With the final season of True Blood hitting television screens this summer, our heroine Sookie (Anna Paquin) will be tasked with fighting a new kind of evil: zombie-like vampires. Though we may be sad to see True Blood finally bite the dust, there have been six seasons worth of fantastic villains. We’re taking the time to appreciate some of them before the true death of HBO’s vamp show.
Maryann Forrester (Michelle Forbes)
Maryann’s crimes include hosting huge orgies, creating chaos, forcing humans to do her bidding, and attempting to sacrifice a magical creature. She may not be the most evil of True Blood’s villains — she also, arguably, did have some people’s interests at heart — but let’s not forget the whole sacrifice/mind control thing.
Antonia Gavilán (Paola Turbay/Fiona Shaw)
As far as the reasoning behind villainous intentions, Antonia’s may be the easiest to understand. Though she is overcome with a need for vengeance and possesses Marnie Stonebrook’s (Fiona Shaw) body in an attempt to seek revenge, can you blame her? She was tortured by vampires; given the laundry list of evil vampires we’ve seen on True Blood it’s almost understandable.
Lorena Krasiki (Mariana Klaveno)
For most of her time on True Blood, Lorena is more of a jealous ex-girlfriend than an actual villain. That’s not to say that ex-girlfriends can’t be evil, because Lorena certainly is. However, she’s not that much worse than some other vampires on True Blood, though she does help give the species a bad name.
Macklyn Warlow (Rob Kazinsky)
Warlow — or Ben, as we first knew him — was the main antagonist of the most recent season, but he had been teased for most of the show’s lifespan. Warlow was the vampire that murdered Sookie’s parents. He also tried to force Sookie to marry him, which was as creepy as it was evil. However, as far as nefarious villains, he spent most of the season (literally) tied up which wasn’t very good for his bad guy reputation.
Rene Lenier/Drew Marshall (Michael Raymond-James)
Though Rene — or should we call him Drew — was more species-ist than outright evil, his psychopathic tendencies really don’t help his case. As the first season’s big bad, the vampire and vampire-sympathist murderer made for a great mystery and thrilling season. Plus, anyone who can kill a nice old women like Adele Stackhouse must be at least 89 percent evil.
Steve and Sarah Newlin (Michael McMillian & Anna Camp)
As religious fanatics, Steve and Sarah Newlin commit some cruel atrocities against vampires in the name of their god. However, even though they may have thought what they were doing was right, it wasn’t. Their delusion makes them pretty darn evil, especially Sarah’s testing facility in the sixth season.
Franklin Mott (James Frain)
Though Franklin wasn’t around for a long time, he managed betray some of our beloved characters Tara and Jessica. To make matters worse for himself, he has no redeeming qualities and many viewers were glad to see him die.
Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare)
By far the most evil vampire on True Blood, Russell has little to no regard for human life, he is a crazed lunatic who just wants to watch the world burn, and his proper Southern accent makes him all the more menacing. Plus, he comes back from being buried under massive amounts of concrete. He’s the biggest bad True Blood has seen yet.
It’s been a long time coming - and a few miscellaneous human lives sacrificed — to get Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare) back to his original glory, but he’s back and in full effect. Just last week, we left him with his hand wrapped around a stake piercing Roman’s (Chris Meloni) heart. But his 3,000 years and menacing manner shouldn’t fool you. Russell is still a full-fledged character with goals and feelings — even if some of those feelings involve getting sexually aroused by feeding on humans - just ask O’Hare, who took time out of his rehearsal schedule for Sondheim in the Park’s Into the Woods in which he plays opposite “the salty little thing” Amy Adams, to talk True Blood with Hollywood.com.
“He just kind of wants to be left alone,” reasons O’Hare. He says his character isn’t just a blanket villain — there’s depth there. And as we witnessed last week, Russell isn’t about to get involved in this vampire bi-partisan battle. He’s just out for blood and lust - you know, the usual “funtime” activities. “Russell will stick around until he’s not having fun, and then he’ll split,” O’Hare adds.
But while he’s having fun, will he find time to mend his broken heart? Back in Season 3, Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) killed Russell’s live-in boyfriend and lovable character Talbot, but it’s been over a year, it’s time for the oldest vampire around to let go and move on. And it truly is. “We shot a flirtation,” says O’Hare. “By episode seven or eight you’ll see. It’s an affair, and we all know the character.” Could it be the former reverend, current vampire PR wiz Steve Newland (Michael McMillian) that manages to tame Russell’s wild heart in the wake of Jason’s (Ryan Kwanten)? O’Hare wouldn’t say, but we’ve got a hunch we could be on the right path.
He was a little more forthcoming regarding Russell’s relationship with Eric. “He and Eric have always had an odd relationship,” says O’Hare. And it seems their ideas are more in line than Eric might like to admit. During “Hopeless” Eric tells Roman he’s not on his side or the side of the Sanguinistas, he’s a “pacifist.” Likewise, Russell tells Roman that he thinks both sides of the Mainstream/Sanguista divide are hypocrites - he just drinks blood because he loves it. After the Authority has but Eric through the ringer, and he’s witnessed so much double-crossing between the two sides - including whoever facilitated Russell’s Houdini act - perhaps their mutual hate of the faux-righteous battle will serve as some middle ground.
And while the potential thawing of Eric’s icy view towards Russell is an interesting thought, the fate of Roman is a little more pressing. At the end of “Hopeless” Russell’s iStake malfunctions and he overtakes Roman in order to shove a stake in his heart, but Roman doesn’t explode the way every other staked vampire has in the history of this show - he simply turns grey. Could that mean he makes it?
Well, that’s not so clear. “Roman was so ancient and so powerful,” explains O’Hare. But we weren’t the only ones confused upon first seeing the scene. “I remember reading it and going ‘So what’s the deal? Is he dead? I stake him? But, really, you’ll just have to wait until Sunday,” he teases. Either way, Roman’s could-be demise is unprecedented on the series.
O’Hare left us with that looming question before delving back into New York rehearsals, the tease has already done its worst. Sunday’s answer to the Roman cliffhanger and Russell’s next big move cannot come soon enough.
True Blood airs Sunday night at 9 PM ET on HBO and Into The Woods starts July 23 in New York’s Central Park.
Follow Kelsea on Twitter @KelseaStahler.
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The TV stars are the brains behind Lucid, a new graphic novel, based around a set of fantasy characters.
Quinto's Before The Door Pictures company will oversee the production of the comic, which will be published by Archaia Comics. McMillian will write the book.
Teenage artist Anna Wieszczyk has been handed illustration duties.
McMillian says, "It's a rock 'n' roll book, and I think, for me, part of it is taking these elements of magic and this concept of fantasy, which I think a lot of times gets a bad rap... and really make it fun and sexy and cool and contemporary.
The first issue is due to be released in August (10).
The National Guard is called out for a routine desert exercise in Yuma Flats where nuclear experiments once took place. The team of young and often naïve recruits set out in the heat and they all have nicknames such as Crank (Jacob Vargas) Stump (Ben Crowley) Spitter (Eric Edelstein) Mickey (Reshad Strik)—and the resident hunk Napoleon (Michael McMillian). There are some chick soldiers too including Amber (Jessica Stroup) and Missy (Daniella Alonso). When they run into traps among the rocks and rattlesnakes they find the dregs of humanity who have been left there after the nuclear experiments. The mutant family living in the buildings left standing from the testing as well as the caves under the ground also have their own share of nicknames: Hades (Michael Bailey Smith) Stabber (Tyrell Kemlo) Letch (Jason Oettle) Grabber (Gaspar Szabo) and Chameleon (Derek Mears). Meanwhile roughshod Sgt. Millstone (Flex Alexander) leads the battle against them. Sometimes the actors in these horror flicks are only judged by how well they scream and die—and a few of these soldiers have some good lungs. The problem is the vain attempts the film makes in trying to create characters the audience care about because frankly we don't no matter how many glimpses of life at home or pictures saved on the cell phone. The first victim in the beginning seems a sympathetic captive but is subjected to a brutal rape and then a quick and graphic decapitation which is highly unnecessary. The monster family is a bit more evil and even somewhat familiar (Michael Bailey Smith was in last year's The Hills Have Eyes). Images of dead soldiers even though portrayed in an unrealistic way may seem too real with the recent news of the day and the family-in-peril anxiety of the first classic is lost in this sequel. Horror guru Wes Craven always said he hated the 1985 sequel he did to his 1977 classic which continued on with the Carter family and their mutant woes so this time—co-writing with his son Jonathan Craven—he went a different way. Unfortunately it still doesn’t work as well. Hills Have Eyes 2 lacks the creativity French director Alexandre Aja instilled in last year’s scare fest which truly highlighted how the 1950s nuclear testing in the desert could have created these mutant people. This time we have director Martin Weisz who is known more for his music videos. Maybe that's why the scenes come across too quick too choppy and too in your face. The requisite amount of gore is going to keep some sickos in the audience happy but it's not the creative stuff we've seen before from this team.