It’s been a long time coming - and a few miscellaneous human lives sacrificed — to get Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare) back to his original glory, but he’s back and in full effect. Just last week, we left him with his hand wrapped around a stake piercing Roman’s (Chris Meloni) heart. But his 3,000 years and menacing manner shouldn’t fool you. Russell is still a full-fledged character with goals and feelings — even if some of those feelings involve getting sexually aroused by feeding on humans - just ask O’Hare, who took time out of his rehearsal schedule for Sondheim in the Park’s Into the Woods in which he plays opposite “the salty little thing” Amy Adams, to talk True Blood with Hollywood.com.
“He just kind of wants to be left alone,” reasons O’Hare. He says his character isn’t just a blanket villain — there’s depth there. And as we witnessed last week, Russell isn’t about to get involved in this vampire bi-partisan battle. He’s just out for blood and lust - you know, the usual “funtime” activities. “Russell will stick around until he’s not having fun, and then he’ll split,” O’Hare adds.
But while he’s having fun, will he find time to mend his broken heart? Back in Season 3, Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) killed Russell’s live-in boyfriend and lovable character Talbot, but it’s been over a year, it’s time for the oldest vampire around to let go and move on. And it truly is. “We shot a flirtation,” says O’Hare. “By episode seven or eight you’ll see. It’s an affair, and we all know the character.” Could it be the former reverend, current vampire PR wiz Steve Newland (Michael McMillian) that manages to tame Russell’s wild heart in the wake of Jason’s (Ryan Kwanten)? O’Hare wouldn’t say, but we’ve got a hunch we could be on the right path.
He was a little more forthcoming regarding Russell’s relationship with Eric. “He and Eric have always had an odd relationship,” says O’Hare. And it seems their ideas are more in line than Eric might like to admit. During “Hopeless” Eric tells Roman he’s not on his side or the side of the Sanguinistas, he’s a “pacifist.” Likewise, Russell tells Roman that he thinks both sides of the Mainstream/Sanguista divide are hypocrites - he just drinks blood because he loves it. After the Authority has but Eric through the ringer, and he’s witnessed so much double-crossing between the two sides - including whoever facilitated Russell’s Houdini act - perhaps their mutual hate of the faux-righteous battle will serve as some middle ground.
And while the potential thawing of Eric’s icy view towards Russell is an interesting thought, the fate of Roman is a little more pressing. At the end of “Hopeless” Russell’s iStake malfunctions and he overtakes Roman in order to shove a stake in his heart, but Roman doesn’t explode the way every other staked vampire has in the history of this show - he simply turns grey. Could that mean he makes it?
Well, that’s not so clear. “Roman was so ancient and so powerful,” explains O’Hare. But we weren’t the only ones confused upon first seeing the scene. “I remember reading it and going ‘So what’s the deal? Is he dead? I stake him? But, really, you’ll just have to wait until Sunday,” he teases. Either way, Roman’s could-be demise is unprecedented on the series.
O’Hare left us with that looming question before delving back into New York rehearsals, the tease has already done its worst. Sunday’s answer to the Roman cliffhanger and Russell’s next big move cannot come soon enough.
True Blood airs Sunday night at 9 PM ET on HBO and Into The Woods starts July 23 in New York’s Central Park.
Follow Kelsea on Twitter @KelseaStahler.
True Blood Recap: Russell Edgington Forever
True Blood Recap: Step Right Up For the Surplus of Supernaturals
Kristen Bauer van Straten Teases Pam’s Future with Eric and Tara — EXCLUSIVE
Russell Edgington Returns
The TV stars are the brains behind Lucid, a new graphic novel, based around a set of fantasy characters.
Quinto's Before The Door Pictures company will oversee the production of the comic, which will be published by Archaia Comics. McMillian will write the book.
Teenage artist Anna Wieszczyk has been handed illustration duties.
McMillian says, "It's a rock 'n' roll book, and I think, for me, part of it is taking these elements of magic and this concept of fantasy, which I think a lot of times gets a bad rap... and really make it fun and sexy and cool and contemporary.
The first issue is due to be released in August (10).
The National Guard is called out for a routine desert exercise in Yuma Flats where nuclear experiments once took place. The team of young and often naïve recruits set out in the heat and they all have nicknames such as Crank (Jacob Vargas) Stump (Ben Crowley) Spitter (Eric Edelstein) Mickey (Reshad Strik)—and the resident hunk Napoleon (Michael McMillian). There are some chick soldiers too including Amber (Jessica Stroup) and Missy (Daniella Alonso). When they run into traps among the rocks and rattlesnakes they find the dregs of humanity who have been left there after the nuclear experiments. The mutant family living in the buildings left standing from the testing as well as the caves under the ground also have their own share of nicknames: Hades (Michael Bailey Smith) Stabber (Tyrell Kemlo) Letch (Jason Oettle) Grabber (Gaspar Szabo) and Chameleon (Derek Mears). Meanwhile roughshod Sgt. Millstone (Flex Alexander) leads the battle against them. Sometimes the actors in these horror flicks are only judged by how well they scream and die—and a few of these soldiers have some good lungs. The problem is the vain attempts the film makes in trying to create characters the audience care about because frankly we don't no matter how many glimpses of life at home or pictures saved on the cell phone. The first victim in the beginning seems a sympathetic captive but is subjected to a brutal rape and then a quick and graphic decapitation which is highly unnecessary. The monster family is a bit more evil and even somewhat familiar (Michael Bailey Smith was in last year's The Hills Have Eyes). Images of dead soldiers even though portrayed in an unrealistic way may seem too real with the recent news of the day and the family-in-peril anxiety of the first classic is lost in this sequel. Horror guru Wes Craven always said he hated the 1985 sequel he did to his 1977 classic which continued on with the Carter family and their mutant woes so this time—co-writing with his son Jonathan Craven—he went a different way. Unfortunately it still doesn’t work as well. Hills Have Eyes 2 lacks the creativity French director Alexandre Aja instilled in last year’s scare fest which truly highlighted how the 1950s nuclear testing in the desert could have created these mutant people. This time we have director Martin Weisz who is known more for his music videos. Maybe that's why the scenes come across too quick too choppy and too in your face. The requisite amount of gore is going to keep some sickos in the audience happy but it's not the creative stuff we've seen before from this team.
September 16, 2005 5:05am EST
The socially inept Elizabeth Masterson (Reese Witherspoon) is a workaholic doctor who never leaves the hospital. Her married sister Abby (Dina Waters) tries in vain to set up with a good man to no avail. But fate is about to intervene. On her way home from a long shift Elizabeth gets into a head-on collision with a semi-truck and suddenly the lines between life and death are blurred. Jumping forward we meet David Abbott (Mark Ruffalo) a guy wallowing in self-pity from the death of his wife two years earlier who to find some solitude moves into a fabulous furnished apartment. What he doesn't know is the previous tenant hasn't left not really. That's right it was Elizabeth's apartment and for whatever reason (seriously they don't entirely explain it) Elizabeth--or her spirit I guess--hasn't grasped the idea that she is in well limbo. Only David can see her of course as she yells at him for leaving sweat rings on the coffee table but Elizabeth eventually grows on him. She elicits his help in finding out what happened to her and with a little help from the eccentric Darryl (Jon Heder) a bookstore employee who has the gift for sensing spirits David and Elizabeth find that heaven and earth are not really that far apart.
As our romantic pair Witherspoon and Ruffalo do an adequate job adhering to the staid romantic comedy formula. Witherspoon is one of the more consistent comedic actresses these days and has the sweet but controlling ingénue routine down to a science. But it may be time for her to take a break from the standard fare and head back to the indies getting down and dirty like she did in Election. Ruffalo does a pretty impressive job for his second time as the romantic lead. As he did with 13 Going on 30 Ruffalo at least tries to add some quirky twists to a boring character. Still he should also probably stick to showcasing his dramatic acting talent in cool indies much like he did in You Can Count on Me. It's Heaven's side characters who have all the fun. Waters (The Haunted Mansion) does a nice turn as the caring sister who's own hectic life as a mother of two rambunctious kids always seems to interfere with what she's doing. Donal Logue (TV's Grounded For Life) as David's therapist best friend too has a fun time yuking it up. But the real standout in an otherwise dull universe is Napoleon Dynamite himself Jon Heder in his second feature film. He's still a geek but at least this time he's a mystical one who knows a thing or two about wandering spirits. Of course he also gets the best lines: "I'm 99.9 percent parched here. I need a cola." I'm going to use that one from now on.
As the director of the satirical Mean Girls and the cutesy Freaky Friday Mark Waters may be out of his element with an out and out romantic comedy. The initial idea about a women whose stuck in the spirit world until she finds the true love she never sought after in life is somewhat intriguing. But rather than play with that the film just ends up your standard romantic comedy while also stealing from other films such as Ghost and The Sixth Sense. Just Like Heaven also has some serious logistical flaws. For example seeing how Elizabeth is supposed to be a ghost--that she can't touch anything tangible and can walk through walls tables and just about anything else--she is later seen laying on top of a table. It doesn't make sense as to how she can walk through it at one moment and be on it the next. And the fact you are paying attention to these inconsistencies means you just aren't caring that much about the rest of the film.