Not that True Blood has ever followed its source material all that closely in the first place (the show essentially parts ways with Charlaine Harris's cozy-but-clumsy Southern Vampire Mysteries saga in like, Book 3) but in last year's Season 5 finale, the departing Alan Ball essentially put Harris's foundation—the Bill-Sookie-Eric love triangle—onto a rocket and shot it into the sun. It's hard to imagine where someone who is not Ball can take the TV auteur's passion project now that he's gone, since he's so thoroughly cut ties with the source material and made so much of the series' heart revolve around the excellent and complicated original characters he added to the original story (Jessica, for instance, plus his re-imaginings of Lafayette and Hoyt come close to being Ball's alone, he's given them so much depth). This puts True Blood's writers in the un-enviable position of not just continuing the tone and quality of a milestone series with a giant fan base, but charting whole new storylines without the road map of the book series or the story compass embedded in Ball's brain.
The good news is, if the writers want to go back and follow up on some threads Ball dropped rather than pull original content out of thin air, there are hundreds of those to choose from, seemingly because Ball eventually lost interest in them. Here’s a list of ten dropped storylines from five insane seasons of True Blood that the show could feasibly revisit in Season 6:
While this plotline was a total rapey downer, it's nevertheless a fact that Jason was forced to impregnate a whole shanty town’s worth of homely lady werepanthers. Have those babies been born? In eighteen years, will Hotshot be choc-a-bloc with dreamboats? How do werepanthers and werewolves get along?
2. HADLEY'S LITTLE BOY
Very briefly in Season 3, Sookie met her cousin Hadley’s son Hunter, who also had psychic abilities like Sookie’s. What’s up with this little dude? How is he doing? Is he cowering backstage at the fairy Cirque de So Lame while his mom does table dances?
There's no question that this plotline, which the show tauntingly dangled in front of us last season, will be revisited; multiple set photos have leaked that suggest Macklyn Warlow, supposedly the biggest baddest vampire of them all, is played by Rutger Hauer. Intriguingly, the official HBO pack of promo photos for Season 6 have Hauer listed Niall Brigant, who is [semi-spoiler alert for the books] definitely NOT a vampire in the novels.
Even if his mind is blank as the bottom of a McDonald's bag, I really hope we haven’t seen the last of Hoyt. Jim Barrack is phenomenal in the role and the character is one of the most sensitively painted on the show. Surely there’s a way to loop him back into Bon Temps’ craziness?
5. BILL'S GREAT-GREAT-GREAT-GREAT (ETC.) GRANDDAUGHTER
Remember that time Bill did
the nasty with a direct descendant? Is she in counseling for that? Maybe she
should be, considering her Great Great Granpappy/lover is now a Vampire
6. V ADDICTION AS AN EPIDEMIC
Remember when this was a regular part of True Blood's plot? There were V dealers and V addicts and vampires were hunted by dealers? I miss those days. Is Bill now, like, the most addictive substance on the planet? Also, is Lillith still squelching around leaving ghostly bloody footprints everywhere? Can there be two naked bloody god-people in this universe, or does the physical transformation signify a torch passed from person to person, a la Tim Allen in The Santa Clause?
7. THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE SUN'S REACTION TO STEVE NEWLIN
I would assume Steve Newlin becoming a vampire
would really shake things up in the FOTS. I’d love to see him get back in touch
with some of his old anti-vampire fundamentalist cronies and talk through some
of his old, wack beliefs. Or see Steve Newlin do anything.
8. LAFAYETTE & JESUS
Lafayette was criminally underused Season 6, as was his murdered ex, Jesus; given that Jesus was a medium, surely the show could work in a few more cameos. And please, feel free to feature any of Lafayette’s past activities—the amazing website he used to run, his smattering of drug dealing, his day trips down to Mexico to settle shit with a brujo...
9. ALCIDE AND SOOKIE
Sookie got so, so close to maximum cuddles in Season 5, and then Eric pulled an epic mind-meld cockblock and now Alcide is just any werebitch’s to claim. That’s just not right. Surely there’s a way around Eric’s glamoring? Now that he's pack master and whatnot, he's even MORE of a catch. (Being pack master ups his net value by like, $345 and a fleet of rusted Ford trucks.)
10. BON TEMPS THE PLACE
What initially drew me, and I suspect many others, to this show was the day-to-day charm of a small, summery, southern town. The coziness of Sookie’s situation, working an easy job in a gossipy place. Not every “daytime” storyline needs to revolve around some wacky fairy giving birth on a pool table or a vet being haunted by a Middle Eastern curse. I am really hoping we get a glimpse of the coziness that so perfectly used to offset the vampiric hyper-sexualized violence, and I will take it in just about any form.
... What storylines would YOU want to see revisited?
… What storylines have failed to pay off in the past?
... Who the heck is Ruger Hauer playing, y'all?