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LOOKING for that perfect stocking-filler box set? Is your other half a bit twisted? Well, look no further in the shape of

LOOKING for that perfect stocking-filler box set? Is your other half a bit twisted? Well, look no further in the shape of The Strain - an American vampire TV series.

Okay, vampires aren't all that cool, but this isn't your poncey Twilight-style creatures of the night, these guys are rather scary.

Why the box set? Because it was released on cult channel FX, The Strain hasn't reached a massive audience over here, and that's a pity.

It's creepy from the off, with a plane en route to New York's John F Kennedy airport - but there's a strange banging from the cargo hold. Soon a creature of the night attacks the cabin crew, and things don't look good for the passengers.

The plane lands, and there's no response from any souls onboard, sparking fears of a terrorist attack or disease outbreak.

Epidemiologist Dr Ephraim Goodweather (Corey Stoll) and his team are called in to investigate - but this isn't your bog-standard flu or even Ebola, it's something more sinister.

There's a handful of survivors, with everyone else onboard dead.

But, unlike any other disease, these 206 corpses will soon be returning home to spread a deadly plague - vampirism.

This one's got it all, with evil Nazi vampires; there's a holocaust survivor-turned-vampire hunter (David Bradley); and a cool Ukrainian rat exterminator who's now got bigger fish to fry: vampires.

It's gory in places (the transformation of the four "survivors" into vampires is chilling, but it's fast-paced with conspiracies, double-crossing and creepy child monsters).

If you haven't caught the show yet, do yourself a favour: it's a classic.

>Mark Evans


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