​Dracula tangles with dancing lunatics and diabolical lesbians

Illustration for article titled em​Dracula/em tangles with dancing lunatics and diabolical lesbians

Sure, "dancing lunatics and diabolical lesbians" sounds exciting, but if you've been watching NBC's Dracula, you know that this is a pretty chill Friday night for the titular vampire.


So Van Helsing has got his "let Dracula stay in the sun" machine working pretty well — so well, in fact, that Dracula declares he's not going to drink people's blood anymore. Van Helsing points out this is a horrible idea, but Dracula is determined to be human, to defeat the curse the Order of the Dragon placed on him. Most of all, he wants to hang out with Mina in the park and take a walk in the sun, where she complains about how listless all the lunatics in her father's insane asylum are. Grayson suggests she hold a dance to liven their spirits. Mina loves the idea, and asks to borrow Grayson's phonograph for the occasion. Of course he says yes, and starts devising a way to turn this into building sexual good will.

Harker, on the other hand, isn't faring so well with Grayson. After learning the bookkeeper who told him Captain Shaw was a war profiteer was a mere actress, Harker announces his mistake to Grayson and wants to fix it. Grayson declines, and Harker pieces together that Grayson was behind the plot — but it can never be proven. Harker is less than pleased, but is still willing to send out invites to the Grayson Geomagnetic Electricity shindig that evening, where Grayson will debut (for the second time, I guess?) his magic free electricity generator.


Meanwhile, Lucy is heartbroken about Mina rebuffing her girl-on-girl action advances, and Lady Jane consoles her. Mina is the bitch for turning her down and not being a lesbian, Lady Jane says, and the distraught Lucy accepts this tenuous logic. Jane tells her to steal Harker away from Mina to hurt her like she hurt Lucy, which, sure. Later, Lucy helps Harker get his suit for the wedding, and takes on the onerous task of measuring Harker's inseam with care and presumably a little ball-cupping.

Also meanwhile, Dracula/Grayson sends Xaro Xhaon Renfield to Budapest to buy the Dresden Triptych, where Renfield outbids the winner by about a zillion dollars, accounting for inflation. Unfortunately, Renfield then immediately abandons the Triptych in his hotel room, where it is easily stolen by agents of Lord Davenport, who opens the triptych to reveal… several paintings of Dracula's wife from the 1400s, a.k.a. Jessica De Gouw, a.k.a The Huntress, a.k.a. Mina Murray. "THAT BITCH GONNA DIE" Davenport shrieks (I may be paraphrasing), still reeling from his son's suicide.

When the hour of Mina's Dance of the Lunatics arrives, she's shocked/delighted to discover Grayson has replaced his phonogram with a full orchestra, and even grabs an first inmate for the first dance. This is weird on about 90 different levels, as Dracula and Mina dance with a variety of smiling madmen as if it's all the most normal, pleasant thing in the world. Alas, Dracula's hunger is getting to him, and he has to leave the dance. Mina follows him, and, buoyed by Grayson's generosity and kindness, as well as the fact that Harker didn't manage to show up even after he promised to, she grabs Grayson and begins the Victorian equivalent of dirty dancing (it's basically a waltz, but with orgiastic expression on both dancers' faces). Dracula loves it until the hunger kicks in again, and he starts fantasizing about turning Mina's neck into a Big Gulp, but he barely manages to tear himself away from her and flees.

Which is probably for the best, because his big crazy free electricity event has already started, and I say I say "already started" I mean "it's been shut down by the police for being a danger by making local people sick, even though the people are sick because the Order of the Dragon hired the local police captain to poison a milkman's delivery tank which made everyone start bazooka-barfing." The police burst in and force everyone out before it even starts; Dracula only arrives as the crowd is dispersing, and is understandably upset.


Oh, the reason Harker didn't make it to the Headbanger's Ball is because he was kidnapped by the Order of the Dragon, who want to recruit him, because even if Grayson isn't Dracula, Grayson's crazy hippie free electricity business needs to be stopped. With all the other members In shadow, Patrick from Coupling announces that the Order is in a holy war, and the Ottomans are sitting on the world's largest pool of the 20th century's greatest resource, oil. Harker points out that if the Order is worried about energy, isn't Grayson's free electricity stuff a good thing? Patrick from Coupling mutters something about Grayson's tech being fake, and Harker more or less has no reason not to join up, especially after the Shaw incident.

The episode ends with Grayson/Dracula going out of his way to kill the police captain's driver, grab his uniform, sit on his coach with his coat perfectly set as to hide his face in shadows, wait until the police captain gets in his carriage, and then pull the dude out and drinks him. He wanders back into his domicile, covered in blood. "You're the monster," he hisses at Van Helsing, "for giving me hope I could be human. And one day I will kill you for that." I'm paraphrasing again, but I'm pretty close. And after what is admittedly a pretty low-key episode for Dracula, it's pretty powerful stuff. Will Dracula actually face off against Van Helsing in this? Is Dracula even evil? How in god's name will this insanity end? Tune in next week, same Dracula-time, some Dracula-channel.

Illustration for article titled em​Dracula/em tangles with dancing lunatics and diabolical lesbians

Assorted Musings:

  • So I understand Lady Jane messing with Lucy when she thought Lucy was into Mina and Mina was into Harker and Harker was serving Grayson who might be a vampire. But after a vigorous fucking in the sun, Lady Jane's suspicions have been sated (cough). So what the hell is she doing by fucking with Lucy? Other than being a dick?
  • Xaro Xhaon Renfield paying $1 million for the Dresden Tryptich and this storing it behind his hotel dresser was easily the stupidest thing that has ever happened in Dracula.
  • To the best of my knowledge, the Dresden Triptych does not contain any pictures of Jessica De Gouw in them.
  • I would have given much to read the thought balloon of the old tailor whom Lucy forced to sit down so she could measure Harker's inseam. He just looked so unconcerned. "Yep, that lady sure wants to cop a feel. Kids these days! Whaddya gonna do?"

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Renfield's actions were a textbook example of having a smart character do something stupid to serve the story. The Order knows who he is. He knows about the Order. The Order knows that he knows that they know about him. Quick! Hide the McGuffin behind a dresser and leave the room unattended! Huh?