While separate and concurrent storylines aren’t inherently a poor trait, True Blood once began as a single story with many parts. Now many stories with their own individual elements muddle the narrative – each scene represents its own story with its own characters (which rarely overlap).
Aside from this trait making True Blood a truly active viewing experience (if you want to keep up with what’s going on), the lack of fluidity amongst the series’ many storylines makes it difficult to get an overall sense of what’s actually occurring in Bon Temps.
The creator of the HBO vampire-filled, steamy series, Alan Ball, will be stepping down as its showrunner after the fifth season, the network confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter. Forbes was first to hint at the news.
"'True Blood' has been, and will continue to be, a highlight of not only my career but my life," Ball, who earned an Emmy for "Six Feet Under" and also won an Oscar for writing "American Beauty," said in a statement.
IT'S something of a mystery why HBO hired so few southern actors for their silly, sexed-out shlock vampire series True Blood. The show (which takes place in Louisiana and nearby) features no big names, so the producers had plenty of aspirant actors to choose from. But the chief actors include New Zealand-raised Anna Paquin, English Steven Moyer and Australian Ryan Kwanten. All have abysmal southern accents in the show.
When you’re a TV show like True Blood with millions of thirsty fans, you can bet they want to know more about the expanded universe. While not every moment of Bill and Sookie’s romance can be caught on tape, IDW has released a licensed True Blood comic book series to keep you updated on the secret parts of your favorite character’s lives.
Vamp/human affairs became a hot topic of discussion at the True Blood panel. "Apparently sex with vampires is really kind of great," said Ball, the creator of Six Feet Under and writer of American Beauty. "Think about it — if you had 100-200 years to learn how please your partner and you had the body of a 25-year-old, you'd be something of a catch."
Ball said he made a deliberate effort to avoid three big vampire cliches in True Blood: blue light, contact lenses and opera music.
The books were Charlaine Harris’s Southern Vampire Mysteries and True Blood is the resulting adaptation. Across 12 parts, with a second series to follow, it tells the story of Sookie, a barmaid in the fictional Louisiana backwater of Bon Temps, who can hear people’s thoughts. She falls for Bill, the apocryphal man-who-walks-in-to-a-bar, except that he’s not a man, he’s a vampire. Times have changed for vampires. The Japanese have manufactured synthetic blood, meaning toothy immortals have been able to come out of the coffin and live without killing.
There’s an American Vampire League, talk of a “Vampire Rights Movement” and more than a few self-conscious parallels to the gay and civil rights movements in the US; but it’s clear that human and vampire communities are still mutually suspicious of one another. Moreover, it turns out that vampire blood is a highly addictive human sexual stimulant – Viagra with Transylvanian attitude – leading some ne’er-do-wells to kidnap and “drain” innocent members of the undead.
The producers of True Blood did an excellent job in casting actors who are very consistent with those in the book, led by the effervescent Anna Paquin. Stephen Moyer as Bill Compton, Sam Trammell as Sam Merlotte, Ryan Kwanten as Jason Stackhouse and Alexander Skarsğard as Eric Northman are particularly well done. Having actors that capture the personality of those in the book, then add their own touches, gives a point to the television series.
Vampires, like wizards, know that the world is made of light and dark, and want to seduce the living into the night. The Vampires are telling us two great seductive lies. There's the "True Blood" lie: "I don't need human blood, I have a substitute now." There's the "Twilight" lie: "I'm a vegetarian now. Those other Vampires are bad, and the Werewolves are bad, but I'm good, you can trust me, you can love me."
After "True Blood's" extended dead-end detours involving faeries and witches, the HBO drama's fifth season finds it back on the true (if not righteous, thank goodness) path, sinking its teeth deeper into arcane vampire politics while adding several strong new characters and squandering less time on subplots that make you want to zap past them. While the show has always been something of a guilty pleasure, the first four episodes suggest a welcome return to pleasure far outweighing guilt.