June 5, 2012
From Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” to Anne Rice’s “Vampire Chronicles” to the Twilight films, vampires have alternately fascinated and frightened us. More often than not, they were portrayed as brutal bloodthirsty monsters. Anne Rice showed us they are all that, but so much more. Twilight showed us they can love and even exist among humans. True Blood (an HBO series based on the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris) takes this one step further. Vampires have come “out of the coffin” and for the last four seasons have had many of us rapt in front of our televisions on Sunday summer nights.
The small town of Bon Temps, Louisiana is practically overrun with supernatural beings. Vampires, werewolves, shape shifters, faerie, and witches show us that their struggles, loves and passions are really not that different from ours. As I watch the show, I often imagine what scents these intriguing characters would wear.
Sookie Stackhouse (played by Anna Paquin) is the main character and a waitress at the only restaurant in town. She is a telepath and knew she was different from everyone, but not why. Actually descended from a long line of faerie folk and to vampires she smells “sweet and fresh, like sunshine”. Sookie is the pretty “girl next door” type.
She loves to lie in the sun, smell the flowers and is a very natural type of gal. I imagine Sookie’s own scent would greatly magnify and exalt the beauty of Emilio Pucci’s Sole 149. Meant to “capture sunshine”, it has a verdant fresh opening of tomato leaf and a soft, slightly sweet, galbanum. Its heart is a soft, almost ethereal, jasmine and its base is composed of a blending of patchouli and vetiver to create a feeling of “down to earth”, while remaining bright and sunny.
Bill Compton (played by Stephen Moyer) was “turned” during the Civil War. He is a native of Bon Temps and after many travels over 175 years he has returned home. He is ever the gentleman, soft spoken and handsome. He has gone from living alone in his old home to becoming King of the Louisiana vampires. His love for Sookie still burns, but he must love her now from afar.
I imagine Bill would not favor strong scents and he would prefer something complex and quality, but not overpowering. What better scent than Penhaligon’s Esprit du Roi from their Anthology line? This fragrance is a clean crisp citrus aromatic, awash in aldehydes and green fragrant herbs, spices and foliage. Its heart of traditional refined flowers, both masculine and feminine, shows his gentleness and sexually ambiguous nature. The woody earthy slightly musky finish suits his smoldering sexuality to a tee.
Eric Northman (played by Alexander Skarsgard) is the vampire sheriff of Area 5 and also owns a club of ill repute (Fangtasia) in Shreveport. He is of Nordic descent and has been a vampire for centuries. He is charismatic and often comes across as uncaring and unfeeling; but he hides his heart and passions well. Sookie’s most recent beau, he has gone from “bad guy” to “good guy” and back again. He is sharp, intelligent and hard to say no to (no matter what he asks you).
Such fair masculine beauty and dark brooding sexiness is defined perfectly by Byredo’s Baudelaire. Warm fragrant and spicy in its opening, it captures not only his initial charm but his hidden warmth. The leathery smoky heart sweetened with hyacinth shows us the bad boy with a tender side. His passions and predilections run dark, and this perfume keeps up with that with its dark patchouli base and slightly animalic ambergris and the unique aroma of papyrus. Eric is overpowering enough…his scent does not need to be!
Sam Merlotte (played by Sam Tremmell) owns Merlotte’s Bar. He is Sookie’s boss and quite in love with her. He is a shifter and can take any animal form. He is a nice guy that almost everyone likes. He has a checkered past, but tries to be a stand-up guy and help wherever and whomever he can. Business man, land lord and friend…Sam is “one of the good guys”. He just likes to get naked, shift and run through the woods.
Sam is a jeans and flannel type of guy. I imagine those tastes run similar in scent. Abercrombie & Fitch’s Fierce would do Sam just fine. It smells really good and is not too pricey or pretentious. Warm and woodsy notes of fir and rosewood seem perfect for Sam. Greens, like moss and vetiver, underpinned with light floral notes with a fair dose of musk would reassure him and not be “putting on airs”.
Jason Stackhouse (played by Ryan Kwanten) is Sookie’s handsome brother: the “golden” boy, the one all the girls want and was the High School all-star quarterback and heartbreaker. He has gone from a dumb blonde, who basically cared only about himself, to cult member before becoming more mature, and even joined the Bon Temps police force. Sweet and sexy, he is trying to fight for his own lost love and help her family…and is trying to keep himself from falling for his best friend’s girl!
Jason’s sexy looks and athletic build would fit perfectly with Versace’s Man Eau Fraiche. Woody, masculine and beautiful (just like him), this fragrance would be something his chemistry would amplify and make even better. He would love the way girls tend to swoon for it (at least the kind of girls Jason likes!). Clean and fresh, but sensual and classy, without smelling too girly or too “poofy”, I’d imagine Jason would smile after applying this and say “Look out girls”!
Lafayette Reynolds (played by Nelsan Ellis) is my favorite character on the show. He is the cook at Merlotte’s and a very proud and out homosexual. He sugarcoats nothing and always tells it like it is, whether you want to hear it or not, in a colorful and funny way. He has gone from being a part time drug dealer and hustler to becoming a medium and finding a man he truly loves and losing him. Crushed, but undaunted by his loss, Lafayette knows that being gay does not make him any less of a man.
The epitome of the word “genderbender”, Lafayette sports silk bandanas on his head to work with dangly earrings and humorous belly shirts. He likes to refer to his female friends and family as “hooker”. He does as he pleases, wears what he likes and could care less about “labels”. Etat Libre d’Orange’s Putain des Palaces immediately came to mind. A beautiful blend of floral majesty with soft spiciness and powdery warmth, this perfume would be glorious on his dark skin. Its smoky sweet leather aroma blended with amber and animalic notes says “Don’t get it twisted, bitch, I’m tougher than I look”.
“Waiting sucks” is the tagline for True Blood. It runs for three short months, after that we have to wait for almost nine more for the next season to begin. The waiting is almost over. Season Five is debuting on HBO on Sunday, June 10th and you know where I will be Sunday night at 9pm!
Let me know in the comments if you would choose something different or feel free to add in your choice for some of the characters I left out.
–John Reasinger, Editor