'True Blood': Michael McMillian talks 'Steve Newlin's Field Guide To Vampires' - First look
"True Blood" fans who loved the show's recently released cookbook will love the next treat coming at them from HBO Global Licensing and Chronicle Books. Michael McMillian teamed with "True Blood" associated producer Gianna Sobol to write a new book called "Steve Newlin's Field Guide to Vampires" that shares the Fellowship of the Sun leader-turned-gay vampire's take on the supernatural world in the hit HBO show.
"The idea behind the book is that it was his journal when he was a human, and the research he was doing on vampires and the supernatural world from the time during and after Season 2 and before he was turned into a vampire sometime during Season 4," McMillian tells Zap2it during an interview at San Diego Comic-Con.
The general premise is that the journal was found in Steve's car after he was kidnapped and turned into a vampire. Pam then took it from a Fellowship of the Sun protestor outside Fangtasia, and she and Eric made their own annotations on Steve's notes.
That element of the story makes it doubly funny because not only will fans get to read how Steve got it so, so wrong about creatures like fairies, but also because they'll get to witness Pam and Eric mocking him endlessly with their notes. Of course, the Season 6 version of Steve Newlin might have a different stance on his old journal if he saw it now.
"I think Steve would believe that all roads led to where he is today and that was a good thing. He may have not wanted to stay in closet so long, but I actually don't think Steve realized that he was gay until he became a vampire and all those suppressed desires came rushing out of him," McMillian says of how the character has changed. "I think he is also someone who is in search of love. I think it's a little misplaced. I think he's confused power and attention with love. But I think deep down he is just a little kid who is searching for some sort of companionship and stability in his life."
Check out an exclusive first-look video at "Steve Newlin's Field Guide To Vampires" below:
With Anna Camp finally making her triumphant return as Sarah Newlin in Season 6, fans will be happy to know that "Steve Newlin's Field Guide to Vampires" will fill in the blanks about her and Steve's divorce -- at least from Steve's perspective. He says the book helps explain what happened between when they were seen fighting on air at the end of Season 2 and when he returned at the end of Season 4.
"We just talk a little bit about why their marriage went wrong and sort of where they're at. You can sort of track the divorce through the book, and there's a lot of passages where he like just kind of gets off topic and rants about Sarah for a couple pages," McMillian says. "Anna Camp and I have been great friends since Season 2 and we've been waiting for that moment to get back and play those characters together again."
Apparently the plan was to try to write Camp into Season 5 episode 2, but her busy schedule kept her from returning. McMillian teases that "where her storyline goes this season is even more exciting," and explains why Steve is so willing to be her ally at the Camp right now.
"Even though they are now on opposite lines of the battle, I think that there's something inherently co-dependent about those two, even though he's a gay vampire and she's now a governor's girlfriend. I think there's something they still kind of need from each other. They have a bond that is very dysfunctional but I think very strong," he says. "They make a good team. I think right now where they're at in the season is Steve is a prisoner at the Vamp Camp and he doesn't know the Governor, he's not on great terms with the other vampires, so he's kind of clinging to what he knows right now. He controlled Sarah once before and I think he's hedging his bets that maybe that's his best ally right now."
The bottom line is that "Steve Newlin's Field Guide to Vampires" is a book for fans who want to get more immersed in the "True Blood" world.
"It's a really fun, I think really funny read. I did sketches for the book that are sort of in Steve's hand, so you get to look at like Steve's drawings of the vampires and werewolves and stuff," McMillian says. "I wanted to create something that felt indispensable for 'True Blood' fans."
"Steve Newlin's Field Guide to Vampires" will be released in early November. "True Blood" airs Sundays on HBO at 9 p.m. ET.