Even those who don’t watch 'True Blood' know who Deborah Ann Woll is by her hair alone. I cannot count the times when she’s been referred to as “that cute little redhead.” Her character name, Jessica Hamby, typically follows the hair comment and everything else cascades into place. She recently stopped by Huffpost Live to discuss her life and role.
Jessica, Deborah’s character, was a bible belt raised seventeen year old who gets taken from her family and turned into a vampire by Bill Compton. Eternally a teenager, Jessica must now navigate not only maturing, but also the severe urge to rip open the necks of those around her. Jessica was never intended to be an integral character on the series; Woll initially signed on for a two-episode story arc back in 2008. During those initial appearances, Jessica was an irritating and insubordinate character, but after her character was promoted to recurring, the writing on 'True Blood' took the opportunity to flesh out who Jessica Hamby is--and who she was becoming. The only drawback to extending the brief appearance would be the practicality of playing an ageless character: in 2008, Woll was twenty-three years old, playing a seventeen year old. As we march through season six, Woll is twenty-eight, playing a seventeen year old... but luckily fans are willing to suspend disbelief when it comes to fantasy and genre storytelling.
Over the last five seasons ('True Blood' is on season six now), we have seen her transform exponentially. TVRage's own Erica Bedow got the chance to ask Deborah what part of Jessica’s transition was the best in her eyes. She explained that Jessica is finally learning who she is rather than being defined by someone else. The person behind the fangs, is down to earth, sweet and always willing to take a picture or pose with a fan.
You can find the complete interview here.
Make sure to watch True Blood at 9pm on HBO every Sunday.