James Frain James Frain

True Blood has returned with a sexy new vampire — Franklin Mott (James Frain), who's certainly stirring up plenty of mystery and intrigue as he tries to uncover Bill Compton's secrets. So why is he in town digging around and who is he working for? TVGuide.com caught up with Frain (who says dressing up as a vampire is "like Halloween for two months") to get the scoop.

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TVGuide.com: Had you read any of the novels before taking the role?
No, I didn't know about the novels, I just know about the show. I got a broad sense of how it compares, but I think it's different. They expanded Franklin's storyline out for sure.

TVGuide.com: Franklin Mott is a bit of a mystery man. What can you tell us about him?
Franklin Mott is a private eye. We learn later in the season that he works for Russell [Denis O'Hare], who is the King. He's been sent on a mission to dig up information on Bill. His attention is completely distracted by the charms of Tara [Rutina Wesley].

TVGuide.com: Do you think he really likes Tara or is he just using her?
It's kind of a spoiler. That's the question of the first few episodes on whether he likes her. I think he really likes her, but I don't know that guys like Franklin have the same idea of what like means like the rest of us do. I think the better word is obsessed. That's what we start to discover.

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TVGuide.com: In the same vein of obsession, why is Bill (Stephen Moyer) so important to everyone this season?
For Franklin, Bill is just a job, so he's no more interested in Bill than any of his other assignments, but there are lots of unanswered questions about Bill, so Franklin will focus on getting the information on why he's there, what he's doing, and whether he doesn't have ulterior motives.

TVGuide.com: Will Tara get in the way of the job Franklin needs to get done?
That's what's on the line. No one likes Tara as much as Franklin.

TVGuide.com: Who else will Franklin interact with in Bon Temps?
He has some pretty good interaction with Jason [Ryan Kwanten] down the line. Oh yeah.

TVGuide.com: Where is the season heading?
It's heading toward some kind of confrontation between those who claim to represent the vampires. There are two different camps that emerge between who the vampires are, who they can be and whether it really is sustainable to live alongside human beings. That's the arc of the season.