Vampire legends have been passed around since people first learned to draw in caves. From Babylonian descriptions of Lilith's baby-eating descendants to Roman accounts of Hecate's man-drinking daughter, vampire tales spread around the world. As communication improved and people learned stories from other areas, regional vampire traits were combined and the semi-modern vampire was born.
In the nineteenth century, vampires were hunted almost as frequently as witches, and Europe was in a panic. Writers began elaborating on the legends and selling classic stories like Varney the Vampire and Carmilla. Then Bram Stoker wrote Dracula and the world never stopped wanting more.
The traits added to vampire mythology by Bram Stoker became the canon staples of vampire lore. Vampires became known as shadowless, reflectionless creatures synonymous with immortality, super strength, blood drinking, mind control, shapeshifting, and above all else, danger. Superstitious readers armed themselves with garlic, religious icons, and thresholds that could not be crossed without an invitation. Still, vampires were believable enough for the world to be scared.
Countless writers, actors, and directors put their own spins on classic literature and folklore, but most tried to keep the canonical vampire traits intact - except for the ones who didn't. With modern fiction like Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, TV's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Stephanie Meyer's Twilight Saga, the creatures keep evolving. Some vampire traits are well-liked and others are seen as the dumbest traits in vampire mythology. Entertainment is subjective, so one person's fictional trash is another one's treasure.Which traits added to vampire mythology are your favorites and which are just plain stupid? Vote up the vampire traits you love and vote down the ones you hate. And as always, if you have more to add, sound off in the comments section to rant, rave, or just talk about vampire traits you hate to love or love to hate!
Vampires Can 'Compel' People
In The Vampire Diaries and The Originals, vampires can compel people to do their bidding. It's a simple process, really. Vampires make eye contact, dilate their pupils, and tell people what to do. Then people obey without realizing anything happened, unless they have vervain (a TVD vampire repellent) in their systems, in which case they just wonder about the awkward eye contact.Of course, vampires can just take people hostage until the vervain wears off if they really need to compel someone. Oh, and Original vampires can compel other vampires, too. Sometimes witches can help break the compulsion, but - never mind. It's not simple at all.
Vampire Blood Has Healing Abilities
Humans who are friends with vampires can heal from just about anything with a bit of vampire blood. (Or at least they can in the worlds of True Blood, The Vampire Diaries, and The Originals.) This trait is so nifty it almost justifies the constant danger their supernatural friendships cause in the first place.
Vampires Are Deeply Connected to Their Makers
Sire bonds run deep in The Vampire Chronicles, Being Human, and to an extent, The Vampire Diaries and The Originals. However, vampires are never as close to their makers as they are in True Blood. In that particular mythology, makers mentally summon their progeny, order them to do things, and value them above themselves. The only way to sever the bond is for the maker to say, "As your maker, I release you" - a line that typically makes vampires and fans cry equally hard.
Vampires Are Made Through 'A Whole Big Sucking Thing'
How are vampires made? Buffy explained it best in the series premiere of Buffy the Vampire Slayer when she said, "To make you a vampire they have to suck your blood. And then you have to suck their blood. It's like a whole big sucking thing. Mostly they're just gonna kill you." That sums it up for the Buffyverse (along with The Vampire Chronicles, True Blood, Moonlight, and Being Human).