- "Vampires shall rightfully rule this earth."
- ―Salome Agrippa[src]
Salome Agrippa was a vampire on the HBO original series True Blood. Played by Italian actress Valentina Cervi, Salome makes her debut on the episode "Authority Always Wins" in the series' fifth season. Nearly 2,000 years old and Guardian of the Vampire Authority, she was a world class seductress and fiercely intelligent. Commonly known for her "Dance of the Seven Veils", Salome was the main antagonist throughout the series' fifth season, and, playing a recurring role throughout the series' fifth and sixth seasons, Salome meets an untimely demise in the Season 6 episode "Who Are You, Really?".
Though Salome laments being painted as seductress and femme fatale she does nothing but confirm this view of her. Given her age, Salome is one of the world's oldest and strongest vampires, yet still resorts to using sexual wiles to obtain what she wants. She became lovers with Roman Zimojic and soon after was named his second in command in The Authority. When it became clear that Roman would never meet the Sanguinistas halfway, Salome plotted to get rid of him. Rather than simply kill the vampire 1,500 years her junior, Salome used Russell Edgington to do the deed. Even after 2,000 years Salome still resents her mother for using her to obtain more power. She doesn't hesitate however in manipulating others like Bill Compton in her own quest for greatness. Salome is also somewhat megalomaniacal - never doubting for an instant that she was Lilith's chosen prophetess, which ultimately sealed her fate. She was also hopelessly naive in believing that freeing Russell would make him her 'lapdog' and not question her Guardianship, even though he was 1,000 years her senior. Having had millennia to better herself, Salome showed herself as bloodthirsty as any newborn vampire; viewing humans as little more than sustenance. Salome was also a fervent fanatic: vampires were of the night by extension, the fae were abominations since their blood allows vampires to daywalk.
Since Salome was ancient at the time she was introduced in the show, it is impossible to tell whether her character had a more friendly attitude towards humans and vampires alike. She was undeniably corrupted to some degree by the consumption of Lillith's blood.
Salome Agrippa was a Judean princess and contemporary of Jesus Christ. Her mother Herodias divorced Salome's father Herod II in order to wed his brother Herod Antipas. When John the Baptist denounced the royal couple as incestuous Herodias orchestrated his death. She was well aware that her new husband had a fondness for teenage virgins and thus used her own young daughter to bend Herod Antipas to her will. Salome was delivered to her uncle wrapped in scarfs and what they did in the bedchamber could be interpreted as a dance. This act give rise to the legend of the Dance of the Seven Veils. Salome quickly found her self vilified by her own people. Even though she was a victim of her mother's lust for power and nothing but a political pawn her reputation was forever ruined. Salome would be remembered throughout the histories as the original femme fatale 'a symbol of dangerous female sexuality'.
Though it is not exactly specified when Salome was acquainted with Godric. She does reveal that they met during Godric's savage and nihilistic phase. Salome was saddened when she learned of his passing but felt that he lost his way by placing humans on equal footing with vampires.
As a Chancellor of The Authority Salome knew that Russell Edgington had been sentenced to the True Death. She followed Bill and Eric and spied on them as they defied orders and consigned Russell to the ground. Salome bid her time and eventually dug Russell up and took him a secure location where her proxies acquired food for the starved vampire. She also had Russell guarded by werewolves in case he was discovered prematurely.
Salome is there to greet Bill and Eric when they arrive at the Authority's HQ for questioning. Being Nora's best friend, she feels personally betrayed and does not believe a word Nora says about her supposed 'innocence', telling her that "fairy tales are for children", slapping Nora across the fact shortly after.
Later, she interrogates and tortures Eric Northman in a cell using liquid silver pumped directly into the veins.
She appears to have an intimate attraction, with Roman; she gazes at and frequently touches him. ("Authority Always Wins")
The Authority continues to debate what to do with Bill Compton and Eric Northman for leaving Russell Edgington alive. Roman assures them that he will take their opinions under advisement and sends them away, except Salome. Roman reveals to Eric and Bill that Russell has become a "poster boy" for Sanguinistas for what he did on public television. Roman makes it clear to them that he will not see mainstreaming ruined by one ancient, pissed off psychopath. Bill and Eric assure him that they understand and promise to bring Russell in or die trying. After sending them away, Roman calls in for the new "Nan Flanagan", revealing it to be Reverend Steve Newlin.
Roman explains to Steve Newlin that Nan told the world that Russell was dead, and that they have just learned that the announcement was a lie. Steve says that there is no proof and that people will believe anything they want to because of their irrationality and motivation to live in fear. Steve asks Roman that he'll make the world believe whatever they want. Roman finds Steve's words insulting, reminding him that humans birthed them before they became vampires, which makes them their ancestors. Roman elucidates that if vampires continue to act like savages, humanity will rise up with their armies and attack them. Roman explains that if Russell pops up on television again, threatening to eat children, then he will need a friendly vampire mainstreamer who knows how to work a crowd. Steve assures that he will not let him down. Roman caresses his face then sends him away. He instructs Salome to ensure that Bill and Eric are thoroughly scanned to avoid a repeat of the "necromancy bullshit" Marnie did the year before. Bill and Eric are fitted with iStakes by Molly.
Salome has Bill brought down to the Authority's basement. As they walk, Salome asks Bill if he knows who she is. Bill reveals what little details he knows, but Salome warns him not to believe everything in the Bible. Salome revealed that the Bible made her a convenient villain and a symbol for the dangers of female sexuality, but actually she was merely a girl with a troubled family. Bill then asked if she actually did ask for a man's head on a silver platter, and she said it was only politics. She further revealed that John denounced her mother's re-marriage to her uncle, the King. Wanting him silenced, she took advantage of her new husband's fondness for teenage virgins and traded Salome's body for revenge. Bill then asked about the dance of the Seven Veils, and Salome said she was wrapped sheer scarves when she was delivered to her uncle's bed where the supposed 'dance' began. Salome then reveals that she has been following Bill's upsurge for over 100 years and admires that he continues following his heart, something that vampires rarely do. Salome reveals that she wants to help him. When Bill asks why, Salome admits that something about Bill moves her, and that after 2,000 years, she has learned to trust that feeling. When she asks Bill if she can trust him, Bill says how he can prove it when she already has his life in her hands. She said perhaps by letting him take her life with his. Bill then pins her against the wall and has sex with her.
Eric is brought to Salome's bedroom at her request. Salome reveals that she knows Nora is Eric's sister through Godric. She says that she found Godric to be a glorious vampire until he lost his way. Salome wonders why Eric left Nora to die; he answers that he had no choice. She tells Eric that we all have choices. Eric asks if this is how she makes friends. Salome says that friends she can trust are a rare commodity. She confides that she sponsored and mentored Nora; Eric wonders if she believes Nora's arrest reflects badly. Salome says Eric is cold at heart because he's been hurt. Eric asserts that it will heal. Salome says that she could quicken that process by being his friend, removing her robes and lying naked on her bed. Eric walks towards her.
Once Salome is alone in her bedroom, Roman comes in and asks her if she had fun. Salome reveals that neither Bill nor Eric are Sanguinistas and that they can be trusted. Roman says he's not sure that anyone can be trusted because Nora has confessed to being a Sanguinista. Salome suggests that they take a different route since mainstreaming has divided vampires. Roman says that's exactly what they want and refuses, convinced that mainstreaming is working. Salome says that she's afraid for Roman. Roman says she shouldn't be and with her as his secret weapon, there is nothing for her to worry about. ("Whatever I Am, You Made Me")
Salome offers Roman Tru Blood and he refuses while he lays on their bed watching Nora's continued torture on his laptop. Roman still believes that Nora is holding back information. Salome, still angry and hurt, spitefully suggests that they continue the ultraviolet light-flashes and liquid-silver IV until she breaks. Roman says that he would rather have Salome speak to her as Nora sees Salome, as a sister. Salome asks Roman what will happen if she doesn't. Roman answers that they will execute her publicly as a warning to the Sanguinistas that the Authority is just as willing to kill for their beliefs. Salome tells Roman that she can be very persuasive.
Salome and Roman enter Nora's cell. Salome releases Nora's manacles. Roman asks if she accepts the true death for her treason or if she's willing to give them the name of the real traitor in exchange for her life. Nora struggles to her knees and accepts her fate. Salome breaks, admitting that she still loves her and refuses to see Nora die for the other Sanguinistas. Salome then begs Nora to tell her who is gathering others to bring the Authority down. Roman derisively says that Nora is not a leader and the true-leader's life isn't worth her losing her own. Nora responds that they have seared and sliced every inch of her body and she has nothing else to say. Roman asks if she cares about Eric and Bill if not herself. Nora says they will be killed whatever she does. Roman asks if he should kill them now and pulls out his phone, showing his application to activate the iStakes. Nora looks terrified and asks how she can trust in their safety if she reveals who the Sanguinista's leader is. Salome bites her wrist and smears blood in a cross on both her chest and Nora's. Salome offers her most solemn vow that if Nora tells them who the leader is then Eric and Bill's lives will be spared, as well as her own. As Salome cradles her, a sobbing Nora reveals the second Sanguinista to be fellow-chancellor, Alexander Drew.
Roman meets with his chancellors and shows them a stake made from the Judas Tree, tipped with the thirty pieces of melted silver that belong to Judas. He considers it the holiest of holy weapons. Dieter attempts to discuss other matters. Roman says that he can't do that as he's having all of the Authority's member's quarters searched. Kibwe says that isn't necessary as all of them are loyal. Roman counters that they know that there are others who still refuse to accept mainstreaming and if one chancellor can be turned into a Sanguinista, then why not two. A pair of guards enter with a laptop and a note. Roman reads the note and Salome asks if it's true. Roman places the note down and confirms that there is another traitor. Roman then places the laptop in front of Alexander and plays a video of Alexander feeding on a human. Alexander tries to plead his case, but Roman reveals the video has been sent to all of the Authority's enemies. He stakes Alexander, covering himself in blood. Roman asserts that there will be no more rebellion or opposition to his cause and they will all fall in line. ("We’ll Meet Again")
Nora continues praying to god and Lilith in her cell as Nigel tells her about Alexander meeting the True Death at the hands of Roman. Nora then looks up at the security camera watching her and says that the Sanguinistas will rise up and that the warriors of Lilith are all coming for the Authority. Dieter has the UV lights turned on to burn both Nora and Nigel. Salome is also there watching, asking for an update on Bill and Eric. Dieter explains they've been about Bon Temps, visited Sookie's home, bought coffee and a box of cookies, then traveled to a parking facility in Shreveport. Salome then tells Dieter to let Bill and Eric know that they have until dawn to find Russell or their iStakes will be activated.
Salome then goes to see Roman in Lilith's supposed chambers. Roman stands before a vial of blood saying Chancellor Drew was a great man, or so he thought since it was he and Drew that drafted the vampire rights amendment. Roman then questions how Drew lost his way and how he failed to see it. Roman then tells Salome that some vampires believe the vial before him contains the blood of Lilith and that they're all misguided just as humans are misguided about the body of Jesus Christ. Salome then tells Roman about the Sanguinistas growing numbers and tells him to attempt to control the message and gain control of them. ("Let's Boot and Rally")
Salome is there when Roman is killed by Russell. ("Hopeless")
After freeing Russell and Nora from their containment, Salome sends for Eric and Bill to explain her actions, and to hopefully get them to join her. Salome admits to digging up Russell because he was the only vampire powerful enough to get rid of Roman, and because the Vampire Bible barred her from killing Roman herself. She says she, Nora and Russell are interested in sharing their power with everyone and want them to join them. Neither Eric or Bill are interested. Disappointed, Salome tells them of a ceremony taking place the following night, and gives them to option to attend.
At the ceremony, Salome leads the surviving Authority members in drinking Lilith's blood, and remains with the group as they rave through New Orleans and massacre a party of humans at a private karaoke bar. ("In the Beginning")
After returning form parading through the streets of New Orleans and feeding on the humans in the karaoke bar, Salome and the others profess their belief in Lilith.
Later that evening, she procures a female human and invites Bill to feel on her. Bill is reluctant at first, due to the fact that the woman has a daughter and Bill once had a daughter of his own. However, Bill eventually gives in and feeds on the human.
Salome gathers the members of the new Authority and takes her place at the head of the table in Roman's former chair. She leads the discussion with the Chancellors on how to stop mainstreaming vampires. Bill brings up the idea of destroying the five True Blood factories in the US to force the "mainstreamers" to feed on humans. Salome and the other Chancellors excitedly agree. ("Somebody That I Used to Know")
Salome is leading the chancellors in a prayer in Aramaic over a human male who is tied to a table. They then begin to feed on the man.
Later, Salome is in bed with Bill. She briefly dances for him and explains that she is now Lilith and that he is her Adam. While they are having sex, Bill bites her and hallucinates and sees Salome first as Sookie and then as Lilith.
Eric drugs Nora and joins with Molly and Bill to escape the authority headquarters. Bill betrays them and the elevator opens to reveal Salome waiting inside with armed guards. Her guards promptly arrest Eric. ("Everybody Wants to Rule the World")
Molly is brought in to the Authority sanctum and Salome gives her one last chance to repent. However, Molly says she won't because she knows that she will receive the true death regardless. Once Molly is staked Steve jumps up excitedly because he has never seen a vampire staked before. Salome tells him to calm down. She then leads the other chancellors to bless the blood of Molly. Once the execution is over Russell asks Steve to go with him to feed. Salome tells Russell that Steve has a TV appearance the next day and must prepare. Russell refuses and takes Steve away.
Later Salome is present with the other Chancellors when Eric presents himself and professes his belief in Lilith.
Salome leads all the Chancellors when all they are gathered formulating plans about spreading the word of Lilith, Russell interjects. He explains that walking in the day will make them more powerful. He presents a plan to capture and breed fairies and synthesize their blood. Salome refuses it saying fairies are an abomination and the sun is forbidden. He says he wants just one drop of fairy blood to "shove down her pie-hole." Salome then says she can put Russell back into the ground should she choose to. He then throws Salome across the room and asks what is preventing him from killing all of the other chancellors. Russell then walks on top of the table and, in his native central European accent, belittles the vampire religion and professes his desire to walk in the sun. He then quickly leaves the Authority chambers. Salome says nothing with a look of regret and fear on her face. ("Gone, Gone, Gone")
Salome walks into the main chambers of the Authority sanctum and asks Nora if something is wrong. She comforts Nora and quells her concerns about Russell's escape. They share a kiss and Salome leaves in preparation for General Cavanaugh's visit.
Upon Cavanaugh's arrival he is greeted by Salome. She, along with the other Chancellors explain to the General about the new Sanguinista movement. She is furious at Eric when he kills Cavanaugh after Cavanaugh threatens to expose their involvement in murdering humans. However, she allows Eric and Nora to go on a glamouring campaign to fix the PR problem.
Salome is wandering the hall of the Authority bunker when Lilith appears before her. The vampire goddess tells Salome that she is the chosen one to lead all other vampires. ("Sunset")
Salome watches intently as Bill reprimands the V-Feds for allowing shifters to infiltrate them. When she asks for Kibwe's whereabouts Bill confesses that he slew his fellow chancellor because he wanted to drink all of Lilith's blood and proclaimed himself the chosen one. He tells her that she is Lilith's chosen prophetess and that he will serve & protect her. Sam Merlotte later glimpses Bill and Salome in bed together while looking for a way out of the Authority. Salome goes to retrieve Lilith's blood and thanks the goddess for choosing her. As she is about to drink the blood the alarm goes off and Salome retreats to her chambers. There she is confronted by Bill, she tells him she knows he wants the blood for himself. She doesn't listen to any of Bill arguments and downs the whole vial, only to fall down in pain; Bill replaced Lilith's blood with silver laced blood. He tells Salome that she was too impatient and megalomaniacal for her own good. Salome tells Bill that Lilith was wise to choose him just before he stakes her. ("Save Yourself")
Powers and Abilities
Salome possesses the normal powers and weaknesses of a vampire such as superhuman strength, speed, healing, senses among others. Due to her age she is much stronger than younger vampires such as Eric and Nora but considerably weaker than her elders Macklyn Warlow, Russell Edgington and Godric. Due to her advanced age, Sunlight would almost instantly kill her. Even though she is one of the most powerful vampires in the world, Salomé was not a fighter, and never engaged in combat. Even after Russell slapped her across the room she didn't. Possibly because she knew she couldn't overpower him.
Weaknesses include: stake, fire,liquid sliver, and sunlight.
Behind the Scenes
The real-life Salomé was born into the Herodian dynasty around 14 AD, making her contemporary with Jesus of Nazareth. Her parents were the Jewish princess Herodias, and Herod II, son of king Herod the Great (who was also Herodias' grandfather). Prior to the death of Salomé's father in 33 AD, Herodia divorced him in order to marry his half-brother Herod Antipas, the ruler of the Palestinian provinces of Galilee and Perea.
Although Salomé isn't named in the Bible, she appears in the Gospels of Mark and Matthew, as "the daughter of Herodias". It is told that she, after pleasing her stepfather with her dancing, was promised to be granted anything she asked for. Upon consulting her mother, she responds by demanding "the head of John the Baptist in a dish", thus causing John's execution. According to the gospels, this was Herodias' revenge on John, who had been criticizing Agrippa for marrying his sister-in-law.
Salomé's name is given by Jewish historian Flavius Josephus, alongside further information regarding her family relations. According to Josephus, Salomé was married twice. Her first marriage was to Herodias' uncle, Philip, who died childless. Following Philip's death in 34 AD, Salomé was remarried to Aristobulus of Chalcis, the son of one of Herodias' brothers. In 55 AD Aristobulus was appointed king of Lesser Armenia, making Salomé queen. As such, Salomé's portrait was imprinted on coins, three of which is known to still exist.
With Aristobulus, Salomé had three sons: Herod, Agrippa, and Aristobulus. She is believed to have died at some point prior to 71 AD.
She mentions to Bill that some of her exploits in the bible are exaggerated. For example, she never actually danced for her uncle, instead she was delivered to his bed.
- Salome was one of the few main antagonist that didn't want anything to do with Sookie. However, she did have a strong detest for fairy kind.
- Salome is the second main antagonist not to be featured in the premiere episode of their prospective season.
- Salome does not psychically appear in "Who Are You, Really?", however, her bloody remains are seen in the beginning of the episode.
- Salome appears to be loosely based on the characters Salome and Mickey from the fifth novel in the Sookie Stackhouse book series.
- It is possible that Salome was one of the Authority members seen in Season 3.
- Salome was the first main antagonist not to encounter Sookie Stackhouse or ever go to Bon Temps, Louisiana.
- Salome was present during the episode "Evil is Going On" but was not seen.
- Her name is pronounced Sal-Uh-May.
|Season five appearances|
|"Turn! Turn! Turn!"||"Authority Always Wins"||"Whatever I Am, You Made Me"||"We’ll Meet Again"|
|"Let's Boot and Rally"||"Hopeless"||"In the Beginning"||"Somebody That I Used to Know"|
|"Everybody Wants to Rule the World"||"Gone, Gone, Gone"||"Sunset"||"Save Yourself"|
|Season six appearances|
|"Who Are You, Really?"||"The Sun"||"You're No Good"||"At Last"|
|"F**k the Pain Away"||"Don't You Feel Me"||"In the Evening"||"Dead Meat"|