True Blood – Bill Compton

July 1, 2009 by  

Exploring Characters from the HBO Southern Vampire Mystery Series

© Dan Knaggs

bill-jessicaWilliam Thomas “Bill” Compton (played by British actor Stephen Moyer) is a Vampire Character who appears in the HBO Series

True Blood. True Blood is based on the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. Bill made his first appearance in the True Blood episode Strange Love. He is often referred to as “Vampire Bill” by the locals of Bon Temps.

Bill Compton’s Past Explored in True Blood

Bill Compton grew up in Bon Temps, Louisiana and worked as a farmer on his own land (presumably a plantation) living in a house with his wife and children. After fighting for the South during the Civil War, on his journey home Bill sought assistance in a cabin where he met a woman named Lorena. Lorena reveals herself to be a vampire and attacks Bill after his refusal to bed her. She drains him to near death then makes him drink her blood in turn, making him a vampire.

Bill Compton’s Return to Bon Temps in True Blood (Season One)

When Bill‘s last family member in Bon Temps dies, the ownership of the ancestral home reverts to him. When explaining to Sookie, Bill states that he thought he would claim the title to the house now that circumstances have changed between human and vampire relations. Bill’s house is separated from Sookie Stackhouse’s home by the Bon Temps cemetery.

Bill Compton’s Motivation for Returning to Bon Temps

Bill explains to a number of characters that his return to Bon Temps is in order to attempt living mainstream – what vampires call living amongst humans as human. This choice is met by resistance from the vampire community causing some rogue vampires to attempt to derail his efforts. Late in season one of True Blood we are introduced to the Vampire King who suggests the choice of living mainstream is one that is seen as weak and makes Bill take undesirable action, ‘making’ a new vampire Jessica, to remember his vampire heritage.

When visiting Merlotte‘s (a local tavern owned by Sam Merlotte) the first night he returns to town, Bill meets Sookie Stackhouse. He attracts Sookie‘s interest and she pays close attention to him as she has never seen a real vampire before. Sookie has the talent of telepathy and her interest in Bill grows when she discovers that she can not read Bill‘s mind. Later that night Sookie reads the minds of the two people at Bill‘s table and learns that they wish to drain Bill‘s blood to sell on the black market and intervenes saving Bill‘s life.