Now, before you come for me: No, the WWDITS Season 4 finale didn’t suck. That title is pure clickbait, and I’m sorry I had to trick you to click on this final recap. However, I am wildly disappointed with the conclusion of this season. I’ve watched the finale three times already – once alone, once with friends, and once more alone before writing this piece. Each time, I felt the exact same way: empty.
The episode itself is a phenomenal feat, bringing home perfectly a lot of the storylines that we’ve seen developed throughout the season, from Nadja’s (Natasia Demetriou) overwhelming desire to run a successful vampire nightclub to Nandor (Kayvan Novak) wanting so badly to be married, to Laszlo (Matt Berry) and Baby Colin’s (Mark Proksch) relationship, and finally Guillermo’s (Harvey Guillén) midlife crisis and questioning his place within his vampire family. And while I feel that under any other circumstances, “Sunrise, Sunset” could have put me off from the entire show, after my third watch, I can say that the WWDITS Season 4 finale was supposed to make me feel this way.
In the first recap I wrote for this season, I pointed out the show’s emphasis on the idea of change – specifically, how What We Do In The Shadows took that idea from us by bringing its characters right back to where they first started. Instead of following Nadja and Guillermo through London, Nandor on his trip of the world, and Laszlo as he struggled to be a father to Baby Colin, the show needed to bring everyone back together and reset them to who they already were (with some minor changes).
But most clearly, the characters’ deliberate refusal to change is at its core the vampire way. They don’t need to concern themselves with constant change because – surprise, surprise – they live forever. Instead, they need to find new things to do for a few years to quench the thirst of excitement. And they don’t need to care about who they use along the way to satisfy their need. That is the main theme of the season.
Spoilers ahead for the WWDITS Season 4 Finale, “Sunrise, Sunset.”
One storyline I loved this season was Laszlo’s struggle with parenthood. It allowed for another side of Laszlo to come through, one that was caring and interested in taking care of someone other than himself. (Yes, Laszlo obviously cares about Nadja, but she can take care of herself.) I think he did set out intending to care for the child that crawled out of the chest cavity of his dear friend Colin Robinson. As Season 4 developed, though, Laszlo fell right into the Disney Channel father to figure conundrum of pushing his child to live out the dreams he had for himself when he was younger (insert clip of Troy Bolton screaming at his father). Laszlo’s desire to raise a kid in his own image conflicted with Colin’s desire to find his own way until, at the bitter end, Laszlo did find a way to connect with Colin, even at his worst teenage and hormonal self.
Which is why it’s so heartbreaking when in true What We Do In The Shadows fashion, Colin returns in full force by the end of the finale. You see, apparently according to energy vampire lore, every hundred years Colin “dies” – or more accurately, decays and then sprouts a new version of himself that grows at an expedited rate so he can return to his ideal middle-aged energy vampire self. I thought the way his story came full circle was both clever and quite unhinged (like Nathan from The Rehearsal unhinged). I think that Baby Colin was one of the better parts of Season 4, which is why it’s going to be interesting to watch how the show reintegrates him into the house dynamic next season.
As for Nadja, she sadly girlbossed too close to the sun. The business started drying up without Baby Colin to drive vampires to her club. Throughout the WWDITS Season 4 finale, Nadja tries everything to resurrect her dream – but, as we all know, once something’s (un)dead, there’s nothing you can do to bring it back to life. At least, that’s what we think before the episode introduces The Guide’s (Kristen Schaal) knowledge of witchcraft and her ability to bring people back from the dead for 24 hours. This revelation gives Nadja the brilliant idea of hosting “A Conversation With…” panels, ones she’s had too much to drink and done too little preparation to sit for. The result is complete chaos, destroying what little clout Nadja had left.
It’s been interesting watching Nadja run herself into the ground. In order to keep her brand afloat, she’s been stealing money from her own club and outright refusing help from others. And, in true Nadja fashion, she chooses to burn the club down instead of quitting. But she can’t even do that right, as the blood sprinklers – the ones that never ever work – finally kick on, salvaging the structural integrity of the building and ruining her stash of cash.
As for Guillermo and Nandor, this is where I start to lose my shit. As someone with an attention deficit, I can relate to Nandor’s vampiric desire to spice things up, experience something new, get lost in searching for something to shake up his routine…and then discard it when the thrill is gone. However, I would never do that to someone I brought back from the dead via Djinn’s (Anoop Desai) wish. Especially not after I changed their entire personality (also by Djinn’s wish), got married to them, and then turned them into a carbon copy of my bodyguard-turned-friends boyfriend. What makes the WWDITS Season 4 finale even better is that Nandor seems to be now recharging from the insanity that he caused. Satiated by the chaos and insanity, he’s gonna just read for a few decades. Plus, with Marwa (Parisa Fakhri) gone and Baby Colin all grown up, Guillermo finds himself aimless, with no concrete reason to stay in the house anymore. He has outgrown his duties as a familiar and is trying to figure out what he should do next.
But I couldn’t have foreseen Guillermo having the same issues with the show that I do. In “Sunrise, Sunset,” Guillermo expresses his discontentment with things never changing in the house. It’s as though he’s finally realized that vampires tend to drift through decades, even centuries like they’re nothing without a clear expiration date. Which they are. But a very small amount of time for a vampire is a luxury that a mortal like Guillermo doesn’t have. If it’s change he wants, it’s going to be up to him to make it happen.
And so in the most insane, scream-inducing possible final minute of the season, Guillermo goes to visit his friend Derek (Chris Sandiford), who survived the events of “The Curse” and is now a vampire. Guillermo brings all the embezzled club money he has left. And he asks Derek to turn him into a vampire.
What’s truly heartbreaking is that after this season tried desperately to move characters into change and growth, the only changes the characters actually made were for the worse. At their core, no one evolved; nobody got better. It makes complete sense within the absurdity of the show. None of What We Do In The Shadows’ characters are good people (or vampires), but we love them regardless. (Except Nandor; fuck him.) And so the WWDITS Season 4 finale is an interesting reminder – particularly from Guillermo’s point of view – that if the people around you won’t bring about change, then doing so becomes your responsibility. I cannot wait to see whether and how Guillermo actually goes through with his vampiric transformation and how it’ll change his relationship with Nandor and the rest of the vampires.
What We Do In The Shadows Season 4 Rating: 8/10 (It is good! I just feel unsatisfied.)
The only meme that matters:
Final What We Do In The Shadows Season 4 Thoughts:
- Matt Berry is perfect and I love him.
- Marwa deserved better and I will challenge Nandor to a fight for her honor.
- The Djinn was my favorite new character.
- Guillermo, you conniving bitch, I love you.
- Mamma Mia and Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again are THAT good.
- Sean Rinaldi maybe does deserve rights?
- Me to Nadja: