Comic-Con Live-Blog: HBO's 'True Blood'
After a long mid-afternoon break, it's time for a little more live-blogging action featuring the witches, werewolves and, of course, vampires of HBO's "True Blood."
Click through for all the fun...
5:18 p.m. Yeah, I can't say I got all that much out of the panels for "Eureka" and "Warehouse 13." Apparently "Eureka" has a semi-animated Christmas episode coming up. And apparently the "Warehouse 13" spinoff based around the H.G. Wells character is still a possibility, though it's in the earliest stage of development.
5:40 p.m. This panel is running 10 minutes late... I blame moderator Tim Stack. It's not actually his fault at all. But still... Let's get this V-party started.
5:42 p.m. Stack says that there are lots of other vampire/werewolf shows on TV, but "True Blood" is different, because they have lots and lots of sex.
5:44 p.m. Extended clip package featuring scenes from the rest of the season. It looks a lot like "True Blood," though if you think you've seen Fiona Shaw over-acting so far, you haven't see anything yet. We also have a shot of Sookie. In a red nightie. With Eric. The crowd was pleased.
5:46 p.m. Here comes our panel, starting with Kristin Bauer van Straten. Alexander Skarsgard is next and he missed last year's Comic-Con, so the crowd is especially pleased to see him. They'd be happy to see him anyway. He's followed by Kevin Alejandro, Nelsan Ellis and the lovely, lovely Deborah Ann Woll. Ryan Kwanten and Rutina Wesley are next. Stephen Moyer gets maybe half the applause given to Skarsgard. Lady in Red Anna Paquin gets a warm reception and some people clap for Alan Ball as well.
5:49 p.m. "If you could live in Bon Temps, wouldn't you?" Adam Ball responds to the question of why so many people stick around in such a dangerous town.
5:49 p.m. Earlier this season, Eric said there were two Sookies. Does Paquin agree? "I think there's part of her that's still this sweet, innocent girl and then there's the part of her that has dirty vampire sex on a regular basis, possibly with multiple vampires."
5:50 p.m. Skarsgard has, indeed, enjoyed playing funny Eric. But why is Eric always topless? Skarsgard has a reasonable explanation. It has something to do with his wearing hand-me-downs mostly. "That's kinda the mystery of this season: Where did this outfit come from?"
5:52 p.m. "If Bill had done a little genealogy, gone to the library, Bill could have worked out who she was," Moyer explains of his recent, unfortunately incestuous romantic entanglement.
5:53 p.m. Is there darkness with Jesus? "I think there's a little darkness in everybody. You'll just have to watch it and find out. But there's some good, good s*** coming," Kevin Alejandro says.
5:53 p.m. What was up with Tara's transformation this season? "I secretly love the UFC," Wesley says. "I personally don't like labels. I think Tara kinda was sideswiped, kinda fell in love and didn't know what happened. I think it's awesome that she's happy."
5:55 p.m. So far, half of the moderator's questions have involved toplessness.
5:56 p.m. "Oh, you're too young to watch our show," Woll says to a fan in the crowd. Woll hints that there is, indeed, some chemistry developing between Jessica and Jason.
5:57 p.m. Baurer Van Straten said that her only direction for the last scene was "Find the hole and push in." The contents of her face apparently were coffee grounds and tapioca pudding.
5:58 p.m. "That moment, if it comes, if you know it's coming won't be as good," Ball says, regarding whether or not Eric will remember his current interactions with Sookie when his memory returns.
5:59 p.m. Will Bill and Sookie have a romantic reconciliation in the cards? "There's obviously so many telepathic waitresses down South. Just move on to the next one," Moyer says, joking.
6:00 p.m. Will we find out what's happening with Arlene's baby and that freaky doll? "We will find out what it is about that doll that makes it creepy, but it's something creepy," Ball says.
6:01 p.m. "There will be a moment in the show where Sookie and Eric are together in a shower. It may not exactly be what happens in the books, it may be weirder and dirtier. Maybe," Ball teases.
6:03 p.m. Favorite moments of this season? "I personally enjoyed the ritualistic rape of Jason Stackhouse," Ball says. Kwanten agrees, calling it, "A bizarre sense of therapy." Wesley's favorite moment was cage-fighting. "I really enjoyed swimming in the sun," Skarsgard says. Woll enjoyed the egg scene.
6:03 p.m. Anna Paquin is asked about her recent scene with a topless Joe Manganiello. She points out that because Manganiello is a foot taller than she is, that produces problematic eye-lines. "From a professional standpoint, that's very awkward. If you're trying to keep your eyes in the appropriate place, that's a little weird. There's a lot of neck-craning."
6:04 p.m. If you're curious, Joe Manganiello is shooting a movie in Atlanta and Sam Trammell's wife is about to have twins.
6:05 p.m. Stack wants a Pam/Tara romance. Will it happen? "I'm going to write that down and send myself an e-mail," Ball says.
6:05 p.m. Stack has run out of toplessness questions, so he opens the floor to fans.
6:06 p.m. "I've always said that he started so low on the evolutionary totem pole that he can only go up," Kwanten says of Jason, who he says "loses some of his boyish charm" but gains in responsibilities.
6:07 p.m. Is Eric's voice getting higher as the seasons progress and does it relate to his increased humanity? Skarsgard is stymied: "I don't know. But I like that interpretation. I was more of a robot in the beginning and now I'm becoming more and more human."
6:08 p.m. We won't see how Eric made Pam this season, but Ball says "You will definitely see it in Season 5." Skarsgard and Bauer Van Straten do baby-talk.
6:10 p.m. Would Lafayette rather date Eric, Jason or Bill? "I'm happy with the squeeze I've got. I'd rather be with Jesus. But I'd do all four," Ellis says. Ball chirps in with, "That's Season 6."
6:11 p.m. Janina Gavankar -- "Shiva!" -- takes the mic to tell the panel that they're all going to hell. That's what they get for not letting her be on the panel.
6:12 p.m. "She's only been vulnerable about her maker, Eric, and now losing her face," Bauer Van Straten says. of Pam.
6:13 p.m. Will Alexander Skarsgard be returning for a "Zoolander" sequel? "I think that's a question for Ben Stiller, but I like the idea."
6:14 p.m. Another question about what will happen when Eric gets his memory back. "That's a big question and I would be giving away too much if I told how his memory returning to him would affect him if his memory does return to him," Ball says.
6:14 p.m. Ball makes a joke about how the vampire community is fighting a common enemy. "And that enemy is Michelle Bachman," says Ball. One or two people find that funny.
6:15 p.m. Skarsgard is comparing American TV to Swedish movies. Previously, Kwanten was asked to compare American TV to Australian TV.
6:16 p.m. What will the death of Sookie's fairy godmother do to her ability to control her power? "Those of you who read the books know that fairies are born in litters and they're identical. That really didn't answer anything, but I was trying to be mysterious," Ball says.
6:16 p.m. Is the Sam/Tara storyline done? "Nothing is ever done," Ball says.
6:18 p.m. What would they like to say to their Turkish fans? "Thank you," Paquin says. Ball adds, "I think people all over the world like crazy, messed up weirdness."
6:19 p.m. Ball suggests that as they progress, the series may cease to operate on a book-per-season basis. He's looking forward to having to come up with an explanation in the writers' room for why the vampires are aging.
6:20 p.m. Ellis is asked about how reserved he was at the first "True Blood" panel. He recalls, "I was scared. I was scared. I didn't know how the public would receive a character that was so outlandish and bold and who he was. I didn't know if he as going to be offensive or if I got him right, so I was nervous about what people were going to say to me when I came out. Plus, it was my first Comic-Con and it was overwhelming. I was like, 'Damn, this is a lot of people.' But I'm a lot more confident now."
6:24 p.m. The actors are asked about how they play these characters as both super-powerful, but also as normal people. "The things that she's going through are incredibly real," Paquin says. "Unless the writing's good, you can't do it," Moyer says.
6:25 p.m. A girl in the audience begs Nelsan to call her "Hooker." He's not pleased, but he does it. There's no question.
6:25 p.m. When will we see Hooligans? "It may not have the same name, but thee may be a business venture that involves people of both sexes taking their clothes off," Ball says, adding that it will be in Season 5.
6:26 p.m. We've got "spirits without bodies" coming. We've got Brujo-based creatures coming. And Ball says that they're breaking stories for Season 5, but he won't say which "supernatural creatures that we may not have seen before" are on tap.
6:27 p.m. Will Eric be shirtless more this season? "Yes," Skarsgard says. He adds that he enjoyed flying and wants to do more of that. And he enjoyed shooting his flashbacks in Swedish.
6:30 p.m. "True Blood"? Less depressing than "Six Feet Under" for Alan Ball. OK.
6:31 p.m. Would Eric fight as hard for Pam as Pam is fighting for Eric? "I like to think he would do everything to save Pam. Is that just me?" Bauer Van Straten says. "It's a very special relationship. She means a lot to him," Skarsgard says. "And who would Pam be without her memory? Would she be a horrible dresser?" she muses, adding, "She'd be some homemaker? Loves children? Horrible. Let's hope we never see it."
6:33 p.m. A fan tells Skarsgard that she loves him. "I like you a lot," Skarsgard responds. "'I love you' is a little strong. Baby steps. Baby steps. But there is potential." The fan giggles.
6:34 p.m. Why has the TV show diverged from the books? Well, a big part of it is to get other characters involved, while the books are all from Sookie's point of view. Ball adds, "There would be no surprises, because everybody could go out and get the books and read the books and know what's going to happen."
6:35 p.m. A fan asks the panelists to record a message to an air force sergeant shipping out to Afghanistan. Ball tells her to come back safe and watch out for vampires.
6:36 p.m. A fan asks if the show is going to provide more naked waitresses for eye candy. Ball points at a giggling Paquin and says, "She takes her clothes off all the time. Just wait for this season, my God."
6:38 p.m. Time for this panel's obligatory reading of the placards saying the audience will include people under 18. "Oh s***," Skarsgard says.
6:40 p.m. Audition stories. Nelsan thrust his crotch at Ball by accident. Skarsgard was in Mozambique for "Generation Kill." Kevin Alejandro jumped through a lot of hoops. Figurative hoops? Deborah did Jessica's death scene and her waking-up-as-a-vampire scene. Kwanten remembers where he was when he got the role. Wesley almost got in an accident leaving a Starbucks when she got her call. Moyer remembers auditioning on tape and then having his apartment burgled. Moyer also remembers walking into Ball's office and meeting Paquin for the first time. "I stalked Alan until he said yes," Paquin jokes, but the reality is that they actually made her read a number of times.
That's all, folks...