True Blood Maryann Forrester Mystery – What The Heck is a Maenad?
If you’ve read the Sookie Stackhouse books you know that the creature chasing her is a maenad.
So What Is A Maenad?
If True Blood follows the book a maenad is a creature that requires offerings (or tributes) from other supernatural creatures who serve alcohol. If they’re not properly honored they tend to get angry and cause madness in people (supernatural and human) or even kill them. In the book the maenad attacks Sookie as a way of sending a message to Eric, the owner of Fangtasia (a bar that serves alcohol). This is the maenad’s way of telling Eric that he has to pay her a tribute. Eric knows all too well how vicious a maenad can be – several years earlier he’d experienced a maenad who caused madness in a vampire. The vampire went on a crazed rampage and eventually had to be staked.
Here’s how the maenad is described to Sookie in the book Living Dead in Dallas:
|Bacchus was the god of the grape, of course, so bars are very interesting to maenads. In fact, so interesting that they don’t like other creatures of darkness becoming involved. Maenads believe that the violence sparked by the consumption of alcohol belongs to them; that’s what they feed off, now that no one formally worships their god. And they are attracted to pride.”|
“What’s she gonna do if you don’t pay her tribute?” Sookie asked.
“Send her madness.” Bill sounded worried.
“Into the bar? Merlotte’s?”
The vampires eyed one another.
“Or into one of us. It has happened. The Halloween massacre of 1876, in St. Petersburg.”
They all nodded solemnly.
“I was there,” Eric said. “It took twenty of us to clean up. And we had to stake Gregory, it took all of us to do that. The maenad, Phryne, received tribute after that, you can be sure.”
In the books, the maenad travels with a large hog. Sound familiar? Yes, we’ve seen Maryann Forrester with a hog more than once in True Blood Season 1.
That’s why Sam (a bar owner) is so spooked when he sees Maryann Forrester. Remember the scene where he takes money from his safe, as if he’s planning to leave? In all likelihood, he’s planning to give the money to Maryann (the maenad) as a tribute.
And that’s your Maenad 101 lesson for the day!
See also: Do You Kill a Maenad?