Monday, July 27, 2009

"True Blood" recap: Oink if you're an evil, back-stabbing supernatural minion

Warning: Spoilers for this week's "True Blood" below.

This week's "True Blood" was all about betrayal. We learned that Daphne, the incompetent waitress who recently revealed herself as a shapeshifter, is actually the pig traveling with evil Maryann. We learned that Eric has enticed Bill's maker Lorena to return and drive a wedge between Bill and Sookie. We saw Sarah Newlin betray her husband by sleeping with his protegee, Jason. And we saw that someone betrayed Sookie to the Fellowship, resulting in her unwilling participation in the world's most hostile church "lock-in."
Here are a few of my thoughts, observations and questions about this week's episode "Hard-Hearted Hannah."
* True to the suspicions of many viewers (of many fans of Charlaine Harris's novels), that was indeed Lorena swaggering down the hall at the end of last week's episode. Turns out, Eric summoned her to work her magic on Bill, even though he and Lorena have seen each other in roughly 70 years. We saw some flashbacks to the days when Bill and Lorena rolled together and, man, was Bill nasty back in the day! Judging from the date on the flashback -- 1936, I believe -- I assume this was not that long before Bill and Lorena parted ways. What changed his mind? What turned him into the gentle, sensitive, tormented Bill we know and lust after? I'd like to know, please.
* And the time has come to know just WHAT Maryann is doing over at the Stackhouse house. Did she do something to Eggs? What does she want with Tara (and Sam, for that matter)? And what's with all the freakin' orgies? I'm getting kind of sick of this storyline, and desperately want to know what's up.
* At any rate, it wasn't a total surprise that Daphne is in league with Maryann, was it? She's always seemed a bit suspicious. But here's what I don't get. Early in the season, we saw Daphne waiting on Maryann in Merlotte's. They didn't seem to know each other, and no one was paying attention to them, so there was no need to pretend they didn't know each other. But, that incident was after Tara first saw Maryann with the pig. So how long have Maryann and Daphne been together? Is this a continuity error? Or did Maryann not recruit Daphne as her pig until after her dinner at Merlotte's? Is she a replacement pig?
* Though I'm not a huge Sookie fan, I liked the scene of her trying to sweet-talk her way into the Fellowship, then slowly realizing that they know who she is, that they plan to take her, and that there's nothing she can do about it. It was appropriately tense and creepy, right down to Sarah's clear anguish over this turn in her husband's plans. Very uncomfortable and effective.
* Jason and Luke's discussion about the morality/amorality of pre-marital sex and its many variations was a hoot, particularly Luke's description of the sin hierarchy. Apparently, the only thing worse than sex with vampire is "sex with a dude" or a "vampire dude." Oh Jason, please get away from these people!
* Running out of time so I'll just make one more observation. I really liked the scene between Andy, Lafayette and Terry in the kitchen. The role of Andy is so broad, it doesn't really allow Chris Bauer to show off his subtlety as an actor. I like how Andy started the scene blustery, then slowly eased off after being chastened by Terry (also, his delivery of the word "pizazz" was priceless). I also liked the subtle inference that Terry, the veteran, recognized Lafayette's cowering as some form of post-traumatic stress. The moment at the scene's end, with trouble Terry comforting trouble Lafayette was very touching.
* Ok -- one more observation: I love Hoyt Fortenberry. Loved the way he stood up to his mom and her snooty friend. Loved the way he ran out to the hotel to see Jessica, social conventions be damned. Love him so much. Jessica, please don't eat him. I will be really, really, sad.

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