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.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Character Spotlight: Hoyt Fortenberry - Hall of Shame

Hoyt Fortenberry, you have been charged with numerous counts of verbal, emotional, and psychological abuse. How do you plead?........

     It is with a heavy and utterly broken heart that I place Hoyt Fortenberry in this installation of our True Blood character Hall of Shame. We have created this space for those characters who at one time garnered nothing but respect and admiration but through a series of uncharacteristic behaviors have fallen from our good graces. We here at the PPT believe in the redemptive qualities of the human (or not so human at times) spirit; and reserve the right to remove any character who can rise above and move beyond their previous and or current offenses from these Halls. That being said let's take a closer look at what landed Hoyt here in the first place.

     How could you do this to us, Bubba? How could a man once so gentle, loving and kind turn into this angry, hate filled, abusive person that we saw last week? You were the only person in Merlottes with a kind thought for Dawn after her murder in the first season. You stood up to your mother calling her out for all her  racist beliefs (secret or otherwise). You have been a good and loyal friend to Jason, even when he referred to Rene-the murderous, misogynist, psychopath as his best friend (I know how much that must have hurt!). You met and fell in love with a beautiful, strong, smart and caring women who just happens to be a vampire.  Throughout all the discord you were our rock, a constant reminder of how good people can actually be. You gave all the bad boys of the world something to think about, proving that the nice guy COULD get the girl. These and many other selfless acts of blind love, and dedication to your moral compass are what made us all (Jessica included) fall in love with you.
     At the beginning of this season we saw a side of Hoyt we thought we'd never see. He has been argumentative, moody, insensitive, emotionally and verbally abusive towards Jessica; cutting her down to the quick with his words. He has violently lashed out, punching walls, throwing lamps and God knows what else around the house, and even though these actions can't physically hurt Jessica they can leave a very visible scar emotionally and psychologically. These abuses rank among the top offensives in most cases of domestic violence! He has made several unsubstantiated claims of Jessica's infidelity allowing his own self-consciousness to bubble up and pollute their relationship. This unhealthy pattern of behavior lead us to this scene as it played out last Sunday night. Re-watch this clip taken from True Blood season 4 episode 8: Spellbound for the last straw that landed Hoyt into our Hall of Shame.


      Couples fight all the time, but it is the way Hoyt fights that upsets me so much. He knows that he is not a physical match so he attacks Jessica verbally and emotionally. He tears into her, accusing her of sleeping with another man. Hoyt then goes on to commit what I consider to be a cardinal sin....he calls Jessica a bitch. While many women feel as though they have "taken back" the sting of being called a bitch, softening the blow by making the word theirs, I still find this word offensive and hurtful. When we think of the archetypal "bitch" what do we see? Does she come anywhere close to resembling Jessica or her actions in any way, shape, or form? I think not, which is precisely why the use of this word is so offensive. How can you say this to someone you love? "You don't deserve me" he yells "and I sure as hell don't deserve you". He goes on to list all the reasons he deserves someone better than Jessica. He attacks her nature both feminine and vampiric. "I deserve someone who's not gonna be a fuckin virgin for all eternity." Women have been simultaneously revered and shamed for their virginity; we are expected to be pure and virtuous yet taught to feel unwanted or inadequate if still a virgin. "I deserve someone I can have a normal life with, with babies....and daylight!" These are all things Hoyt was well aware of while falling for Jessica, things she cannot be held accountable for. Note her reaction as she hears these words. It's as if his words are literally wounding Rachel pointed out, stabbing her like a knife in the chest. As if this weren't bad enough he lands his final blow by exclaiming he deserves someone who's "not fuckin dead" then with a look of disgust on his face revokes Jessica's invitation to their own home. When Hoyt slammed the door on Jessica, leaving her demoralized and sobbing on the front porch, did he also slam the door on any hope that this relationship can be mended? I, for one eagerly await the answer to this and would love to see if Hoyt has it in him to redeem his character's good name. Still a few hours until our next hit, just enough time to see what everyone else is thinking....Thoughts?? ~ Rebecca


  1. First of all, I am so glad I stumbled across this blog--this is EXACTLY the kind of commentary and thinking I approach TB with (really, it's how I approach most things!). I anticipate a happy future of trawling through these posts. Secondly: Oh, Hoyt/TB writers, you cut to the quick. I found myself cringing during this scene, not just because of the nature of the scene but because I have been in nearly this exact same situation myself, tho obviously not a vampire: I ended a relationship and the fellow in question took it very, very badly and went as low as someone could go, lower even, dragging up past relationships of mine he knew about, telling me to go f--- myself, etc etc, and kept doing similar things over email for months, consistently excusing himself by saying "it's a breakup, it's OK if I speak this way." NO IT IS NOT. With him as well as with Hoyt I think we can look to the poisonous "alpha-male" stereotype, not as in Marcus, who merits a post, but as in the "survival of the fittest" stereotype that posits a man's self-worth upon the ability to get and, later, "keep" a woman. If that ability is called into question, as in a woman ending the relationship, the pain of being told that he has "failed" in this way at "being a man" results in such vitriol as Hoyt demonstrated--though that does not in any way shape or form justify it. That got a little long-winded! I'm just so excited to find someone thinking in this way and have spent a lot of time thinking about my breakup as well as Hoyt and Jessica's.

  2. Wow! Vanessa, thank you so much for the kind words on our blog. We have been doing a lot of second guessing lately, wondering if people understand what it is we are trying to do here. Your comment is just the type of inspiration we needed to keep our conversation going! Thank you so much for joining in, we hope to hear so much more from you in the future. I cried as I read your story and am humbled that you would share something so personal with us here. I am a firm believer in what doesn't kill you makes you stronger and having survived this relationship you a surely a stronger person! Brava!!! ~ Rebecca

  3. Glad you appreciate the post! Perhaps to increase visibility in the crowded online TB fandom, you can bring your views to forums with a link to the blog in a signature? I know the lovely Sookiverse fanbase would probably appreciate your view ( Looking forward to the next post!

  4. Good suggestion, Vanessa, thanks for it! We're always wary of apppearing to be spamming, when all we really want to do is forward the discourse and get more voices involved in the conversation.

    We have been checking out the Sookieverse blog and may just follow up on your recommendations to engage those folks!

    Thanks again, glad you've joined the convo here.