Join us in looking back on some of the best moments from the show as we process the news that it will not be renewed
BY NIC CROSARA, IMAGE BY NETFLIX
Vampires have always had a queer appeal. So when Netflix released the sapphic vampire show First Kill, it’s no surprise that it filled LGBTQI viewers with queer joy. The show follows the forbidden love romance between vampire Juliette and monster-hunter Cal. When the news came out that it would not be renewed for a second season despite its success, fans readied our stakes and fangs and expressed our disappointment.
netflix is weird as hell for cancelling first kill. a successful wlw show with a black female lead being cancelled after outperforming SEVERAL netflix originals?… what— ceo of kory (@korysverse) August 3, 2022
To those stating that its cancellation is due to its campy and lighthearted tone, I must ask, are LGBTQI viewers not allowed to escape into a fun show? There are plenty of campy cishet shows that run on for multiple seasons, can we not experience the same joys with characters who love or look like us?
First Kill had a very successful premiere. It trended for weeks, almost instantly gained a devoted fandom and reached similar metrics as other shows that are still going strong. That alone should be enough of a reason to keep the show running. But here are seven more reasons why the cast, crew and viewers deserved more seasons.
Psst… spoilers ahead.
It’s not a coming out story
The majority of LGBTQI shows follow teen protagonists, which means a lot of the queer stories we are told are of people navigating coming out. These depictions are important, but it was so refreshing that both Cal and Juliette knew they liked girls from a young age, way before the start of the first episode.
The *chefs kiss* representation
Dark-skinned Black female leads are so rare in film, let alone fantasy genres. The fact that Cal was queer made this glorious representation even more vital. Cal’s family all have important roles to play which means that half of First Kill’s main cast are Black. What was refreshing was that their ethnicity wasn’t something used to add tension to the plot. They were a family of monster-hunters who just happened to be Black.
The queer friendship
Juliette’s relationship with BFF Ben resonates with many LGBTQI people who understand and appreciate the magic of queer friendship. When Ben finds out about Juliette’s vampirism he is, understandably, quite taken aback. But before long, he comes out guns blazing in her defence. Proving he is a ride or die type of friend and beautifully portraying the relief that comes when our loved ones accept us exactly as we are.
It’s focus on the women of the show
Of course our two leading protagonists, Juliette and Cal, are headstrong and vulnerable in their own ways. I particularly loved how both of their families were led by women. Juliette’s family is run by matriarchs instead of patriarchs and Cal’s mother, Talia, is a force who speaks her mind. The show manages to present Talia in a way where she is clearly in control and confident without portraying her through the “Angry Black Woman” stereotype.
Our favourite tropes
Love at first sight, enemies to lovers and forbidden love are some of the most popular tropes within the romance genre. They are so entertaining to watch, even though we’ve seen them time and time again, and almost always through a white cishet lens. So seeing sapphic characters take on these much-loved tropes was a true delight.
While vampires will never go out of fashion, we’ve seen so many interpretations of the lore surrounding them that it can easily become boring. I appreciated how First Kill kept many of the best traits of vampirism but also changed things up. There were plenty of surprises, and yes I’m specifically thinking about THAT snake scene.
And, of course, THAT cliffhanger
The show ended in a way that had me begging for the “watch next episode” button to appear, only to be dismayed that I had unknowingly binged the entire season. First Kill ended in a way that makes it clear the creators had big plans for the next season. It surely would’ve been been even more epic. I have so many unanswered questions. It is deeply frustrating that I’ll never get the answers. This show deserved so much more.
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