Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Blood Ties

Just watched my last weekly episode from my Blood Ties box-set that Debbie got for me Christmas. The series is based on the Vicki Nelson books by Tanya Huff which I started reading at the end of last year. Vicki is an ex homicide cop who has quit the force due to a worsening eye condition; retinitis pigmentosa which results in very poor night vision. The tv series doesn't use the restricted night vision angle as much as the books. It's not thrown away but beyond Vicki wearing glasses it is only touched upon a handful of times.
Vicki sets up her own one woman detective agency and soon starts getting roped into cases with supernatural elements. In the first episode, whilst unknowingly hunting a murderous demon, she encounters Henry Fitzroy who is also hunting the same killer. Henry is a vampire. He's also the bastard son of Henry VIII. The two hunters form a partnership which continues for the rest of the series. My favourite character though is Vicki's ex partner Detective Mike Celluci. The two of them argue like cat and dog throughout in a kind of feral love hate relationship. It works slightly better in the novels as, like a lot of book to tv adaptations, there is a lot of toning down going on. For instance, Henry's is bisexual in the books and continues a relationship with the other regular character Tony Foster (a street boy and Vicki's main source of info) at the same time as trying to woo Vicki. Tony gets completely dropped by the tv series and replaced by Coreen who is an overenthusiastic goth girl, mainly used for googling all things occult or supernatural. Despite all the changes the tv series is really enjoyable. Canada does make some decent tv. The show is set in Toronto, which I'm not convinced gets a huge chance to stamp its personality on the series. Yes there are plenty of city montages between the scenes, the CN Tower is viewed from many angles but beyond these and the whole sunset/sunrise riff Toronto could be almost any high rise city.
Then the series was axed. Well, not so much axed as tangled up in production issues that eventually resulted in the axe. Not as tragic as Firefly's demise but still a shame that a very watchable series ends after one season when dross like Lost and Heroes seemed to go on forever. At least my other preferred supernatural series True Blood based on the Sookie Stackhouse books has managed to get to that all important second season. Series three is planned already.

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