True Blood came out during a time when vampires were all the rage in the mainstream. That was thanks to Twilight, which was making a killing off of Stephanie Meyer’s adaptation. The adult HBO series focused on Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin), a telepathic waitress living in Louisiana. The period was set two years after the invention of a synthetic blood product branded “Tru Blood” that allowed vampires to come out of the coffin and let their presence be known to mankind.
The series lasted for seven seasons and has a total of 80 episodes. It was certainly one of HBO’s most popular shows in its heyday. It’s been nine years since the series finale and fans got their hopes up when HBO originally announced a reboot of the vampire series. Sadly, it was officially confirmed that a True Blood reboot was no longer taking shape.
The Success Of True Blood
True Blood was essentially the adult version of Twilight. More sex, violence, and of course, vampires! Minus the sparking vampires and bad storytelling. Well…at least in the first couple of seasons. The series was an adaptation of Charlaine Harris‘s The Southern Vampire Mysteries.
At first, True Blood wasn’t the hit that HBO thought it would be. Despite good critical ratings, the series managed a weak 1.4 million viewers for its premiere episode. HBO went above and beyond to advertise this series, so it was a huge misfire. Had the ratings remained that low throughout the season then it wouldn’t have never been greenlit for a second season.
The ratings climbed as the season continued and managed to average 6.8 million per episode following the premiere. True Blood was a hit with the critics and fans, though the love from the former wand as each season progressed. The final season had a viewership average of 9.4 million, going out on a high note in terms of ratings.
The Announcement Of A Reboot
In 2020, HBO announced the reboot of the popular vampire series. There weren’t many details in terms of plot or premise, so it was unknown if characters like Sookie or Bill would return to the series. Though Paquin did briefly speak about a possible return and she seemed very open to the idea of coming back into the world of Tru Blood.
A reboot wasn’t much of a shock since HBO was going reboot crazy during this time. The brand also revived shows like Degrassi and Gossip Girl, though the latter was eventually canceled. The former had one season, but bombed commercially and critically and was given the axe as well.
As you can imagine, the fans were generally excited. The confirmation that Riverdale creator Robert Aguiree-Sacasa was attached to co-write the series drew even more anticipation from fans. Alan Ball – the original True Blood showrunner – was tapped to oversee the reboot. Everything sounded good, but then, news about the series was silent for a good period.
True Blood Reboot Was Surprisingly Cancelled
Variety first reported earlier this year that the reboot was officially dead. It appears that it all came down to quality and that the series scripts just weren’t good enough to receive the go-ahead from HBO, according to HBO and HBO Max CEO Casey Bloys, “nothing that felt like it got there.”
There’s no word on how far the writers got in terms of story or episodes. It’s not too surprising as HBO is known for its quality brand of television. Sure, the network has a couple of misses here and there. However, HBO has been considered the standard of great television since its inception in 1975. At the moment, the hopes of a True Blood revival appear dead. The creators can’t take it to another network unless HBO approves it first. Perhaps down the line HBO will give the reboot another chance as it was a financially lucrative show for the network overall.
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