What We Do In the Shadows Recap: The Cloak of Duplication

Magic exists everywhere. As is love. Now, some may think love is magic, but I’m happening on the stance that it’s misfiring synapses in the mind that make some connection with another life form. The thing is, it’s all in the mindscape, and though we think we know how oxytocin works, we know little about how something feels so right, it’s downright criminal. So is dominance and want for things and it is within this episode of What We Do In The Shadows (FX) titled “The Cloak of Duplication” that we find the true meaning of our dreams and necessity. It’s called illusion.

The leaders of the Vampiric World are at odds. Nadja (Natasia Demetriou) and wants true dominion while hubby, Laszlo (Matt Berry) wants no part of a leadership position. They have their work cut out for them, however, as Nandor (Kayvon Novak) goes against his honorific and “relents” to work in concordance with Nadja as duel rulers. So off to the Vampiric Council HQ they go. The Guide (Kristen Schaal) leads them to a menagerie of Vampiric Wonders, and though it houses Van Helsing’s cut-off cudgel, Guillermo (Harvey Guillen) still isn’t allowed in the sanctum.

There also exists a cloak that, not unlike a Harry Potter movie, can replicate yourself. The familiar-cum-protector can’t be in this room though, as it’s only for VAMPIRES. So he’s guided into a vault that is only reserved for familiars. Nandor pumps the breaks on it, but since nobody wants to turn the would-be nighttime assassin, he relents.

Now this place has the largest library of tomes ever concerning spells, vampiric knowledge, and well, what Laszlo is interested in, which is the oldest collection of pornography. He’s in his own basin, only sinking down more. What are his favorites? The Knobnomicon (706 AD), Gutenberg’s Vaginarium (1487), de Tocqueville’s Lusty Discharge Pamphlet (1842), Egypt’s Longest Penises (unknown), Roy Cohn Esquire’s 169 Sex Positions (1954), and Aristotle’s second volume of poetry.

While he’s mentally masturbating, Colin (Mark Proksch) is trying to blag a 23 and me and is coming up with nothing.

Guillermo breaks out of his prison (again) and finds himself in the library. This has Doctor Strange energy on it.

By the way, the other vampires are being measured for their vestiments. Nandor goes to bat for Guillermo crashing in. The funny thing is that Nandor wants to steal his own ‘suit’, that being the cloak. He has some other things going on, in the fashion of trying to get a date with a place called Massive Fitness.

Being the ruler and killer of years yore, his game isn’t exactly on point. He needs a cover and what better a way to try to gain the affections of this woman at the desk than the master of it, who actually has a wife- Laszlo.

The only problem with this plan is that Laszlo is (outside of Jackie Daytona) lazy. He tosses it off to Colin. Plus, Laszlo has a wife and I believe if Nadja, for all of his exploits were to find out he bedded another woman or even as blink an eye at her, she’d be dead, as well as he. Again.

So it all falls on Colin. Oh, my cats. Colin. I’m sure he watched Tom Cruise’s monologue from Magnolia beforehand because he takes negging to the next level. He’s also fucking over Nandor, but as an energy vampire, he doesn’t know the game. His prize? Being bounced out by Chris, the heavy.

He, handily having his ass out goes back to Laszlo and challenges him to try it.

What are the rest of the crew doing though? Well, funny you should ask! There’s another crew, a rogue vampire clique in Queens that isn’t not paying their dues. I guess it’s a mob move, as Nadja, Nandor, and Colin go there to collect.

What do they find? A Millenial vampire named Wes Blankenship. He of course welcomes them in (ya gotta).

Laszlo tries to hit on the girl, shows her porn after playing horribly a mandolin. Yes, Nandor’s thing is working well.

Back in Queens, Wes does not acknowledge the floor. His crew doesn’t believe in rules. They call themselves the Council of Vampires and are basically a rogue state. They are basically the idiots that calling themselves sovereign citizens, just with blood lust. Nandor wants to create a possible alliance, but Nadja isn’t having anything of it. She’s lived for too fucking long and she’s tired of this shit. But lo!

Colin spots another energy vampire. He didn’t think they existed outside of him. (Ego, much?) He happens to be a fan of his though.

In the library, once Guillermo breaks free, Laszlo tells him he can do his master a solid by donning the cloak and going on a date. He’ll do anything for his Master, so he obliges.

At the party, Colin is chopping it up with Dave Lewis but has an existential moment, wondering where they came from and how they came to be. The thing is in the other room, the millennial council is trying to figure out how to dismantle the official Council’s ruling.

It doesn’t help that Guillermo is talking now to Meg, but he does air his grievances. She realizes that he feels something for him and that he should tell him.

In Queens, Nadja’s non-current blood is boiling. She’s had enough of these idiots and why shouldn’t she? She just wants to get back to her husband and sleep. Though Nandor tries for a more diplomatic move, his flank has something else in mind, ripping out the host’s heart. She’s staked her claim and told them the dues are on the first full moon of the month. It’s a Boss move.

At the gym, the real Nandor appears and has learned that not only is Guillermo fond of him but also that the woman he’s been crushing on is a lesbian. The sad this is with this in tow, Chris, the bouncer gets the brunt of it.

The last part is Nadja waking up Nandor only to chastise him for how it all went down. She thinks he’s gone soft, but he’s just a big softie. He wants to be a paramour and doesn’t have it when it’s in front of his goddamned face. She also uses the cloak on him and with her husband.

This second episode swung for the fences and nailed it as a good one-two punch with the previous episode. We get a sense of where things lie and what is at stake. Yes, I said it. Season 3 certainly seems to be coming in hot right out of the gate and it certainly isn’t taking any guff… prisoners for that matter.

 

Robert Kijowski
Robert J. Kijowski is a screenwriter who enjoys a good chuckle and an even better weep when indulging in art both good and even better bad. He enjoys the company of strangers in a theatre but adores the camaraderie of friends watching Netflix. He also loves to talk- a lot. This can be read through his recaps and reviews on the Workprint or heard through his weekly movie podcast, After the Credits. His presence can be felt through Facebook, Spotify or Ouija. Don’t use the latter though- he almost always ghosts people.

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