If you've seen North Coast Repertory Theatre's Dracula, you've had a chance to check out the program. It's cover features a cool Middle English typeface, below which rests an oil rendering of a darkly beautiful young woman. Her gaunt frame sports two puncture wounds at the neck and a vacant, raven stare--sadly, she's one of them now, an intervention of biblical proportion her only hope.Yes, visual art has its magical qualities. But those qualities are meant to reflect concepts of the artist's account, not the account itself. For that, y'all need the theater. And try as it might, this Dracula stops way short of performance art, reading instead like an enactment of that picture on the program. The thing is, onstage horror mostly winds up spoofing itself, and in this entry, Stephen Dietz's unoriginal script is at the core of that problem. The Draculan legend, after all, is one of the most intriguing in the annals of English-language literature. To portray the count so rotely, amid so predictable a set of technical bells and whistles, trumps our imaginations and spoils the surprise on which that intrigue depends. The story's so familiar you can recite it while sleepless, drunk and illegally parked: The embittered, displaced Count Dracula (Matt Thompson) has a pesky habit of feeding on people's blood and passing along his vampiric sensibilities to the unsuspecting. But the castle ain't big enough for both Drack and Professor van Helsing (Robert Grossman), his intrepid pursuer. The latter eventually avenges the count's cruelty, helping dispatch the baddies and saving Mina and Harker (Brenda Dodge and Jason Heil) a lifetime of headaches in the process.What you might not know is that there's a cool little bit of military history taking place offstage. Abraham (Bram) Stoker's 1897 Dracula novel was inspired by a real-life prince named Vlad, born in 1431 in the honest-to-God Hungarian satellite of Transylvania. Hungary was at big-time war with Turkey then, and, wholesale patriot that he was, Vlad devised ways to impale his Turkish captives unto their excruciating torment. By some accounts, he'd scarf down their blood for laughs.You won't learn anything about that in this show. Neither will you discover that Vlad was an ardent Christian in his early days or that he had a brother with whom he was fairly close. What you will get is director Christopher Vened's unremarkable take on Dietz's skeletal story. The acting and tech touches, however appropriately conceived, lose their clout against a yarn you've been hip to since before you could belch.This piece might have been better as a staged reading--at least then, the technical demands would have been minimized so as not to overwhelm the dog-eared storyline. Or Dietz could have reworked his script as a narrative character study of Vlad, telling us stuff we don't already know about the dastardly count. Whatever. This show constitutes a fairly watchable revisit, but it's nowhere close to rethought.This review is based on the performance of Oct. 21. Dracula runs through Nov. 18 at North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987-D Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach. $23-$40. 858-481-1050 or www.northcoastrep.org.Red-letter dayThe Bible does too say something about computers, yo. It's in the Old Testament. Eve had an Apple, and Adam had a Wang. There's even stuff in there about Marty Schottenheimer's firing as Chargers head coach and San Diego's thorny city-pension flap. Still more lies ahead in The Bible: The Complete Word of God (Abridged) as staged by The Reduced Shakespeare Company (RSC)-but pretty much all of it depends on paltry shots like those for its laughs.If you're gonna have fun with the Bible, you need to spoof the parables and the history that goes with them in an extremely general context. RSC, on the other hand, has chosen to blitz us with one-liners-and the Bible, with its crazy family entanglements and its unknowable central figure, is too obvious a target for such an approach. RSC performers Michael Faulkner, Jerry Kernion and Brent Tubbs are affable and properly unrefined. Authors Adam Long, Reed Martin, Austin Tichenor and Matthew Croke have passable ears for cadence. But mostly, their material's just kinda--well--dumb. The Bible: The Complete Word of God (Abridged) runs through Nov. 11 at the Lyceum Space, 79 Horton Plaza, Downtown. $41-$45. 619-544-1000 or www.sandiegorep.com.