Shapeshifters are supernaturals with the ability to transform into any animal they chose to.
A shapeshifter can copy another animal's body and morph into an exact copy of that animal. The animal does not have to be a similar size to the shifter.
However, a basic shifter can not shift into another human as they are too complex to copy. To earn the ability to shift into a human, a shifter must kill a fellow shifter family member, by accident or by choice. This turns them into a Skinwalker, capable of turning into any animal on earth (including humans). Shapeshifters also have a "go to" shift, which is a shift they find easy to copy, and the animal that they usually shift into.
The shapeshifter will have this animal around where they live, making it easier for them to shift quickly into this animal. It is unknown if the shapeshifter chooses this animal or if it is chosen for them. It also can be said that when a shapeshifter chooses a "go-to" shift animal (the animal they most often shift into) they inherit some animal traits. For example, Sam apparently has a keen sense of smell like a dog because he was able to remember the scent of an ex-girlfriend of his on Rene's clothes, which would have been impossible for a human to smell (though other shifters have also exhibited a heightened sense of smell).
When there is a full moon in the sky at night, shapeshifters are driven to shift into their animal for the entire duration of the full moon. For example, a young Sam Merlotte was seen shaking and looked ill when he had to change for the first time under a full moon and was driven to shift the very moment he stepped out of the house.
Shapeshifters can't retain their clothing when they change, so when they change back into a human, they will be completely naked.
Known Shifters Edit
- Daphne Landry - Pig (deceased)
- Emory Broome - Horse (deceased)
- Luna Garza - Bat (also Skinwalker) (deceased)
- Melinda Mickens - Mastiff (deceased)
- Sam Merlotte - Collie
- Suzanne McKittrick - Horse (deceased)
- Tommy Mickens - Pit Bull (also Skinwalker) (deceased)
- Unnamed female shapeshifter - Raccoon
- Though shapeshifters in the True Blood series are considered to be superhumans with the ability to change form into any animal they choose exclusively, their counterparts in others supernatural/sci-fi dramas are seen to posses the ability to transform or change shape into basically anything; living or non-living, hence the name. Due to the fact that they only change shape into animals, an appropriate name would probably do the ability more justice.
- Skinwalkers are considered evil, because of their murderous act of betrayal. By killing a shapeshifting member of their own family they're no longer bound by the laws of basic shapeshifting (into "lower level animals" only). This opinion is debatable however. In Luna Garza's case, she didn't knowingly cause the death of her mother. Therefore this cannot be considered an act of murder nor betrayal. Skinwalking power is gained as a result an action rather than the intent of the heart.