Suspenseful Season Finale Finds Lovable Bloodsuckers Trapped in a Big ‘Uh Oh, SpaghettiO’
I can’t believe it’s already that time, but here we are at the season finale of “What We Do in the Shadows.” Through ‘70s vampire homes, Superb Owls and Jackie Daytona, these past nine episodes have hilariously expanded upon the world, all while Guillermo grapples with his fatal heritage and the path it may lead him down. With tonight’s episode, it’s safe to say that the once-timid familiar has finally accepted his calling with some deadly results.
Just a forewarning that everything from here on out is loaded with *SPOILERS*, so read at your own risk! Catch up with all “What We Do in the Shadows” season two with recaps here.
“Nouveau Théâtre des Vampires” (dir. Kyle Newacheck)
As Nandor (Kayvan Novak) wakes from his daytime slumber, he realizes that Guillermo (Harvey Guillén) is nowhere to be found. All that’s left in his familiar’s room is a small note that says “Sorry,” implying that Guillermo has finally left his master. Over a week later, the house is in complete disarray without him. Countless half-drunk bodies are strewn all over the floor with no regard for cleaning up the slippery pools of blood everywhere. They can’t even do laundry on their own, so it’s no wonder why Nandor goes from his lavish cape to Michael Jordan’s Dream Team jersey.
Nandor remains in a state of denial that he’s better off without Guillermo. He really isn’t. Surely sending him a picture of him having fun with a taxidermied bear will show his familiar who’s who. If only Nadja (Natasia Demetriou), Laszlo (Matt Berry) or Colin Robinson (Mark Proksch) bothered to learn his last name, maybe they’d get somewhere contacting him. At that second, everyone receives an invitation to the Nouveau Théâtre des Vampires, a traveling European event that only the most prestigious vampires are invited to.
If only they had someone to do their laundry so they’ll actually look presentable. Colin Robinson, in his one of his greatest troll moves yet, offers to do their laundry, presented as an arduous, death-defying task, in exchange to move into a better room. I mean, if you were already planning to make a trip to the dry cleaners, you might as well play your desperate roomies for fools. Colin Robinson indeed wins again.
Guillermo, meanwhile, has spent the past week in his mom’s apartment in the Bronx, conflicted with his desire to become a vampire despite his violent ancestral tendencies. Back in Staten Island, the vampires arrive at the Nouveau Théâtre des Vampires and take their seats among the pinnacles of vampire high society. Going back for his mini-fridge, Guillermo lays his eyes on the mess that’s accumulated since he’s left and promptly slips on the pooling blood. Before leaving, he notices that the invitation was sent by the deceivious Vampiric Council. The Nouveau Théâtre des Vampires turns out to be a deceptive ploy to exact revenge on the vampires who escaped their clutches last season.
As the master of ceremonies, Vladislav the Poker (Jemaine Clement) takes the stage and shines a spotlight on the clueless guests of honor. Seeing someone from the film always makes me smile even if they’re technically the villain turning against our core vampire crew. Using props and amateur actors, Vladislav reenacts the many vampire atrocities he believes they have committed, all as Guillermo watches from above the stage with guilt. The Baron, the ‘70s vampire clan and the Council’s assassins were all hastily slaughtered by the deadly familiar.
Even on the verge of being painfully beheaded, Nadja, Laszlo and Colin Robinson can’t help but criticize the actors’ mediocre performances. Nandor attempts to assure the Council that his familiar was behind the killings and that he’s taken care of him, taking the pressure off of Guillermo should they be let free. Neither Vladislav nor the crowd believes him. And just as the guillotine comes slashing, Guillermo emerges from out of the shadows and swings onto the stage. Vladislav flees when he realizes that this won’t end well for him.
What follows is the series’ most spectacular sequence thus far. Brimming with anger, Guillermo leaps from the stage, stakes at the ready, and single-handedly takes out a large portion of Council members one by one. I just about screamed in excitement when Guillermo, seemingly trapped in a vampire huddle, proceeds to break free and perform a holy water spin, hosing them down with the most badass expression on his face. And if this rescue wasn’t already the greatest thing ever, he grabs one by the hair, tilts the head back and then dispenses more holy water down the vampire’s gullet. It’s one unabashedly awesome vampire slaying technique after the other. Harvey Guillén should be so proud of his amazing stunt work on display.
There the once-timid familiar stands, soaked in the blood of his natural enemies. The Van Helsing prophecy has been fulfilled, a mere familiar no more. All beware Guillermo de la Cruz (“of the Cross”)! And despite all that’s happened in the past few minutes and the vampire bodies piled on top of one another, Nandor still manages to complain about having to pick up his own laundry. We end on a striking shot which makes it loud and clear that you don’t f*** with Guillermo or his friends.
Overall, the sophomore season of “What We Do in the Shadows” only proved just how much this show has to offer for years to come. I made some predictions toward the start that did not pan out as I initially thought. After the unexpected vampire raid in “The Curse,” it appears that we may have seen the last of the amateur vampire hunters. I’m still holding out hope that Beanie Feldstein makes a guest appearance again at some point, more experienced after a year or so as a true vampire.
Among this season’s offerings, “Colin’s Promotion” is without a doubt my favorite singular episode. A notoriously funny side character in Colin Robinson gets the spotlight only to elicit the biggest laughs, shocks and overall suspense throughout the entire season. I can’t imagine a portion of the series finale that doesn’t have Colin Robinson single-handedly taking over New York after being shown everything he’s capable of.
“Nouveau Théâtre des Vampires” concludes on an unforeseen turn of events that places the core cast of vampires in boiling hot water.The season three premiere sets up our vampire crew on the run á la “Spider-Man: Far From Home.” I may have to wait over a year or longer to see more of my favorite vampires, but I’m happy that we’re even getting a third season at all. We’re very lucky to have “What We Do in the Shadows” and the amazingly talented, hilarious cast to go with it.
They really are lazy teenagers with Guillermo there to pick up the mess.
“Someone contact the village washerwoman!”
Any Mickey Guillermos here?
“I’ll do this just to show you how dumb you are.”
Guillermo polishing that sword might be the scariest image of this entire season. Way to go, Harvey!
“This is your hot take? That you have a problem with the choreography?”
I’m willing to bet they left someone out in that vampire “In Memoriam” video.
WHAT. AN. ENDING.
Until next season, bloodsuckers, sleep tight in your musty coffins, and cross your fingers Guillermo de la Cruz isn’t waiting outside with a freshly carved stake.
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Featured image credit: FX Networks
Matt graduated from Keene State College in 2017 with a Bachelor’s in Critical Film Studies. A few of his favorite films include “2001: A Space Odyssey,” “Army of Darkness,” “Before Sunrise” and “Certain Women.” Having already contributed to Bloody Disgusting, ELF Magazine and The Simple Cinephile, Matt aspires to expand and continue writing with various outlets. If there’s any chance to talk about horror films and/or Twin Peaks, he’ll very much jump at the opportunity.