Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1 Review: What Can The Damned Really Say To The Damned

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After an intoxicating and almost flawless first effort, Interview with the Vampire returns with a few new items to start the latest season.

Louis and Claudia, having left New Orleans and Lestat behind (not, really), are now traversing around Europe during Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1 to find others like them.

It's a treacherous journey that sees them travel in silence for many years, frustrated, cold, and subsisting off "bad" blood, but eventually lands them in a place that will undoubtedly shape their vampire lives.

Louis & Claudia In Europe - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

Before we dive into the happenings of the first hour, this is the part where I remind all of you loyal readers that I never read the source material, so I may not know where things might go or specific backstories if they aren't explained on-screen.

As I said before Interview with the Vampire Season 1, reviewing the series without prior knowledge could be a good or bad thing, depending on how you choose to look at it.

Now, I did see the movie, which is a far cry from what we're seeing in this series, but it does mean I have a working knowledge of names and locations.

While the season has been promoted as revolving around Louis and Armand's introduction at the Théâtre des Vampires, that's not what the first hour is about.

Leaving New Orleans was heavy for both Lestat and Claudia, but for entirely different reasons.

The toxicity of Louis and Lestat's relationship and the debilitating contempt Lestat and Claudia had for one another should have meant that Lestat's demise filled Louis and Claudia with a sense of power and freedom, but that wasn't what happened.

Louis & Lestat Share A Moment - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

We're years into Louis and Claudia's European journey, and the tension between them was thick with trapped feelings and heavy resentment from Claudia.

In between seasons, the role of Claudia was recast after Bailey Bass was unable to return. Delainey Hayles steps into the role and does a beautiful job picking up where Bass left off.

So much of Claudia's feelings are in her eyes and her expressions, something Bass mastered, and Hayles is just as strong. Hayles brings an intensity to Claudia, and you can tell immediately that this time spent away with Louis has been to the detriment of their fragile dynamic.

Louis left his heart in New Orleans, and he could deny it all he wants, but the truth is the truth, and Claudia is nothing if not a walking truth bomb ready to tell you about yourself in a minute.

There's a challenge in this second season with Lestat no longer being a central figure in the same way he was previously, and thus, the Louis and Lesta relationship no longer being a centerpiece of the gothic horror tale.

Jacob Anderson and Sam Reid truly brought the first season to life, with their deliciously wicked and intoxicating romance quickly drawing you in and invoking a myriad of conflicting emotions, which only the best of fictional romances can do.

Louis In The Forest - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

Lestat will still be present in Interview with the Vampire Season 2, but here, he showed up in a hallucinatory fashion, and it's clear it's an ongoing battle for Louis, who feels tremendous guilt about his decision.

The fact that he's imaging Lestat in the way that he saw him bleeding out, haunting him with the image of what he did to him, shows that Louis's far from okay with what transpired in New Orleans, even if he would make the same decision a thousand times over. I think.

Self-loathing is Louis' middle name, and that constant hatred of himself makes it hard to fully understand Louis at times and what he's feeling, though Claudia knows.

She knows his heart still beats in sync with a man thrown out with the trash, and she hates him for it.

Is she wrong to feel that way? No. She had a firsthand seat to the abuse and the power imbalance that existed in a house that was devoid of joy. She and Louis weren't Lestat's equals and were barely even individuals.

Claudia wanted to save them both, yet she still feels like a second fiddle to Louis' toxic lover, who still invades his thoughts and his heart with an ocean in between them.

Claudia On A Mission - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

The frosty dynamic between Claudia and Louis showed no signs of thawing once the two hit Romania, even when Claudia felt they were closer than ever to finding Old World Vampires.

And she was right, per usual.

The atrocities of the Second World War play out sullenly in the background here, and as usual, the series is shot beautifully, and it truly feels like you're being dropped into a ravished and worn-torn land.

Louis was ready to call it an adventure, though returning "home" surely wouldn't be as easy as he wanted.

There were a lot of profoundly compelling moments during the hour. Still, one of the best came when Claudia returned to the factory with her displaced shoulder, excitement rollicking off her as she recounted FINALLY seeing another blood-sucker in the wild.

Perpetually aggrieved Louis was not believing what she said, and it was nice for Claudia to voice her frustration.

Saddened Claudia - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

She was simply trying to meet a vampire who wasn't the absolute worst, and you can't blame her for that. She didn't choose this life or decide to be "raised" by a pair of vampires caught in a co-dependent, venomous love story.

I've known exactly four vampires in my life, and you've all been the worst. Lestat, Antoinette, the motherfucker, and you. I'm looking for one. Just one that ain't a goddamn bastard.

Claudia [to Louis]

Claudia wanted to know more about her kind, and she needed to know that not everyone was awful like Lestat or downtrodden like Louis.

Related: Interview with the Vampire Set a Very High Standard With Its First Season. Can the Show Avoid a Sophmore Slump?

I feel like I'm ripping a lot on Louis, and I don't mean to because I think he's always been very valid in his feelings, which are also laced with confusion. Louis was young, but he lived a full life before Lestat, and he had a family, people he loved.

Everything changed for him overnight, and things he never knew he may have ever wanted taken. He had Lestat and Lestat alone, and that connection sustained him for so long. So, I understand his pain, and he's not dead weight, so much as he's traumatized and haunted by a lifetime of regret, which manifests in many ways.

You can see early on in this season that the relationship between Louis and Claudia, though passed off to strangers as father and daughter, is much closer to siblings now.

They walk side by side, not one in front of the other.

Searching For Something - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

Once Louis was convinced that a vampire was among them, the plan to lure the vampire out was easy, and then suddenly, they were thrust into a situation they were ill-prepared for.

One thing I've always loved about vampire tales is the varied lore. I've previously spoken about this during my Interview with the Vampire reviews, but every vampire story plays a different set of truths.

We're learning over time about the various truths in this world, which will open up once we're introduced to Armand and the theater, but here, Louis realized pretty early on that the horrors of war tainted the blood in Romania.

That sadness, suffering, and terror invaded the blood and was why Daciana and her "son" weren't the vibrant vampires Louis and Claudia had come into contact with during their time.

Poor Claudia. Every part of the last few years FINALLY felt worth it when she came face-to-face with an Old World Vampire, and she didn't get more than a few minutes with them before they took their own life.

I'd be defeated, too!

Moving On - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

Daciana's suicide was like the jolt Louis needed to get out of his head for a minute and get Claudia out of hers. For better or worse, they are in it together. They're walking through the shitty world together, and wherever they go next, they'll be together.

And isn't that so intriguing when you juxtapose the two of them arriving in Paris, shoulder-to-shoulder, to Louis and Arman in Dubai, sitting down in front of Daniel, finally ready to divulge their love story to a skeptical journalist.

Related: Interview with the Vampire Stands Out as a "Feelings" Show in the Era of Procedurals

Things inside that otherworldly penthouse have become TENSE since fake Rashid came forward as Armand. Daniel's determined to make everyone uncomfortable, often forgetting that he's antagonizing vampires who could rip his throat out or mess with his mind in seconds.

Armand's refusal to be on the record was played as a funny joke, but it was clear that Louis and Armand weren't on the same page. It'll be something to watch as we delve deeper into the beginning of their relationship and its present-day iteration.

When Armand was pretending to be Rashid, he lingered on the fringe, though his presence was loud and noticeable. He never wanted Louis to do the interview, and his existence nearby was more to remind Louis he was there than anything else.

Makes you wonder what their dynamic is really like.

Together - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1

I'm not buying the 'love of my life' business Louis spouts off like he's practiced saying it in the mirror, and I'm curious to hear what memories they share and how they compare to the couple we see settling down for bed with a mountain of space between them.

They may have a plan to sway Daniel in the way they want him, but let's see them sway me into believing they're half the power couple they want us to believe they are.

Extra Thoughts

  • Daniel's utter disdain for Armand (and really his anger at being played) is so funny, and the way he utters 'real Rashid' is laugh-out-loud hilarious.
  • Lovely seeing Blake Ritson from The Gilded Age fame arrive here as Morgan. He didn't believe a word Louis was saying, and Louis' coldness toward his plight as he watched his love get beheaded was one of the more emotional moments in the premiere.
Drinks & Conversation - Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1
  • Jacob Anderson is so good. As he recounted Claudia's dreams and came to terms with her words not matching reality, you could see the devastation play out across every part of his face.
  • Even a dead Lestat and Louis have all the chemistry in the world.
  • Hearing Lestat say that he will kill Louis when he's happy (as projected by the Lestat that Louis is imagining) is very intriguing. Is it that Louis stays in such a place of misery out of fear that Lestat will return? Or does he think Lestat deserves that little piece of satisfaction because he feels so guilty?
  • I feel we're heading toward Armand, the bad guy, and I have nothing concrete to support that feeling. There was something in the way he was hesitant to let Louis see the missing Claudia diary pages that gave me pause. But also, all these vampires kind of suck (ha!) in their own way, so how bad could he be?

We're back, baby, and after one installment, it's safe to say that the quiet, sensual allure from season 1 has carried over into a more mature but equally spicy follow-up.

We should be in for a stellar season, and I'll be here for it all. So, let me know how you feel after this one in the comments! I want to hear all your thoughts.

What Can The Damned Really Say To The Damned Review

Editor Rating: 4.4 / 5.0
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Rating: 5.0 / 5.0 (7 Votes)

Whitney Evans is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is a lover of all things TV. Follow her on X.

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Interview with the Vampire Season 2 Episode 1 Quotes

Louis: An ancient doesn't need the blood as often as the young do.
Daniel: Intriguing. And disregarding.

Louis: Can you imagine never dreaming? Would you look forward to sleep? Or would it terrify you when the day broke?
Armand: Or is it the sleep of an infant?