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Funniest Moments From What We Do In The Shadows

"What We Do in the Shadows" is a mockumentary in the style of "The Office," only the camera crew follows the lives of a house of vampire roommates in Staten Island. It's a spin-off of the 2014 film of the same name written and directed by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi. Clement is the creator of the series and has written several episodes.

While the vampires are killers, they are also somewhat sad, occasionally pathetic, and more than a little ridiculous. The oldest vampire is Nandor the Relentless (Kayvan Novak), a boastful creature originally from a kingdom in the Middle East that no longer exists. His familiar is Guillermo de la Cruz (Harvey Guillén), a faithful human who's stuck around for a decade hoping to be turned into a vampire. 

Laszlo Cravensworth (Matt Berry) and Nadja of Antipaxos (Natasia Demetriou) are the house's husband-and-wife vampire team. Laszlo has an insatiable sexual appetite, which Nadja is only too happy to indulge, as she's the one who turned him into a vampire in the first place. Rounding out the house is Colin Robinson (Mark Proksch), a nondescript energy vampire. Instead of sucking blood, these vampires drain energy from their victims from others by being incredibly tedious. The show demonstrates that if you grant power and immortality to someone who's an idiot, they simply become very powerful idiots. Let's take a look at some of the funniest moments from "What We Do in the Shadows."

Laszlo's alter ego Jackie Daytona

In the Season 2 episode "On the Run," Laszlo is confronted by Jim the Vampire (Mark Hamill), to whom he owes money. Jim rented him an apartment a century earlier, and Laszlo skipped out without paying. Jim has been hunting him ever since. After agreeing to a duel, Laszlo runs away again, using what he describes as his "foolproof human disguise" — a pair of blue jeans and a toothpick in his mouth. 

The absurdity of this disguise is that it works perfectly. Of course, being lazy, Laszlo stops running in Pennsylvania, mostly because it sounds like Transylvania, and takes over a bar after he kills its owner. Thus is born his new alter ego and the legend of Jackie Daytona. The episode goes deeper into his ridiculous persona, as one of the bar's waitresses develops a crush on the mysterious Jackie Daytona, and he inexplicably becomes obsessed with a local high school girls volleyball team. The storyline becomes a weird "Friday Night Lights" pastiche as the episode climaxes in a fundraiser to get the girls to the state tournament. 

The funniest moment of the episode is when Jim the Vampire seemingly tracks Laszlo down to his bar. When he sees Jim, Laszlo says, "I suppose the jig is up." However, that toothpick is such a foolproof disguise that Jim doesn't recognize him and is only there because he is also inspired by the plight of the volleyball team! 

Guillermo learns about his heritage

In the final episode of Season 1, "Ancestry," Guillermo decides to send test the DNA of everyone in the house on a lark. Unsurprisingly, Colin Robinson is revealed to be 100% white. While Laszlo and Nadja weren't interested, the lonely Nandor is delighted to learn that he has over 200,000 living descendants. He even visits one of them, although he doesn't realize that she is 94 years old, so when he hovers outside her window with a teddy bear, he literally frightens her to death. 

When Guillermo looks at his results, he finds, as expected, that he is mostly of Hispanic descent. After all, the proudly Latinx character was inspired to become a creature of the night when he saw Antonio Banderas in "Interview with the Vampire." What he didn't expect is that he is also Dutch, and the match was very specific — he is a descendant of vampire hunter Abraham Van Helsing

As the arch-enemy of Count Dracula, Van Helsing is killed in the climax of Bram Stoker's famous novel. The schlubby-seeming Guillermo, whose only dream is to be a vampire, is instead destined to be a vampire killer. When he tosses aside some wooden stakes in frustration and sees that they all land dead-center in the hearts of paintings of vampires, he knows that it's true. Guillermo's initial comedic dread of that reveal remains one of the show's funniest moments. 

Familiar faces at the vampire trial

When Baron Afanas (Doug Jones) visits the vampires' house to see their progress in taking over Staten Island, he is accidentally killed by Guillermo when an open front door exposes the Baron to sunlight. However, the Vampiric Council assumes the roommates killed the Baron, ignoring the possibility that a human could be responsible. 

In the Season 1 episode "The Trial," the funniest reveal is who comprises the council's membership. The three leads from the 2014 film, Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi, and Jonny Brugh, have prominent positions, but there are even more surprises in store for vampire fans. In fact, every other council member is portrayed by an actor from a famous vampire film. There is Tilda (Tilda Swinton, who played a vampire in "Only Lovers Left Alive"), Paul (Paul Reubens, from the film version of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"), Evan (Evan Rachel Wood from "True Blood"), Danny (Danny Trejo, a vampire bartender in "From Dusk Till Dawn"), and Wesley (Wesley Snipes, who played Blade in several films). 

Snipes isn't there in person, but he does Skype into the meeting in an especially funny touch. The introduction also mentions no-shows like Brad (Pitt) and Tom (Cruise, both from "Interview With The Vampire"), as well as Rob (Pattinson, from "Twilight") and Kiefer (Sutherland, from "Lost Boys"). It's an incredible feat of stunt casting and one that fits perfectly into the show's aesthetic of incorporating all aspects of the vampire mythos. 

Jan's exit strategy

What happens when a vampire decides to become a cult leader for other vampires? You get the Season 3 episode "The Wellness Center" and a disturbingly upbeat aerobics-based cult. When a depressed Nandor faces an existential crisis, as he is over 700 years old and still living with roommates, Nadja sends him to collect a debt on behalf of the Vampiric Council from Jan (Cree Summers). However, Jan claims that she doesn't owe any debts because she and her followers are no longer vampires. 

Jan bamboozles her disciples into thinking that she can reverse the vampiric process. Referring to her acolytes as "the formerly fanged" because they pull their rapidly regrowing fangs out every night, Jan's dance routines, hula hoops, and games of cornhole give this narcissist many adoring followers. Jan easily fools Nandor into thinking that she could eat and drink like a human. However, what she is really interested in is having sex with Nandor and doing dance routines to songs like "One Week." 

Guillermo comes along to bring Nandor back, and the vampire hunter brutalizes nearly everyone there. In the aftermath, Jan's followers start to express doubts about her ability to protect them. In perhaps the darkest joke of the entire series, she quickly scrambles to lead them all up to the building's roof for the ultimate burn, a fitness reference. Burn they do, as Jan leads them to their destruction, shrugging her shoulders and saying, "Back to the drawing board." 

Jenna's vampire power

When Baron Afanas comes to America to observe the roommates, Guillermo is told to find some virgins for the Baron to prey upon. A quick thinker, Guillermo goes to a LARP event at a local college and lures a couple of them to the house. This includes Jenna (Beanie Feldstein), a LARPer who wears pointy ears and refers to herself as "Jenelf." However, before the Baron can feed, Colin Robinson drains the LARPers' energy through his usual boredom tactics, making their blood unsuitable for consumption.

Nadja and Laszlo travel to the LARP meeting intent on feeding but are bummed out by the nerdiness. Nadja takes pity on Jenna, who is bullied even by her fellow nerds, and turns her into a vampire. Of course, it takes a while for Jenna to adjust to this new reality, but Nadja helps guide her through the process. 

In the Season 1 episode "Citizenship," Nadja tries to help Jenna find her special vampire power. The eternal pushover Jenna is still ignored at a frat party until she realizes that she has literally become invisible. She uses that power to get her first kill — the lead singer of an annoying ska band.

The roll call of Simon the Devious

In the Season 1 episode "Manhattan Night Club," the vampires are tasked by Baron Afanas to expand their rule over humanity. They decide to travel to Manhattan to join forces with their old friend, Simon the Devious (Nick Kroll.) Simon came over on the same boat as Nadja and Laszlo but became the leader of the New York vampires. Operating out of his own Manhattan nightclub makes Simon a big deal, and his only flaw is desiring a cursed hat that Laszlo owns, which proves to be his undoing. 

The best part of the character is the several-minutes long introduction of his crew, The Leather Skins. Each name is more ludicrous than the next, with some deliberately fierce vampire names and contrasted with some very silly titles. The gang includes vampires like Big Vlad, Little Vlad, Abaddon, Blavglad the Exsanguinator, Desdemona the Shrieker, Hovark the Pit Master, and Gunthrapple. Sillier names included Mr. '50s, Evil Steve, Freakfest Tony, Wesley Sikes, Count Rapula, Asian Mike, and Ken the Accountant. Of course, half the group is blown up in an explosion at Simon's nightclub, thanks to the cursed hat. The rest leave after Simon shows them he doesn't care about them.

A new host for Nadja's ghost

The vampires find themselves haunted in the Season 2 episode "Ghosts," eventually realizing that the spirits are present because they have unfinished business from their mortal lives. This leads the vampires to summon their own ghosts to resolve whatever loose ends might be in their past. While the ghosts of Nandor and Laszlo are dismissed quickly, Nadja is so delighted by her ghost that she invites the spirit to stay in the body of a creepy little mini-me doll. 

In the Season 3 episode "The Siren," Nadja's ghost doll (who is, crucially, never given a name) starts to feel ignored and unappreciated. With her housemates are occupied with Vampire Council business and other nonsense, she decides to run away, making a little ghost doll bindle and walking out unnoticed. When Nadja realizes her ghost is gone, she panics and conscripts the other vampires into searching for the doll with her. 

When Nadja tracks the doll to a department store, the ghost jumps into a mannequin and berates the vampires. She then escapes and jumps into her most ridiculous form yet, a giant inflatable rat. The sight of it scampering around the city is both hilarious and terrifying. When Nadja taunts her that her butt looks big as a rat, the ghost rat shoots back, "Not as big as yours, darling!" Nadja eventually convinces her ghost to come home in an unusually sweet moment for "What We Do in the Shadows."

Nandor's cursed email

Nothing reveals the helplessness of the vampires in the modern world more than their bafflement at contemporary technology. In the Season 2 episode "The Curse," Nandor freaks out when he reads a chain email he opens after Guillermo logs him into his email account for the first time in over a decade. 

Nandor receives an email that says, "This is not a joke. You are now cursed." Nandor, of course, takes this literally and terrifies the other housemates with it. They panic when they see they have to forward it to 10 people or be cursed to death (thanks to Bloody Mary). Nadja exclaims, "Where are we going to get 10 email addresses? The email address shop?" Laszlo replies, in all seriousness, "No, that will likely be closed at this time of night."

Of course, it didn't help when Guillermo, fearing the vampire hunters were going to their house, calls to leave a message that the vampires need to get out or they will all die. Eventually, with the help of Colin Robinson, the vampires are able to avert the curse and even acquire the unforeseen riches promised in the email — some extra change from the Tide pens that Guillermo buys because they are on sale.

An old standard saves the show

There have been several silly storylines on "What We Do in the Shadows," but the idea that Laszlo has been writing hit tunes for years that famous songwriters have copied may be the silliest. In the Season 2 episode "Collaboration," Laszlo hears the '80s hit "Come On Eileen" while feeding on a jogger, and he is outraged. He then reminisces about other songs he claims to have written over the years and fondly recalls his days singing with Nadja. This includes the original, dirty version of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat," as well as songs with titles like "Witches Are Snitches" and "Wannabe." 

When Colin Robinson learns this, he naturally encourages it, even offering to line up a gig for them. It is just an open mic performance, but Laszlo and Nadja unsurprisingly don't know what that is. Colin describes it as "a prestigious showcase of top-level talent," knowing that their brand of weirdness will be exactly what crowds hate at an open mic, allowing him to feed on the crowd's annoyance and anger. 

Colin's plan works perfectly, as songs like "Cellular Telephone Craze" make the crowd restless. When the audience starts booing and cursing them, Laszlo and Nadja break out "The Seafarer's Song," a tune that Laszlo claims to have written in 1792, which turns out to be the Beach Boys' earworm hit "Kokomo." To their great surprise, the audience starts singing along. Colin, of course, is displeased.

The surprise reveal of the Mosquito Collectors

Guillermo's attempt to find more virgins for Nandor in the Season 2 episode "Brain Scramblies" results in him stumbling upon the Mosquito Collectors of the Tri-State Area. While trying to determine if their mosquito collecting hobby leaves them any time to date, their leader, Claude, asks Guillermo, "Doesn't the fact that they drink human blood sicken you?" He then questions Guillermo about other creatures that drink human blood, "with sharp teeth and stupid accents." Guillermo, slightly bewildered, says, "You mean, um, vampires?" When asked if vampires sicken him, Guillermo plays along.

Claude deems Guillermo worthy, leading to a hilarious reveal of the true nature of the Mosquito Collectors: would-be vampire hunters. The group flips over a whiteboard to reveal facts about vampires, turns on infrared lighting, shows off a jug of holy water (do not drink), and unveils a host of weapons. When Claude starts a lecture about the evils of vampires and how pathetic their human familiars are, poor Guillermo cringes like crazy. Guillermo hurriedly leaves the meeting, but not before firing off three shots from a crossbow and landing three precise headshots on mannequins dressed up like vampires. Whether he likes it or not, he has more in common with these would-be vampire hunters than with his masters!

Colin Robinson meets his match

As an energy vampire, Colin Robinson feeds differently than the more traditional vampires he lives with. Instead of sucking blood, he feeds on negative emotions. Boredom, irritation, annoyance, and general social awkwardness are all on an energy vampire's menu. They have a keen sense of the social contract among humans and exploit it to get what they want. Colin enjoys attending city council meetings and asking long, irrelevant questions. He keeps an office job where he does nothing but annoy his co-workers, draining their energy and often forcing them to fall asleep out of lethargy. 

That all changes in the Season 1 episode "Werewolf Feud," when Colin is flummoxed by his new co-worker, Evie (Vanessa Bayer). She keeps telling awful stories about her tragic life to co-workers and getting their attention by falling down. When Colin realizes that he cannot drain her energy, he confirms that she is an emotional vampire. A subspecies of energy vampires, emotional vampires drain energy by making people feel sorry for them through countless sad stories. They battle each other for office psychic vampire supremacy, putting one co-worker into a coma after they batter him with their tedium and tragedy. 

Naturally, they start dating each other. It goes well at first, but she starts badmouthing him at the office to draw pity, leading Colin to break up with her. She pretends to be upset with him to draw more sympathy, naturally.