I'm a bit late to The Strain party but I thought I'd give my views on it so far. Spoilers for the first few episodes of Season 1.
The Strain is a one show attempt to undo all the Anne Rice crap that ultimately lead to Twilight and turned fictions best monster into a punchline. The Vampires are nasty, scary and more than a little gross. It has plenty of WTF moments and copious amounts of blood.
The Strain's vampires are essentially giant, blood-sucking worms in human power-armour. Kinda like Earthworm Jim. They infect humans with little worms that go on a DNA writing spree and convert the human body into a home for the giant worm. This worm (disguised as a tongue) can shoot itself out of the hosts mouth and has two pointy teeth for sucking blood. They also poop glow-under-black-light slime, for some reason.
And if all the grossness is not enough to desexualise the vampire it also causes your genitals to drop off. Well for men anyway. They haven't really gone into it with women yet. Though the only female vampire we've focused on so far is an 8 year old girl so that topic is probably not very appropriate.
The show (so far) follows the start of a Vampire outbreak in New York. A dying billionaire has the Master vampire smuggled into the US with the help of an Nazi Vampire, presumably so he can become immortal. It follows the activities of members of the CDC, an aged Jewish Vampire hunter (A Jewish man who hunts Vampires not someone who hunt's Jewish vampires. That would be perversely anti-Semitic), a vermin exterminator and a small time criminal as the outbreak kicks off.
It's pretty tense and, like I said, icky. The characters are engaging and the dialogue while occasionally cheesy is well delivered. It's only real flaw is that cast seems to be almost completely genre blind. Just like the cast of The Walking Dead have never seen a Zombie movie nobody in The Strain seems to have seen the pale, blood-sucking monsters and considered vampires.
And despite hearing that season 2 isn't as good I'm interested to see where the show goes.
Watched a few more episodes and they've actually started using the world "Vampire" but reluctantly. The cast make faces like they've just been fed a shit sandwich when they do though.