As brooding vampire Bill Compton, British actor Stephen Moyer is right at the center of the bloodthirsty buzz surrounding HBO's hit True Blood (Sundays at 10 pm/.ET). Not a bad place to be, right?
Not so fast. Moyer's character virtually disappears in the third of Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse novels, on which the show is based. And while series creator Alan Ball is clearly creating his own path (see the non-death of Book 1 casualty Lafayette on the show), shouldn't Moyer worry a little? Nah.
"That gives Alan the opportunity to invent something," Moyer tells TVGuide.com. "Just like last season with the V trips — they had to invent that. And they're very good at it. So I'm confident that however they keep him there, they'll make Bill's story interesting."
That's not to say his arc this season hasn't given him plenty to sink his teeth into. Bill's playing daddy to a newborn bloodsucker, while also trying to keep afloat his turbulent relationship with Sookie (Anna Paquin), who is increasingly being eyed by Bill's sheriff, Eric (Alexander Skarsgard). Moyer promises that the road trip to Texas will reveal much more about who Eric was (and is) and further flesh out the vampire world.
"Toward the end of the season, we're going to see the hierarchy taken almost to its peak," he says. "We're going to meet the monarchy, if you will. Last year, we met the grand judge of Louisiana, and this year we're going to meet the monarch of Texas. But he's not the monarch of America. It's kind of an almost feudal system. I love the idea of this incredibly detailed society in which manners are very important as to how you relate to people that are above you.
"As much as Eric does to piss Bill off, Bill never has a childlike fit," Moyer continues. "The hierarchy is incredibly strong. So no matter how much Eric does against Bill, Bill will never bad-mouth him. It's sort of an elevated playground mentality. However horrible a kid is to you, you don't go and report him."
Even if that horrible kid is moving in on your girlfriend/midnight snack? "What I think is interesting is the love triangle — giving your characters conflict is always much more interesting to watch than suddenly making Sookie and Eric have a relationship," Moyer says, noting that Bill and Sookie can't — and shouldn't — always be happy together.
"You can't watch two characters be happy in love for 12 episodes," Moyer says. "That would be extremely dull. I do know that [a separation is] going to happen. The writers will do what's best for the show. And who's to say they won't create a character for Bill to love? I'd love to be a fly on the wall in the writers' room."
It's evident in every anecdote the actor tells that he adores the show and his character. Moyer giddily cackles at the mere thought of an upcoming plot twist he can't bring himself to spoil. "You wait, you wait," he laughs. "You won't believe it."