FX has released enough trailers for Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming vampire saga The Strain to sate anyone’s interest in the show until its July premiere; some are fun sized teasers, others more lengthy, while others still come in extra-large presentations. All the better to acquaint audiences with the creepy, icky, shadowy world of biological parasitism that del Toro, Chuck Hogan, and Carlton Cuse have concocted on the small screen; and of course, to introduce their stellar cast as well.
But FX is keeping the flow of promo content steady with a new featurette that goes behind the scenes to explore the production process, delve a bit into the story, and – what else? – sing the praises of del Toro’s depth of artistic vision. Del Toro is an incredible world builder, Cuse tells us, and even a cursory look at the Pacific Rim director’s body of work affirms the claim: del Toro has an imagination that shows in every aspect of his films’ visual designs, from the troll market of Hellboy II to the titular mythic creature of Pan’s Labyrinth.
Viewers can expect to see the same attention to detail in The Strain, which should give the series a distinct texture among today’s glut of great television. If you’ve been keeping up with the clips, then you’ve already seen those artistic flourishes in action and recognize just how much they make del Toro’s work stand out. We get an eyeful of them in the featurette, too, and with a full season order on the table, it’s guaranteed that we’re in store for far more of them once the story commences.
For those unfamiliar with The Strain, it’s all about a vampire apocalypse, Outbreak with creatures of the night. When a plane lands at JFK Airport, windows shuttered, communications cut, and with two hundred dead passengers (plus four survivors) on board, a CDC team investigates to make sense of the massacre and eventually discovers that the root cause is an ancient, bloodsucking evil. These aren’t your Twilight style vamps, though; del Toro, adapting the novel he wrote with Hogan, envisions vampirism as a kind of viral mutation rather than romanticizing the legendary monsters as so many narratives do.
We get into a little bit more of that here, though del Toro, in truth, has flirted with this concept before in Blade II. The Strain lets him exercise his idea on a much greater scale, though, and judging by the featurette, it looks like he’s really gone all-in on the twist to folklore, making the conceit entirely his own.
The Strain premieres on FX on July 13th, 2014, at 10/9c.