Deborah Ann Woll on Bill and True Blood’s finale

In last week’s episode of True Blood, we saw Deborah Ann Woll’s Jessica Hamby experience the difficulties of having to adjust to being released by her maker, Bill. We’ve excerpted out the Bill Compton sections of an interview with Deboran Ann where she discusses her experiences on True Blood and her maker.

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Jessica really has evolved so much as a character since Season 1. What have been some elements that you’ve enjoyed most about that journey?

Jessica’s is a coming-of-age story, and in any good coming-of-age story, the person has to learn how to be independent, how to take care of themselves. I think from where she’s started, which was living with very domineering parents who didn’t really want her to be an individual, she had to go through all the growing pains that come with that in terms of trying out every extreme of yourself, pushing to see where your strengths are and where your vulnerabilities are.

By the end, and I think it’s illustrated best in her relationship with Bill, she needed a strong father figure and she had that in Bill over the last six, seven years. Now that he’s leaving — and there’s more growing to do, certainly, in the last episode, and we’ll see how that relationship pans out — but she asked to be released in [episode] 9, and I think there’s something in that that says, “I am a grown woman. I’m capable of taking care of myself. I need you to recognize that, and recognize my independence.”

If Bill does end up dying the true death, how will she be able to move on from that?

Bill is the most important person in Jessica’s story. We can talk about the boyfriends as much as we want, but as far as I’m concerned, the story started with Bill and it will always end with Bill. At least this story of “True Blood” for Jessica will end with her relationship with Bill, and for me that’s the through-line for her, especially considering the troubles that she has with her real father. I think this was the story about the two of them growing together and learning from each other. The releasing thing is interesting, because there’s a lot of different reasons why she could do it. She could do it to hurt him, which was part of it. She could do it to assert her independence, which I think was part of it.

But I also think it’s a little bit of fear. He chose to go through something that’s going to be very painful for everyone around him, including himself. I don’t know that Jessica wants to have to experience that. I think that’s a very human and universal feeling. When someone you care about and love so deeply is going to be in pain, I think we get scared and we want to push it away. In that moment, she was so hurt and just thinking, “I can’t sit and watch him turn black and blue and bleed and die. I just can’t do it, and I need to be divorced from that.” Without giving too much away, that’s something that Jessica’s going to have to confront in the finale in terms of how she’s going to either choose or not to reconcile with Bill based on what he choses to do with his time.

Do you think — as Deborah, not as Jessica — that Bill made the right decision, as of episode 9?

He has room to change his mind. I would point out to people that we spent a lot of time this season looking at Bill’s human life. There’s a reason for that. I think there’s a strong reason for why we’ve seen how much he loved his human family, how much he missed of them. If you think back to Lorena, she basically made him give them up. He lost so much when he became a vampire, and I think that’s why we’ve seen him struggle so much with being one. I think Jessica is a part of his salvation in that a little bit. I think he loves her very dearly, and it was his chance to have a family in the way that he misses them, but I can understand Bill not really wanting to continue this — just for his own personal reasons, beyond the idea that maybe he’s causing Sookie or Jessica or people pain. There’s maybe more peace for him in death than there is in continuing to be a vampire, perhaps.

Do you think there are happy endings for some or all of these characters?

Happiness is variable. Life is life, and it has happy moments and it has challenging moments. Even if the show leaves some of our characters in a happy moment, we know that there will be challenges ahead. And if it leaves some characters in a challenging moment, we know that there will be happiness ahead. I would hope that no matter how the show ends, the fans keep these characters lives going in their minds and in their imaginations. I lived with Jessica for six, almost seven years. I have hopes and dreams for her that are as strong as my hopes and dreams are for myself. I absolutely have ideas of what happens to her after the last minute of the last episode.

Can you share one that’s not super spoilery?

I absolutely cannot think of a way to do it without spoiling. [ laughs] I do imagine her becoming a maker one day. Or it could be human children, perhaps. I see Jessica as being extremely compassionate and a care-giver. I would hope one someday that she would have someone to teach all the lessons to that she’s learned.

After filming the final episode, how did you respond?

We were all a little sad. This is a family of actors and crew but also a family of characters. Specifically on the actor point of view, I’ll miss the characters. I’ll never see Bill Compton again. Obviously we’ll hang out every once in a while and we’ll keep in touch, but I won’t ever see Bill, and a piece of that is really saddening to me. As the scripts started to wind down and we started to see, “Oh, this is the last scene for these characters together” or “This is the last time I’ll do my fang-out” — things that are really only going to happen on this show — and we watched them count down to done, that was hard.

readRead the complete interview at: zap2it.com

23 Comments

  1. Such
    an insightful interview with Deborah Ann.  I’ve enjoyed watching Jessica come of age as the seasons progressed.  The Bill-Jessica relationship has truly been a special one.  They have been a family, with Bill a strong father figure and Jessica a daughter who has matured and grown into a vampire who can stand on her own two feet.  I have no idea what Bill’s fate will be.  I hope that they will part in a loving way, if part they must.

  2. I love the Bill and Jessica relationship  The actors are so great together.  There is such a connection between them.  I will really miss that.

  3. One thing that sucks about true blood is this is the last one to be made when I started watching it I watched 12 episodes back to back from 6pm-6am this is sad u get us hooked n let us down hard core u could have manlde a soap opera of this lol

  4. Bill won’t die. He is actually turning back into a human–Sookie is pregnant…they will end up happy together.

  5. I  have no doubt Jessica and Bill relationship will be mended. Bill knows his baby girl was  overwrought and greatly distressed. 
    They have an unconditional love for each other and that will not change.

  6. Heather sure he did! He realeased her because he was running from Russell and was telling Jessica that he couldnt take care of her or protect her. I have every season on DVD…maybe it didnt count cuz she said no shes not leaving?

  7. yes, i remember!! that’s what i was saying, he already released her?! ugh, last episode sucked… to say the least

  8. Yes! It sucked no pun intended! It was rushed, the whole season was but there was action in the beginning…i almost fell asleep on the finale.

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