True Blood: A Midseason Night's Dream

So the season is already halfway over. How did this happen?

I’m a bit sad that we only have five episodes left, but I’ve got to say, this season has been pretty awesome.

One of the themes of True Blood has always been that vampires equal the "other". You’re pretty much bashed over the head with the concept that vampires, after "coming out of the coffin," face the same kind of issues as other minority groups. In the opening credits you catch a glimpse of a "God hates fangs" sign. In the first season they had talk of the VRA (Vampire Rights Amendment) and the fact that in some states you can marry your vampire spouse.

I find it hilarious when the show pits Steve Newlin (the crazed right-wing Bible-thumper) against Nan Flanagan (the smooth-talking vampire rights spokeswoman) on cable television. It’s just as ridiculous as what we see everyday on Fox News and MSNBC. Or when they show a few "human-rights activists" tricking a vampire into feeding on a human on camera. It’s a scene straight out of the ACORN scandal. And of course, the people who stand outside of Fangtasia protesting and waiting to get something juicy on video put one in mind of the people who hang out on Bourbon Street with those "you’re going to hell" signs that we’re all used to these days. These people are supposed to be the ignorant and crazy ones.

But in this case,what if they’re right? What if vampires should be feared and mistrusted? As Nan would say, we’re living in a post-Russell Edgington world, people!

As fans of a television show in the "vampire" genre, we’re all supposed to be rooting for the vampires. But the thing about this season is that they’ve presented us with a "big bad" who has me questioning whose side I’m on. And I find this very cool. The witch, Marnie – or rather, Antonia (Marntonia?) – has a very good reason to hate vampires. She has a very good reason for wanting them all to meet the true death. But to us, there are still "good" vampires that we’re rooting for. It’s interesting because as I’ve been watching this season, I’ve found myself on both sides.

Kind of like how last season when Russell ripped out the guy’s spine on national television. YOU GO RUSSELL, you’re awesome! I would cheer, all the while knowing he was the bad guy. And this season I find myself rooting for the witches. YOU GO ANTONIA, you’re awesome! You possess Marnie, attagirl!

I mean, we all love Eric, right? But at the end of the day, he’s done a lot of terrible things. When Tara found him in Sookie’s house and started naming off all of the horrible things he’d done, she wasn’t just being a total downer (even though she kinda is). Actually, she was right. Eric is a jerk. He did kidnap and torture Lafayette. He did kill Talbot (for which I will never forgive him). He did sell Sookie out to Russell. He did buy her house in some strange power play to make Sookie his. He did all that, and we give him a huge pass. Why? Because he’s really hot and kinda funny.

And ultimately, we will end up rooting for Eric and Sookie and Bill. I just hope that Marntonia doesn’t end up like poor Russell, rotting away in a concrete limbo.

As for the other stuff going on, I do better in life with lists, so here we go, "Top 5" style.


Top 5 things I like so far:

1. Someone finally cleaned Sookie’s house!

2. Marntonia. I love her. I love that she’s giving the vampires something to be afraid of. It’s like they’ve become too arrogant over the millennia, thinking that they are the most powerful things on earth; this witch is knocking them down a peg or two. And Fiona Shaw is amazing at going from a genuinely nice wicca to a very angry Spanish sorceress. I’d be just as vengeful if Creepy Luis (also Creepy Olivier from Six Feet Under) raped and tortured me before burning me at the stake. The last scene she pulled off from Sunday’s episode was one of the most suspenseful of the whole series: The vampires were compelled to break their silver chains and meet the sun.

3. Amnesia Eric. This was my favorite story from the books and I think the show has done a good job with it. Was there anything better than Eric battling imaginary sea monsters in the swamp? No, I didn’t think so.


4. Pam’s skin-rotting spell. This has been hilarious (and I love that we got a Dr. Ludwig appearance out of it). I love Pam and her snark, but she was totally arrogant, and underestimated Marnie, to her detriment. (She kind of deserved it.) Of course, I don’t want her to be like this forever, but I love anything that gives Pam more screen time.


5. King Vampire Bill. I love that he’s become king because it means that Sophie-Anne is dead! And I feel like Bill gets a bad rap sometimes. He makes me laugh (to poor Pam, "Perhaps a cosmetic solution? More lipstick, perhaps?" HA!) Sure, as vampires go, he’s a huge nerd. But nerds are my people.


Top 5 things I don’t like so far:

1. Tommy is making me feel sorry for him. But I do like that there will be no more Ma & Pa Mickens…so at least there’s that.

2. The demon baby. I just think it’s kind of icky to imply that a baby is evil. I mean, the little guy is so cute. And what’s up with the creepy old trash doll? The revelation that he has some kind of "spirit" watching over him is interesting, and could end up redeeming the story, but it’s still pretty creepy. Who is she? (Whoever she is, I love her hair.) Is she related to Lafayette somehow? To René?


3. Hotshot. I’m sure this storyline is not over yet but I really wish it would be. Watching Jason get gang-raped by inbred were-cougars was one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever seen on television.

4. Sam. Okay, he’s at least a little bit more interesting this season than he was last season, but I’m still bored with him. I wish he was more involved with the main action, and even though I like Luna, I wish they would stop adding characters that take away from the ton of other characters that are already established. Sometimes I feel like there’s just too much going on and it hasn’t been coming together at the end.

5. Geography. I might be wrong, but are there swamps in Northern Louisiana? It seems like there’s a bit of wonky geography going on. The town of Bon Temps is supposed to be set right next to Shreveport, but on the show it looks like a habitat straight out of Swamp People

So we’re a little more than halfway in and I’m hooked. As of now, I’m liking season four a lot more than season three. I can’t wait to find out what happens in the coming weeks. I hope we get to see more of Amnesia Eric and less of Arlene’s demon baby. I hope we get to see more of Alcide and less of Sam, and I hope Jessica is okay. I mean, she can’t die, right? Jason will totally save her. And what about that fairy world? What the hell was that all about?

What are your season likes and dislikes? Shoot me a comment, I’d love to hear.

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