The Vampires of Sanctuary

Over the last year, I’ve been watching the television series Sanctuary that aired for the past few seasons on the Syfy cable network. The premise of the show is that there is a worldwide network of people devoted to protecting the rare, abnormal creatures of the world, which include everything from mermaids to lycanthropes and many creatures beyond. The leader of the Sanctuary network is Dr. Helen Magnus, a scientist who started her career in Victorian England. She obtained a sample of vampire blood and injected herself along with four of her closest colleagues. Each of the people in the group gained long life and some vampire-like powers.

SANCTUARY -- "Awakening" Episode 316 -- Photo by: Carole Segal/Syfy

The member of the five who gained essentially all of the original vampire powers was none other than Nikola Tesla, who we see here played by Jonathan Young alongside Amanda Tapping, who plays Helen Magnus. As a writer of both vampires and steampunk, I’m absolutely delighted to see this historical figure realized so well as a vampire. Young captures the historic Tesla’s vanity and his scientific curiosity. He clearly has fun exploring what it would be like if the nineteenth century inventor had tremendous strength and virtual immortality, exploring many scientific pursuits.

One of the things Tesla seeks in Sanctuary is to find out what happened to the original vampire race who once ruled the Earth as humanity’s masters. During the third season, Tesla and Magnus awaken the queen of the vampires. When they do, we learn that Tesla isn’t the most vain or power hungry vampire after all. Fortunately, she isn’t quite as clever as Tesla and Magnus.

Over the course of the series, Tesla keeps finding ways to get the Sanctuary team into trouble. Despite that, he still seems to have a moral compass. He used his intellect to fight the Nazi’s in World War II and he generally tries to help the cause of humanity even if his selfish goals get in the way. We even learn that Tesla is still trying to find a way to provide free power to all.

It’s fun to imagine what it would be like for Sanctuary’s Tesla to meet the Scarlet Order vampires. I could see them getting into all kinds of trouble together. Although I couldn’t use Sanctuary’s Tesla in one of my stories, I could certainly imagine the Scarlet Order vampires meeting the real Tesla. Now that could be one electrifying tale!

In the meantime, if you haven’t already discovered Sanctuary, I highly recommend it. Also, I recently had the opportunity to meet Amanda Tapping, who seemed a genuinely nice person. Although I was sorry to hear that Sanctuary has been cancelled, I look forward to seeing what she does next.

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2 thoughts on “The Vampires of Sanctuary

  1. nrlymrtl says:

    I really enjoyed the first season of this series. I think it was a Canadian production then. I saw the 2nd season and vampiric Tesla, who seemed a lot of fun. Perhaps when it ends up on Netflix, I will watch the rest of the series and see how they outwit the queen bee of vampires.

    • I believe it remained a Canadian production throughout it’s run, and was distributed on SyFy in the United States. It actually is on Netflix – that’s how I watched it. I think the fourth season is streaming only, though, so if you get the disks, you’d be out of luck. Fortunately, the vampire queen episode is in the third season. 🙂

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