This article contains spoilers from the True Blood season 5 episode "Gone, Gone, Gone," which aired August 12. Read ahead at your own risk.
Last night's True Blood saw the departure of a major character from the series. Hoyt, played by Jim Parrack, made his final bow from the show -- though unlike pretty much every other character to leave the series, he wasn't killed off. No, Hoyt left of his own accord, headed off to a new job working on an oil rig in Alaska.
Leaving Bon Temps might make Hoyt the show's smartest character.
Of course, it took him a long time to get to that point. His ties to Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll), a newly turned vampire, kept him around, though when she slept with Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten), Hoyt's heart was broken and he found himself a lost soul, spending part of season 5 as a fangbanger and part of season 5 as a part of an extremist anti-vampire group. When they tried to have him kill Jessica, though, he realized the error of his ways and let her go (but not after a tense moment where he held a gun to her head). After that, he decided to get the hell out of Louisiana -- but before he left, he asked Jessica to use her glamoring abilities to remove any memories of her and Jason from his mind. She obliged, and Hoyt exited the show.
But was his departure for good? According to Parrack, for a while. "[Executive producer] Alan [Ball] was adamant that one of the reasons they wanted to do that was to leave him the option to have a return," Parrack told TV Guide, noting that he'd be okay if his character never came back. "I think that if it did end this way and Hoyt never came back, it would be good storytelling because it's just a complete journey from somebody who was utterly dependent upon other people, never stuck up for himself, or got to think for himself and then to fall in love and all the betrayal and hardships and him saying, 'You know what, I've got to take care of myself.' I think it told a whole story."
His final scene on set was emotional, Parrack admitted, but it did come with an epiphany: "A real interesting thing happened that day we shot it. . . it was just an instinct I had, it was really moving. I kept looking to Jason. . . and thought, damn, I'm never going to see my friend again. So out of the two, the love for [Jessica] was more intense, but I would say the love for [Jason] was deeper and I didn't even know that until we got in the moment."
You can read the full interview with Parrack over at TV Guide.
What do you think about Hoyt's departure? Are you sad to see him go? Do you think it was good storytelling?
The next episode of True Blood, "Sunset," the penultimate episode of the fifth season, will air August 19 at 9/8c on HBO.