Bill and Godric: Kindred Spirits

August 20, 2009 by  

trueblood09_42For someone who appeared in only four episodes of True Blood, Godric managed to make quite an impression on us. The 2,000-year old vampire showed himself to be a gentle, compassionate soul, and as his body dissolved in blue flames on the hotel roof, I found myself wishing he would stay a while longer, even though I knew he was “full of joy.”

Watching the towering Eric fall to his knees at the feet of his Maker and tearfully beg him not to leave was an emotional thing to behold. Allan Hyde, the young Danish actor who played Godric, exuded wisdom beyond his years as he comforted Eric: “There are centuries of love and faith between us.”

But what happened next between Godric and Sookie was among the most poignant and beautiful moments of the entire series. He was weary of life and of the perpetual fighting between humans and vampires. In the end, he found peace. He was ready for whatever awaited him after he left this earth.

Sookie, waiting for the sun with him, began to cry. Certainly, she was grateful to him for saving her from Gabe in the church basement. What one writer for the Boston Globe suggests is that, on another level, Sookie‘s tears were also for Bill:

She will probably never get to witness Bill‘s “end”– she will probably die first. So she had an opportunity to shed tears for a gentle vampire like Bill while he left the world.

This connection was probably intentional. When Sookie told Bill that she needed to be with Godric, she said, “You of all people should understand how he feels. What if it were you, Bill? What if in 1,800 years, you were Godric?”

Bill has proven that he still has a heart, even if not the literal, beating one. Though a vampire, he cares for humanity. It must have been a great relief to him when synthetic blood became available. He no longer had to feed on humans to survive. He willingly cut himself off from the vampire community — which he knew to be a corrupting influence — and began “mainstreaming.” He regained some semblance of his former humanity. And all of this was magnified further when he met Sookie. He fell in love with her. She was his miracle.

So it is easy to picture Bill, a thousand years or more from now, becoming like Godric. Sookie would be long gone, but he would have held onto the goodness that she awakened in him. If he ever became a vampire leader, he would probably try to calm the animosity between humans and vampires, knowing that it was possible for them to live peacefully if they would only let go of their prejudice. For Bill, protecting humanity would be like protecting Sookie because of humanity’s connection to her.

Eric did not understand what Godric meant when he said that the very existence of vampires was wrong. “You taught me there is no right or wrong. Only survival… or death.” This has been Eric‘s truth for 1,000 years. It’s not his fault that he believed his Maker, but Godric lied to him. So Eric held the fundamental assumption that surviving is the only thing that matters. Bill, however, knows that survival is not the most important thing. He has proven many times that there are things worth dying for: he would have staked himself to be free of Lorena and the cruelty she made him inflict on humans; he would rather have spent years in a coffin with silver chains than turn Jessica into a vampire; and he would have allowed himself to waste away in the sunlight trying to save Sookie from Rene. Bill is only 173-years old, but he already has a gentleness that Godric acquired after 2,000 years of living.


(Photo credit: HBO Inc.)