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Nightmare Fuel / The Strain

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Being a series about vampires co-created by Guillermo del Toro, Nightmare Fuel was bound to happen.

The Strain

  • The transformation of several infected humans: the hideous physical and mental decay as they devolve into savage, blood-drinking monsters whose will is no longer their own and being incapable of doing anything about it.
  • Setrakian's days in the concentration camps, when he and the other camp inmates live and die at nothing more than the sadistic whims of the German guards. Making it worse is the Master prowling the camps at night, feeding as he wishes.
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  • Captain Redfern recounting his childhood night terror, Mr. Leech. Sure, it's a ripoff of Mr. Flip in 'Salem's Lot, but it's one of the creepiest parts of the book.
  • The Master. He is a towering nightmare of of a vampire, whose face remains hidden throughout the first book, although it's implied to be even more horrifying than any of his drones. By the second book, he's been burned by the sun, leaving him to walk around with pieces of his crispy flesh flaking off. Further, he has the ability to incapacitate his prey through telepathy, leaving them fully vulnerable and unable to do anything while he feeds.
    • An in-universe moment happens where a little girl is on the subway home with her mom after seeing "the Little Mermaid" musical. At an intersection in the tunnels, she catches a quick flash of the Master feeding in one of the tunnels. Though it was quick and she didn't realize what she had spotted, the glimpse is enough to make the girl starts sobbing, cuddling her mother the entire way home, traumatized. The narration says the Master KNEW she saw him, aware of everything, especially when feeding.
    • Another comes when Ephraim gets to his apartment and finds the Master waiting, tall enough to have his head brush the ceiling. He paralyzes Eph with his ability, and would have died if Setrakian didn't come. Before he flees, he says he has Eph's "pig wife" and soon his "pig son".
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  • One of Joan Luss's neighbours comes to her house looking for his kids(suggested to be other Strigoi victims)and is piled on by Strigoi. Multiple of them feeding on him likens it to being vacuum packed from the amount of draining he suffers.
  • Regis Air Flight 753. Immediately after landing at JFK International Airport, it goes completely dark, turning off all its lights and not responding to any signals. When the authorities board the plane, they find that all but four of the 210 people aboard dead from unknown causes, with no sign of violence or trauma. It turns out that the Master was smuggled aboard in his coffin, and when the plane landed he came out. He paralyzed the passengers with his psychic "murmur" and systematically murdered nearly every man, woman, and child aboard, sucking them dry and infecting their corpses one by one. The four "survivors," who don't have a clue what happened, are even unluckier; they were infected too, and all of them become ravenous vampires within the week. The only purpose of their slightly prolonged lives was to distract from the Master himself.

The Strain (TV series)

  • Compared to more romanticized depictions of vampires in fiction, the vampires in this show are portrayed more on the lines of Eldritch Abominations with their proboscis-like appendages they use to kill their victims and copious amounts of Body Horror.
  • Special regard to the Master himself, who is strong enough to crush a man's skull in a single blow and speaks in a truly demonic voice, all the while keeping his face hidden under a cloak.
  • The brutal death of Peter Bishop in the first episode at the hands of the Master. He gets the blood drained out of him, his neck snapped, and then has his head literally smashed in by the Master with just a few slams of his palm. The next episode opens up with the discovery of his body and a lingering shot of the wreckage of brain and blood that was his skull.
  • The death of Ephraim's mortician friend, Dr. Bennett. While performing autopsies on the seemingly dead airline passengers and noting all the abnormalities in their bodies, he notices one of their hearts begins beating... while outside of its chest. He inspects closer and is attacked by worms inside the heart, one of them succeeding in burrowing under his skin. He manages to get it out only to immediately be Eaten Alive by the revived, dissected airline passengers. All the while "Sweet Caroline" plays in the background.
  • Eichorst's true face is immensely disturbing.
  • Gabriel Bolivar's genitalia falling off.
  • The autopsy of the vampirized Captain Doyle Redfern combines this with Nausea Fuel.
  • Eichorst's method of feeding. He keeps a guy chained up in a room, and when he wants a snack... He just winches the chain in (while his victim is screaming, moaning and pleading to "Just kill me already!") until the guy's head is basically on a chopping block, then drinks his blood while stroking the guy's forehead. Brr.