Stephen Moyer on “Evil Bill” and Slapping Jessica

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TVLine has a new interview with Stephen Moyer talking about Bill’s motivations and the “trauma” of that scene where he slapped Jessica. It’s not very long or insightful, but it does give Stephen a chance to sound off on the action that seems to have really turned fans against Bill.

TVLINE | Are you having as much fun playing Evil Bill as it seems?

You’re saying he’s evil and I’d say he thinks he’s doing the right thing. But I suppose dictators always think they’re doing the right thing. [Laughs] He’s been lost and he’s found something to grab hold of that he thinks is the right way forward… When you play a character you have to ask yourself, “Can I make sense of what’s happening here? Is this authentic?” And if you can sort of find a through line of authenticity, then you can play that beat — which might come across to somebody else as evil. [But] there were a couple of things that were tough to play, and one of those was with Deborah Ann [Woll].

TVLINE | I was going to ask you what it was like slapping her across the room in last week’s episode.

I love the Bill and Jessica relationship. There’s genuine love there. When Sookie turned her back on Bill in Seasons 3 and 4, that was the one affectionate relationship he had left. And so that was a really tough scene to play. But she went against what Bill asked her to do. So, again, that was an authentic reaction.

It’s looking more and more like I might have to eat crow on next week’s finale podcast, but I still can’t reconcile all those speaking looks between Bill and Eric if they didn’t have a plan. Is it Sunday yet?

Fan of the Southern Vampire Mysteries since 2001, and co-admin of since 2008. Team Sookie!


  1. Crzy4Eric

    August 23, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    UGH, this interview is pretty annoying to me. “When Sookie turned her back on Bill in Seasons 3 and 4”? She was still humping him in Season 3 even after he cheated on her, dumped her, and nearly drained her.

    • Mitsu

      August 23, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      Pretty much this, I am so done with Bill, I honestly dont know how he will win back any fans that he had (if he had any, ever since he became King he has been a pompous ass). Many people have lost so much respect for him as a character, especially him slapping Jessica across the face, that was a big no-no and probably infuriated fans (especially Jessica fans like me) even more so.

    • Ellen

      August 23, 2012 at 5:26 pm

      Stephen was speaking from Bill’s perspective. A character’s perspective only has one voice, whereas the audience can take many characters into consideration at once. Bill nearly drained Sookie as any vampire would have done in the same position, including Eric, he broke up with Sookie because he didn’t want Russel to come after her, and he banged Lorena as a mark of his surrender to fact that, as a vampire, he cannot be a part of mortals lives with out hurting them.
      Stephen did not give any indication that Bill didn’t deserve what happened to him when it came to what happened with Sookie. Remember all of his talk of not deserving forgiveness? Third season was when Bill whole “I’m a monster!” ‘tude came to a head. He didn’t think he deserved anything good in his life, which is the state of mind he was in when he tried to release Jessica. But since Jessica yelled at him that she needed him, he clung to her. In the commentary for You Smell Like Dinner, Stephen said that he thinks Bill sees Jessica as a replacement goldfish for his human children, so in the year that Sookie was gone and Bill was king and stuff, the only person he had to talk to was Jessica.

    • Margaux

      August 23, 2012 at 11:48 pm

      Agree. Moyer has always made excuses for Bill.

      • Belle

        August 24, 2012 at 5:20 am

        Stephen Moyer is just an actor. Talking about his character. I don’t think we can really say he’s making excuses for the character he plays when he’s just trying to give us an insight into his creative process!

      • Mel

        August 24, 2012 at 10:20 am

        Remember that actors will always be advocates for their characters, and they often know more about their backgrounds and motivations than we do. Please keep it civil.

  2. Melissa

    August 23, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    You do not have to feel bad Mel, everyone is allowed to have their own opinion! You may be right anyway! I always see things different the second time I watch. I was saying that the expressions on Bills face were totally different to me during the second viewing of his sex scene with Salome than the first time! I first interpreted as a longing for Sookie then realized he looked mad when he saw her, then drained her.

  3. TrueLove

    August 23, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    I think the looks between Bill and Eric were more about problems for the authority than about a plan. As a fan I think the actor is great and I don’t mind Bill going a bit bad on the show, it will keep things interesting. I just don’t want him back with Sookie! 🙂

    • Ellen

      August 25, 2012 at 8:34 am

      I don’t think they’ll ever be together the same way that they were before, but I could see them becoming friends next season. It looks like Sookie is going to go into the Authority with Eric, Jason, Tara, and Nora. If she does make Bill realize that his mind has been poisoned by Lilith, he’s not going to be instantly better. He’ll have a lot to atone for, I could see Sookie giving him the strength to put the mainstreaming moment back together again.

  4. tina

    August 24, 2012 at 11:17 am

    Sookie didn’t turn her back on him. She dumped him after she found out their entire relationship was based on a lie. She for gave him all the horrible situations he put her in but that lie was more hurtful them being nearly drained. Also, Bill has become comfortable with jessica (making her replacement for his human kids) but it has caused him too lose focus of finding himself ( because he is lost ass hell).