True Blood Finale: Thank You, A Reflection

It was oddly fitting to have both a wedding and a Thanksgiving dinner in the final episode of True Blood. The citizens of Bon Temps have always celebrated family and friendships, and this episode encapsulated all of this.

The wedding reunited best friends Hoyt and Jason, past lovers Sookie and Bill, family members Bill and Andy, and it brought everyone involved closer together. Jessica is Bill’s vampire daughter, Andy is a descendant of the Bellefleur-Compton bloodline, Arlene married into the Bellefleur family; now they are all together under one roof…and Andy is marrying Jessica even though she killed his other faery daughters. This scene packed an emotional, and symbolic, wallop.

At the end of the episode, pregnant Sookie is helping to prepare a huge feast for Thanksgiving. It’s an outdoor meal with Sam and Arlene’s kids at the kid table and a larger table for the adults. Looking around the table you see how much this group cares about each other. Here you have people from all walks of life, human and vampire, current and former lovers, gay and straight…and the only thing that matters is that they love each other.

Does it matter who the mystery man is who got Sookie pregnant? My take-no, it doesn’t. There was no point in revealing his identity in the brief final moments of the show. We can safely assume he was human, and the main point is that she was happy. Everyone was happy.

I am going to miss the hell out of True Blood. Thank you for the memories….

True Blood Series Finale Recap, S7E10: Thank You

True Blood Season 7, Episode 10: Thank You

Airdate:  August 24, 2014

Summary by: Sarabeth Pollock

The day has arrived.  It’s time to say goodbye to True Blood after seven lovely seasons.  I can’t believe the series finale is upon us.  It seems like a horrible dream, really.  My summertime once-guilty-pleasure-turned-television-sensation-that-everyone-watches is gone. 

I will truly miss this show that has come to mean so much to so many.    My heartfelt thanks go out to the cast and crew of True Blood.  Thank you for making my Sundays amazing for the past seven summers.

And now, on to the recap!

Bill goes inside Sookie’s house, and he looks around the room and comments that the living room is where he first called upon her.  She doesn’t think nostalgia belongs with suicidal thoughts.  He says the disease is making him feel more human than when he was human.  When he stopped in the cemetery he saw his gravestone and realized that he should be with his human family.  The gravestone as it stands now is a lie.  If he stays with Sookie, then he’d be denying her a real life.  He has seen her around children, how she lights up around them.  Bill wants Sookie to have a chance at children and grandchildren, and that’s not possible for her to have that life if she is with him.  Sookie thinks that Bill should just break up with her, since she can’t seem to get away from him.  He loves her too much to do that.  He asks her to perform the “ultimate kindness” on him, which would kill him and rid her of the line of vampire suitors who will be coming after her when he dies.  If she does this, it will set them both free.  Sookie thinks Bill needs to leave, and she threatens to rescind his invitation.  He asks her to think about it, and she says she will.  Bill takes one final look at Sookie in the room and leaves.

Cue the credits for the last time.  Thank you, too, Jace Everett.

The Yakuza are driving fast in their fast cars.  Mr. Gus is upstairs drinking.  Eric is in the basement staring at Sarah Newlin, who is chained up.  Eric wants to release Sarah.  He tells Pam that they’re going to kill Mr. Gus and steal New Blood from him.  Eric has Pam feed Sarah her blood so they can always find her when she’s frightened.  They let her go, but Eric reminds her that everywhere she goes, everyone wants her dead.  And as much as Eric and Pam hate her, they’re going to be her best friends. 

Sarah escapes, and Mr. Gus demands to know how Eric could let her escape.  Pam and Eric take out the guards before they can pull their guns on them.  Mr. Gus retreats through the tunnel.  Pam wants to chase him, but Eric has a gas can and a lighter.  “Humans are slow,” he says.  After Mr. Gus blows up, Eric races to Sookie’s house, where the Yakuza are about to attack her.  Sookie gets out of bed, dressed in a night shirt, and goes to the window.  Eric has already stolen their car, though, and he speeds away, covered in blood.

Meanwhile, Sarah is eating leftover carnival food in a carousel.  Pam finds her.  Sarah tells Pam that she’s there because that’s where Eric turned Willa into a vampire.  She read it in Bill’s book.  Sarah asks Pam if she’s a horrible person, which Pam can’t argue with.  She thinks she’d make a great vampire, but Pam doesn’t think so.  Sarah has spent so much time working behind powerful men but perhaps she was supposed to be behind a powerful woman all along.  A vampire lesbian, Pam scoffs.  When Sarah mentions Tara, Pam attacks her.  She tells Sarah she’d never let her go down on her for a billion dollars, but she does want her blood.  So she takes it.

Bill sees that Jessica is home, and that Hoyt is with her.  Hoyt is happy to see Bill and asks if he got the blood from him.  Jessica tells Bill that she doesn’t want him to die, but she’ll be ok if he does die.  Bill hugs her and says it’s what he needed to hear.  Bill asks if Hoyt’s decision to stay is because of Jessica, and Hoyt says absolutely yet.  Bill wonders if Hoyt will one day ask Jessica to marry him, and while Jessica responds with shock, Hoyt says yes.  Jessica pulls Bill away and tells him that she has already dreamed of a wedding, but not like this.  Bill explains that love can happen in an instant.  He never got to give his mortal daughter away, so this is his chance to make up for that.  He has no idea how much time he has left, but he wanted to be sure she was “spoken for” before he dies.  They hug.  She asks Bill to wait a moment while she and Hoyt talk.  She wants to ask Hoyt if he will marry her today.

Sookie is sitting in the dining room in her pajamas.  She looks out the window and sees herself as a child running through the rain with Tara.  Tara is trying to get away from the rain because of what it does to her hair.  We see Gran in the kitchen, telling the girls to call her when it’s raining, but it’s all a ploy to get hot chocolate.  When Gran goes into the laundry room, she hears Tara wondering when Jason is getting home.  Tara asks who she likes, but Sookie isn’t sure about boys, or marriage.  Gran stops her from thinking that way, telling her that she can do anything she wants to do.  She makes Tara promise that she’ll hold Sookie to that promise if Gran isn’t around.

Once Sookie is dressed, she heads to Jason’s house, where Brigette answers the door.  Jason is still sleeping.  Sookie wonders about Brigette, considering that she’s wearing his boxers, but she hears her thoughts and they didn’t sleep together.  Sookie uses coffee to wake her brother up, and once Jason is awake she tells him about Bill’s plan for her to use her ball of faery light.  She has given it a lot of thought, and Bill looks horrible, but she’s not sure that she wants to give everything up right now.  Jason can’t believe that Sookie is asking him advice.  He says he loves her.  Their phones ring.  Hoyt is calling Jason to ask if he will be his best man, while Jessica wants to know if Sookie has anything that will work as a wedding dress.  What on earth went on last night?

Later that day, the Stackhouse siblings leave Sookie’s house dressed for a wedding.  Bill is dressed in a fine suit, drinking a glass of blood and dressed for a wedding.  Arlene, Holly and Andy pull up, wondering why Jessica wants to be married so fast. Could she be pregnant?  Holly thinks baby vamps would be cute.  Bill calls Andy into his study.  Andy had heard Bill was sick but had no idea how bad it was.  Bill sits Andy down and tells him that Andy is his only living heir.  When he dies, the house and everything he owns goes to Andy.  Bill wants Andy to rent the house to Jessica and Hoyt.  “Copy that, Vampire Bill,” Andy says.  “Consider it done.” 

Jason finds Hoyt getting ready upstairs.  Hoyt wonders if he should call Brigette.  Jason says it’s a terrible idea.  Hoyt apologizes for Jason’s eye, and Jason apologizes for Hoyt’s tie, so he fixes it for him.  Besides, taking a shot in the eye is worth it to get his best friend back.  Hoyt recalls a movie about a man who has amnesia and wakes up with a new life.  Jason reminds him that they rented that movie together.  Jason says they have to live every day like they’re going to die.  Embrace everything.  “Let’s do this shit,” Jason says.

Arlene wanders through the mansion.  She finds Jessica’s room and knocks on the door.  Sookie says they need another minute, but when Arlene walks in, she says that Jessica is beautiful.  Sookie finds Bill downstairs and says that Jessica would like him to walk her down the aisle.  Of course he would.  He finds Jessica sitting on the steps looking beautiful in her cream-colored dress.  He says she looks beautiful. 

Bill and Jessica enter the living room where their friends and family have assembled.  Andy prepares to speak, but he asks Arlene to turn down the music.  “Oh shit, I forgot!” she exclaims.  Andy apologizes for his notes.  He begins the ceremony as Jessica and Hoyt stare lovingly into each other’s eyes.  Bill gives his vampire daughter away.  When he says the words, Jessica hugs him.  He goes to sit down next to Sookie, and suddenly Sookie can hear Bill’s thoughts for the first time ever.  She hears him think about how much he loves Sookie.  Andy continues that the state of Louisiana might not recognize their marriage, but he does.  They don’t have vows written down, and they don’t have rings, so they’re improvising.  As they exchange their vows, Bill prays for Sookie to choose this life for herself.  Jessica babbles through the vows and needs more tissue.  Jason, Holly and Arlene look on in pride.  Andy pronounces them husband and wife.  Everyone cheers.

Jason pulls his squad car up at his house.  Sookie reveals that she could hear Bill’s thoughts, and that he had said this disease was making him feel more human. She said he was thinking all the right things that you’d want to hear from someone who loves you.  Brigette comes out, and Sookie tells Jason that she’d approve if he slept with her on the way to the airport.  She likes Brigette, and the fact is, she isn’t Hoyt’s girl anymore.

Sookie arrives at the church.  She finds Reverend Daniels sitting in a pew.  She asks if it’s ok for her to come in.  He says he’s writing the week’s sermon.  She asks if he ever hears from God, but the good Reverend says he knows that Sookie is there to ask him advice.  Sookie says the world used to be a simpler place back before vampires and werewolves came out.  He says that Sookie is a telepath.  “And a faery,” she adds.  He smiles.  He knows how much she has done for the community.  She is questioning her role, and he says that God gave us brains to exercise free will.  His message hits home.  She starts to leave, then she gives him advice on his sermon.  “Help is on its way,” she says.

Sookie calls Bill and says that she’s made arrangements at the cemetery.  She’ll meet Bill there after sundown.  She dresses in black and leaves the cheery yellow house on her way to help Bill find peace.  As she walks through the cemetery she sees that a grave has been dug.  A coffin is at the bottom of the grave. 

Bill leaves his house and starts walking.  He announces himself, and she says that she’s been standing there for a while.  She wants to know why he has a coffin.  He explains that it was because it was easier for soldiers’ families if they have coffins.  She hugs him and says she doesn’t want to do this.  “It’s time,” he says.  They kiss.  Tears stream down Sookie’s face.  “Thank you,” Bill says.  He jumps down into the grave and lifts the lid.  Inside is a box.  It’s a photograph of Bill with his daughter, the one we saw him take in one of the visions.  Sookie cautions that he should get in before she loses her nerve.  Bill clutches the photograph and says he’s ready.  “Bill, I’ll never forget you,” she says.  Bill can’t say the same—he doesn’t know what happens next.

Sookie conjures the ball of light.  Bill lies down.  She stares at it as it pulses in her hand.  She says that she didn’t understand the gravity of what he was asking her to give up.  She said being a faery is a part of her, whether or not she likes it.  And so is Bill.  And he always will be.  But she can’t give it up for him.  She wants to know if he still wants to die.  “Please,” he says.  She breaks a shovel and tosses the stake into the hole, then she crawls after it.  She straddles him and asks if he’s sure. They kiss.  “I love you, Bill Compton,” she says.  “I love you, too,” he says. 

She positions the stake over his heart.  She hesitates, and so he helps her to stake him.  He explodes underneath her, and she sobs.  Sookie is covered in blood when she steps out of the coffin.  She closes the lid and sits down on it, crying harder.  She climbs out of the hole and starts covering the coffin with dirt using her bare hands.  When she leaves the cemetery, she walks away.

A year later…

Eric Northman is pitching his New Blood for a TV commercial.  He and his associate, Pam, have found a cure for Hep-V in the blood of Sarah Newlin.  They tell the story of how they found Sarah, and though she escaped, they were able to synthesize the few drops of blood they found into…New Blood!

Three years later…

Pam and Eric go public with New Blood at the New York Stock Exchange. 

The following Thanksgiving…

A turkey is being fried while a pregnant Sookie gets dinner ready.  Jason is prowling the floor with his three kids.  Poor Brigette looks exhausted.  That would be three kids in three years, if you’re counting.  Sam and Nicole show up with his baby girl and older daughter.

Eric and Pam rule over Fangtasia while they accept money from vamps who want to drink directly from Sarah, who is still tied up.  She’s haunted by the ghost of Steve Newlin.  It’s Thanksgiving, and Steve thinks that they should say what they’re thankful for.  He’s glad she’s losing her mind, so he can haunt her every day until she dies, and perhaps after that.  He wants to know what she’s thankful for. “Nothing,” she says.

The Bon Temps family is gathered around a huge dinner table.  Everybody is happy and healthy.  Andy.  Holly.  Wade and Adilyn. Arlene. Hoyt and Jessica. James and Lafayette.  Jason and Brigette.  And Sookie and…well, we don’t know who he is.  But she’s pregnant and happy.

I will probably think of something more fitting to say tomorrow.  But for now…thank you, True Blood.

Throwback Book Review: Anne Rice’s “The Wolf Gift”

I originally wrote this review for http://www.DarkMedia.com a few years ago.  I thought it would be fun to share it here on my blog as well. 🙂

The Wolf Gift

Genre: Adult, Fiction

Publisher: Alfred A. Knoph

Publication Date: February 14, 2012

Author: Anne Rice

Overall Review: 5/5-Excellent

Review by: Sarabeth Pollock


A Return….

In 1994 I stumbled across a mass market copy of Interview with the Vampire in a country store during a family vacation.  Though I was fourteen, I immediately fell in love with the lush prose and the vivid characters that came to life in the novel.  After the first few pages I was transported into a world where vampires came to life; the story was as consuming as the humidity of a hot New Orleans evening—which is to say inescapable.  I have been an Anne Rice fan ever since, becoming enmeshed with the stories of vampires, witches, ghosts, and even mummies.

2005 saw Rice’s departure from the supernatural with the publication of Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt.  Year later, through the miracle of Twitter (ironically, given the prevalence of social media in The Wolf Gift), I discovered that Anne Rice was returning to the world of the supernatural with a new book about werewolves, called The Wolf Gift.

I am pleased to tell you that Anne Rice has returned to the world of the supernatural with a thrilling tour de force!


The Story….

Reuben Golding is a youthful reporter for the San Francisco Observer, on assignment to write about an enchanting mansion situated on a cliff in Mendocino.  We meet the alluring owner of the house, Marchent Nideck, who looks to sell the house after the estate of her great uncle Felix Nideck has been settled.  Felix Nideck has at last been declared dead after his mysterious disappearance years earlier, and Marchent is eager to sell the house and return to her life abroad.  She hopes that Reuben’s article in the Observer can spark interest in the house and quickly attract a buyer.

Reuben is the youngest son born to a surgeon mother and college professor father.  His older brother is a priest and his girlfriend is a high-power, high-energy district attorney.  They all have nicknames for him that continually remind him of his youth: he is “Sunshine Boy” to his girlfriend and “Little Boy” to his brother Jim.  Reuben is an aspiring writer, and a dreamer, who would be content to buy the house, which he refers to as Nideck Point, even though he knows that his family (with exception of his father) would never approve of such a frivolous purchase.   

It isn’t long before Reuben convinces himself that he must buy Nideck Point, for he has fallen hopelessly in love with the house, and, unexpectedly, he has fallen in love with Marchent.   He follows Marchent like the proverbial kid in a candy store as she takes him from room to room, sharing her late great-uncle’s treasures with Reuben.  In the library they come across a massive portrait of six men hanging above the mantel.  They are dressed in safari khaki and they are in a jungle and they have interesting names like Margon and Sergei and Frank Vandover.  Margon, also known and Margon the Godless, was Felix Nideck’s closest friend as well as his mentor, and though these men were all incredibly close, Marchent has been unable to reach them after her great-uncle’s disappearance.

It isn’t long before the tranquility of Nideck Point is shattered in the middle of the night by an attack, at first at the hands of mortal men with jealousy and revenge on their minds, and then by…something else.  It is at that point that Reuben receives the Wolf Gift.


My Thoughts….

The most compelling aspect of this novel is that the story is oddly plausible.  Whereas Interview with the Vampire vacillated between past and present, The Wolf Gift is firmly rooted in the present, with all of the technology and media and ethical dilemmas that come with life in 2012.  Reuben, like most twenty-three year olds in the twenty-first century, is in love with his iPhone.  He uses it to chronicle his transformation from man to wolf.  Once reports of the mysterious “Man Wolf” start to circulate, people all over the world flock to social media sites to create fan pages and dedicate songs on You Tube to him.  Reuben uses his newfound powers and abilities to help people in need, and though one can raise scores of ethical issues about his methods, Reuben clearly acts with good intentions.  The Man Wolf, rather than be feared by the media-hungry public, becomes something of a hero to scores of people who believe that he is trying to do good in a world where it is easy to lose hope.

Another interesting aspect of the story is that Reuben shares his lupine dilemma with other people.  He confesses his secret to his brother Jim, and he confides in Laura, the woman who accepts both his human and wolfish selves with love and compassion.  This is a departure from other Anne Rice novels, where characters went to great lengths to conceal their true nature from the mortals around them.  (ASIDE:  Lestat’s quest to become a rock star in the 1980s could be interpreted as an attempt to reveal his true vampiric nature to ultimately allow him to live in the open, but even he conceded that mortals didn’t really believe he was a vampire.)   

One of the most refreshing aspects of Reuben Golding’s character is that he doesn’t hate himself or the creature he has become.  Once he understands the Wolf Gift, he cherishes it.  He embraces it and comes to see the wolf as part of his identity.  As an intellectual young man raised in a family that taught him to seek knowledge and ask questions, Reuben wants to understand what he has become so that he can use the gift to its full potential.  Of course he makes some mistakes along the way, but these mistakes make Reuben’s character all the more real, for he is a man stumbling through this transformation alone.

I enjoyed how Rice allows the reader to experience Reuben’s transformation with him.  Her imagery makes it easy to imagine what it must feel like to shed one’s human form and become a Man Wolf.  The novel moves quickly through his discoveries and his adventures as a werewolf, but it does get bogged down with mythology toward the end as the story races to its conclusion.  I’m not sure that this is detrimental to the story, however, as the mythology is essential in establishing and understanding the new world of werewolves, or Morphenkinder, that has been created.  Avid Anne Rice fans are well-versed in the history of her vampires and witches after eighteen books, so it is fair to say that this novel serves as an origin story and couldn’t be told without the mythology.

Anne Rice fans new and old will enjoy The Wolf Gift, and given the increasingly energized interest in werewolves thanks to shows like SyFy’s Being Human and films in The Twilight Saga, new readers will appreciate a fresh and modern take on werewolves.

True Blood Recap S7E9 Love is to Die

Bill tries to explain to Jessica and Sookie that he has accepted his fate.  Pam reminds everyone to keep it down while the Yakuza is upstairs.  Sookie tells Bill that if he chooses death he is giving up on both of them.  Bill settles on the True Death and Sookie slaps him.  Twice.  She’s on to a third time when Eric grabs her hand and stops her.  Eric tells Bill to leave, but before he does, Jessica asks Bill to release her.  He doesn’t just release her.  He makes an Emmy-worthy speech about righting the wrongs of making her in the first place.  Blood tears fall down her cheeks as he releases her, and then he turns and leaves.  Eric hugs Sookie and says he’s sorry.  Pam embraces a sobbing Jessica, but she tells her that she’s paying for the jacket if there is blood on it. 

Five minutes into the penultimate episode and Bill has chosen the True Death, and he’s released Jessica.  Wow.

Sookie and Jessica arrive back at Sam’s house via Alcide’s truck.  Jessica checks it out and declares it safe.  Inside, they find that Sam has packed up.  He left two envelopes on the table.  One is for Sookie.  As she reads it, we see Sam packing up with Nicole.  He’s convinced that he needs to be there for his child.  He’s going to Chicago, and he isn’t saying goodbye.  In fact, he wants Sookie to visit.  As they drive past Bellefleur’s Nicole acknowledges that he’s giving up on a lot.  But Sam doesn’t see it that way.

Next they head to Bellefleur’s, where Arlene is having a party.  Andy and Holly are there, with Lafayette and James and Jason.  Sookie announces that Sam is gone, and she asks to speak with Andy.  The other letter is for him, and she figures that he’d like to read it in private.  It isn’t a long letter—it’s Sam’s resignation as mayor.

James approaches Jessica and apologizes for the way things went down.  She tells him that she doesn’t know a lot about him, which is what Lafayette told her back at Sookie’s party.  She is sorry for never asking those questions, and she wants to know that he’s happy.  James says he is happy.  Jessica asks James to make sure Sookie gets home safely.  Then she leaves.

Hoyt is watching television while Brigette does dishes.  She is upset and wants to talk about the night before.  She feels he owes her an explanation about what he said about not having kids.  He says he just doesn’t know about having kids.  Brigette wants to know who the redhead was.  Hoyt says that he has never seen her before, but Brigette could see that she had been all doe-eyed with him.  She asks where he was all day, and at first Hoyt says he was with Jason, but then he admits that he’d been to see Jessica because he heard that Bill was dying.  They apologize to each other, and as he hugs Brigette there is a knock on the door.  It’s Jessica.  She has come to tell Hoyt that they knew each other.  She starts to explain everything and Brigette interrupts and says that she can’t listen to any of it.  She gives Hoyt an ultimatum that if he goes outside to listen to her then they are done.  Hoyt apologizes to Brigette and goes after Jessica.

Jessica tells Hoyt that Bill released her earlier, that there is a cure but he wouldn’t take it.  Hoyt wants to know why.  Jessica tells Hoyt that she doesn’t think that Bill understands how she feels.  She tells Hoyt that he was the first man she ever loved.  After all of the crap she’s been through tonight he was the only person she could think of to be with.  Hoyt tells her that he wants to hear their story.  He pulls her into his arms and hugs her.

Jason is at home when his phone rings.  It’s Brigette.  She asks Jason to come pick her up, since he’s the only person she knows in Bon Temps.  Brigette tells Jason that Jessica showed up.  That’s all Jason needs.  He’s on his way.

Big John has cooked up a huge feast.  Adilyn asks Sookie if she is going to join them for the big feast.  Arlene asks Adilyn if Sookie is ok.  When Adilyn says no, she goes after Sookie.  Sookie is happy that Arlene has Keith, who clearly makes her happy.  Sookie tells Arlene that Bill is dying and it’s her fault.  He’s going fast.  Sookie asks how Arlene has made it through so many heartaches.  Arlene knows that Sookie will get through it.  She wants Sookie to eat, and she ushers Sookie to the table.

There’s a knock at Bill’s door.  It’s Eric.  Eric comes inside and tells Bill that when he saw his family die he wanted to die.  Eric says that Hep-V attacks the spirit, and that he’s here for Sookie.  He wants Bill to see what he’s doing to Sookie.  Bill doesn’t think that Sookie would want them if not for the fact that she’s half-fae.  Bill recounts the dream that he had with Sookie rocking the baby.  He says that Sookie gave birth to death, that the baby was a black void.  He says that all they can do is offer her death, and after all he has done to her, she keeps coming back.  Bill asks Eric to bring Sookie so that he can explain it to her.  It’s the last favor that Bill will ever ask of him.  Eric pats his shoulder on his way out.  It’s a very tender parting.

Jason arrives at Hoyt’s, sirens blaring.  When he gets out, Hoyt belts him.  I guess Jessica told him what happened.  When he wakes up, Brigette is driving him to the hospital in the squad car.  She says he’s been out for five minutes, which makes him laugh.  She agrees to take him home.  But before they get there, Jason tells her openly that they won’t have sex.  Brigette seems very shocked to hear this, but I think that it was more for Jason than anything.

The Yacuza grab Sarah Newlin and take her upstairs.  Pam is waiting for her.  Sarah is screaming.  Pam tells her that she’s taking her back to being blonde.  Certainly not what Sarah was expecting.

Brigette is trying to book a flight back to Alaska but the ticketing agent isn’t helping at all.  Jason asks if it’s a man or woman.  He gets on the phone and starts sweet talking the agent to book the flight.  At the end of the call, Jason gets her to book the flight.  Brigette thanks him, telling him that it’s a big deal for her.  He leaves her to go to sleep, and then he returns to his la-z-boy and ices his face.  And his crotch.

Jessica offers to heal Hoyt’s hand.  He wants to know if since they broke up because she wasn’t ready, so is she ready now?  She explains that when she was made she was a naïve 17 year old.  But things are different.  Sitting with him now makes her see a future for herself that she never saw before.  He agrees to let her heal him, which she does.  Gently.

Pam curses when she realizes that she has to remove Sarah’s gag to complete the bleaching.  She resorts to glamouring Sarah so that the gag can be removed.  Pam starts to tell Sarah about one of her girls, Mary, from the whorehouse.  (Mr. Gus’s men know that word)  Pam says that Sarah is like the whore who doesn’t know that she’s a whore.  But she is going to be very valuable very soon.

Brigette can’t sleep.  All Jason has to drink is beer.  They each drink a beer.  Brigette wonders if life would be different if she was a man.  Jason says that he was good at math but nothing else.  Eventually, Jason starts explaining his past with Hoyt.  While he tells the story, we see Jessica getting it on with Hoyt.  Jason apologizes and thinks that Brigette might not want to hear this.  But she does.  Jason says that Jason used to go out after school and Hoyt went home to his mom.  And then he met Jessica.  And things changed.  And Jason messed it all up.  With all of their shared past, Hoyt decided that he wanted his memory erased before he went to Alaska.  As Jason says that they belong together, we see Hoyt and Jessica climaxing together the way they never did before.  Brigette says she wants to take Jason to bed to show him how not to have sex with her.

Eric finds Sookie outside Bellefleur’s.  He tells her that he saw Bill, and she’s surprised that he cares.  Eric says that he only cares for a few vampires, and Sookie.  He wants Sookie to talk to Bill.  She’s resistant, but he says she really needs to see him.  He says Bill is doing all of this for her.  She thinks it’s absurd, but Eric says it isn’t when she hears it from Bill.  He offers her a ride home, but not in the car.  He picks her up and they shoot into the air.

Jason and Brigette are lying on his bed next to each other.  And they’re talking.  She reveals that she cheated on someone before.  Jason says that he likes the color pink.  When he decides to go deeper, he tells Brigette that he wants kids, unlike Hoyt.  He’s just afraid that his daughter could end up with a guy like him.

Sookie thanks Eric for the lift.  She’s never seen Bon Temps from the sky.  Her phone is ringing.  She asks if he wants to come inside.  He gives her a long look and then says goodnight.  Bill is on the phone and he asks if he can come to her.  He stops off at his family cemetery and looks at the gravestones.

Ginger wants to know if Eric was ever going to tell her that he was dying.  He says he was out all night listening to everyone else’s relationship problems, so he wants to make it up to her by fucking.  “Let’s do this, sweetheart,” he says.  On the throne, no less.  He makes her spell out what she wants.  He bites her (because he’s immune).  She has a screaming orgasm before he can even doing anything.  She’s passed out on the floor and Eric looks utterly confused for the first time in his life.

Eric goes to find Pam, but the office is empty.  He goes downstairs to find the Yacuza waiting for him.  They have Pam on a table in silver chains. Mr. Gus wants to know if Eric was out with Sookie.  He doesn’t have the leverage he thinks he has.  They are going to impale Pam if he doesn’t speak the truth.  Mr. Gus says goodnight to Pam and is about to cut the cable when Eric stops them and admits that Sookie knows about the cure.  Mr. Gus wants to know where Sookie lives.  Uh oh.

When Bill arrives at Sookie’s house, he finds her inside sitting in a chair.  She’s deeply troubled.  He knocks on the door.

And that’s the end of the episode.

These were the longest 58 minutes I’ve experienced in a while.  I’m not sure how they will wrap this series up in one hour next week.  There is so much to do at this point.  I’m a bit frustrated that Brigette had so much time tonight when we barely had any Lafayette.  And Sam was gone before we could process his departure.

Alas, that is life in Bon Temps, Truebies.  What are your predictions for next week?  Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

True Blood Recap S7E8 Almost Home

Welcome back, Truebies.  We have two episodes left after tonight’s roller coaster ride.  Loose ends are still…loose.  Last week we saw Sookie reunite with Bill.  That left everyone talking.  But the big revelation was Ashley Hinshaw as Hoyt’s girlfriend.  That news took the world by storm.  Pity that she only has four episodes with us.  It would be fun to see what Hoyt has been up to in Alaska.  And frankly, I’d love to see some more Steve Newlin.  That was even more fun.

At any rate, onto tonight’s episode.

Mr. Gus and his men have Sarah surrounded. She’s still having visions of Jason, who tells her to let the truth in.  Sarah decides that death is the answer.  She hurries outside and Eric captures her.  Sarah begs for death so that she can be reborn as the Princess of Peace.  Pam is afraid that Eric will renege on their deal with Mr. Gus, so she takes a gun and aims it at her heart.  If Eric dies, she dies.  Eric drinks from Sarah and lets her go.  Mr. Gus and Pam watch as Eric feels the antidote working its magic.  He lets out a triumphant yell.  Is he cured?

Sookie traces the lines on Bill’s chest.  He asks what she’s thinking.  He wants to know.  She has been thinking about the past but she’s afraid to bring up the bad memories.  Finally she asks about Sophie Anne and what she wanted.  Bill explains that Sophie Anne wanted to capture all the Fae and seal the portals between the worlds.  Then, if Sookie proved to be Fae, she would be bred for her magic blood.  Bill also explains that he stopped his mission when he met Sookie and she reminded him of what it was like to be human.  Everything else for him was darkness and that was all he could offer her.  He could never escape his past no matter how much she tried to help him.  That’s why he made it his own mission to protect Sookie, to atone for the past.  Sookie kisses him.

Lafayette and Lettie Mae are digging in the front yard.  Reverend Daniels arrives and assures the homeowners that everything is ok.  James shows up and the Reverend accuses him of being the V supplier, but Lettie Mae reminds her husband about the journey he took when he lost his faith.  Tara is trying to show her something and she needs to go on the journey.  Lafayette takes James’ blood, then he offers the wound to Lettie Mae, and then, slowly, the Reverend takes blood as well.  When he looks up he sees Tara standing in the doorway.  “I’ll be damned,” he laughs.  Tara leads the group inside the house, past the terrified family.  There is a bright light, and once they’re inside they see a vision of Tara’s early childhood during a birthday party.  Sookie is there and they’re celebrating.  Tara’s father shows up and he’s clearly drunk.  He sticks his hand in the cake.  Sookie is afraid of him.  He accuses Lettie Mae of spending money but not inviting him to the party.  He hits her and Tara watches as her father searches for his gun.

Brigette looks at Hoyt’s old photos from school.  She’s sitting on the couch with Jason and she makes a remark about having children.  Hoyt gets upset at the mention of children given that they’re going through his mother’s old things.  She apologizes, and he says that it’s wrong that they’re going through all of these memories but it’s not the same for him.  (Mainly because he can’t really remember any of his childhood)  Meanwhile, Jason gets a text.  It’s a picture of Adilyn tied up and gagged.  There’s also a picture of Jessica tied up and gagged.  And there’s an address.  Brigette is fed up with Hoyt’s attitude and she says she’s going with Jason.  Jason calls Andy, who is still 50 miles away with Holly.  Andy tells Jason to get to Violet’s house, and he leaves with Brigette in the car with him.  Poor Jason, even when he doesn’t want it to happen he ends up with Hoyt’s girls in his car.

Back at Fangtasia, Mr. Gus tells Pam and Eric that there is going to be a delay in getting the New Blood out to the public.  The blood is synthesized but they don’t want it to be perfect.  They don’t want a cure; they want something to keep people going for a while so that they can maximize profit.  Eric and Pam, who are both dressed in black leather, sense that there is more to all of this, but they agree. 

Jason and Brigette arrive at Violet’s house.  Jason gives Brigette a gun but warns her to stay in the car.  When he goes inside, there is church music playing.  The lights are dim so he keeps getting spooked by the stuffed animals all over the place.  As he prowls, Violet sneaks up on him.  She’s glad he’s loyal to at least one woman.  However, it isn’t her.  She promises to show Jason what real betrayal looks like.   Violet drags him into a room where Wade, Jessica, and Adilyn are tied up in their underwear.  She’s going to crush Wade’s skull and rip Adilyn’s breasts off with some kind of kinky BDSM tool.  Then, she’s going to use a hot poker (literally) every ten minutes to rob Jessica of her virginity every time it heals.  And Jason is going to watch all of this and know it was his own doing.  All she ever wanted was to be with him.  And now this.  And—BANG! Violet stops mid-sentence as blood runs down her chest.  She explodes, and Hoyt is standing behind her with a gun drawn.  Hoyt saved the day.  He rushes to free Jason, and then he frees Adilyn while Jason frees Jessica.  Jessica is stunned to see Hoyt, and she’s even more stunned to see Brigette, who runs into his arms.

Young Tara watches as he father searches for his gun.  The group is assembled and watches as Young Tara finds her father’s gun in the sock drawer.  Her father is beating Lettie Mae, so Young Tara takes aim and almost fires, but instead she runs outside and starts to bury the pistol.  Her father rushes out and leaves, and Tara sees her mother begging for him to come back because she can’t do it all without him.  Outside, back in reality, Reverend Daniels finds the pistol.  Finally, Tara is able to speak.  She apologizes for not pulling the trigger.  She was a good mother.  Lettie Mae apologizes for being a bad mother.  No more blame, Tara says.  She tells her mother to forgive herself and let go of Tara.  Tara wants her mother to continue living.  Lettie Mae promises that she will, and Tara gives her mother a hug.  At long last, Lettie Mae seems to be at peace.  Tara walks off into the murky woods, and she disappears. 

Goodbye, Tara.

Andy and Holly arrive to find Jessica making sure that Adilyn is okay.  Andy tells Adilyn to stop apologizing.  They just need to be okay.  Andy offers Hoyt a huge thanks for saving his daughter.  Jessica finds Hoyt and thanks him for saving them.  She has to introduce herself because he has no idea who she is.  Jason is sitting by the stairs and Brigette comes to check on him.  She asks who Jessica is to Jason.  She wants to know if Jessica is his girlfriend.  “Honestly, I don’t know what to call her,” he admits.

Bill is sleeping fitfully.  Sookie hears a knock at the door.  It’s Eric.  “Nice robe,” he says dryly.  He came to let her know that he’s okay, but when she says that Bill is sick, his expression changes.  He can’t tell anyone about the cure, including Sookie.  She begs him to explain how he was cured, but he says he needs to think.  He promises to return the next evening, but she’s not sure he has that long.  Eric shoots up into the air, and Sookie runs off through the field to her house. 

At the same time, Jason’s car pulls up into the driveway with Jessica.  He says he needs to stop making bad decisions.  He mentions the other night they spent together, and he says that he never considered anything they did together as a bad thing, except when he shot her and had her sent to the prison camp.  Jessica says that their paths have always crisscrossed, and seeing her with Hoyt brought everything back for Jason.  She laughs and says that her relationship with Jason is the least complicated of her life.  Eventually they decide that they have a beautiful friendship, which probably isn’t what Jason was thinking.  He reminds her that he’s here if she needs him.

The next day, Sookie drives to Fangtasia and sees Mr. Gus’s men outside Fangtasia.  They say she’s incredibly stupid for coming there.  Mr. Gus and Pam are inside discussing the finer details of the release of New Blood.   Mr. Gus wants to get rid of her, but Eric stops them, pointing out that though she is just a fangbanger he fucked a few years prior, she also has a brother in law enforcement.  He offers to glamour her, and Sookie plays along, but not before getting the information she needs from Mr. Gus’s head.

Jason is eating at Bellefleur’s and asks Arlene about the eggs.  Hoyt walks in and orders coffee.  He sits with Jason and says that he hasn’t been sleeping.  He admits that he was up all night, but he wasn’t thinking about his mother and Brigette.  They order beers.  Hoyt says was thinking about Jessica.  Hoyt asks if Jason and Jessica are together.  When Jason says no, Hoyt says that he isn’t that kind of guy.  Jason reveals that Jess is going through a hard time with the death of her maker.  Hoyt remembers Vampire Bill and how much he liked him.

Sookie drives down the road in Alcide’s truck, and as she recalls the words from Mr. Gus’s mind, she turns the truck around.

Hoyt shows up at Bill’s house.  He’s about to write a note for Jessica when she hears him.  When he says it’s him, she smiles broadly.  He goes inside and Hoyt says he’s sorry to hear about Bill.  Hoyt went to the clinic and brought Jessica a pint of his blood for Bill.  Hoyt says that he feels blessed in a way to not have known that his mother’s time was up.  He can’t imagine what Jessica is going through and so he wants to help her.  He keeps thinking back to when he was a kid, to a time when he was loved.  Jessica understands what he means.  Hoyt snaps out of his memories and says he needs to return to Brigette.  With that, Jessica feels much better.

Sookie walks down the alley to the back of Fangtasia, to the boarded up door they used to help Arlene escape.  She finds Sarah in the dungeon and Sarah tries to use the opportunity to bring Sookie into the madness.  Sookie tells her to shut up and she instead uses her fairy powers to see what’s really going on.  She sees that Sarah is the cure, but she’s not prepared to allow Sarah to hurt anyone else anymore.  Sookie returns to Bill’s house and tells Jessica that Bill is going to live. Meanwhile, Bill is having a dream that Sookie is holding a baby, but the baby is blackened and dead.  He wakes up to see Sookie standing over him.  “There’s a cure,” she says.

Mr. Gus informs Eric and Pam that he’s returning to Dallas but he’ll be back by sunrise.  He advises Eric not to do anything stupid.  Eric agrees, but Mr. Gus insists upon leaving his men with them.  Pam and Eric go down the stairs.  Pam asks if they’re about to do something stupid, and when Eric explains that they’re going to get some of Sarah’s blood to Sookie and Bill, Pam confirms that it’s something stupid.  Of course, Sookie, Bill and Jessica are downstairs already.  Bill sees that Eric is healed, and Eric offers Sarah’s blood to him.  But Bill refuses to drink.

That’s right.

We only have two episodes left.  What is going to happen now!?

True Blood Recap S7E5: Lost Cause

True Blood Season 7, Episode 5: Lost Cause

Airdate:  July 20, 2014

Summary by: Sarabeth Pollock


We’re at the halfway point.  It’s really depressing.  Next week I’ll be bringing you content from Comic Con, including the last time the blood drive will be sponsored by HBO.  That’s sad, too.  (Incidentally, all appointments are full on Thursday.  I’m going in Friday afternoon.  Crazy to think how full that event has become, and it’s all thanks to True Blood)

Ginger is doing cleanup outside Fangtasia while the boys from Anubis Air prepare to ship a few vamps.  Willa is yelling at Pam for being abandoned by Eric.  Eric abandoned her, and Pam abandoned Tara.  Tara raised Willa.  Eric wants to go after Sarah Newlin, and Willa probably knows where she is.  Willa agrees to talk provided that Eric releases her.  Eric releases her and she tells him that Sarah has a sister named Amber who is a vampire.  It was a well guarded secret, but it’s true.  She overheard a phone call while Sarah was staying at the mansion with Governor Burrell.  The call came from a Dallas area code.  Eric smiles at Pam and they move to leave, but Ginger interrupts.  She knows that if Eric leaves she might never see him again, and after all these years she’s been his sex slave without the sex.  What does that make her? “A slave?” Pam asks.  Ginger puts her foot down and demands that either she goes with Eric, or Eric fucks her before she leaves.  She tells him she’s diseased, too.  The next thing we see is Eric’s coffin being loaded into the van with Ginger kicking and screaming on top.  Poor Ginger.

Back at Sookie’s house, Sookie returns home to find it quiet.  She’s still in shock.  She sees a leather jacket on the couch.  She’s about to break down when Lafayette and James appear.  Lafayette just heard about Alcide, about everything, and he tells Sookie she should rest.  He tucks her in and she asks him not to leave.  He promises to be there when she wakes up.

The sun comes up and sets again.  Sookie wakes up in her empty bed and goes to the window.  Jackson is outside loading up the truck.  The house is full of candles and food and party favors.  Jackson comes in and tells Sookie that the hardest thing is having to go through someone’s stuff after a death, so when she’s ready she can come out.  Then Lala and James and Jackson’s girlfriend come in and say that they’re having a party. Sookie feels bad but she can’t possibly have a party when she’s so sad.  Death is sad, she says.  Lala disagrees—they’re filling up Sook’s empty house with people.  Even Jackson agrees that it’s what Alcide would have wanted.  They go off to prepare, and Bill knocks at the door.  He sees Sookie in her bathrobe and jokes that he’s early.  He didn’t bring alcohol, but he brought flowers.  She accepts them awkwardly and invites him in while she goes to get ready.  He smiles and goes inside.

Dallas, Texas.  Eric knocks on the door and greets Amber Mills, who is also infected with Hep-V.  Amber was the black sheep of the family.  Her boyfriend Jeremy turned her, and then Sarah got involved with the church and paid her off to stay in the closet.  It worked well for Sarah to say vampires carried her poor sister away when she’d been hiding all along.  Eric says that none of this was her fault and asks for her help.  Amber wants to know if he’s going to kill Sarah, and when he says yes, she says she’s in.  “I like her,” Pam says.  Amber hasn’t made up her mind about Pam, which makes Pam like her even more.  Amber reveals that Sarah called earlier asking for help.  She’ll be holed up at their parents’ house because their parents always fall for her BS even though Sarah disgraced the family.  Her parents won’t be home, though, because they’ll be at some fundraiser.  Amber warns Eric that they won’t be able to get in because “they only invite assholes.”  Eric promises that they can be assholes.

Lettie Mae wants to go to the party.  The Reverend says there will be vampires and alcohol and it’s a bad idea.  Lettie Mae says there will be no goodbyes for Tara in a regular cemetery, but the Reverend holds out and wants her to taste the sauce.  She says it needs cumin, but when she gets it from the cupboard, she grabs some Benadryl as well.

The party is in full swing when Jason and Violet arrive.  James is dancing.  Bill is a wallflower.  Sam stays close to Arlene and Nicole and Holly.  They toast to not dying.  Bill watches them and reflects on the time back in the day when he was a man about town.  He runs into a friend who says that war is coming and they’re bound to be officers.  His friend leads the charge against the Yanks who threaten their way of life.  Bill doesn’t seem to agree.  He wants to know what they’re going to be fighting with.  They’re outnumbered and they won’t win.  He’s immediately expelled from the bar for being a sympathizer.

Jason compliments Sookie, and she compliments Violet but he thinks she’s talking to him.  Violet gives her a hug and says she’s sorry for her loss.  She also adds that she’s lost about a hundred boyfriends die over the years…and that’s when Bill jumps in to rescue Sookie. 

Lettie Mae tucks in Reverend Daniels and heads out.

Jackson reflects on how arrogant Alcide was during a small gathering in the kitchen.  Everyone is in there listening.  Jackson says that he never fought for anything that wasn’t worth fighting for.  Sookie was worth it.  He died for a righteous cause.  “To Alcide,” they say.  Lettie Mae walks in and Lafayette tries to get her out but Sookie offers her a chance to say a few words.  Lettie Mae says that Tara was a hero in her eyes, that she died protecting her mother in spite of the way Lettie Mae raised her and mistreated her.  They raise a glass to Tara.

Andy goes outside to find Jessica alone.  He tells her that her grief about his girls is keeping him from moving forward, and this past week has been hard for all of them.  He needs her help to move on, and he starts by asking her for a ring.  Jessica realizes that he’s going to propose to Holly, so she runs inside and asks Sookie for help.  Sookie tells Andy that Gran left Jason a ring.  Jason gives it to Andy after Violet declares that Jason is already hers and she doesn’t need a ring.  As the happy group goes downstairs, Jason grabs Adilyn and Wade and says that he doesn’t know if they’re fucking or not, but if they are, they’re going to have to stop.

Everyone is in a great mood downstairs.  People are laughing and dancing.  Andy walks up to Holly with a dazed look and he drops down to one knee.  He stutters at first, but then he says that he’s been meaning to do this for a while.  He says that the voice in his head says that he doesn’t deserve a woman like her.  He holds out the ring and she says yes, but he reminds her that he hasn’t asked yet.  It’s the most awkward but endearing proposal ever.  Adilyn and Wade share confused looks.  James corners Jessica and she pushes him away.  Arlene grabs Sookie and takes her upstairs so they can share some girl talk.  Sookie reveals that she hasn’t had enough time to realize that Alcide is gone.  It doesn’t matter how big and strong he was when there’s a gun involved.  Arlene says that she got through it by wearing his jacket at night when no one was looking.  She tells Sookie that you never get over the loss of someone you love.  Jackson is outside the door listening.  He leaves when Arlene says that tequila helps get over it all.

Outside James and Lafayette are on the swing together. They’re laughing and flirting.  Lala recalls the story James told him about the night he was turned.  Lala wants to know if he had been having sex with his maker.  “Yeah,” James says.  The two kiss.

In Dallas, Eric helps Pam dress, showering her with jewelry and telling her about how he told the salesperson that his wife was going to a party and “only the best will do.”  Pam glows, and he smiles.  She laughs.  “I’m a Republicunt,” she says.  She tells him to strip, and then she sees that he’s Stage 2.  He hands her some cover-up and reminds her that he’s going to die. 

Keith, the vampire who saved Arlene, keeps staring at her.  He tells her that she’s the most beautiful woman he’s seen in three centuries.  Arlene is stunned.  She tells him she needs to “go make tinkle” and runs off, but not before Jessica can ask if she’s seen James.  Jessica wanders outside and follows the grunting to a car.  She sees Lafayette pounding into James’ ass.  She rushes into the house and tells Jason to rescind James’ invitation to the house.  She tells Jason what happened and he tells James to “get the fuck out.” Violet tells Jason that it’s ok for him to go to Jessica.  James wants to be alone.   Jessica tells Jason that James must be confused.  Lala interrupts and reminds Jessica that she doesn’t even know about James’ past.  He says that he has watched everyone else fall in love and he’d like to do that, too.  He advises Jessica to let him go if she doesn’t love him.

Downstairs Sookie wanders through the party listening to everyone’s thoughts.  Willa walks in looking for Arlene.  She asks if she’s seen Bill.  Bill is outside remembering how he and African American man were leading their families through the woods to escape the oncoming war.  The man is shot by his friend from town, and they’re threatened.  Bill burns the map to protect those that went ahead.  He’s interrupted when Sookie walks out.  She’s drunk but she sees that something is wrong.  Bill says he’s fine and he compliments the fact that she was able to bring people together.  They’re mainstreaming.  He escorts her back to the porch and she hugs him, thanking him for seeing her the way she can’t see herself.

Once Sookie returns to the party, she hears Lettie Mae looking for Willa.  Before she can stop it, Lettie Mae stabs Willa.  Sam grabs the knife and the vampires in the room go on the defensive.  Lafayette appears and takes Lettie Mae away.  Lettie Mae insists that Tara is trying to contact her from the other side but that she needs Willa’s blood.  Once she’s gone, Nicole flips out at how only a few days prior the town was invaded by sick vamps and now they’re having a party.  Sam tries to quiet her but she keeps going.  She doesn’t see how they can pretend that nothing is happening.  She leaves, and Sam follows.  Violet offers to escort them home.  The mood has shifted at the party.

Upstairs, Jessica contemplates her situation and sees that Lafayette may be right.  Jason admits that Violet is weird.  “Way the fuck off, sometimes,” he laughs.  He gets closer to Jessica and they start sharing stories.  He was upset that Violet didn’t want Gran’s ring.  He was so thankful that he didn’t have to put it on Violet’s finger.  Jessica says that he might be the sweetest man in the world.  They kiss, and then they kiss again.

Pam and Cowboy Eric walk into the party.  They’re scouting the place looking for Sarah’s parents.  Sarah’s mother is in the bathroom and Sarah pokes her head out of a closet.  She tries to tell her mother that she’s in trouble but her mother isn’t buying it.  Sarah is a disgrace.  Sarah asks if Laura Bush is outside, but Laura Bush isn’t taking their family’s calls after the book came out revealing all of Sarah’s secrets.  Sarah says she’s in trouble and that the Japanese men are after her, which seems to strike a chord with her mother.

Jason and Jessica waste no time getting busy upstairs.  Of course, Violet gets back right on time and hears them.  She doesn’t go into their room.  She walks away.

Eric has found Sarah’s father.  He asks him if he’s seen his daughter, but the party gets crashed by the Yakuza, the Japanese men.  They come in, guns blazing, and start shooting everyone around them.  Sarah and her mother flee.  They kill her father.  Sarah runs down the hall and has to leave her mother behind.  She’s quickly killed.  That leaves Sarah on her own.  Eric turns the corner and runs into Sarah.  He grabs her neck and hoists her over his head.  The Yakuza find them and pull their swords out to fight. Eric rushes them and kills them quickly, but not before he rips the leader’s jaw from his face.

Sookie goes into her bedroom and find that Alcide’s jacket has appeared on her bed.  Jackson must have put it there.  Slowly she slips it on and climbs into bed. 

Bill is soaking in the tub.  He recalls being with his wife in front of the family cemetery.  Suddenly he gets out of the tub and goes to the mirror.  That’s when he sees the first signs of Hep-V on his chest.  That’s right, Bill is sick.

Well, that was another first-rate episode.  It’s hard to believe that we only have four episodes left.  I promise that I’ll bring you plenty of True Blood gems live from Comic Con next week.  Keep watching my blog and www.darkmediaonline.com for updates!

Retro True Blood Recap: S5E1 Turn Turn Turn

True Blood Season 5, Episode 1: Turn! Turn! Turn!

Airdate:  June 10, 2012

Recap by: Sarabeth Pollock


The weather is getting warmer, the nights are getting shorter, and that can only mean one thing: It’s time to laissez les bons temps rouler in Bon Temps, Louisiana, with the return of HBO’s True Blood.  If you’re like me, you’ve finally picked your jaw up after the ultimate WTF!? moment in the Season 4 finale.  Tara was lying in Sookie’s arms with half of her head on the floor.  Bill and Eric sent Nan Flanagan to the True Death.  Pam was licking her wounds after Eric chastised her.  Sam and Alcide killed werewolf pack master Marcus (who was also Sam’s girlfriend Luna’s ex-husband).  Jason and Jessica were trying to figure out what to do after their hookup, and Jason was also trying to mend his friendship with Hoyt.  Lafayette killed his lover, Jesus, after being possessed by Marnie.  Terry and Arlene’s son, Mikey, is back to normal now that the ghost who had been haunting him is gone, but now one of Terry’s Gulf War buddies shows up at Merlotte’s with unknown intentions.  Sheriff Andy Bellefleur had sex with a woman in the woods who had a glowing finger.  Steve Newlin, the former leader of the Fellowship of the Sun, shows up on Jason’s doorstep.  He’s a vampire now.  Oh, and it looks as though Season 3 villain Russell Edgington has freed himself from his concrete grave.  Yep, Bon Temps is about to roll.

Season 5 begins at King Bill’s mansion.  He’s on the phone with Jessica, telling her that he is going out of town and that she has the run of the house while he’s gone.  Eric is flying around in the background trying to clean up Nan’s remains.  It’s hard to picture the two former adversaries working together, but it’s rather endearing seeing them work in unison to clean up the house.   We flash to a scene of Sookie pulling up at her house.  She goes inside and Debbie Pelt is waiting for her.  Then we return to Bill’s house.  Bill senses Sookie’s fear and moves to assist her.  Eric stops him, reminding him that not only did Sookie refuse him, but the AVL is going to be after them and they need to leave as soon as possible.  Debbie shoots Tara and Sookie screams.  Bill speeds out the door and into the arms of the waiting AVL troops.  Eric is trapped in a silver net.  Looks like Bill and Eric won’t be rushing to Sookie’s aid. 

So much for that theory.

Lafayette hurries into Sookie’s kitchen and takes in the scene.  Before anyone can react, Pam flies in and demands to see Eric.  It’s his house, after all.  She wants Sookie to tell Eric she’s sorry for disobeying him and she wants to mend their relationship.  Lafayette asks Pam to turn Tara into a vampire.  At first Sookie resists this idea, given how much Tara has suffered at the hands of vampires, but she quickly realizes that having Tara alive—in any state—would be better than losing her.  She tells Pam she will owe her one.  Pam is intrigued by this idea of having Sookie owe her a favor, but she warns them that turning Tara might not work and she could wake up and be “f**ktarded.” (classic Pam-inology)  She agrees to turn Tara provided that Sookie agrees to help mend her relationship with Eric, in addition to owing her a favor.  Sookie agrees.

Over at Jason’s house, Steve Newlin is on Jason’s porch and he’s a vampire.  Jason refuses to let Steve in, citing his exposed fangs, which can only mean a vampire hard-on or a hungry vampire, neither of which would end up well for him.  Steve assures Jason that he cannot glamour him because his maker didn’t teach him anything.  He says he was turned as a punishment and he didn’t even know his maker.  He woke up in a hole with a woman, and then she vanished.  Just as Jason starts to feel sorry for him, Steve glamours him and gains entrance to Jason’s house.

Sam is confronted by a pack of werewolves who want to know where Marcus is.  Sam shifts into a bird and escapes them, but he knows they’ll be after him.

Sookie and Lafayette dig a hole in Sookie’s backyard.  While they grumble about doing all the digging, Pam grumbles about her yellow attire: “I’m wearing a Wal-Mart sweat suit, y’all.  That’s the definition of team work.”  She tells Sookie and Lafayette to bury her with Tara, and they do so, both of them hoping that it all works out.  Clearly this is a matter of the lesser of two evils.  Is it better that they let Tara die, or is it better that they find a way for her to live, even though she will be something that she despises?

Luna and her daughter Emma come home to find a naked Sam on their porch.  Emma gets major props in my book for being so nonchalant about finding her mom’s boyfriend standing naked on her front porch.  Must be a shifter thing.  (Totally random aside: in the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly, Kristin Bauer van Straten talks about Alexander Skarsgard’s sex scene in Season 3.  She and Anna Paquin did “about a hundred takes” and after a while Skarsgard was just walking around naked, which is not a big deal to the Swedes.  To help with the awkwardness, she and Paquin started referring to his member as IKEA…”because he’s Swedish.”  End aside.)  Sam warns Luna that the pack will be coming after them both, and they need to leave at once.  Sam refuses to betray Alcide, who saved them all by killing Marcus.  The pack enforcers arrive at Luna’s house, and though Luna insists that Sam didn’t kill Marcus, Sam gives himself up, imploring Luna to tell Emma that he said goodbye.

Back at Jason’s, Steve puts duct tape across Jason’s mouth and tells him that all he will remember is that he invited Steve inside and agreed to allow Steve to tape his mouth.  Jason nods willingly, and when the glamour is removed Steve admits to Jason that it didn’t bother him that Jason slept with his wife, Sarah.  It was more painful to him that Sarah was the one sleeping with Jason.  All of Steve’s confused feelings led him to the violence that Jason experienced at the Fellowship of the Sun camp.  That’s right.  “I’m a gay vampire American,” Steve says, “and I love you, Jason Stackhouse.”  It’s a classic Jason scene.  I love how Ryan Kwanten plays Jason—Jason would be more upset that his Bon Temps High School football record is about to fall rather than be concerned that Steve Newlin is attracted to him.  He tells Steve that he’s flattered and that it was the “nicest I love you from any male, female, or otherwise…but this dog don’t bark that way.”  Crushed by Jason’s rejection, Steve tries to force Jason to change his mind when Jessica bursts in.  Jason is hers, she says, and given that she’s older than Steve and she’s also the progeny of the King of Louisiana (she’s practically the Queen!), Steve must cede to her authority.  He leaves, and Jessica flashes her red lingerie at the befuddled Jason, who is still reeling from all of the excitement.

Bill and Eric’s AVL enforcers drive into the night, Paul McCartney’s “Silly Love Songs” blaring on the radio.  Bill and Eric are tied up in the back, but Bill figures that they might just be called in for questioning, an idea that Eric quickly rejects.  Together they manage to puncture the gas tank and set the car on fire.  As they are thrown from the explosion, Bill is injured and tells Eric to go on without him.  Eric won’t leave him, though.  Again, I’m loving the camaraderie between them.  Before they can get away, the driver pops up from the wreckage and moves to shoot them, and then he suddenly explodes.  The female vampire from the car is standing there.  In an instant, Eric has her in a passionate embrace.  Her name is Nora, as it turns out.  Bill asks if she is Eric’s friend.  Eric casually replies that Nora is his sister.

Back in Bon Temps, Sookie and Lafayette work to hide the evidence of Debbie’s death.  Lafayette tells Sookie that she could just call the police and claim self-defense, given that Debbie was in her house pointing a gun at her.  Besides that, Sookie is a white girl so the police won’t even question her.  But Sookie tells Lafayette that it wasn’t self-defense; she had possession of the gun and she made a decision to pull the trigger.  How can that be self-defense?

At the dock, Nora explains that she is a chancellor with the AVL and that no one there knows that she is related to Eric.  There are factions within the AVL that threaten to tear everything apart.  She had arranged for their car to be attacked down the road, but the “stunt men” took things into their own hands and now there was no escape vehicle for them.  She gets on the phone to call the AVL in New Orleans to say that there was a delay, that they were going to ground because the clean-up took a little longer than expected.  She tells Bill and Eric that they cannot return to their previous lives or it will mean death to all of them.

The following day, Sookie and Lafayette return to Lafayette’s house to bury Jesus, but his body is gone.  Lafayette tells Sookie that “people need to be said goodbye to” and he starts to talk to Jesus, hoping that he could hear him.  He says that Jesus told him to keep going, but how could he manage to keep going with everything that kept happening?

In one of the lighter moments of the night, two boys walk into Holly’s house to find the good Sheriff, Andy Bellefleur, in bed.  And he’s very naked.  Holly wakes up and tries to console the boys, who are less than pleased to find their mother doing the deed with the sheriff on the couch they sleep on.  Andy hurries from the house (once he finds his pants).

Terry’s Iraqi war buddy, Patrick, is bombarded with questions about Terry’s past over breakfast.  Arlene’s daughter wants to know if Terry “was a badass.”  Terry becomes agitated with talk of the past and insists that all that matters now are his half-cooked pancakes, so Arlene talks about how they’re staying in Andy’s house until they can get back on their feet after the fire put them out of their own house.  The mention of fire catches Patrick’s attention, and he cautions that fires are not to be taken lightly, all the while glaring suggestively at Terry.

Sookie takes a shower and has a flashback of being ridiculed in middle school.  Her classmates don’t want to pick her for their teams and she tells one of the bullies that she knows he plays with himself while he watches his sister take a shower.  Horrified, the bully calls Sookie a freak and the taunting continues until Tara shows up and punches him.  Sookie stares out the window at the freshly dug mound of dirt in her backyard as she reflects on how Tara was always there to defend her.  Once she finishes her shower, Lafayette takes a bath.  As he relaxes, he spies a razor.

Alcide shows up on Sookie’s porch.  Sookie offers to get him some lemonade while he waits in the living room, but as she goes to the refrigerator she spies a tooth on the floor and covers it with her foot as Alcide walks in.  She nervously tells him that she’s embarrassed at how dirty her kitchen is, which makes him laugh.  He says she has an incredibly clean kitchen that smells like lemons covering up ammonia covering up bleach.  Without preamble he tells Sookie that she has to leave, that Russell Edgington has escaped from his concrete tomb.  Sookie insists that Russell is dead, and Alcide realizes that Eric and Bill never told her that they never actually killed him.  Russell will be gunning for Sookie, Alcide says, and only he can protect her.  Alcide doesn’t know that Sookie killed Debbie Pelt, and she tries to tell him that he won’t want to help her when he finds out what she did.  But before she can tell him, Lafayette stops her.  Alcide growls at Lafayette, but Lafayette holds his ground and tells Alcide that they’re done with all of the supernatural BS.  Alcide begrudgingly leaves, and Lafayette remarks that the sun will be going down soon.

Sam’s cries can be heard outside the barn where he is being tortured.  A middle-aged werewolf named Martha tells Sam that the pack needs to know where Marcus’s body is so that they can perform pack rituals.  This is incredibly important for them.  Sam doesn’t care about his own well-being…but Martha doesn’t threaten him with his own life.  She threatens him with Luna and Emma’s lives.

Once the sun goes down, Bill waits for Eric to finish having sex with Nora inside the storage container.  They need to be quieter, he tells them, because New Orleans is only sixty miles away.  Eric’s phone interrupts them, and he tells an angry Nora that his phone is untraceable.  “We fight like siblings, but we f*** like champions.”  His good mood disappears when he answers the phone and hears what Alcide tells him.  We can only imagine that Alcide is telling him about Russell’s reemergence.

The King of Louisiana’s house has been converted into a frat party.  The college kids tell Jessica that she should consider attending their school, which has admission for vampires and special night classes just for them.  (Could this be a subtle dig at the Twilight vamps?)  Jessica thinks this is very funny.  Why on earth would she want to go to school, she laughs.  She’s a vampire.  One of the guys flirts with Jessica, but the doorbell rings.  It’s Jason, and he’s confused about their relationship.  She saved him from Steve Newlin, and now she doesn’t want him anymore.  Hoyt doesn’t want anything to do with him because Jason stole the only woman he ever loved away from him.  Jessica tells Jason she was only trying to protect him and that she didn’t invite him to her party because some of the people were underage.  Jason goes inside and offers to take his uniform off since he’s off duty and ready to party.  He and Jessica sing along to “Cherry Bomb” on Rock Band, and much to Jason’s dismay Flirty Guy slips in and finishes the song with her.  One of the girls offers to go home with Jason, but Jason’s conscience is clearly getting the best of him.  He doesn’t want to have sex with her, he says, and that’s what they would end up doing if they kept going.  He ends up taking her home instead.

Martha and the pack take Sam to where Marcus is buried.  Martha, it turns out, is Marcus’s mother.  She tells Sam he did the right thing.  Luna and Alcide show up, and Alcide says that Marcus deserved what he got.  Martha is angered by this, but the ritual must be completed.  She shifts, and she starts to tear apart Marcus’s body along with one of the male werewolves.

Bill, Eric and Nora are on the dock.  Nora tells them that they will be given new identities to help with their “extraction.”  Bill will become Marcellus Clark, and Eric will become Ike Applebaum…but before they go anywhere, the vampires gathered on the dock are shot down and a voice on a loudspeaker tells the trio that they are surrounded and there’s nowhere to go.

The sun has set at Sookie’s house and she and Lafayette have gathered in the backyard.  Pam rises first and complains, in typical Pam fashion, that she has dirt in her bra.  The yellow track suit has done nothing to brighten her personality.  Soon Sookie starts to dig.  She reaches Tara’s face and starts to cry.  Lafayette approaches.  Sookie shakes her head.  As reality sinks in, the dirt around them explodes.  In the chaos, Sookie screams for Lafayette. 

And the screen goes dark.

There aren’t many programs on television that can pack so much action into one episode.  This season looks amazing and it can only get better from here.  And then there’s the matter of the body that was dragged into the dark underground room.  All we see is blood splattering against the window.  Could that be Russell having dinner?  Is it bad that I’m really excited to have Russell back?

What did you think, fellow Truebies?  Did the season premiere live up to your expectations?  Were your predictions valid?  What do you think is coming our way?  Post comments below or send me your thoughts on Twitter!  Until next week….

Still Pondering the Vampire Thing

Yesterday I asked if you would talk to a supernatural creature if you encountered one.  I haven’t stopped thinking about the question.

Let’s assume for the moment that these supernatural creatures exist.  I see two possibilities.  Either they have adapted and integrated into mainstream society, or they live on the fringe. 

NBC’s version of the Bram Stoker classic, Dracula, posits that Jack the Ripper was in fact a vampire.  Vampires feed on blood, so they would need a source of food.  I don’t think this is the kind of vampire I’d want to talk to.

But let’s say that vampires and witches and the rest of the “supes” have managed to integrate.  It would make sense given that it would be hard to hide bloodless bodies or mysterious occurrences with today’s 24/7 media coverage.  I think you could have a conversation in this scenario.  I realize that therr is still an inherent danger.  Anne Rice and Deborah Harkness’s vampires and supernatural creatues are mostly civilized, but there is still an element of danger.  Frankly, though, I’d go as far as to say that there is danger meeting anyone these days (Christian Bale and American Psycho, anyone?)  You just have to be careful.

So as I strive to be a perpetual optimist, I still think I’d talk to a vampire if I encountered one.  Good conversation can be so hard to find these days….

What do you think?

Would you talk to a vampire in real life?

If you encountered a vampire in real life, would you talk to him/her?  What about a ghost or a witch or a werewolf or a mummy?

It’s an interesting dilemma.  These days, supernatural creatures have essentially been neutered by modern literature and movies.  Vampires are sexy, not scary.  Witches are cool, and werewolves are hot.

I’ve always battled with this question.  As a history major, I’d be fascinated to be able to talk to someone who has lived several hundred years.  I’d like to think that it would be easy to carry on a conversation with any of the creatures listed, but frankly it probably wouldn’t be as awesome as I picture it in my head.

Would you talk to a supernatural creature?

True Blood Musings (Spoilers for S5E2)

True Blood’s season 5 promises to be amazing.  I have heard the naysayers talk about the lack of action so far, but I would disagree.  As a recapper for the show, I have been constantly amazed these past two weeks at how much of a foundation is being laid out.  When Alan Ball talked about Michele Bachmann being his inspiration for the political/religious storyline this season, I couldn’t wait to see how he’d develop everything.  I have not been disappointed.  Remember that line from Interview with the Vampire: “God kills indiscriminately, and so shall we, for no creatures under God are as we are, none so like Him as ourselves.”  There has been a pattern recently where vampires think of themselves as either creatures of God (“Jesus loves vampires”) or as being more similar to God than humans.  It will be interesting to see the direction Russell Edgington takes once he emerges from his sick bed…will he lead the Sanguinistas?

Some observations/musings:

Tara: I really hope that Tara embraces life as a vampire.  It would be a shame to see her sulk all season that she has been turned into a creature that she despises.  Embrace your new power, Tara!  Use it to fight the forces of…good..bad…or something.  Anything.  Just make use of it.  (I might regret this later)

Alcide: The last thing Alcide ever wanted was to be the pack master.  But now he doesn’t have much of a choice.  I say again, use this opportunity, Alcide.  Do something with your new role.  Embrace it.

Terry/Arlene/Patrick:  This subplot has been a challenge to follow only because the scenes are like extended snippets.  I’m certain the story will continue to develop, but I have enjoyed it so far.  It’s disturbing to watch gentle Terry become angry and violent.  Something bad must be coming if he’s experiencing such a turnabout.

Pam: I LOVED the 1905 flashback.  I can’t wait to see more of her history with Eric.  Once again, Pam has some of the best zingers on the show.  I love watching her, and it will be interesting to see what happens when Eric returns to find his new grandchild….

So far Sookie and Lafayette have been babysitting Tara.  Hopefully they will get more involved as the season develops.

That’s all for now.  I’m always eager to hear what other people think.  Be sure to check out my True Blood recaps at www.DarkMedia.com.