Vampires have been tumbling out of closets and graves ever since Twilight. The Canadian series Carmilla, which kicked off in 2014, initially appears to have a serious Twilight hangover: the titular bloodsucker falls in love with a 19-year-old college student. The difference is that the main characters in Carmilla are women.
The web series, produced by the YouTube channel KindaTV, is based on the 1872 novella of the same name by Gothic fiction specialist J Sheridan Le Fanu. The novella predates Bram Stoker’s Dracula by 26 years, is said to have been one of the inspirations for Stoker’s masterpiece. Apart from being one of the earliest works of vampire fiction, Carmilla also boldly suggests a romantic angle between Laura and the vampire countess Carmilla.
The vlog-style series has a lighter and more irreverent storyline. Carmilla follows Laura Hollis, a college student at the fictitious Silas University whose roommate, Betty, has gone missing. Meanwhile, she has a mysterious new woman to share her lodgings with – Carmilla. It turns out that Betty isn’t the only woman to have disappeared on campus.
The show has completed two 36-episode seasons. The story continues beyond the YouTube episodes through Twitter accounts linked to the characters of Laura and Carmilla and a parallel Tumblr page. The female-dominated narrative and the presence of at least five queer characters also have our vote.
Carmilla’s third and possibly concluding season will be released over the next few months. “Creampuffs,” as hard-core fans of the series are known, will be eagerly waiting the chance for more chills and thrills.