• Network: HBO
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 7, 2008
  • Season #: 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    The supporting players aren’t nearly as interesting initially as the intense bond between Sookie and Bill, though they do keep the first few installments busy, including some nicely gratuitous sex, adventures in the Viagra-like effects of vampire blood and a tepid murder mystery.
  2. The core characters, including Sookie's best friend Tara (Rutina Wesley), Sookie's brother Jason (Ryan Kwanten) and bartender Sam (Sam Trammell), who has a thing for Sookie, all have interesting features and are well-played. The rest of the locals don't come off so well, mostly having few brains and a big shortage of couth.
  3. True Blood is a sexy affair that sets up an entirely believable world where humans and vampires co-exist. It's a soap, to be sure, but a soap with an eye for social commentary.
  4. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Graphically sexy and scary, and often wildly funny, True Blood, from Six Feet Under’s Alan Ball, turns Charlaine Harris’ rollicking mystery novels into a broadly entertaining, deliciously twisted slice of modern Southern Gothic.
  5. 60
    You won't be drawn to True Blood if you don't like a heightened, almost cartoonish atmosphere. Paquin, giggly but calmly assertive, is something of an acquired taste as Sookie.
  6. 88
    Part mystery, part fantasy, part comedy, and all wildly imaginative exaggeration, Blood proves that there's still vibrant life--or death--left in the "star-crossed lovers" paradigm.
  7. Both Paquin and Moyer do well here. And True Blood is fleshed out with other interesting characters getting to spout well-written lines. But at times the whole thing seems silly.
  8. 50
    It’s not surprising that Ball gets the mixture wrong a fair amount of the time; what’s surprising is that it’s possible for such a strange gumbo to work at least some of the time.
  9. True Blood looks terrific, especially whenever it has to depict a vampire in action, as they can move almost too fast for the naked eye (but not the high-def camera) to see. But unless the thought of vampire/human love makes your pulse quicken--or, even better, makes you wish you didn't have a pulse to quicken--most of it is not really worth seeing.
  10. 38
    HBO's new series from death-obsessed Alan Ball, creator of the legendary "Six Feet Under," whose new show True Blood, won't so much make your blood run cold as it will leave you cold.
  11. Ball's done an entertaining job of turning Harris' stories about life in a small Southern town after vampires "come out of the coffin" into something adults who wouldn't dream of reading her books might be caught dead watching.
  12. It’s creepy, steamy and funny at times, and it’s also a muddle, a comic murder mystery that is a little too enthralled with its own exoticism.
  13. Vampire fantasy, murder mystery, star-crossed love story, political satire, True Blood is all and none of the above. Not quite funny, not quite scary, not quite thought-provoking, the show's attempt to question the roots of prejudice is continually undermined by its own stereotyping.
  14. 80
    True Blood is an unlikely but irresistible mixture of pungent political satire, observant pop sociology and lurid drive-in thrills.
  15. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    True Blood makes little effort to rethink genre conventions.
  16. 80
    True Blood isn't meant to be an exercise in good taste. Just a romp and a wallow--and a bloody good one.
  17. The show is ugly and fixated on death and violence. There's lots of lurid sex, too, reflected in other title images. There's also creativity and flat-out breathtaking acting to instill a voyeuristic fascination and perhaps inspire a fanatic.
  18. 90
    After watching five episodes, I can say True Blood stands out as one of the strongest new series in an uncertain fall.
  19. True Blood, with its constant profanity, gore and banal cruelty, will have a limited appeal. It might become appointment viewing for genre fans even as the rest of us steer clear of Bon Temps.
  20. My hope is that True Blood will get all of this tub-thumping out of the way in a few weeks and start its tremendous potential as an ensemble drama with hints of comedy.
  21. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Appetizingly pulpy and yet not at all crass, the series presents a new angle on the phenomenon of shows-so-bad-that-they're-good: It sucks hard and thus plays very well.
  22. 60
    Even though the second episode of the season isn't structured very well, with lots of rambling talk about nothing, even though the show lacks the tightness and the natural momentum of "Six Feet Under" (and the weight and the intensity, for that matter), True Blood is still odd, unpredictable and off-kilter.
  23. 80
    True Blood, Academy Award-winner Alan Ball's steamy, sassy, sometimes nasty, but always thoroughly engaging, new HBO drama.
  24. 80
    It's easy to like True Blood, because Ball's episodic smarts are primal, not at a remove, and he approaches supernaturalism by emphasizing the natural over the super.
  25. 60
    When Tara and Sookie speak truth to each other (or seem to), True Blood is almost shrewd.
  26. Although generally witty, always absorbing, and invariably violent, True Blood isn’t really a big surprise until its fifth hour.
  27. Reviewed by: Misha Davenport
    Bloody, sexy and violent, the show is also both occasionally funny and frightening.
  28. Reviewed by: Brian Holcomb
    There's certainly enough story here to develop into a strong series were it centered around interesting characters, but Ball has populated it with one stereotype after another.
  29. Reviewed by: Ken Tucker
    I'd say that the author is more vivid, subtle, and funny in her portrayal of Southern life; I'll be surprised if her fans aren't disappointed by this adaptation. The best thing about Ball's shows is their opening credits.
  30. Reviewed by: Michael Judge
    True Blood is supposed to be a sexy, easy-to-swallow mystery, but too often it ends up leaving a bad taste in one's mouth.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 655 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 35 out of 241
  1. RionaD.
    Oct 3, 2008
    This show has SO MUCH potential, but it gets lost in it's attempt to sell itself better by sticking in a ridiculous amount of sex and nudity. I honestly felt like I was watching a porno with a plot thrown in as an afterthought. It has it's good points, though. It got some laughs out of me with it's cheesy humor, and the characters are generally likable. As I said earlier, it has the potential to be absolutely great. They just need to realize that people will still watch it if they don't include a sex scene every ten minutes. Full Review »
  2. AntonioM.
    Sep 13, 2008
    Boring, lame. slow paced, terrible acting. PAris Hilton scary House of Wax was a masterpiece compared to this. we were 4 in a room and we all agreed, that it sucks... Very disappointing Full Review »
  3. ML.
    Aug 20, 2009
    The best vampire show I've ever seen. Wow, this show is totally addicting. Nice mix of drama and social/religious/political satire. Very funny at times, but also sad and moving sometimes. A little different from the books which are also great. The characters are a pretty believable, and many of them remind of me of people I know. It's not perfect, the accents are a little fake, and it's a mystery why Eric's hair doesn't grow back when he cut it(my girlfriend loves him but wishes they had left his hair long). They overdue the sex scenes sometimes too. Still, overall one of my favorite shows of all time. There's not many good Vampire movies or shows, so it's a refreshing change. Full Review »