TV Memories: Kindred: The Embraced (Beverly Hills with Vampires)

Short lived, cheesy and lots of fun.

kindredThis used to air late at night when I was fourteen or fifteen. Being a vampire-holic even back then, I had to stay up late and tape it. If I went rooting around in the attic, I’m sure I’d find my Kindred tapes somewhere, though I think I only kept the episodes featuring the Romeo & Juliet type characters (more on them later).

Julian Luna is the Prince of the city of San Francisco. He’s a dangerous but honourable vampire and rules over The Kindred, five vampire tribes. Striving to take the city from him is a group of vampires called Brujah. As far as I can remember, there are five vampire bloodlines/clans. I liked to imagine myself as a Toreador vampire. They’re the creative type: artists, writers, musicians, free to spend eternity honing their crafts and having a damn good time all the while.

The presence of the undead in San Francisco does not go unnoticed by the annoying cop, Frank. Really, I wanted some vampire to rip his neck out every episode – he’s that irritating. He’s a little on the slow side, too, completely unaware his partner is a vampire.

Julian has one last human relative left, Sasha. She’s a wild, young thing who falls for one of Julian’s employees, Cash, a vampire of the Gangrel clan. Julian wants to keep Sasha from his world, but of course, that’s going to be impossible. Eventually he gives Cash permission to “embrace” Sasha, but it’s too late. Sasha is viciously attacked by the Brujha clan and turned. Brujha and Gangrel have long been enemy clans, establishing a Romeo and Juliet type of romance between Sasha and Cash. (I apologise to any Kindred fans if I’m spelling any of the clan names incorrectly).

A little trivia now for you. Sasha was played by Brigid Brannagh who made a few guest appearances in Angel as Wesley’s girlfriend. Cash was played by Channon Roe who appeared in the season three episode of Buffy, “The Zeppo”.  Does anyone remember the big, hulking vampire, Luke,  who Buffy went up against in “Welcome to the Hellmouth” and “The Harvest”? Well, his name is Brian Thompson, and he’s in Kindred, too. In fact, he’s responsible for turning Sasha into a vampire. Jeff Kober of the Nosferatu clan was the vampire who Buffy faced on her 18th birthday in the season 3 episode, “Helpless”. He played another character later in Buffy, Rack, the magic guy who gives Willow her first taste of dark magic.

With only eight episodes airing, we never got to fully explore the wealth of vampire activity going on in San Francisco. Mark Frankel, the actor who played Julian, died in a motorcycle accident. If you ever see reruns of this advertised, sit down and give them a watch. Kindred: The Embraced is enjoyable, television fluff.

Did anyone catch this back in the 90s?


About Emma

Buffy fan, avid reader, writer.
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27 Responses to TV Memories: Kindred: The Embraced (Beverly Hills with Vampires)

  1. Mae Clair says:

    Wow, I’d never heard of this show, but it sounds like a good one, especially the star-crossed romance. I think the 90s might have also been when…crap, I can’t remember the name of it…another vampire show that had been based on a movie called Nick Knight. I remember Rick Springfield had the lead in the movie, but another actor took over when it was spun into a series. I remember being really discussed with the way that one ended but I did enjoy the series.

    • Emma says:

      Mae, I remember that show – he was a detective wasn’t he?
      This show is very Aaron Spelling Melrose Place type thing with vampires, but I found it entertaining anyway 🙂
      If you watch this you’ll probably feel the same about how it ends. So many shows just get cancelled with no thought for the viewer. Argh!

      • Mae Clair says:

        Yes, he was a dectective and I remembered the name of the show–Forever Knight. It did run a 4 or 5 season arc and all the storylines were closed but they all ended badly in my opinion.

        I hate when shows get cancelled midway and the viewer is left hanging. Melrose Place with vamps works for me.It sounds great!

      • Emma says:

        I’m going to see if I can find that show and watch it. I vaguely remember it being on, but not sure if I ever sat down and watched it.

  2. I’ve never heard of this. It sounds like something I might like. I wish it was available for streaming on Netflix. Maybe I can catch it somewhere eventually.

    When someone mentions cheesy vampire stories, I can’t help but think of the movie Dracula 2000. LOL

    • Emma says:

      I don’t know how I stumbled upon it. It think I must be able to sniff out anything vampire pretty well 🙂
      Dracula 2000! I remember that being out but I can’t think of what the story was. Well it had Dracula obviously but I can’t remember the plot for that version.

  3. Erik Smith says:

    A very enjoyable show based on the White Wolf role-playing game Vampire: The Masquerade, and the collectible card game Vampire: The Eternal Struggle. I was a bit, uhm, let’s just say I was a big fan of the game. There were dozens of novels, and I read most of them. I still have, packed away, my Clan Brujah wine glass and my Vampire: The Masquerade cigarette case and lighter. I was very excited when the show came out, and quite disappointed that it only lasted a short while.

    It’s nice to see that people are still finding and enjoying The Kindred.

    • Emma says:

      Erik – the Masquerade game!! I remember looking that up when the TV show came out but can’t remember much about it. Do people still play that game? It sounds intriguing.
      That wine glass is probably worth a pretty penny now.

      • Erik Smith says:

        I would guess that someone, somewhere, is still playing. I never tried the role-playing game, but always enjoyed the collectible card games. Unfortunately, an ex took a box of my card games when she left. But, the joke’s on her. I still have my Buffy games! 🙂

      • Emma says:

        Good for you. Buffy trumps Kindred every time. And also – what a bitch. 🙂

  4. beckyday6 says:

    Ha, this sounds really cool, I’d never heard of it! 🙂

  5. Never seen it but I may see if I can get a copy 😀

  6. I didn’t watch this live in the ’90s, but I have seen most if not all of it on one of the Chiller daytime marathons. I didn’t think it was all that bad. I would have continued watching. I think the network was its downfall…

    • Emma says:

      It wasn’t all bad. As long as you know what to expect going in, it’s pretty enjoyable. I loved the bar Lily owned. What network was it on?

  7. Another 90’s TV show I missed. I don’t really remember much of the 90’s at all in fact. I think I was roofied. I hope I had a good time.

  8. Must confess hadn’t heard of this until now but enjoyed your outline as always, Kevin.

  9. Never seen this one either!

    Really liking the new look, Emma! 🙂

    Have an awesome week.

  10. Debra Kristi says:

    I’ve never even heard of this. I wonder if Netflix streams it. You have a good vampire sniffer. LOL.

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