TCADeadline__140109155905FX’s new vampire series The Strain is a “really original re-imagining of vampire lore” that “says something about the precariousness of our modern world” and also about the 2014 Winter TCA Tour - Day 6intersection of “empiricism and religion,” exec producer Carlton Cuse told TV critics this afternoon.

Then he showed critics a clip from the pilot episode.

“I got a massage just watching that,” Cuse tittered when the gore-tastic clip wrapped. Critics, who looked like the clip had had the same effect on them, were disappointed to learn from Cuse that the vampires of The Strain won’t engage in actual sex. That’s because the particular strain of vampire in Chuck Hogan’s novel trilogy on which the series is based sloughs off genitalia – no use for them.

Cuse, who is exec producing with Guillermo del Toro, explained that “one of the amazing things” about the books is the elaborate biological specificity when it comes to the vampires, including the genitalia thing, the fact that they defecate and eat at the same time, and other fun facts too numerous to mention here, but all of which will be detailed thoroughly in the series – and then some, Cuse promised. “We’ve added a lot of new stuff, gotten deeper into characters, invented new situations. The books are well represented in the show, but the show is a deeper and richer experience,” he said.

FX ordered to series the project in November and the first season is expected to premiere in July. Cuse said the series will run three to five seasons but has a pre-determined end, based on the novels. The Strain tells the story of Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (Corey Stoll), the head of the Centers for Disease Control Canary Team in New York City, investigating a plane that arrives at JFK airport and everyone on it appears to be dead. The plane turns out to be carrying a mysterious cargo which is this strain of vampirism that will spread through New York City and ultimately the world, while the Centers for Disease Control tries its darndest to get things under control.

“You’ll never look at vampires the same way,” Cuse told the TV critics at Winter TV Press Tour 2014. “They’re not the sparkling, brooding dudes” with love issues that we’re used to seeing on television, he promised. “They’re scary creatures.” He also promised/threatened the series would be an allegory for “the precariousness of our modern world” and a statement about “empiricism and religion.”