Reality Bites – Session 4: Heads or Tail?

June 30, 2010

Every week, a diverse panel of Bon Temps residents gather to watch and discuss each new episode of HBO’s True Blood. The sessions are moderated by Nina Harken, PhD candidate interested in finding out what the real folks of Bon Temps think of the portrayal of their town and their people on HBO’s hit series.

NINA
Well, here we are, the third episode into the season. And no shortage of storylines. So, let’s talk. Open forum. Who has something to say?

[A beat of silence]

NINA
Oh, come on now, somebody must have something to say about this episode.

BYRON
Ahem… well, while I admire Jason Stackhouse for attempting to apply himself to something of value, I question whether this is a serious consideration of his and the writers. I would hate to have something as important as joining the police force to be brushed aside.

NATHAN
Yeah, that was a little weird.

BYRON
I also did not think it was very wise of the sheriff to quit.

HENRIETTA
Do you blame the poor man? He’s old. In the TV show Bon Temps was essentially crime free. and then suddenly, he’s dealin’ with vampires, serial killers, sexual deviants —

ELIJAH
Yum.

HENRIETTA
— dear Lord. Now they have this man who is missin’ his head…

MADISON
But we know who did it.

NATHAN
Bud doesn’t.

HENRIETTA
I suppose I should not be surprised that a vampire would do such a terrible thing to the human body.

ELIJAH
Oh, darlin’, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

HENRIETTA
And I thought a vampire couldn’t compel a human into inviting them in? Doesn’t that violate the spirit of the rules?

Crickets…

NINA
OK well. How about a different topic?

MADISON
There was definitely not enough —

HENRIETTA, NATHAN, ELIJAH, CHUCK, TRACY, BYRON together:
Eric.

MADISON
Whoa. You guys noticed, too? I mean, okay, he gave Lafayette the car, which was kinda funny.  And he took the bullet for the werewolf in the beginning only to kill him later, but that was it. Serious Eric shortage.

CHUCK
I just appreciate that vampires are all individuals, not like those werewolves.  They all looked like biker redneck hicks!

MADISON
That new werewolf is kinda cute…Alcide…but he’s not Eric.  I’m surprised he actually was protecting Sookie though, you know?

CHUCK
If his life is on the line, he’ll let Sookie die.  Werewolves are all selfish greedy bastards.

TRACY
Really?  Cause I thought all vampires were sorta gay.

[CHUCK’S fangs appear as he lurches toward TRACY.  MADISON’S eyes are shielded by her mother’s hand, HENRIETTA grabs her cross and ducks under the table.]

ELIJAH
Oh Charles, put the fangs away. When you reach my age, you’ll find that men and women sorta… blur together.

NATHAN
How progressive…for a vampire.

ELIJAH
Since you brought it up …how about that scene with Bill and Lorena?  I must try that.  Madison…interested?

MADISON
Ew…you don’t even look a little bit like Eric.

ELIJAH
Nathan?

NINA
We’re supposed to be discussing the episode, not planning our social lives.

ELIJAH
Jealous?

HENRIETTA
I swear on my Mother’s grave that I have never seen anything quite as disturbing as those two vampires…making love…if that’s what you want to call it…

NATHAN
Bill spent a lot of time in flashback this episode. I mean, we got to see why he hates Lorena so much.

ELIJAH
That one was Bill’s own fault. You cannot go back to your human life. It just complicates everything.

NATHAN
Regardless… I think there was too much in this episode. It was really heavy and didn’t really advance the story at all. They did the same thing in the second season – slowed down the pace of the whole show.

MADISON
Yeah, but we got to see Bill’s wife and his kid. It was kinda cool.

NATHAN
But kinda long. Between that and Sam’s story…

BYRON
I do agree that Sam’s story has gotten a bit out of hand. It seems as though the only shifters this series portrays are drunks, criminals, or liars. And where did his brother put Sam’s money when he was a bird???

TRACY
Just like weres are all bikers. Or Nazis.

NINA
So ultimately, some of you think —

NATHAN
In some cases.

NINA
— the series stereotypes certain people?

BRYON, CHUCK, and TRACY
Yes.

NINA
Interesting.  Now let’s move into the portion of the panel where we talk about Bon Temps.  Any one want to start?

MADISON
I think its sad that nobody really went to Eggs’s funeral.  I mean, he was a part of the town for a little while and still nobody came.  Not even to support Tara.  That was kinda sad.  I think the real Bon Temps would show more support for their bartender.  Oh and speaking of Tara…a one nighter with a creepy British vampire?

TRACY
I knew that Bill Compton was up to no good.  Can’t trust a vamper.

NINA
But what about Bon Temps?

NATHAN
I think that there isn’t a lot of focus on Bon Temps this year…which I don’t like.  All of the main characters are doing their own things now.  I kinda liked in the first two seasons when they all had to work together.

ELIJAH
Or at least were getting in trouble together.

HENRIETTA
Too many murders.  The young people may drink, do drugs, and have sex out of wedlock, but there are no murders–even with vampires and werewolves running around.  Even they know there is a line that they can not cross.  Bon Temps is a town, not a mass grave.

BYRON
Also, the show makes it seem like the only jobs you can have in Bon Temps is being on the road crew or in the food service industry. That Lafayette has two legal jobs and those are both it.  There are plenty of sophisticated jobs in town as well.

NINA
All interesting viewpoints.  Well, I think that’s good for now.  Everyone enjoy next week off while you watch the fireworks.  We’ll see everyone back here in two weeks.

This column is a parody of the Gothic fantasy series, True Blood, and as such, is presented here for your amusement. “Reality Bites” and the various writers that contribute to it, have no relationship/affiliation to HBO, True Blood, or any of the cast or crew of said nor any relation to Charlaine Harris‘s Sookie Stackhouse novels.

Header Credit: K. Rose

Author Credits: Cory Brin and Sarah Pugh

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Sam Trammell on the Chelsea Lately Show This Thursday

June 30, 2010

Sam Trammell who plays the sweet and lovable, Sam Merlotte on Alan Ball‘s hit HBO TV vampire series True Blood will be making a guest appearance on the Chelsea Lately Show on Thursday, July 1, 2010 at 11:00pm on the E! Network. Also joining Sam will be Randy Sklar, Loni Love, and Ryan Stout.  So set your DVR because you do not want to miss seeing Sam!

Many thanks to Sam for sending us the info.

SOURCE: Sam Trammell

(Photo credit:  sharetv.org)

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AUDIO: Stephen Moyer on The Sherdog Radio Show

June 30, 2010

Stephen Moyer took time out from his last day of shooting the season finale for season 3 of True Blood to do a live radio interview with Bruce Buffer on “IT’S TIME!!!” on The Sherdog Radio Network on Tuesday, June 29, 2010. Stephen was extremely charming on the show as he discussed the Bill/Lorena sex scene, vampire sex in general and his hectic schedule with other projects and appearances coming up. You must listen to this radio interview as Stephen is hilarious as he describes some unusual situations. Stephen‘s portion of the interview begins at the 21 minute mark.

Click here to listen to Stephen’s interview.

SOURCE: sherdog.com

(Photo credit: mirror.co.uk)

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Time Magazine’s 10 Questions for Anna Paquin

June 30, 2010

Time Magazine will be interviewing Anna Paquin soon for an upcoming issue, and they’re letting the fans have a say in what questions are asked. The feature will have Anna answering 10 questions, all of which will be chosen from fan questions.

Anna is currently best known for her role on True Blood as our blonde heroine Sookie Stackhouse, though she’s been in many other feature films. That list includes The Piano (for which Anna won an Oscar), as well as Amistad, Hurlyburly, Almost Famous, and the X-Men Trilogy.

So, if you have a question for Anna, head over to Time Magazine, and leave a comment with your question for Anna in it! Best of luck to everyone that your question is one of the few that gets chosen!

SOURCE: Time Magazine

(Image Credit: HBO Inc, screenshot by Isis Nocturne)

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True Blood Welcomes Lindsay Pulsipher as Crystal Norris

June 30, 2010

Lindsay Pulsipher has always dreamed of being on the big stage, and even though she in on the TV and not on Broadway, I don’t think she is complaining. True Blood viewers saw a mysterious glimpse of her on last episode where she is going to play Crystal Norris. Jason and Crystal are going to become very close and have a special relationship.

“The writers are really focusing on the relationship between Crystal and Jason,” she said from Los Angeles. “Up to this point, he has never settled down, and I think she really knocks him off his feet. They have this magical relationship, and it’s brand new for both of them. It’s kind of a powerful, explosive relationship.”

While True Blood is known for it’s eye brow raising scenes, Lindsay says that she is not worried about it because she has talked to the show and they have agreed to allow her to step out of the scene when she is uncomfortable with the nudity. She said that she has a very trusting relationship with the producers.

Lindsay started acting school shortly after graduating from her high school, it was then she was picked up for a stint in “Touched by an Angel.” Later, she starred in “The Beast” which included the recently deceased Patrick Swayze. Lindsey thought that Patrick was an amazing actor.
So what does Lindsay think about her new opportunity on True Blood?

“Right now, my opportunities are really great, and I hope ‘True Blood’ makes it more available for me,” she added. “I think this show has an amazing fan base. I’m hoping this will lead to other things.”

Welcome aboard, Lindsay, we can’t wait to see Jason and Crystal in their “explosive” relationship.

Source: sltrib.com

(Photo credit:  HBO.com)

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Alexander Skarsgard: Naked and Loving It

June 30, 2010

Oh, Eric. Where would we be without you?

True Blood‘s Alexander Skarsgard, or vampire sheriff Eric Northman, gave a delightful interview to PopEater.

Right off the bat, we get some True Blood info. Eric has some scores to settle.

“You find out pretty early on that something happened a thousand years ago, that Eric lost someone, and now he’s getting the opportunity to avenge that person’s death. So he’s going to try to do that, and it’s not easy.”

Alex goes on to warn us about a “very, very graphic scene” coming up involving himself and another man.

“I’m not a prude. I’m from Sweden, and it’s different there. If it makes sense, I’ll do nudity, and it’s made sense every single time I’m naked on the show. And I love to be naked. It’s kind of liberating.”

Glad to hear that.

We also know Eric is obsessed with Sookie. (Although who isn’t nowadays?) But it seems this season, his obsession becomes a little more intense.

Eric is intrigued by Sookie… there is something different about Sookie, and he wants to figure out what that is — what she is. And while it’s fun to play around with Bill, to tease him, it’s not just a game anymore.”

Alex discusses his attraction to darker roles, citing his characters in the animated film “Metropia,” and the upcoming “Melancholia.”

As for his taste in music, Alex favors British and Swedish punk rock, mentioning a number of bands and artists he is currently interested in, including the Buzzcocks, Ebba Gron, and Theresa Andersson.

Speaking of music… about that Lady Gaga….

“The reason I did the ‘Paparazzi’ video is that the director, Jonas Akerlund, is a fellow Swede and a good friend of mine, and he called and asked me to do it… But I didn’t want to do something if we’d just be walking down the beach or holding hands or that sort of thing.”

No worries were Gaga is concerned. The video is much more fun, of course, and was very popular.

“The thing is, you can work on a movie for three months, and no one sees it, and then you do something like this for six hours, and that’s what people talk about!”

Does that mean Alex will devote more of his career to music videos?

“That’s my new career. I’m going to quit acting and do music videos from now on. I’m over ‘True Blood.’ I’m officially quitting right now!”

Joking aside, I’ve had one too many of my favorite non-vampire TV actors recently announce they’re leaving, so forgive me if I’m a little sensitive to such comments.

Thankfully, we still have plenty of Eric to enjoy.

Source: popeater.com

(Photo Credit: Screencap by James)

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Nelsan Ellis Had to Find His Lafayette

June 30, 2010

Nelsan Ellis is nothing at all like the character he portrays in True Blood. Lafayette Reynolds is a flamboyant gay man but is also masculine in his attitude.

In his recent interview with Vibe, Nelsan revealed that he had a difficult time finding the Lafayette he wanted to portray.  When he auditioned, the casting director told him he was being too stereotypical.

“They figured I was playing a stereotype or something like that so I got a friend of mine to come and work the audition with me and somehow I found the character inside of me versus putting on something that wasn’t real.  Alan Ball wanted the character to be a myriad of things and at first I was skeptical but I somehow found it.”

Nelsan said he struggled with the role even after he got the job.  He said it wasn’t until the 3rd or 4th episode that his real Lafayette finally revealed himself.

What is intriguing to Nelsan is that fans like the character.  He likes the character!  “There’s something about the dude that’s likeable.”  What Nelsan likes about Lafayette is his strength and stillness.

“If you watch Lafayette he doesn’t do very much.  He’s not quick on his toes unless he gets heated.  He’s just in that southern way—sort of sauntering along, being who he is which is something I never intended.  It just happened.”

Asked if there have been any repercussions around playing a gay man, Nelsan says that it’s within the entertainment industry itself.  He finds it annoying when a casting director or agent can’t separate the character from the real person.

With regard to the gay community, however, the feedback he’s gotten is that they have not seen a guy like Lafayette; he is definitely not a stereotype.

“I think somewhere along the line they didn’t like that he was a prostitute.  But I did [laughs].  It’s who he is.  I don’t think it’s a reflection of the gay community, that’s just Lafayette.  But this is just from what I hear, I haven’t really spoken to the gay community…”

About True Blood, Nelsan referred to the show as a little like “the Jerry Springer of TV shows” with legitimate actors.  He uses words like edgy and sexy.  “With True Blood, you don’t know what to expect. You don’t know how wild it’s gonna get.”  He says the show is innovative and each episode looks like a movie, they’re shot so well.

So what’s in store for Lafayette this season?  He is going to fall in love and deal with a complicated relationship with his mother.  Nelsan said that although we’ll see a softer side of Lafayette, “there’s still gonna be that violent part of Lafayette that don’t take no bullshit.”

When asked if his love interest will be a vampire, werewolf, other supernatural creature or human, Nelsan only said that his lover has “something going on. What, I cannot say.”

Fortunately for True Blood fans, it sounds like we’ll be seeing a lot more facets to our favorite short order cook with nail polish and eye shadow.

Source: vibe.com

(Photo credit – vibe.com)

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Vampire King’s End Game

June 30, 2010

While several new characters have been introduced this season, Russell Edgington is one of the more intriguing ones. In his first episode we found out that he is responsible for kidnapping Bill Compton and that he is working with the werewolves. The big question everyone is asking is why? We know that Russell wants to marry Queen Sophie Anne and unite the two kingdoms but his real motivation for that is unclear. Denis O’Hare, who portrays Russell, tells the New York Post:
“It’s kind of like the old royalty of Europe, where you’d get married to prevent an invasion or form an alliance. [Russell] also takes cues from today’s politics in terms of playing the media. There comes a point later on when he starts using the media to destroy or create something – it’s wonderful.”

Russell’s kidnapping of Bill has set several other exciting plots in motion for this season. Now that Bill has sworn fealty to the King and is giving up Sookie and his life in Bon Temps, what will Edgington have in store for him? According to O’Hare the plans the King has for Bill are constantly changing.

“What’s great about all the characters is that they don’t always know what they’re doing. They have an idea and a plan, but as they go forward, that plan changes. What Russell initially wants from Bill is much smaller. But what he gets throughout his relationship with Bill is information that leads to a much bigger plan. So Russell himself doesn’t always know what he’s doing. There are times when you’ll see him with Eric [Alexander Skarsgard] or Bill where he’ll be dealing lies on at least two different levels – every character is lying about everything. These people are playing a massive game that keeps shifting every episode.”

How will the Queen and Eric react to the news about Bill, and how does Russell plan to get the Queen to marry him? Watching his end game unfold will no doubt make for a great season. O’Hare is also excited to see how the season plays out.

Russell had two very big secrets that paid great dividends for me as an actor. I can’t tell you what they are, but everyone is fueled by overarching motives – for respect, for affection, for food. Whatever drives you, is the same for vampires – they used to be human, so quite often they’re motivated by their nascent human emotions.”

Source: Zap2It

(Photo Credit: HBO Inc.)
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Carrie Preston on Vampires and Redheads

June 30, 2010

There has been a lot of speculation about the future of Carrie Preston’s True Blood character Arlene. However, with True Blood in its third season and already picked up for its fourth, it seems Carrie and Arlene are still as important to the show as when it first started.

While fans are contemplating the fate of Bill Compton and his relationship with Sookie, Deadbolt interviewed Carrie Preston on vampires, working with Alan Ball, and everyone’s favorite redhead waitress, Arlene.

When asked how she relates to Arlene, Carrie quickly mentioned the redhead’s confidence. Arlene isn’t one to deal with fools and takes her job seriously, making sure things get done right. Outside of the bar, Arlene is strong and can deal with whatever situation is thrown her way. Carrie admires the way Arlene seems to pull herself together; even in the most difficult of situations, she still manages to keep her sense of humor.

When it comes to being influenced by other people, Carries notes that Arlene is never without a man. She suggests that this is true for many working class Southern women. Arlene seems to believe she needs the help of a man and can’t handle  situations on her own. With this in mind, sometimes Arlene makes bad decisions when it comes to finding a partner. For her, it’s better to have a bad man than no man at all. In the end though, Arlene always manages to fall back on her own strength, focusing on what’s best for her and her children.

At the end of season two and now in season three, however, Arlene has found a very good man: Terry Bellefleur. Though he may have some emotional distress over his time in the Marines, he is still a warm-hearted gentleman and Carries hopes that Arlene makes is smart enough to make the decision to keep the relationship going.

Aside for her love for Terry’s character, another thing Carrie loves is the scene she had with Tara in the bathroom where Arlene is unsure if she slept with Terry or not. Tara bluntly replies “You telling me you date raped Terry Bellefleur?”

Carrie loves this scene because the stakes were high for Arlene yet there was a lot of comedy in the situation. It’s an example of how good True Blood is at portraying the real balance of every situation: the drama and the comedy that rises up at the same time.

It’s not just the great scenes that keeps Carrie so excited about the show. It’s also the red hair. She notes,

“It’s funny because now I have red hair in life but for a long time I was blond. Going to work and putting on the red wig, I noticed that once I got into that red wig and got into costume, the types of people, especially men, that wanted to talk to me and pay attention to me were completely different than the types of men that talk to me when I’m blond. I get to kind of experience two different women on the same day. It was very, very intriguing just from an anthropological standpoint and sociological standpoint to see just the reactions I get… it is slightly different and I do kind of feel different. I feel a little edgier, a little sassier as a redhead. It’s been a refreshing change of pace for me because I’ve been blond for so long. I’m really enjoying it.”

She isn’t the only redhead on the show; Jessica is not only a redhead, but also a vampire, which begs the question ‘what is it with the popularity of vampires?’ Carrie has a simple answer to that: in a youth obsessed culture, of course, a vampire is going to be admired. Vampires can stay young and sexy forever.

While vampires can stay young forever, not all of them are as well rounded as Carrie. Not only does she act, but she also directs and has a production company. She’d love to shadow a director for True Blood and learn the angles that aren’t privy to as an actor during a shoot. She feels she’d learn a lot from the experience both as an actor and director. When asked if she has picked up any tips from director Alan Ball, Carrie notes,

“I pick up a lot from all of the directors. I mean, that’s what makes it very interesting for me as an actor, that I get to also watch 100 percent more directors than a director gets to watch. If you’re only a director, you really only kind of watch yourself. If you’re an actor, you get to see and experience a bunch of different styles, ask questions, and all of that stuff. So yes, I have very much enjoyed not just from Alan, but from all of our directors, getting to know their styles, asking them questions, and talking to them about shots and things like that. It’s like a little masterclass.”

Carrie seems to be having the time of her life on the set of True Blood. Could it get any better? Of course,  if her husband Michael Emerson is brought onto the show now that Lost is over. Carrie would love to have her husband in the world of True Blood and hopes that there is an opportunity where he can join the fun. Right now though, he is enjoying his break and reconnecting with family, friends, and their dog.

Many fans will be focused on the drama between Sookie and Bill, but the more fans see of Arlene, the more they want to learn about her past, her present, her future, and how she keeps her hair such a lovely shade of red.

SOURCE: The Deadbolt

(Photo Credit: HBO Inc.)

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Sam Trammell Does FunnyorDie Video

June 29, 2010

Sam Trammell is definitely using Twitter to keep his fans informed! His latest tweet was a link to a picture of him working on a video for Funnyordie.com out in the desert. It follows a tweet from Funnyordie’s own Twitter account which also features a picture.Take a look at the pics and let us know what you think Sam‘s Funnyordie video will be about!

SOURCES:

Sam Trammell’s Twitter

funnyordie’s Twitter

(Image Credit: Sam Trammell and funnyordie’s Twitters)

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