By Shirley Li
July 21, 2016 at 11:53 PM EDT
Michael Gibson/FX
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The Munchers have been rebranded the “strigoi,” Eph (Corey Stoll) has become an alcoholic after losing son Zach (Max Charles), and The Strain is about to turn in its first 10-episode season.

At the San Diego Comic-Con panel for the FX horror series, EPs Carlton Cuse and Chuck Hogan spoke of the series’ faster pace. “We wanted to increase the narrative velocity of the show,” Cuse explained. “We’re past the point where we’re worried about, ‘Are the strigois real? Are people in denial?’… There’s a problem, it has to be solved, the fate of New York City is at stake.”

“Ten episodes would make the show kickass all the time,” he added. “This season is really an all-out battle for the soul of New York.”

The key to winning that battle? Understanding the history and mythology of the bloodthirsty creatures in the first place. “We dig deeper into how the Ancients relate to Quinlan and the Master,” Cuse said. “The Ancients get very involved in the whole plan to get rid of the Master.”

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The Strain, though, won’t just be eclipsing its story in darkness. The cast teased new romances as well: Ruta Gedmintas, who plays Dutch, said she and Eph grow “closer,” and Kevin Durand, who stars as fan favorite strigoi hunter Fet, will be enjoying some action this season — or rather, lots of it. “My wife and I had a deal that every time I have to make out with a woman on screen, I have to buy her a bag, and I had to buy her a couple more bags this season,” he said, to cheers from the crowd.

More levity occurred in the form of a spoof rap video called “Vamps Boom,” which featured lyrics written by Durand and Gomez as well as Regina Corrado (who wrote David Bradley’s rap). Video of that can be seen below.


The Strain returns Sunday, Aug. 28, on FX.

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