SyFy has announced that their next TV drama. Reginald the Vampirean adaptation of the Fat Vampire book series by Johnny B. Truant, is officially in the works. Headlined by Spider-Man breakout star Jacob Batalon, the series appears to parody pop culture vampire tropes, most notably the Twilight franchise. Though Twilight isn’t exactly the most current trend in 2022, vampires are still around in pop culture, such as with FX’s What We Do in the Shadows.
What do we know about Reginald the Vampire so far? We have an idea of what the plot will lampoon in pop culture, so what else can we expect from the story? Batalon has landed his highest profile television role in the title character, so who can we expect to join him on screen? When can we anticipate the series premiere on Syfy? And what else should audiences know about Reginald the Vampire?
Reginald the Vampire: The Plot
Per Deadline, the series logline reads,
Imagine a world populated by beautiful, fit and vain vampires. Reginald tumbles headlong into it as an unlikely hero who will have to navigate every kind of obstacle – the girl he loves but can’t be with, a bully manager at work and the vampire chieftain who wants him dead. Fortunately, Reginald discovers he has a few unrecognized powers of his own.
The official teaser trailer gives us an idea of what to expect from this premise. Reginald is an average guy stuck in a dead-end job at a convenience store. He is unhappy with the cards he was dealt in life and wants to find a way to change them. He gets that chance, and a mysterious stranger turns him into a vampire, who are regular inhabitants of this world. However, the higher-ups in the vampire community aren’t so willing to let him join the ranks.
Although he has to “feed” (ie, drink blood) in order to survive, the timid Reginald isn’t one to attack unsuspecting victims, offering one man up to 50 dollars for the chance to drink his blood.
This series is expected to stick to the format of subverting tropes, primarily for its choice of a lead character. Most vampires in popular culture are white, beautiful, and confident. They might be frowned upon as vampires, but they are still “perfect.” With Batalon, the series has a chance to explore the vampire theme with a person of color with a more unconventional appearance when it comes to on-screen bloodsuckers. While the vampire craze may have died down in recent years, at least this series is putting a comedic spin on things while incorporating some much-needed diversity.
Reginald the Vampire: The Cast
As mentioned, Jacob Batalon is taking on the lead role of Reginald. While already well known for his role as Ned Leeds in the MCU Spider-Man films, Reginald the Vampire marks Batalon’s television debut.
In addition to Batalon, the series also stars Mayor of Kingstown’s Mandela van Peebles as Maurice Miller. Maurice is Reginald’s “vampire life coach” who finds himself in the complicated role of instructing Reginald in his new way of life. Em Haine of The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers is Sarah Kinney, a human coworker of Reginald’s. Alongside Reginald, she has to learn to fight for what is important to her.
The dramedy has also added Supernatural’s Aren Buchholz, SurrealEstate‘s Savannah Basley, and Sirens‘s Georgia Waters and Marguerite Hanna in recurring roles. Buchholz is Reginald’s manager Todd, while Basley is Angela, an ancient and powerful vampire. Georgia Waters is vampire Penelope, and Marguerite Hanna is Ashley, another coworker prone to conspiracy theories.
Additional cast members include Rachelle Goulding, Andre Anthony, and Thailey Roberge in unknown roles. We expect additional casting announcements to follow in the coming weeks and months.
Reginald the Vampire is set to premiere on Syfy on October 5, 2022.
As mentioned, Reginald the Vampire represents a resurgence of the vampire trope. Since the end of the Twilight franchise, Hollywood seems to have moved away from it. Reginald could offer a return to form while also presenting a new take on the concept. Audiences love stories where a social outcast tries to fit in with the popular crowd while staying true to themselves. In a world where attractive vampires dominate, it makes sense that there would be those outcasts trying to fit in with the vampires. Reginald breaks convention with the beautiful vampires acting as antagonists against the lead.
If more movies and TV shows follow Reginald’s lead, we could see the genre pick up some steam with a new generation. Audiences would also get to see more diversity among their entertainment vampires. Though Twilight definitely overdid the vampire craze, that doesn’t mean it has to disappear completely. If studios recognize that they could capitalize on the trends with likable and empathetic leads, we might see a new outpouring of on-screen vampires who are not all flawless and beautiful.