Thirsty for a Fresh Take on All Things True Blood?

WELCOME! Thirsty for a fresh take on all things True Blood? Pull up a virtual barstool at the Pierced Pomegranate Tavern where sisters Rachel and Rebecca are serving up juicy feminist analysis with a twist and opening a vein of thoughtful sociocultural dialogue on HBO's hit series.

Like the epic literary salons of eras past - theaters for conversation and debate which were, incidentally, started and run by women; where the spirited debate about the issues of the day ran as copiously as the actual spirits did - but updated for the digital age, the Pierced Pomegranate Tavern is a fun forum for exploring questions ripe for discourse about the human condition & today's most crucial social issues through the medium of True Blood.

Your salonnières are not peddling liquor per se, but they are offering up new and alternative ideas informed by such diverse influences as pop culture, art, music, cultural history, Goddess studies, transformative theory, literature and poetry, and archaeomythology, filtered through the sieve of their own lived experiences as feminist women of a particular age, background, and culture.

This is a space where you - patrons and passersby alike - can view and engage with these perspectives through the lens of True Blood and contribute your own thoughts. So, no matter if you're a Truebie or a more casual viewer of True Blood, or your drink of choice is a pomegranate martini - one of Rachel's favorite cocktails to drink and Rebecca's to mix - an herbal tea, a frothy double mocha latte, or a can of Fresca (wink, wink) you're invited to join the conversation on the show's complexities in a way that can spark transformation.

Hopefully you'll find something to sink your teeth...err...straw, into! PLEASE ENJOY RESPONSIBLY ;-)


The Pierced Pomegranate Tavern is dedicated to exploring social issues and more through the lens of True Blood. As such, you may encounter:

related to the often provocative and adult themes presented by the show

If you choose to enter and participate in this virtual salon, please be prepared to do so in a thoughtful, respectful, and mature fashion with the above in mind. Click here to check out our comment policy. Thanks!


No copyright infringement is intended, all rights to True Blood belong to HBO, credit is ascribed to sites where images appearing here were originally found.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Here's a sneak peek BEHIND THE SCENES: True Blood Reenacts the Goddess Persephone's Ordeal of Abduction and Rape...or Self-Directed Sexual Initiation? Opening a Vein on Woman-Centered Sexuality

It's 4:23AM. Rachel sits alone on the couch. The house is quiet except for the furious clacking of her fingers on her laptop keyboard. Her eyes are blurry and close involuntarily from time to time, but she is determined...

So how'd you like my spoof of the True Blood S4 teasers HBO has been releasing? So far we've had brief scenes of amnesia Eric, Eric & Bill, Jason & Crystal, Sam & new female character (sorry, don't recall her name) and Pam, Tara, Jesus & company introduced by the disembodied voice over orienting us to the action I tried to mime above. Did I miss any?

So what's my teaser all about? I mentioned a while back, I'll be presenting a visual talk exploring issues of sexuality and representation through the lens of True Blood at the PCA/ACA & Southwest/Texas Popular Culture and American Culture Associations joint conference, in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Area: Special Area: True Blood track in just a few weeks...(wipes sweat from brow, assures self presentation will be ready in time...steels self for 2 more weeks of living the vamp life by default, working on prepping my talk all night, in bed with the sunrise).

Now, this may seem like a pretty cool rock-star lifestyle and all, except for the fact that I don't have the luxury of going underground or hunkering down in a coffin all the whole sleep deprivation thing is rather bothersome and the bleeds are sort of difficult to explain when working 9-5...

we were 1st introduced to the phenomenon of the bleeds during this scene, S2

...But anyway, I digress...the real point of this post is to pull the veil back a bit and give you a sneak peek of what is to come at the conference next month.

You may have noticed that we put out a teaser of sorts via Twitter with some shots of Neolithic goddess replicas I've been sucking up for the presentation.

My talk is entitled: True Blood Reenacts the Goddess Persephone's Ordeal of Abduction and Rape...or Self-Directed Sexual Initiation? Opening a Vein on Woman-Centered Sexuality. What do you think these images may have to do with it?

Persephone's return


Green Gulch Tara
 Oh well, you'll just have to stay tuned to find out, won't you?


And please do stay tuned for the frothy confection on groupies & fangbangers that Rebecca's mixing up, to be served here at the PPT soon!

~ Rachel 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Keep This Party Going: National Women's History Month

March was National Women's History Month, and since it's now (already!?!) early April, a riff on the title of True Blood S2E2 seems only appropriate...let's keep this party going!!!

During this past month, I have been involved with planning and facilitating events in honor and celebration of National Women's History Month, both at my full-time job as a social worker in the non-profit sector and at my part-time gig as a college professor. The overarching theme of these events carries over from the strong messaging of great organizations like the National Women's History Project  and the Long Island-based Herstory Writers Projectthe need to write women back into history.

These organizations are dedicated to bringing the contributions and voices of women - often unsung and historically silenced - from the margins to the center of our collective narrative. There is a need for women's stories to be brought forth in such a way that - as Artistic & Executive Director of Herstory says - moves a stranger/reader to care, towards the ends of both personal growth and healing and social justice and transformation. There is a need to open space in our culture for women's stories to be seen as worthy or being told - received and truly heard.

I strongly believe that stories and storytelling are basic to human existence; they're the communicative and meaning-making spindles we use oh so naturally to spin the flax of our lived experiences into the glittering gold of our personal narratives.

We meet and shape the world through story; what is history but a story?

Story is basic to humanity, but it's also a very feminine means of expression that's deeply connected to women's ways of knowing and being.

And boy oh boy, can Alan Ball and the True Blood writers spin a story!!!

Where would the True Blood tale be without the female characters who populate it, not least of whom would include Miss Sookie Stackhouse herself - the eponymous heroine of the Charlaine Harris-penned novels that birthed the show?

Could the True Blood story even be told without them?

For me, the female characters True Blood invites us into the lives of are drawn with bolder lines and brighter colors than are the less fully developed women on other shows; they are multidimensional and relational, complex  personalities. No all-brain-no-affect-socially-crippled intellectuals, empty-headed-buxom-bimbos, or any other types of caricatures here.

I feel like these are real, actual women. A little eccentric, kind of crazy at times, conflicted and wild, yes; but real.

Do they contradict themselves? Yeah, sure, but don't we all? As Walt Whitman wrote in Leaves of Grass over a century ago, Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.) If we are living, breathing human beings, how can we not?

In light of National Women's History Month and the associated slogan, "writing women back into history" I got to thinking about how the lives of the women of Bon Temps and its environs are portrayed on True Blood, how their stories are told.

I came across something that got me to thinking more...

As the video says, this isn't a means of determining the quality of a movie (or TV for that matter, the formula applies), or whether or not it's feminist; it's a gauge for the presence of women in film.

How do you think True Blood stands up to this test? How do you think the test stands up to True Blood?

Do you think there's anything to this test? Taking it in the context of True Blood, what does it say to you about the presence and representation of female characters? I'm hoping you'll share your thoughts :-)

~ Rachel