TORONTO, ONTARIO. Like a body finding itself overrun with squiggly bloodworms and going from human to vampire, FX's "The Strain" is undergoing a transformation.
The series launched last summer with a pilot directed by Guillermo del Toro and written by del Toro and Chuck Hogan from the literary trilogy by Chuck Hogan. In the early rounds of promotion, "The Strain" had few cheerleaders more jovial and engaged than Guillermo del Toro and there are few cheerleaders more engaged and engaging than Guillermo del Toro.
But as "The Strain" moved deeper into its first season, deviations from the books became larger and larger. Thomas Eichhorst, pretty much an afterthought stooge in the book, became perhaps the TV show's defining villain in the hands of breakout star Richard Sammel. Nora's (Mia Maestro) unstable mother, a character whose importance stretches into the third book, was killed off with minimal emotional impact. And who the heck is "Dutch"?