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.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Gendered Judgmentalism

When Jason's Hot Shot rape arc first launched, our friend Amy (webmistress of the clever and hilarious She Liked Imaginary Men Best of All) was justifiably outraged.

She commented on Facebook that if a woman were strapped to a bed and used as a breeding mare, people would be going nuts. Rebecca responded that she felt people were supposed to be disgusted and outraged by this depiction of the repeated violation of a man by a string of (I would argue also exploited) women.

And during Sookie's (hot! hot! hot!) Bill/Eric dream this past Sunday, she admonished the two of them for buying into the double standard that she must be one of theirs, but she - as the proper lady she is -shoudn't even entertain the idea of having both of them be hers.

And forget the idea of a vampwich with Sookie in the middle; that's just too far outside the boundaries of society's standards for acceptable female sexuality (but as Sookie said, it's OK if the threesome consists of girl-boy-girl, even if the players barely know each other)!

It was her dream, so ultimately they both caved. I wonder if that had anything to do with the fact that she emphasized how her desire for both of them to love her was born out of her total, complete love for the two of them. Because women are hardwired to conflate love and sex, right...and to reserve intimate relations for partners with whom she is in love, rather than in lust, with?

Now, I'm not advocating for indiscriminate, lust-driven sex outside of a caring, mutually consenting, adult relationship. I'm just interested in seeing more expansive options for women to express ourselves and our sexuality outside the constricted bounds of our society's gender-based norms, is all.

This idea of double-standard and reversal got me to thinking...

...If a woman were carrying on a purely physical affair or two while still in love with, or hung up on an ex-lover (as Bill had been doing with Katerina and Portia) how would that be viewed?

How is it viewed when he's doing it?

Does it negate his continuing love for Sookie?

She sure let him have it for "sticking his fangs and God knows what else into every girl in Bon Temps". S4E6 I Wish I Was the Moon

Is it OK because he's a man, and as such, has needs for
companionship and sexual gratification that must be satisfied?

Granted, he has been upfront with these women and has not led them on.
He even told Portia outright (albeit rather coldly) that he could never love her, and although it was she who suggested that they casually add sex to the equation of their already successful and friendly professional relationship, I'm pretty sure I saw her flinch.

Yet she accepted Bill's terms for taking their relationship to the next level.

Does this diminish her femininity?

Reduce her to a cliché with all the fixins expected of the (in her words) "smartest and most powerful" professional woman in Bon Temps, i.e. ballbuster, bitch, etc.?

She goes after what she wants. She's willing to enter into a "friends with benefits" situation. She's a self-described "terrier", as a lawyer and a lover.

Does this make her emotionally bankrupt (an undesirable trait in a woman)?

Would these pitbull qualities make others see Portia as being too much like a man to be a real woman?

Now, since Bill found out that Portia is actually his great-great-great-great granddaughter, we're not likely to be seeing her again (at least not in his bed) any time soon. But honestly, don't you think his brush-off was a little silly and condescending?

Sure, Portia was very aggressive in her rationalization of incest. And yes, he's got an awful lot on his hands, what with his kingdom facing the witch crisis, and all. To top it off, Bill was not overly invested in their brief relationship; he had promised her nothing.

Even so, no matter how busy Bill was, however eager to short circuit their dance around his desk, with him in retreat as she gave chase he may have been, didn't such an intelligent, sophisticated woman deserve a letdown that didn't involve being glamoured to scream at this sight of him?

Please weigh in below!

~ Rachel

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