In its penultimate episode, True Blood is content to set up its own fall for the finale.
By its penultimate episode, True Blood has mostly run out of story to tell. There’s the lingering question of what will happen with Sarah and the Hep V cure, which is still largely pushed to the background. There’s also the question of who will die by finale’s end (most likely arbitrarily). True Blood remains focused on Bill, the ultimate time suck, which makes one wonder if or how Stephen Moyer has so much pull (is it his involvement in developing the potential Broadway adaptation?).
The question of the Hep V cure is pushed to the background, so now there’s just the question of who will die by finale’s end
Bill refuses the cure because he thinks meeting the true death will help save her from herself. The fact that Bill, and eventually Eric, consider this some form of romantic, even selfless, gesture is telling and incredibly paternalistic. First, Bill doesn’t actually need to die; he could simply move away, if only for the remainder of Sookie’s life. Second, Bill isn’t Sookie’s only romantic connection to the vampire realm – there’s still something between her and Eric. Even when she was done with Bill and Eric, Sookie still shacked up with a werewolf, so she has an inclination for the supernatural that extends well beyond Bill. Third, it’s silly that Bill (and Eric) think Sookie could actually lead a normal, human life at this point. Aside from being a far halfling whose blood is like a magnet for vampires, she’s also a telepath. Everyone (including the writers) seems to forget that her telepathy was keeping her from dating or otherwise leading a normal life. So no, Bill can’t save Sookie from herself and it’s insulting that he would presume otherwise.
Sam just up and left with Nicole without telling anyone. He left a note for Sookie, so luckily his trailer was the first stop she and Jessica made after leaving Fangtasia (which doesn’t make any sense other than pure necessity). Sam moved to Chicago and, after the baby is born, wants Sookie to visit because Chicago is just a stone’s throw (note: Chicago is in no way “just a stone’s throw” from Bon Temps – apparently Sam sucks at geography).
The writers aren’t 100% sociopaths so Jessica came clean to Hoyt about their past. He was surprisingly OK with the whole “sorry I cheated on you with your best friend” thing regarding Jessica, but still punched Jason when he showed up after Bridget called him. The punch made sense from a comedic perspective (who doesn’t like a good pratfall?), but it’s just sloppy and convenient to have a single character have dramatically different reactions to the same story. It’s made even more weird by Hoyt and Jessica’s eventual makeup(?) sex being overdubbed by Jason explaining how Hoyt and Jessica are a perfect, One True Pair to Bridget.
The sloppy, contrived ending offers a cheap ploy for symmetry with the first episode, but that’s what True Blood has become
As if that awkwardness didn’t already border on self-parody, Jason and Bridget initiate a friendship in which she decides to teach him how to spend time with a woman without having sex with her. Jason has always been the Bon Temps sex idiot, a well-meaning but dim guy whose sex appeal has always gotten in the way of his own better intentions. Setting Jason up for a romantic happy ending over the course of a two episode arc is yet another way True Blood is going for unearned character development.
A high point of the episode (a dubious distinction) was Arlene comforting Sookie in the bar. The Arlene/Sookie friendship has been one of the few genuine relationships this season, even when it didn’t make much sense given the situation or their past. Again, this is largely due to Carrie Preston’s innate charm, and hopefully she moves on to something better.
Gus Jr found out that Sookie probably knows about Sarah/the cure, so he and his Yakuza henchmen hold Pam hostage to confirm. It’s a rather preposterous situation, given Eric’s age and general cunning, but it mostly serves to put Sookie in danger for the series finale. It’s sloppy and overly contrived, but so was most of this season. It’s a cheap ploy for symmetry with the first episode, but that’s what True Blood has become.
- If Pam dies, True Blood will be far beyond redemption.
- Ginger finally got some action from Eric. Ginger is the best.
- Lafayette and James are apparently a couple now, which presumably happened offscreen, but would’ve been more interesting than anything involving Lettie Mae. James and Jessica also had a good scene in which she admitted that she wasn’t what he deserved. So there’s that.
Read more: Last week’s True Blood recap
All images: HBO