First Kill, review: a vampire story that disappoints expectations

First Kill, review: a vampire story that disappoints expectations

First Kill, review

From 10 June a whole new TV series has been available on Netlix that had been waiting for a while. First Kill, a creation by Victoria Schwab based on her short story, is the story of a forbidden love born between ancient hostilities, dark cults and legends that come true.

Buy the Fire TV Stick 4K Max with Wi-Fi connection Alexa-compatible Fi Produced by WaterWalk Entertainment and Inc. Belletrist Productions, a first glimpse of First Kill was possible during Netflix Geeked Week. The 8 long episodes, lasting about 50 minutes each, star Juliette (Sarah Catherine Hook) and Calliope (Imani Lewis), vampire and huntress, linked by a curious destiny and a deep and sudden attraction.

What is First Kill about?

Humans and monstrous creatures coexist in the world in a condition of mutual hatred, and both sides try to escape each other's decimation. In the small town of Savannah, in the United States, monsters are hiding from hunters. In particular, the Fairmont, a family of Original Vampires direct descendant of the First Bloodline, live in apparent harmony with the rest of the inhabitants in order to feed on poor victims without arousing any suspicion. These, in fact, are immune to light and can be reflected in mirrors, in spite of "traditional" vampires who wander in the dark.

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The first imperfections

Initially, the storyline of First Kill is very captivating. Each episode bears the title of a "first time": First Kiss, First Blood, First Fight and so on. The viewer is well directed towards the mysteries that involve, first of all, Juliette's family and the story of the Originals. It is interesting, in fact, to know all the mechanisms that Schwab sets up to give life to a mythology, despite being partly similar to what stories and media have often shown. Assuming the setting and the purely fantasy character of the TV series, First Kill lacks a plot that, in certain moments, does not fully exist. The same attraction between the two protagonists is so sudden as to be "far-fetched", in addition to the fact that it falls into the cliché of forbidden love.

The storyline, moreover, is so linear and devoid of temporal progressions or regressions to convey a clear enough idea: the story is lazy, and the result is a montage that does not enjoy any stylistic quirk. The ending suggests the desire for a continuation, giving even more a sense of general incompleteness which on the one hand arouses curiosity, but on the other hand does not create such fertile ground for a second season.

First Kill is a rather brave queer drama

The trailer and the first official images, like the poster itself, made one think of a homosexual love as the real center of attention. In reality, the new Netflix series is a great concentration of fantasy that leaves little room for romance, or at least does not do it in the most appropriate way. Speaking openly about LGBTQA + issues is very important, especially through a medium that can reach a wide audience. The same choice of dropping First Kill's debut in Pride month sounded great. But what happens when, after almost 8 hours of viewing, there is very little talk about this theme? The truth is that, after the great success of Heartstopper, a TV series based on Alice Oseman's comic, the expectations were really high, perhaps too high. Maybe the Netflix downfall was inevitable, but it's also true that First Kill really went out of its way to disappoint the audience.

Calliope and Juliette Reduced to a mere set of passionate scenes, the story of Juliette and Calliope is perhaps the element that generates the greatest discontent. If on the one hand Schwab wants to face coming out and the homosexual relationship in the most natural way possible (as it should be), on the other hand this purpose ends up falling into a negative excess. Naturalness becomes obvious, and what the viewer would like to hear is not said. First Kill is a show that has the courage to show queer love without filters, but not enough to talk about it as the audience would have liked.

Direction without art or part

Given therefore for it is established that the new Netflix series is almost exclusively a mere story about the supernatural, it is interesting to analyze its realization on an aesthetic and directing level. The style, particularly in photography and in the all too linear editing, is rather bland, without particular flashes or virtuosity. The only elements that arouse attention are the scenes in which Juliette, in the throes of crises, surrounds herself with a blood-red atmosphere, with a clearly symbolic value and with an allusion to an almost hallucinatory dimension.

A vision from Juliette Vampires aren't the only creatures the Guild has to deal with. Zombies, Ghouls, Werewolves and various demonic figures make their appearance, and the animation sector of First Kill sets the computer graphics in motion. This, however, on more than one occasion, demonstrates minimal effort in appearing as homogeneous as possible. One sequence in particular sees a monster invade the home of Calliope's family, resulting in clashes to kill him. The CGI used to make and animate the creature is gross, far too cumbersome. Still, some recurring special effects do not convince enough: the eyes of vampires, when they apply hypnosis, are colored with vivid and shiny colors, perhaps a little too much. The impression is that of witnessing the graphics of a few decades ago - is it the nostalgia of Buffy The Vampire Slayer? - and, in short, to an animation so "fake" that it stands in stark contrast to the performance of the cast.

In conclusion

First Kill's misleading advertising had created such expectations high to make the public impatient. At the end of the day, this fantasy teen drama can't be considered the show of the month; indeed, at the end of the 8 episodes, one detaches himself very easily. A work that could be quickly forgotten, despite the initial effort to captivate the public.

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