S3E6: Tara is killing vampires and saving Sookie’s ass! True Blood certainly deserves a round of applause for what they’ve done with Tara this season, since I’ve gone from hoping that they could find a way to write her out of the show slightly more charitable than dropping a piano on her head, to finding her one of the most compelling parts of the show. It’s partially Franklin, who is still adorably crazy this week, (especially when he gets all pouty when Tara doesn’t notice that he shaved) but a lot of it is Tara herself, who orchestrates a successful jailbreak from Russell’s plantation of disturbing sex. As soon as Sookie got captured I began making a list of potential rescuers, but Tara was right at the bottom, below “Russell gives up his life of crime and joins the clergy.” Sure, Tara drank Franklin’s blood, so he now knows how to find her all the time, but I don’t know if Tara ever knew about that. And while I doubt that smashing his head in with a mace actually killed Franklin, I can’t blame her for assuming it would. Generally, when people’s heads are reduced to something resembling salsa, all other immortality rules go out the window. So kudos to Tara, for being way smarter and tougher than I gave her credit for.
Sam’s plot also took an unexpected turn for the better this week, culminating in Sam finally figuring out how absolutely terrible his parents are. Joe Lee’s been using Tommy, and before him, his mother, as contestants in dogfighting rings. Which seems like a pretty unimaginative use of their powers, they could’ve set up a “come see a unicorn” sideshow or something, but I guess that option was turned down because it might require Joe Lee to actually do some work. Tommy continues to be surprisingly sympathetic, in light of how awful his parents are, and the show has successfully gotten me to the point where I don’t want him to get killed by a pit bull. Congratulations, writers, it’s more than you managed to do for Eggs.
Jason’s relationship with Crystal continued this week, and continued to be inexplicably intense. Their storyline has gone from 0 to Romeo and Juliet in the space of two episodes, and it feels rushed. It makes sense for Jason to fall head over heels for a girl, especially one he can’t have, but its hard to care about Crystal when we met her about 15 minutes ago. Also unlucky in love this week as Lafayette, who finally got to first base with Jesus only to get rejected after being exposed as a drug dealer. I can understand why Jesus wouldn’t want to date a drug dealer, but dumping someone due to his career seems remarkably quaint on this show. Lafayette also gets his car trashed by Crystal’s hick drug dealer friends, who are admirably tenacious but deeply stupid. If, the last time I went to beat up a guy I got attacked by a flying 6-foot-tall vampire, I’d call it a loss and start looking for a new person to bully.
And speaking of 6-foot-tall flying vampires, Eric continued his quest for revenge this week. Unfortunately, since its still in its beginning stages, there was less stabbing and more creepy smiling and awkward touching. I still think that Eric’s “murdered viking family that we never mentioned and happen to have been killed by his next door neighbor” thing is kind of tacked on, but it leads to more Russell and Talbot, which is fine by me. Talbot continues to be fun, he out-shrieks Sookie, gets in a fight with Russell, and spends the rest of the episode watching old romantic movies and eating a pint blood gelato straight from the carton. And Russell gets the plot moving; he spends most of the episode explaining why he wants to get rid of humans (turns out that he’s a conservationist, kind of) and proposing to an increasingly unhinged Sophie-Ann. The only downside is that there’s still a distressing lack of Pam-saving going on (and Eric’s tight blue sweater seems to have gotten stained), but Sophie-Ann finally gets a much-deserved ass-kicking.
It looks like all the progress Bill made in the past few weeks is out the window. The episode started out well, Bill staked a guy and almost had Russell before he got shaken off like a floppy-haired mosquito, and it was all pretty impressive. Unfortunately, he then got to spend the rest of the episode in the Anne Rice memorial melodrama dungeon, where he and Lorena torture each other with pointy instruments and terrible dialogue. In the interest of saving time and my sanity, I’ll include some of Bill’s lines from the episode verbatim.
“He is the reason that a girl, who once marveled in the beauty of all life, now delights in pain and horror in every moment.”
“I welcome death, it is only then that I will be truly free of the disease that is you.”
“I wish I had known you before you were made. When your smile was full of happiness and life instead of insufferable whining and a whole lot of crazy.”
Well, that last one might be changed a little, but that’s the general gist of it. I understand that Bill is unfailingly melodramatic, but he had been so good lately about not sounding like a MySpace poet that I forgot how ridiculous he was.
Sookie made a backwards slide this week too, still proving to be completely obsessed with Bill and completely incapable of asking useful questions. Her scene with the King, where he’s trying to figure out what she is and she’s trying to figure out how many crowns he owns seemed like a deliberate statement “no, we’re not answering questions you care about, bugger off” from the writers. We get a cute moment where Sookie tries to impersonate Eric like she did Bill, but she’s mostly in the background in the episode, and mostly relegated to screaming and being clueless, as Russell perceptively notes. She even of fails at rescuing Bill, she gets blindsided by Lorena despite knowing that Lorena went off to torture him. You’d think that a mind reader would have a better handle on what is going on, even if she can’t read vampires. Sookie has been really good lately at taking charge, working well with Alcide and getting things done, and I hope that doesn’t stop now that Bill is back. We’ve seen him shirtless, and compared to Brawny, he’s really not worth it.
“I will tear out your ribcage and wear it as a hat.” Hey, look, a Buffy reference!
“You mean nothing to me, understand? Nothing!” Suuuure, Eric.
“Those are dumped out of a can into a pan and heated up. What do you think this is, Red Lobster?”
Franklin’s take on being a vampire: “No more pain, no more fear, no more rules.” Well, that is just plain wrong.
“Let’s turn this here dead man into a fucking raisin!”
“I will rip your head off and throw it in the pool. And I will have fun doing it.”
The entire conversation between Cooter and Debbie was gold.
“I’d do anything for you.” “Will you take me to forever 21 and buy me anything I want?”