Monday, July 14, 2014

More Thoughts on "The Strain" (SPOILERS)

Now that I've had some time to think (and sleep), here are some more ponderings about last night's premiere of The Strain.

I've only read the first 100 pages or so from the book version,but the part that was the most gripping is the story Abraham Sertrakian's elderly grandmother tells him about a giant who came to Romania. The giant--a young Polish nobleman named Josef Sardu, who suffered from gigantism--is hunting wolf with his father, who has the notion that eating this will cure his son of his sickness. The animals they seek have been displaced from their lairs by something, a something that hunts and kills the other members of the party. Josef, the sole survivor, buries them and goes into the cave to confront what he thinks is something unnatural watching him.

(You can see this part of the story in comic-book form here.)

The premiere episode of the television adaptation is great as it is, but it would have been nice to have that as a prologue just like in the book. Sardu's story could be shown in flashback form much like the comics--both the boy's flashback to his grandmother telling the story and his grandmother's flashback to the events of her childhood and what she imagined preceded them. Then the prologue could end just like the book--Sertrakian and his family are living in territory under Nazi control and have to flee those who would exterminate them just like his grandmother had to flee the monstrosity the once-kindly Josef Sardu became. It would tie in Sertrakian's back-story with the hints we've received thus far about Eichhorst as well.

However, now that I've had some time to think about it, it would be an either-or choice between that prologue and the prologue aboard the aircraft involving the flight attendants. In that respect, the flight attendant scene works better because it introduces Gabriel Bolivar and the little French girl--who will introduce the "dear ones" aspect of the story--and provides the first appearance of the villainous Master in his modern form. One major task of a writer is to "kill your darlings" and I'm sure that story can be told later--perhaps as a nightmare Sertrakian has, or a story he's telling to someone else.

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