The following contains spoilers for Reginald the Vampire S1E7: “The Last Day of Our Acquaintance” (written by Harley Peyton and Isabella Gutierrez, based on the books by Johnny B. Truant and directed by Siobhan Devine)
What a bizarre downfall episode this was. After an insane cliffhanger and the promise of love-struck violence, we end up with a montage episode leading up to the eclipse of Reginald’s poor decisions.
Reginald (Jacob Batalon) finding new confidence from two-timing the love of his life with a crazed vampire assassin and then getting dumped twice serves him right. However, the supposed month or so this goes on for is absurd. Do you mean to tell me that in all that time leading up to the Assessment, Angela (Savannah Basley) made no other attempts to kill Reginald? That Ashley (Marguerite Hanna) hasn’t figured it all out yet?
Claire (Thailey Roberge) has finally been seen and heard from again and tries to convince Nikki (Christin Park) to turn her into a vampire. Why? Because something cold, mysterious, and smelling of sulfur is happening to Claire’s mom, Claire is obsessed with fighting “evil”. Thank you for bringing Claire back into the narrative, but why tease us and then leave us? What’s the story there? We’re getting pieces of a puzzle, thank you, but it’s still very unclear what this puzzle is supposed to look like.
Todd (Aren Buchholz) keeps ending up outside Maurice’s (Mandela Van Peebles) house when he goes on runs. Spooky. I think it’s probably related to when Maurice saved Todd’s life when Reginald was bleeding him dry. Now that Reginald has killed Todd… will Todd be a vampire? That’s interesting; however, when Reginald showed up at Maurice’s door blaming his maker for his downfall, Maurice didn’t let out any indication that Todd turning was on the docket. Plot hole? Only time will tell.
Although, I may be getting ahead of myself because the first half of Reginald the Vampire S1E7 was a mess. Nikki’s POV was written as a blatant ripoff of Harley Quinn’s POV in The Suicide Squad (2021). Right down to the cartoon birds and musical numbers. The rules are blurring about compulsion because Sarah’s (Em Haine) memories are spotty, and the glamour seems to be less potent than previously proposed by the show’s earlier lore setup.
This episode felt like two concepts had to be blended together in the writer’s room. The first half felt like part two of last week’s episode, and the second half felt like an entirely new episode. The two halves had stark competing tones. It was like whiplash, moving from a three-point perspective narrative form (held together by floss) to Reginald the Vampire: Casanova.
The storylines of this series keep getting messier, and I don’t mean good messy; I mean muddy, confusing, sloppy and lacking direction.
It’s sad; every week, I come to Reginald the Vampire with fresh eyes and an open mind, hopeful because, like I’ve said many times over the past weeks reviewing this show, I think it has extraordinary potential with a strong concept and successful source material. Yet, every week I’m faced with disappointment. This show isn’t working. There are too many competing tones and too many storylines running at once. Planting a story and letting it sit for a couple of episodes doesn’t work here. Reginald the Vampire should be wrapping up plotlines in two/three consecutive episodes. This show doesn’t have the depth to be running so many characters through hoops at once; it doesn’t come across as complex, it comes across as messy.
Siting at Episode 7, and we still haven’t figured out the right balance between funny and dark. The attempts at humour in this episode made the drama less potent and genuine.
The quirky set design I once loved now works against the tone of the stories they’re trying to tell. Honestly, in my opinion, this episode wasn’t just the downfall of Reginald the character but Reginald the Vampire the series. At this point, I’ve grown tired of trying to defend this. I wanted to love it, I really did, but I’m losing interest.