Vampire question

About vampires whose image cannot be photographed or seen in a mirror:

Co come their CLOTHES are also invisible?

They are wrapped in vampiric aura.

I dunno. It’s hell when they try to put on cosmetics, though.

It’s magic!

Vampires are actually malignant, bodiless spirits. A vampire’s appearance (including clothing) and its ability to affect the physical world is the result of a psychic projection of its self-image, driven by its agonizing hunger for life. A mirror, of course, does nothing to reflect psychic impressions. (This is also why mirrors can be used to see through illusions.) As a corollary, vampires don’t cast shadows.

Right, now that I’ve got that bit of silliness out of my system…

This has always seemed like one of the weirder bits of vampire lore to me. Vampires are generally represented as corporeal undead–that is, they have actual, physical bodies. They should absorb and reflect light just like any other body. In fact, they must do so to some extent if people are to see them at all. So what is it about them that changes light so that it can be absorbed (and thereby detected by our retinas), but can’t be reflected? Why does the effect extend to anything it wears or holds, right down to dust on its clothing, but not (for example) to the chair it’s sitting in?

Stoker introduced the lack of reflection in Dracula based on the idea that mirrors reflect the soul, and vampires have no souls. That doesn’t help with the clothing question, unfortunately. In fact, it inspires the odd notion that mirrors should, in fact, reflect everyone naked at all times (since clothes presumably don’t have souls, either). All I can offer on that is the notion that maybe mirrors aren’t supposed to reflect things that shouldn’t be before them. Since soulless, blood-drinking husks shouldn’t be stalking around in tuxedos, and since unoccupied tuxedos shouldn’t prance around in front of mirrors, the mirrors reflect neither the wearer nor the worn.

Or maybe the mirrors are actually windows into our world, which is identical except for the fact that vampires don’t exist here, and so can’t be seen in the mirror regardless of how they’re dressed. :wink:

I think clothes are part of the vampire, or any person really. As Scully points out in the X-Files episode “How The Ghosts Stole Christmas” ghosts shouldn’t have clothes, but they do. And in Charmed Leo healed not only a stab wound in a witch, but her top too.

Most of a vampire’s powers and weaknesses break down if you try to explain them in physical terms - in most versions, shapechanging vampires’ clothes change with them.

Putting a stake through a Vampire’s heart is no different than destroying their heart, or pinning them down through other physical means, and yet, it’ll kill or incapacitate them where other ways won’t.

A vampire going into the sun doesn’t just suffer a particularly bad sunburn.

The easiest way to explain them is that they’re not a physical property of what remains of the body, but a mystical property of whatever force animates them.

For mirrors and photographs, I chalk it up to the silver used in the creation of the film and the mirrors, at least for those vampires in mythos which include silver allergies. But of course there are some which include the silver weakness but allow for photographs. And this doesn’t explain the lack of reflection in non-silvered reflective surfaces.

You know I’ve seen that comic about ten times and I’ve never realized it was about a vampire. I thought it he was making fun of a blind girl. :smack:

Well, I assumed it was some kind of undead being. The way I see it, making fun of blind people? Kind of un-PC. But making fun of the undead? Totally kosher!

I like Balance’s explanation the best. (The second part, at least.)

The comment about ghosts is fitting. In the movie, Beetlejuice, right after Barbara and Adam have died, no one can see them. They can’t even see their clothing. I assumed that because they died with the clothing on, it counts as an extension of themselves. But when they hold things (Barbara lifting a wooden horse in front of the mirror, for example), it looks like these things are hovering. Similarly, when they wear the sheets to try and scare off the Deitz family, it basically looks like ghost like sheets just hovering around. (You’d think with these mad skillz, they would have been able to freak out the Deitzes with a poltergeist type effect, hurling things and breaking glasses and windows, but I digress.)

Then how the hell did Claudia & Louis go shopping?


Vampires are fantasy, not scifi. I.e., there is no logical explanation, nor should there be.

Not really on topic, but I thought Stephen King really nailed it when he said, in Salems Lot, “if the eyes are the windows of the soul, these eyes looked in on an empty room.”

Heh. Or to quote Geordi La Forge from Star Trek : The Next Generation when he and Ensign Ro was intangible and Ensign Ro suggested they were ghosts, “What about my VISOR and uniform ? What am I ? A blind ghost with clothes ?”

As for vampires and mirrors, perhaps they can only be perceived by living beings, and don’t show up to cameras, mirrors, or robots.

Or perhaps they are the embodied manifestation of humanity’s imagination and collective psychic/magic/spiritual power, and can’t be seen in mirrors because the stories told about them say they can’t be.

Or perhaps the stories about them being invisible in mirrors are a lie spread by the vampires themselves, to make it easy for them to “prove” they are not vampires. :eek:

I like the way you think…