Sunday, May 12, 2024

REVIEW: 'Interview With the Vampire' - Louis and Claudia Travel Across Europe in 'What Can the Damned Really Say to the Damned'

AMC's Interview With the Vampire - Episode 2.01 "What Can the Damned Really Say to the Damned"

Louis recounts Claudia's quest to find Old World Vampires amidst the inhumanity of WWII Europe.

"What Can the Damned Really Say to the Damned" was written by Hannah Moscovitch and directed by Craig Zisk

Molloy is no longer the bumbling journalist willing to take the vampires at their word on what their life story has been. Decades ago, he fit that role. He was still invited back to try again. Some comfort was present between him and Louis. However, he possesses the instincts to look at everything objectively. He appreciates having Claudia's diaries to know precisely what she was feeling in the moment. He also knows information is being withheld. Louis is no different than any of the other high profile interviews he has conducted over his career. He knows the art of getting to the heart of the story. He pushes back against Louis' fantasized version of events. Louis being distraught is what led Armand to reveal himself. He is an even more ancient vampire Louis has fallen in love with. He presented as Rashid to exert control over the interview. He was never in favor of the arrangement. And now, the vampires are conspiring to revert Molloy back to his naive self. They need that in order for any of this to work. They can seemingly only do so together. In the heat of the moment though, Louis appreciates the breakdowns and catharsis offered from revisiting the past for Molloy.

Louis and Claudia betrayed Lestat. They killed him. That was the clear and concise ending offered to Molloy. It wasn't the truth. The journalist noted how they disposed of the body differently than how they did with all of their previous kills in New Orleans. Lestat was left to rot at the bottom of the dump. Molloy understood that as Louis offering his own sense of poetic justice. Lestat criticized Louis for his diet. And now to survive, Lestat also has to feast on rodents. Of course, all of this is complicated because Lestat's presence isn't all that necessary in the story at this point. It's clear Louis still carries remorse over what happened. He projects Lestat in that bloody state. He still professes his love and determination to stand together. The betrayal was still necessary. It had to be done to protect Claudia and provide the answers she desperately seeks in the world. Throughout their European adventure, she views Louis as dead weight. She doesn't trust him as a loved one. He's simply the only other vampire she knows. She wants a sense of community. It's taken from her every time she believes she has found hope.

Louis and Claudia were kept under Lestat's control for a long time. He was their maker. As such, he believed they should always be gracious towards him. He could do whatever he wanted. He could also dictate how other vampires should live. Louis and Claudia have major disagreements about life. She seeks out vampires from the old world. All her research points to Eastern Europe. The plight is complicated by the world being at war. Louis refers to that as nothing more than an ideological divide amongst humans. It's not in his interests to get involved with the conflicts of man. He has more pressing concerns. Of course, he only has that mentality once it's confirmed a vampire lurks in the Romanian woods. When it's simply gathering information, he's perfectly fine reminiscing over the past and flirting. It never goes anywhere. He's committed to helping Claudia. He cares for her despite her disdain for him. She hates him for the fantasy he created where everything with Lestat was justified. Horrors were inflicted upon her. She had no choice in the matter. Now, she wants to belong. Everywhere she turns though, vampires are dead or dying out. Hope is nowhere to be found. The blood has been poisoned by sadness.

Not even the promise of renewed spirits can reignite the passion to wield over a strong lineage of vampires anymore. Louis and Claudia find an old world vampire. She is powerful. She possesses great stories about many of those who previously existed. And yet, she is the mother of a vampire who appears more like a monster than a human. Louis sees no comparison between them. He's not a monster despite the many people he has killed. He exerts his superiority. That proves to be costly. The last of this great vampiric line has died. The creator sees no reason to continue living. Claudia is still so young. She still has so much to explore in her vampiric life. The same cannot be said for others. Those who have lived for centuries grow depressed and cynical about what's still possible. And so, death by fire becomes the eventuality. It's devastating to Claudia. The action itself has very little to do with her. The bleak nature of the world cannot be avoided. It's all-consuming. No one can escape the horrors of World War II. Countless lives were lost. The vampire community was affected too. They've always dealt with villagers spreading false superstitions about how to scare them away. This new conflict is unlike anything that has come before. The decision is made to abandon life altogether.

Louis ultimately takes Claudia west to Paris. It serves as a revival of their roots in New Orleans. The city has just started to come alive again. Throughout their travels, they were greeted by darkness. They could only travel at night. People were confined to their homes afraid of what would happen. Louis even remarks how the streetlights were turned off. People didn't feel reason to travel. Armand already confirms his coven will eventually find Louis and Claudia in Paris. That's getting ahead of the story though. Molloy has endured tedious exploration of Louis and Claudia's failed exploits in Europe so far. Neither Louis nor Molloy want to miss any of the key details. For Molloy, it's all about getting to the truth of the story. For Louis, he's remembering crucial details that have slipped away over the years. He fears allowing Molloy as the one to reignite those emotions. He wants access to Claudia's missing diary pages to ensure he has those breakthroughs in private. Only then can he fully be prepared for whatever questions Molloy may have. He wants to exert that control once more. He finds renewed catharsis with Claudia as well. He proclaims that she is enough for him. She is good even if every other vampire is monstrous. That's as much affirmation he needs in life. Claudia yearns for more. She's also in a place to accept Louis' love and support instead of shunning him away. They still clash. However, they stand united too as a family.