HBO’s TRUE BLOOD – a Vampire phenomenon

On American TV series and a Vampire scientist from Sweden

Few TV-Series have ever fascinated me as much as TRUE BLOOD. It is one of those modern American TV-shows which can be perceived as a new kind of intellectual challenge, as “Frankfurter Allgemeine” wrote in 2012 in Amerikanisches Fernsehen_ Serien als Stresstest – Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung – FAZ : They present the viewer with a plethora of characters and plot details and they are “rewatchable”, as HBO plans them to be. Thus the DVDs find their place in our bookshelves and become part of our cultural canon.

TV-Series like TRUE BLOOD enter the cultural canon - and our bookshelves.

TV-Series like TRUE BLOOD enter the cultural canon – and our bookshelves.

Tonight the final episode of the final season will go on air, but the Vampire phenomenon this series helped unearth is far from over. Swedish scientist Anna Höglund writes in her study about Vampires “Vampyrer” that all Vampire stories are really stories about mankind; and thus about the social structures of power and rebellion at the given time one such story is created. Modern Vampires, she claims, often play the odd-one-out theme – Sookie Stackhouse, the heroine of TRUE BLOOD (played by Anna Paquin), is such an outsider, she writes. TRUE BLOOD’s other main character, 150 year old Vampire Bill Compton, tries to “mainstream” and to thus be accepted into human society. Compton even becomes a politician in the series. “The snake in this Vampire paradise” writes Höglund “is the blood thirst.” The synthetic blood drink – “TrueBlood” – which caused Vampires to “come out of the coffin” in the first place, is just never enough to satisfy their real needs. Like a human drug addict the Vampire will be drawn to real blood. And humans will be drawn to Vampires, who have evolved from ugly monsters to seductive sex symbols, as Höglund proves in historical comparison of modern versus historical Vampire-tales.

So #TrueToTheEnd tonight the last drop of TRUE BLOOD will fall. Sad. But guess what? I’ll do as HBO planned and just start over with Season 1. I watched the last six seasons of TRUE BLOOD already several times on DVD, and I keep finding entertaining details and new perspectives each and every time. Addicted. Höglund is right.

 

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About Elisabeth Schabus (477 Articles)
I see, I like, I write ... mostly about cinema and actors, but also about politics or economy. In English, auf Deutsch, på svenska. This ORF trained news journalist (TV, radio), who has also worked in corporate publishing for international brands and written/edited tons of magazines, has become a blogger out of passion.

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