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.
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.
Read the complete interview at: zap2it.com