The Netflix series V Wars adapts the popular V Wars anthology series co-written and edited by Jonathan Maberry from 2012 to 2016. Consisting of four novels with entries written by a variety of authors, V Wars consists of “eyewitness accounts” and “official reports” (reminiscent of World War Z by Max Brooks), which weave together the story of a vampire apocalypse sweeping across the planet.
The Netflix series depicts these events through the eyes of Dr. Luther Swann (Ian Somerhalder), tasked with identifying the virus and determining how to stop it. Things become personal for Luther when his close friend, Michael Fayne (Adrian Holmes), is bitten and infected, eventually causing a rift as one man turns into a vampire and embraces his new life while the other must watch from the side while figuring out how to stop it.
Within the V Wars world are two types of vampires; knowing the difference between these groups will make all the difference in your understanding of the story and the implications of the choices made by these vampire characters. So, let’s do a quick breakdown on the V Wars vampire types before you get too deep into your binge.
The Bloods are what you’d consider a more traditional kind of vampire, although some variations in their behavior are unique to V Wars. The Bloods, also called “Blood Nation,” have been infected by the ancient pathogen once buried in the Antarctic.
Other traditional vampire traits are present in those with the virus, including increased healing abilities, strength, sight, hearing, and speed. A human transforms into a Blood through a vampire bite, keeping in line with the lore, but the victim must have the NH47 gene in order for the virus to take hold. If a human has been bitten without the NH47 gene, they become ill but remain human. So far, only one character on the V Wars TV series has experienced immunity to the virus after being bitten: Luther’s son, Dez.
Under Michael Fayne’s leadership, Blood Nation has worked on controlling its urges with organized feedings once or twice a week. Some members of Blood Nation try to feed on animals despite knowing it will not satisfy their thirst while others steal from blood banks. On the Netflix series, Luther works to create a blood alternative known as “BludSub” for Blood Nation to use. It seems to work for a little while, before ultimately having negative effects on the vampires and creating further rifts between humans and vampires.
The Vourdalaks, like sisters Danika (Kimberly-Sue Murray) and Mila Dubov (Laura Vandervoort), are a different species of vampire. This group of vampire prefer to feed on humans without killing them. Instead, once they finish feeding on their victims, they dose them with a naturally-occurring toxin specifically made from Vourdalak genes. This gives the human who has just been fed on a drug-like high, resulting in a satisfied Vourdalak and happy, compliant prey.
The Vourdalak toxin can become addictive, with some humans wanting to chase the high and giving themselves over to Vourdalaks (referred to as “Feeders”). Vourdalaks also have an intimate bond with the humans they feed on; they cannot feed on someone unless they have a close connection, further differentiating them from Blood Nation.
V Wars Season 1 is currently available to stream on Netflix.