first kill: the lesbian romance canceled too soon

by waynegretsky

She was a vampire. She was a vampire hunter. Can I make it any more obvious?


The women-loving-women called and Netflix answered– First Kill was born. And by God if it wasn’t the second best Teen Lesbian Vampire TV Show Drama to ever exist. [Buffy reference] Lesbians flocked en masse to binge-watch during the spooky season with an enthusiasm that had previously only been rivaled by Over the Garden Wall and we fell in love in october. Critics (me) widely acclaimed the show for its intricately woven plots and cinematographic mastery. It had everything– intrigue, stakes (vampire pun), mediocre acting, lesbianism. 


But when the world needed her most, First Kill vanished. Deadline reported on August 3, 2022, that Netflix had tragically canceled the fan favorite after a single season. An anonymous insider at Netflix reported that “it did not have the staying power of most Netflix hits” and “the cost ratio just didn’t make sense” and “the bloodsucking is too similar to lesbian sex.” The stakes (vampire pun) had never been higher. I felt that it was my solemn duty to uphold journalistic integrity by providing a completely mostly unbiased review of the show. To keep my memory sharp, I spent my valuable weekend time rewatching the show at 2x speed. How’s that for commitment? 


The pilot episode began right off the bat, as episodes of television often do, by introducing us to our main character– a teen vampire named Juliette. As someone with English major friends, I cleverly deduced that this was a Shakespeare reference. Honestly, Shakespeare could never write First Kill, but the writers of First Kill sure as hell could never write Shakespeare. I think everyone should just stick to their strengths. Juliette is a vegan vampire who opts to take blood pills (?) every morning rather than take a life. Juliette is head-over-heels in love with new girl Calliope after seeing her once, which is the kind of lesbian representation we love to see in media. Juliette sexily grabs the bee off Cal’s shirt and cups it in her hands while staring longingly into Cal’s eyes. Peak seduction tactics. 


Fast forward a few minutes, and the two are at least like five bases into making out to “Slumber Party” by Ashnikko when Jules bites Cal on the neck–  NOT in a sexy way. Like full on vampire fangs taking a chunk out of this girl’s neck. Just when you thought things couldn’t get more insane, Cal STABS Juliette through the heart. Yeah, that’s right. Cal was a vampire hunter the whole time. 


The next few episodes are somewhat of a blur. What with the bad CGI werewolf monster things, ritual sacrifice, legacy vampire powers, I was left feeling a little discombobulated. Nevertheless, I gathered my strength and persevered, and for that I was greatly rewarded. Episode 5. A paranormal peach tree that Juliette had once seen in a dream appears out of thin air and, naturally, the two have sex under it while the peaches dramatically fall to the ground. It was at this point that I realized that This was my Call Me By Your Name, this was cinema. 


As someone who has now seen First Kill two times in full, I feel that I am uniquely qualified to give this a certified fresh 10 out of 10.

Categories: oct 31, reflections, Vol 27, wayne gretsky