This has been a very big week for the FX series “What We Do in the Shadows.” At the same time the fourth season of the cable series that is based on the 2014 film of the same name created by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi was launching, nominations for the 74th annual Emmy Awards were announced.
The series picked up seven nominations that included a nod for Outstanding Comedy Series. There were no acting Emmy nominations this year for the work done by the cast members in the third season. Those overlooked include Kayvan Novak (Nador), Matt Berry (Lazlo), Natasia Demetriou (Nadja), Mark Proksch (Colin) and Harvey Guillén (Guillermo).
The consolation is this year’s nods go along with “What We Do in the Shadows” earning 10 EmmyAward nominations during the first two seasons, including one for Outstanding Comedy Series.
What has resulted in Emmy nominations, attracted a large viewership and garnered great praise from the critics is the show’s fresh and irreverent look at the world of vampires. The latest assault on the tropes of the familiar horror genre continue in season four.
The vampire elements in this new season starts with the vampires returning to Staten Island to find their mansion on the verge of total structural collapse and with no money to repair it. At the same time, Nadja finally realizes her dream of opening the hottest vampire nightclub in the Tri-State area. Then there is Laszlo struggling with the question of nature versus nurture as he tries raising Baby Colin to be anything other than an energy vampire.
It might come as a surprise to find out that even with the unorthodox way the series deals with the world of vampires, there are rules the cast and crew won’t break (at least for now).
Executive writer and producer Stefani Robinson says, “For the first season, we had books and books and books of vampire textbooks, which they do make surprisingly enough. Watching movies. And a lot of them aren’t really contradictory.
“I don’t think there is one true through line in terms of what vampires can do and can’t do across the board, maybe except the drinking‑blood things. So I think it was from early, spending a lot of time talking about what our vampires in particular could do, and then sort of sussing out which of the weirder vampirey things maybe could be an interesting story that we talked a lot about.”
The vampire nightclub is a prime example of how the team behind the series starts with basic vampire elements and then puts their own spin on it. The club will be mostly for vampires but some humans will be allowed. And since this is New York, the human guest will include plenty of celebrities.
Executive producer and writer Paul Simms explains that there is a line in the script where Nadja (Natasia Demetriou) explains how the drinks have to be very expensive because that attracts the wealthy people and the wealthy people are like veal.
Sims adds, “They get massaged and eat rich foods, and their blood is just delicious.”
Little information has been released as to which celebrities could be stopping by the vampire nightclub. But, the series has become known for its long list of actors who have made guest appearances.
Those joining the merry band of blood drinkers in the first two seasons have included Mark Hamill, Tilda Swinton, Evan Rachel Wood, Paul Reubens, Danny Trejo, Doug Jones, Haley Joel Osment, Vanessa Bayer, Nick Kroll, Benedict Wong. It is by design that often the cameo appearances are handled in a way it is not easy to spot the celebrity.
Simms reluctantly reveals that Fred Armisen will be making an appearance this season. He opts not to mention any other names.
“And then there’s some familiar faces that are returning that we are not going to spoil the surprise of also,” Simms says.
Season four of “What We Do in the Shadows” debuted with two back-to-back episodes. If you missed them, they are now available through the streaming service of Hulu. New episodes air on FX at 10 p.m. Tuesdays.
There will be no stake to the heart of the series anytime soon as FX has renewed “What We Do in the Shadows” for a fifth and sixth seasons.
It is a little difficult to discuss the eventual end to the series considering how high the show is flying at the moment. But, Simms is ready whenever the end comes.
“We have an end in mind. It’s just a matter of figuring out when the right time to do it is,” Simms. “We know we have at least two more seasons’ worth of stories to tell, and then we’ll figure out what happens after that.”