True Blood Season 5’s Critique on Religion: On-Point or Out of Line?
True Blood has never shied away from controversial issues, from homoeroticism to incest and everything in between. While HBO's hit supernatural show has always presented an allegorical critique on religion, Season 5 took it to a whole new level.
This season, we watched the vampire Authority transform into a theocratic terrorism regime that used religious texts to justify its barbaric behavior — not unlike the extremists involved in real terrorist groups. But did showrunner Alan Ball take his commentary on the dangers of religious extremism a bit too far?
Ball stands by his storytelling, revealing to Religion News Service that he was inspired by some of the events he witnessed right here at home in the U.S.
"We wanted to play with the politics/religion angle, since that seems to be something that never stops," he said.
"Some of the things being said by some people during the Republican primary were so horrifying to me that I thought, 'What if vampires wanted a theocracy? What would that look like?' Whenever anybody thinks they know what God wants and wants to apply that to government, whether Americans or the Taliban, it's kind of a terrifying thing."
While True Blood remains a sexually gratuitous supernatural bloodbath, there's an underlying layer of subtext that's dripping with socially-conscious commentary. And we can't get enough of it.
Do you think Season 5 was on-point with its critique on religion, or did you find the storylines offensive and out of line?