Monday, June 14, 2010

True Blood 3.1: You Picking Up What I'm Putting Down?

A Confession: One of the main reason I started this blog was to recap the third season of HBO's delightful camp fest True Blood. This will be a weekly feature at Madeleine Davies Aims to Please.

Last night’s premiere of True Blood definitely kicked off the season with a bang, and by “bang” I mean a rapid series of catch-up before we even saw the opening credits. Luckily, we only had to catch up about 15 seconds because Season 3 of True Blood picks up right where Season 2 left off with Bill having been kidnapped, Jason having shot Eggs in his nicely symmetrical face, and Jessica going from new teen vampire to seducer and killer of truck drivers.

It all begins with Sookie Stackhouse because, for some reason, Alan Ball has decided that she is a compelling character that we the audience should feel invested in. Unfortunately, we do not feel invested in her and I feel perfectly comfortable speaking for all of us. So Sookie is in hysterics because, duh, she’s Sookie and hysterics is one of the three emotions that she is capable of (the other two are unqualified uppity-ness and sadness aided by fiddle soundtrack). To be fair, she has her reasons for being hysterical, since Bill has been kidnapped and she hasn’t had the chance to accept his completely inappropriate and irritating marriage proposal (God, I hate those two). What’s worse is that the ever-logical Bon Temps sheriff’s department couldn’t give less of a fuck that Bill has gone missing. First, they assume that he tore apart the restaurant before leaving in a scorned huff, and then they confess that they just can’t be bothered. Poor dimwitted Sookie won’t accept this, which leads an entire episode of Anna Paquin stomping around in her cut-off overalls, straw hat, and blackened tooth, hollerin’ that BEEEEHL’S BEEEHN KEEEEEHDNAPPED. I’m already totally bored with her storyline.

Elsewhere, Jason Stackhouse is in a complete panic, having shot Eggs under the pretense of saving Detective/Stevedore Andy Bellefleur/Frank Sobatka. Andy takes the rap for the killing, but his cover story is full of holes and he knows it. He also knows that the Bon Temps police are completely incompetent, so, as long as he and BFF Jason keep their shit together, the two of them should be alright. Though possibly absolved from legal responsibility, Jason is still a wreck about killing Eggs. This leads to a hilarious inspirational speech by Andy in which he tells Jason to stop thinking with his conscience and start thinking with his sex drive. As long as the rest of the town sees Jason acting like his old philandering self, the dummies won’t suspect a thing. “Conscience off, dick on,” indeed. Jason takes Andy’s advice to heart (or at least to cock) and hits up Merlotte’s in search of tail. He finds it in the form of two twenty-something New Yorkers who are apparently fucking their way across the country on a road trip. With the help of the reluctant and heartbroken Hoyt (who I am sincerely happy to see again), Jason has a TOTALLY normal conversation with these two girls (showrunner Alan Ball must have spent his entire budget researching how 23-year-old girls talk to each other because I was like, “GET OUT OF MY LIFE”) and convinces them to go back to his place to engage in some group-sex. Hoyt is out because he is too sad about his maybe ex-girlfriend, teen vampire Jessica, and because he is one of the show’s few characters with a solid moral compass. Jason, too, ends up failing to participate because he is too preoccupied with the idea of being a murderer to get aroused. Not only that, but every time he looks at the women in his bed, he imagines them with bullet holes in their heads. He tells them that and they leave, rightfully terrified. Looks like Jason’s path to promiscuity will be a rocky one. For now, it’s conscience on, dick off.

Complimenting Jason’s emotional turmoil is Bill’s physical one. He’s been kidnapped by a group of guys who you know are tough because they wear black leather and denim jackets with the sleeves cut off. Yeah, pretty bad. They’re also V-addicts who like to drink directly from the source and drink they do. It’s a series of pretty gross scenes that include a lot of blood spitting and nipple rubbing, all of which Bill must watch as he slowly bleeds out. Somehow, with all of his kidnappers high and reckless, he manages to escape and kill his captors. Bill discovers that he has been taken to Mississippi, which is significant somehow, right before he is attacked by a group of werewolves (yes, there are now werewolves, too). I would go into more detail, but it would probably make me fall asleep at my computer because Bill is that uninteresting.

You know who is interesting? Jessica. See, Jessica’s got a real problem on her hands and it comes in the form of a dying trucker. Though she’s the one who drained him, Jessica is freaked the fuck out. Whether this is because she feels remorse for causing a horrifically violent death or because she is afraid of the fall out when her prudish maker Bill finds out about it is debatable, but I’d say it’s probably a mix of both. She’s so panicked that she doesn’t even have time to cover up her bra or reconcile with Hoyt. She even tries to turn the now-completely-dead man into a vampire, but the plan fails and now she’s stuck in an old mansion with a decaying corpse. She is almost caught when Sookie barges in, barefoot and blowing on XXX jug, and demands Jessica’s help. As Bill’s progeny, Jessica might be able to help find where Bill’s been taken—the two share a blood bond which allows them to be psychically connected. Jessica is able to lead Sookie as far as the corpses of Bill’s kidnappers, causing her to self-identify as a “freak of fucking nature.” Poor Jessica. Girl needs a mentor and self-consumed Sookie is not cutting it. Sookie makes Jessica check the kidnappers’ bodies for ID so she can find out who would have wanted to take Bill and all Jessica ends up finding is a strange tattoo that is connected to something called Operation Werewolf.

In other vampire news, things are getting out of control at Fangtasia. Boss man Eric Northman has been keeping himself busy in his fuck dungeon with one of the club’s new dancers, who looks like a runner-up from Pussycat Doll’s Present: The Search for the Next Doll. They show us a quick peek of the action and I think it was supposed to be sexy? Really, it just made me feel super uncomfortable. As someone who finds Alexander Skarsgard incredibly attractive, I’ve got to say that it was a weird and wasted opportunity. Oh, well—we still have hopes for next week. Besides boning the dancer, Eric is dealing with the missing Bill situation. Because of his attraction to Sookie (sure, okay), he feels conflicted about helping to find him, but, still, he is duty-bound as sheriff of Area blah blah blah. Adding pressure to his workload is the Vampire Queen of Louisiana, Sophie-Anne (played overwhelmingly by Evan Rachel Wood), who is having him sell vampire blood to help her pay taxes because vampires be mingling with people now. Unfortunately, the vampire magistrate has come all the way from Juniper Creek to see why so many vampires have gone missing and why the use of V is so prominent in their state. For being so old and experienced, both Sophie-Anne and Eric are terrible liars. The magistrate seems to suspect something, but he’s not saying what, at least not yet. Also at Fangtasia is Pam who, I’m glad to say, will be around a lot more this season. She’ll also be a lot gayer—good for her!

Speaking of gay, Sam Merlotte is having some adventurous dreams, thanks to drinking Bill’s blood at the end of last season. Like the Eric sex scene, Sam’s dream pretty much lacked any real sexiness, at least for me. I’m sure there are people out there who are supes turned on by the idea of stocky men with feathered bangs taking a shower together. For their sakes, I’m sad to say that Sam wakes up before they can do anything besides walk around each other and speak thinly veiled innuendo.

Lastly, we have Tara and Lafayette. Tara is filled with anger and sadness over the death of Eggs and is looking to pin the blame on someone. Unfortunately, I don’t feel all that bad for her. That relationship was weird and she has always been full of sadness and anger anyway. Still, Lafayette is there to take care of her and thank god for that. He had a pretty traumatic last season and I was glad to see him all sparkly belts, feathered fedoras, and PILLS PILLS PILLS. There’s also the fact that he is the smartest character on the entire show, as seen in his verbal takedown of the walking train wreck that is Tara’s mother, Lettie Mae. The episode ends with Tara locking herself in the bathroom and attempting to O.D. on Lafayette’s personal pharmacy. Lafayette figures this out (like I said, smartest on the show) and tries to break the door down. Honestly, he should just let her die. And then he should find away to let Sookie and Bill die, too. That way, we might actually end up with a pretty good show on our hands.

Same time next week!


Librarian Girl said...

Ok, so True Blood is on my list of things to watch, but I have not yet started. If it wasn't already on my Netflix queue, I would put it there simply based on the fact that you said the phrase "vampire magistrate."

Rachel said...

Coincidentally, "Sadness aided by fiddle soundtrack" is one of my three emotions, too!

Very nice recap; Ricardo Lawson would be proud.

Keely said...

I can't get behind all of the Sookie hating- I love her! Also, I thought the scene where she walks in on Eric in the basement is hilarious... and then you get a butt shot- so its funny and sexy. If I were going to let a character die it would be Jason- moron should not have killed that perfect specimen of manliness that I enjoyed ogling.

Farah said...

maddie - i found your blog while stalking you on FB during one of my study breaks. thank god for study breaks. any chance you'll be doing some Real Housewives recaps? perhaps your mom can guest-blog? see what you can do.

Madeleine Davies said...

LG- "Vampire Magistrate" is probably one of the least ridiculous things about that show, but I love it regardless.

Rachel- Thanks!

Keely- I love dummy Jason! I also love how much we disagree on movies and TV (sincerely). Somehow we make this friendship work regardless;)

Farah- Do you read Richard Lawson's RH recaps on Gawker? He sets a pretty high standard.

katie said...

I have stumbled upon this freshly christened blog so so happily. my obsession with teevee (I watch each episode of my favorite shows twice usually in rapid (rabid?) succession) and am a hapless devotee of the overwhelming richard lawson. this blog and me, I think we are gonna be friends.

Madeleine Davies said...

Thanks, Katie! I'll look forward to your weighing in!