as a warning?”
Lestat: “I’m only halfway through, let's see.”

Louis: “I could not save the Azalea, I could not save Storyville, I could not save the aunt on the wrong side of the wall, but I could save her. My light, my Claudia. My redemption.”

Louis: (quoting Daniel's book) “I’m in my Buick staring in the rearview mirror at my daughter in the car seat, an hour after I gave Derek, a guy I don’t know, the last 30 bucks I had. My editor reminds me, it’s seven years before car seats are mandatory. My ex-wife reminds me, I never owned a Buick. This is the odyssey of recollection.”

3 1/2 out of 4 Corrupt Bureaucrats

Samantha M. Quinn spends most of her time in front of a computer typing away at one thing or another; when she has free time, she enjoys pretty much anything science fiction or fantasy-related.


  1. Thank you for your review, I like it. I agree with your assessment of the relationship of L&L in the show. Especially Louis. I did always think Louis as a selfish lover, focussing on his own world and desires and not taking into account the needs and wants of his respecitve others. In the end he is a loner by choice. And as well mannered and in control he shows off to be, he does have a control issue because as you said, he cannot deal with excess without going to extremes.
    As for Lestat, I do believe his statements of eternal love are true, but the problem of their relationship in the show is, as you described it.
    The burning the tapes - I took as a metaphor for letting go of the source material. But to be honest, I am glad they did. I disliked them changing everything from the books, while clinging to them - it made everything feel disjointed for me. I can embrace the new story for what it is, if they do not constantly remind me of the books and therefore the stark changes. Maybe this is why so far I liked this episode the best.
    Another thing is many point out, how toxic the relationship is - and it is. Yet in the show, they made it so much more so, by changing elemental parts of the book canon. On the one hand the show tries to sell it as deeply romantic by trying to bring in context from later books, but by changing the main characters, it is not so much romantic as really toxic. I am not sure, it this is what the writers had in mind tbh. I never got this kind of toxicness from the books, especially later ines. It basically was to men loving eachother but being fundamentally different which somehow made a relationship long term impossible - but toxic, not so much. From the books I alway had more the feeling that Louis (at least for me) was more a representation of someone dealing with depression. Lestat on the other hand is more of a representation of someone with histrionic personality disorder with acute phases of depression. None of them easy to handle, together impossible.

  2. sorry for the typos, have not figured out how to edit here. And sorry, I seem to be unable to keep my comments short...

  3. If you're going to change your lead to be a black man in the early 1900s America, then you're going to have to talk about race and Jim Crow laws. Obviously, this is all stuff that is wildly different than the book. No wonder Louis burnt the tapes. It's a completely different story. Still, how it was handled was phenomenal. A slow burn, where Louis thought that everything was perfect only for it to fall apart along with everything else in his life.

    Your comment about Louis and excess was spot on. That's the problem with suppressing something: it builds up inside like a volcano. So when the pressure finally breaks, it doesn't just snap but explode. Louis didn't just kill the alderman. He made a public display out of it. Did he enjoy it, though? I'm not sure.

    Lestat was thrilled, ready to declare this their anniversary. Like Louis' humanity was always something that was going to fade. But did Louis not enjoy it, or was he just already horrified by the side effects? If there wasn't a riot going on outside, would he have been more receptive?

    I kept expecting Lestat to kill the man that Louis slept with too, but apparently he didn't. That surprised me. His most toxic traits were on full display here, and he definitely came off as less charming than before. Just as charismatic, but not as "sweep you off your feet" charming. (Side note: I adore how Sam Reid occasionally switches accents for a sentence or two. Very smooth and well done. I love it whenever anyone does that.)



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