Pam

played by Kristin Bauer

Pam Swynford de Beaufort - progeny of Eric - is fierce, direct...

Character Bio

Pam Swynford de Beaufort -- progeny of Eric -- is fierce, direct, and loyal. She's been a vampire for more than 100 years and, up until recently, cared only about two things: herself and her maker. To her surprise, her progeny Tara Thornton has managed to find a place in her cold, dead heart as well.

Bio

American film and television actress Kristin Bauer, who has been in the business since her early 20s, is most known for her role as Pam, the vampire co-owner of Bon Temps' Fangtasia bar, in 'True Blood.' Born and raised in Racine County, Wisconsin, Kristin had an idyllic childhood centered around nature and animals. In junior high, she became interested in the arts, specifically drawing. Being done with academics, after graduation she compiled a portfolio and applied to fine arts school in St. Louis, Boston and New York, of which she attended all three. In 1993, Bauer decided to pursue a career in acting and moved to Los Angeles, California.

While juggling her various odd jobs, she was asked to become part of a movie which earned her more in a day than she was getting in a month. She still continued drawing and painting while she began appearing on television and in film during the mid-'90s, making her small screen debut in a 1994 episode of 'L.A. Law.' Her first major television break came the following year when she was hired to portray flight attendant Maggie Reynolds on the FOX comedy 'The Crew,' which lasted for one season.

In 1996, Kristin appeared in one of her most memorable guest roles as "Man Hands" Gillian, Jerry's girlfriend, on Seinfeld. Throughout the years, she has played a few other series regular characters including the Geneva Renault, the buxom secretary of a high-tech security agency, on the short-lived action drama 'Total Security,' Candy Cooper in the CBS family drama 'That's Life,' and the sexy, softball "porn mom" on the NBC comedy 'Hidden Hills.' In 2008, Alan Ball tapped her to co-manage the vampire bar Fangtasia with formidable Viking Eric Northman (Alexander Skarsgard) on HBO's original drama 'True Blood.'

Today she lives in Los Angeles with her musician husband Abri van Straten and two rescued dogs. She splits her time between shooting, painting and trying to bring light to things that should not be happening. She works with IFAW, The Amanda Foundation and other charities. Nature and animals are her greatest passion as they "Have always given selflessly to me, so much more than I ever could have dreamed or given back. Mother nature is the greatest, most magical artist I have ever seen."

Interview with Kristin Bauer van Straten

HBO

This episode shows a very different side of Pam's relationship with Eric. Who knew that he was such a great dad?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

It's really interesting because when we started out filming, it wasn't clear whether they were friends or romantic... But it's become very clear this season that it's a paternal relationship, and he's very much Pam's father. What was so interesting to me about this episode was that I had no idea Pam would have an Achilles' Heel or a weakness. But everybody needs one person, so this is Pam's one person. And also, she really believes that Eric is a great maker - he's cool, tough, funny... He appreciates disobedience and they really have a partnership.

HBO

He's better in some ways than Bill is with Jessica...

Kristin Bauer van Straten

That's definitely what Pam thinks. To have a reluctant maker is the worst because he's not going to teach you anything. Bill is shackled in guilt for even having created Jessica, but Eric? There's no apology or guilt. Just love of being a vampire and everything that entails. And that's really fun to play.

HBO

Do you have any insight into Pam and Eric's history together?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

The Season 2 Blu-ray was really where I found out a lot of it. She was made 100 years ago, and there were lines in the Blu-ray about how she was stuck in a very small world with small men and endless limitations for women. And she was looking at the life that she was being raised for and thought, "Ecch." She was pretty secretively promiscuous, and there was a line in there like, "I met Eric, and my world split apart. And Eric likes to joke, so did my legs." So, in my imagination, she sought Eric out and pursued being a vampire and never looked back.

HBO

Everyone is always debating which guy Sookie will end up with - do you think Pam has a shot with her?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

Oh God, I'd love to see her try! With the endless torture that Sookie's been suffering at the hands of men, you'd think she'd at least entertain the possibility. Two women who understand each other, who could go shopping together for eternity? Sounds kind of awesome.

Bill is shackled in guilt for even having created Jessica, but Eric? There's no apology or guilt. Just love of being a vampire and everything that entails. And that's really fun to play.
HBO

You've been on the show since the beginning - what's it like to see a crop of new characters arrive each season and then watch so many of them die off?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

Dude, they're dropping like flies. Every table read where two or three go, there's sort of a hush over the room. I'm very happy that Pam is in all the books - because this is such a great job - so I hope she'll get to stick around. But as far as what's going to happen in a new season, we all sort of gossip, like, "Well I heard..."

HBO

Have you had any close friends who've been staked or dismembered along the way?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

Yeah! Bill's maker - Mariana Klaveno - we're friends. Last night we went to see Shakespeare in the Park together. I already miss seeing her around, but luckily I see her off the set. And Michelle Forbes [who played Maryann in Season 2], we had a 'True Blood' ladies party at her house a couple weeks ago. She was wonderful to have around.

HBO

So the stakes for Pam and Eric keep getting higher - what will Pam be facing in these final episodes?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

We saw Pam's integrity and loyalty tested with the Magister. Then we find out where her heart - and her vulnerability - lies, which is with Eric. And then in the future episodes, her mettle is tested again in a new way, and we'll see if her physical strength can match the mental strength she's already shown.

HBO

She's really become a fan favorite. What is it about Pam that appeals to people so much?

Kristin Bauer van Straten

It's so nice to know that Pam's getting a fan following. She's just so fun, and maybe all of us would like to be a little more like her...I'm always censoring, trying to find the kind way to say something - I'm from Wisconsin so I'm fairly polite - but Pam has none of these restraints. She loves shopping, she loves clothing, she's straightforward, she's sarcastic, she's unapologetic - it just feels like she's being who she is. Just for a day even, wouldn't you love to try that?