18/6/12 – True Blood Season 5
On Sunday, True Blood Season 5: episode 1 was featured on Showcase, which was very exciting! All the True Blood fans will be quite pleased with the new release of True Blood and the first episode did have some unexpected twists.
According to Susan.P. Peppers and Joshua Lust in True Blood and Philosophy, True Blood originates from the ‘Southern Vampire Mysteries’ which are a series of books that were written by Charlaine Harris. Irwin also questions the viewer’s ongoing fascination with Vampires, which have become very popular within the contemporary culture. Irwin suggests that the viewer becomes instantly fascinated or engaged with the immortal and non human characters, which is implied through Sookie’s interest in Bill Compton.
One could argue that every season of True Blood introduces other mythical characters into the narrative, which successfully engages its audience through the dark visual effects and the humorous connotations.
Poster: True Blood Season 5 – Submission by DarlingHeat, Deviant Art
In the Monstrous Feminine Barbara Creed comments “the witch, the vampire and the zombie”, which have become the most popular subjects within the contemporary culture. (Creed, 1993 p. 10) In comparison Noelle McAffe also investigates Julia Kristeva’s theories of the ‘abject’, which may relate to True Blood.
According to Beard, Kristeva explains that the abject establishes a relationship between the “subject and the object”, which is exemplified through bodily substances, which unifies the “self with the other”. Kristeva also explains that bodily substances such as “vomit, sweat, blood and excrement”
establishes the connection between the human body and the abject. (Beard, 2006 p. 46-47)
Noelle Mcaffe’s investigation into Julia Kristeva also identifies the corpse as an abject form, which unifies the “self with the other”. Mcaffe quotes that “the very border between life and death has been broken with death seeming to infect the body”. (Mcaffe, 2004 p. 46-47) Barbara Creed’s Monstrous Feminine explains that the corpse also generates ambiguity and the viewer becomes fascinated with abject forms or subjects on-screen.
Religious Iconography and the Image of the Skull
While watching the first episode of Season 5, Jesus Valasquez’s home features Day of the Dead imagery or skulls within his lounge room. When his partner Llayeyette walks into his house, the character sits directly underneath a banner, which says Dead of the Dead in Mexican “Dia De Los Muertos”.
The lounge room also features a medium-sized shrine with religious iconography and a large Day of the Dead Skeleton with an assortment of flowers, which has been placed on top of its head. I was not aware of these particular images or representations until the release of Season Five, although it is interesting to actually recognise how the Television series has subtly included associations with Day of the Dead or Halloween.
I could not find any images of Valasquez’s lounge room, although there is a clip from season four, which displays Day of the Dead imagery. I decided to watching this particular clip again and I also recognised that there were Jack O Lanterns with the image of the skull, which were used to celebrate Halloween.
Bates, Susan. P and Rust, Joshua. “A Vampire’s Heart Has It’s Reasons That Scientific Natrualism Can’t Be Understood. .” In True Blood and Philosophy edited by Rebecca Housel, George. A. Dunn and William Irwin New Jersey John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2010
McAffe, Noelle. Abjection. Julia Kristeva. London: Routledge, 2004.
Creed, Barbara. The Monstrous Feminine: Film, Feminism, Psychoanalysis. New York: Routledge, 1993.
Beard, William. The Artist as Monster: The Cinema of David Cronenberg. Toronto University of Toronto Press Incorperated 2006