ABWW Sterotype of the Day: Tara Thornton from TrueBlood

I love vampires.  I have vampire books, vampire movies and have dressed up as a vampire foe Halloween. I was a fan of Charlene Harris long before TruBlood long before the hit HBO show premiere.  To my delight I heard that a minor character in the book was recast for a black woman. To my disgust the mild manner white Tara had been changed to an angry black
woman. In Tara’s first scene of the show, she cusses out a customer and quits her Walmart-clone store, usually stop watching a show like that but I wanted to see how far they would butcher the book and got hooked. I suffered through Tara’s pitiful relationship with a  hes boss, a changling who was hopelessly in love with the lead character Sookie Stackhouse. Finally in season two Tara get some lovin’ from Eggs (fineass Mechad Brooks) only to have him shot  and the cops cover it up. No one seem to notice she is grieving, which is chalked up to being racial insensibility on her part. She then found out that her best friend Sookie admits she uses her psychic in away the contributes to her honey’s  death and promptly tries to choke her out.

Is this overboard or what? How many black women choke people when they are in mourning? The majority of  Hollywood writers are white as Spike Lee brilliantly pointed
in his film Bamboozled. So very few of them know a black woman much less spend enough time with them to get to know them.  For example series creator Alan Ball also shot his main black character at the end of Six Feet Under. They rely heavily on stereotypes and it shows. This season Tara is due to strike the fancy of a new vampire, let’s see how far up the ABWW scale Tara Thornton gets this season.

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3 responses to “ABWW Sterotype of the Day: Tara Thornton from TrueBlood”

  1. Y says :

    I love, love, love TrueBlood but I was shocked at how blatantly Tara was stereotypes. Angry, loud, aggressive, cant sustain a romantic relationship. It bothers me. I still enjoy watching the show but they need to ease up on all the stereotyping.

  2. Jack says :

    I’ve a question regarding this so-called stereotype of the angry black woman. One of the few traits carried over from Tara in the books to Tara in the show is that she comes from a horribly abusive past. This is made quite clear in both.

    Let’s pretend, for just a moment, that all we knew about the character was that fact. If I was asked “How might that affect this person when they grew up,” I’d admit that no, they wouldn’t *automatically* grow up angry–but I’d expect any person that comes from such an environment to have major, major trust issues.

    As far as her attitude, I think I’d generally expect either an angry person (as Tara is in-show) or a person who allows others to completely walk all over her. I’ll grant that this is somewhat implied in the books, but not entirely–it’s a lot more practically difficult to separate yourself from your abuser when your abuser can hurl you through a wall and track you by your scent.

    I’ll agree that the show could have portrayed Tara differently, but the portrayal shown in-show is consistent with the way anyone might react. If Tara was a royal bitch for no reason, or if she had no in-character explanation for how she acted, I’d be more inclined to think of this as racist.

    • eshowoman says :

      But the Tara in the book runs a business, gets married and is not running around yelling and screaming. Since book Tara is white, why else was such a drastic difference made. In addition they only other black female character that Alan Ball has created was also stereotypical crack junkie. Perhaps if there were black women on this show with other characteristics you criticism might hold some weight.

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