Monday, June 23, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "Radioactive"

Here we are at the end of an interesting run of a series that successfully resurrected itself from near death. Before my season 6 marathon I was dreading the final season until this one restored my faith in Bon Temps.  Anyway enough of this wanton praise let us discuss what actually happens in “Radioactive”.

To me the most controversial but necessary step was to turn Warlow back into a bad guy I think it was simple and weak choice it could have been done a little better but it was a fairly packed finale. Now for some reason Warlow being alive was providing the daylight resistance to all the vampires who fed from Bill with his death they revert to your normal run of the mill vampires. Let’s face it there was no way they were going to let the daylight thing run over to the new season.

Violet is a weird possessive girl but I like the dynamic between her and Jason, I wonder if he thinks he can change her because as we see she has a hell of a temper.

And then we have the time jump which was interesting in itself, 9 months is a good space of time and allowed for the interesting changes around Bon Temps such as Sam as Mayor, Violet moving in with Jason and finally Alcide and Sookie getting back together.

It seems the Hep V takes a lot longer to kill vampires when it is out in the wild so they have become quite a problem in Louisiana. The mayor and Bill who has become a bit of a celebrity after breaking the Hep V/Tru Blood story have come up with a plan for a vampire to protect a human on a one to one basis.

To that end the hold a mixture at what is now Arlene’s bar, things seem to be going well until dun dun dun, Bill and Alcide smell trouble and we see the zombie vampires attacking the party in force. This season has been a revelation and for me at least the season MVP has to be Sheriff Bellefleur, Chris Bauer definitely brought it home and helped make True Blood something other than a mess of sexy times and nonsensical plotting. I just hope things stay at this level next season.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "Life Matters"

I know that penultimate episodes are usually action packed drag out battles but True Blood did something rather unique by setting the episode in two incredibly different settings Vamp Camp and Terry Belflour’s funeral. I will start by saying for me this is simply the best of the current season and perhaps of the series as a whole from my point of view.

Let me talk about the raid on Vamp Camp, gruesome action packed and actually in some points moved character development on which to be honest was a bit of a surprise. Personally I would have thought that they would be better prepared for a vampire attack after the whole escape thing but between it being the day and the fact it had to go that way I am willing to give it a pass.

Did Eric really have a plan? It seemed a little bit loose as he knew that there was a deadline for the death of Pam and Nora even if he didn't care about the others yet he seemed to be just strolling up and down the installation at least until he found and healed Jason, then things began to seem like they actually mattered. Also that little dialogue between the two blonde bombshells was good with Jason’s almost apology for being all crazy and racist for awhile and to be fair Eric seemed to be in a forgiving mood so that whole thing worked out.

How did Bill know where the Vamp Camp was? Hadn't this been something he had been trying to ascertain for most of the season with no luck? Anyway I feel for Bill being painted into a corner as a saviour and trying to do the right thing where mostly everyone else thinks he’s completely lost it. He tried to help Eric and Eric screwed him over royally, he goes to Sookie for help to rescue their friends in common and she shuts him down and doesn't even apologise for staking him.

The way this episode moves between the funeral and the vamp camp is amazing and poignant. The service itself was beautiful though I was amazed by how fast the turnaround was. The speeches and those new scenes where we got to see Terry and his struggles with PTSD. All the speeches except for Sookie’s which came across more than a little self-centered with her coming out and all.

Jason missed out on the funeral which was a shame but ultimately made sense as he had a lot less time with Terry and his confrontation with Sarah Newlin was powerful I had more than a moment when I thought he might actually pull the trigger and his speech shows that despite appearances he isn't just a dumb hunk.

I can’t properly put into words how well-crafted this episode was and the fact that this is my undisputed favourite episode of True Blood. I have admit to myself that this season has been a hell of a turnaround from the shenanigans of recent times.

Monday, June 16, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "Dead Meat"

True Blood
Season 6
Episode 8
Dead Meat

After this there are only two episodes left, to be honest I thought that I would have more questions. At the end of the season there is going to be a major death apparently now I take that to mean a death that would have someone staying dead and not being resurrecting through some weird hijinks. I don’t know who is going to die but trying to bait us into thinking Sookie is going to turn isn’t going to work with me. Still let’s get to what actually happened.

Jason is now in a committed relationship with Violet who is awesome because she seems to be a vampire who intimidates Pam, yeah I’ll give you a minute while you check to make sure you read that right. She is a really odd vampire and definitely not lacking in confidence she also seems pretty old so I hope she sticks around even if it seems to signify the end of any hope for Jason and Jessica.

Now that whole Bill and Eric scene to me just ending up with Eric bitching about things far beyond Bill’s control, yeah he is mourning but he was also just being a jackass he broke a deal and then went from jackass to that crazy revenge trip he went on with Russell.

Ah the Werewolf Pack I still really don’t care but it was nice to see Alcide half step up against Rikki the fight itself just made me feel uncomfortable so I’m glad it didn’t last that long. The fallout though was that Alcide left seemingly his positon and with Nicole and her mom and later returned them to Sam.

Terry’s life insurance scam and Arlene’s struggle with the Belflour Matriarch were actually far more interesting than I thought they would be I was always confused by Arlene and where the show wanted to take her given how much of a 180 she is from the books but I can say this season has been good. Also seeing Arlene’s friends around her is given the cast something to do and get their teeth into, Sheriff Andy’s speech about whether or not he should go after Terry’s killer was something special though I can’t blame him for Terry as it was Terry’s idea.

Sookie, oh Sookie I don’t even know what to write in here I just don’t get even half of her motivations to do the things she does or more accurately more moan about the circumstances to which she finds herself. Warlow wanting to turn her into a vampire yeah that sucks but his seemingly genuine declaration of love is a bad thing? Yeah a little over the top and teleporting into her bathroom speaks of boundary issues.

Bill puts things to her plainly enough your blood can save your friends but she sits there and second guesses him all this after pretty much begging Pam to turn Tara and her agreeing to, just seems that she forgets what others have done for her in the past. Then when she went to Sam and said that he was her safety husband I was like I’m sorry wut. That has got to be one of the most insulting things she could possibly say, I know Sam was mad but after that I would have been furious, it just shows how self-involved she is. Unfortunately given this is the second to last season it doesn’t seem like something that is likely to change.

Oh crazy Sarah Newlin, to be honest I don’t have a clue what is going on with this storyline but I guess the writers really wanted Anna Camp back after last season. Still without Anna we wouldn’t have Vamp Camp without her so I’m going to try and forgive her god inspired craziness.

Well I really do wonder what is going to happen next episode as most shows tend to go big penultimate and resolve some in the final. I am assuming Warlow is alive as that would be way to abrupt if Eric had actually just killed him.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "In The Evening"

Season 6
Episode 7
In The Evening

Wow Jason that was a seriously gentlemanly thing to do and I feel kind of bad for him I don’t think he was expecting such a cool reaction from Jessica but even with that he still went out and did what she wanted. I like this Jason much funnier and easier to deal with than the weird Jason who sees racist visions of his parents (*cough* still not explained).

Poor Jessica though she really is in a very dark place and after her recent experiences and the fact that she is really young even by human standards I am amazed that she didn’t entirely fall apart. I’m not really sure what to make of the whole sex thing, in fact I actively do not wish to discuss so let’s move on.

So Nora isn’t looking too good and Willa is actually kind of growing on me, you got to step it up though I suppose if you spend all your scenes carrying a severed hand. We learn about Nora’s origins but bleh who cares about that – not me. Nora then died so we now know exactly how deadly Hep V would be should those bottles successfully ship out.

Arlene’s grieving breaks through to Sookie and she leaves Warlow in Faeville and helps out her friend, Arlene is falling to pieces and lashing out all over the place but we can see that the family has rallied around her. Bill strolling in like a boss was interesting to say the least, his words to Arlene were immaterial the real scene was the face down with Andy, a speech about his losses and Andy’s losses and the fact that they both have one daughter left… that was intense. Put simply I’m sorry Jessica killed your daughters but touch her and I’ll probably execute your entire family scary stuff but hey Andy just stood there in front of the Vampire strolling around in the daylight and only backed down because his girlfriend asked.

Things are getting interesting down in Bon Temps to say the least and I need to know what happens next.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "Don't You Feel Me"

Season 6
Episode 6
“Don’t You Feel Me”

True Blood did some serious pruning to the cast list something that it had needed to do for at least a couple of seasons, join us now as we take a look and see what happens next. Todd Lowe is the man who played Terry Bellefleur who is of course now deceased which for me is a shame. Terry is amazing in the books and always seem to punch above his weight on the show even that unspeakable war and curse storyline.

Warlow is still doing his best Edward Cullen impression and it is still a little creepy though it seems that Sookie is at least partly falling for his charms. Sookie takes Warlow to the fairy dimension which takes him outside of Billith’s summoning range. While there they talk about their feelings and eventually hook up and make shiny fae sex lights, which was kinda disturbing but hey it is True Blood moving on.

Vamp Camp is a truly twisted place and in this episode we get a real good view of it when Jessica and a dashing young (looking) vampire are threatened with violence if they don’t have sex. It is a hard scene to watch but it does pretty much make you an instant fan of this new vampire who seems at least at first to be a nice guy. We also see Eric and Pam bury their differences into the throats of a couple of guards and begin a long run at escape which eventually reveals the big bad possibility of poisoning the entire vampire population of Louisiana (and I guess judging by all the attacks on bottling plants most of the US) with Hep V.

Sam decided to hand over Emma to her grandmother who left the pack which I think in the end is for the best because those folks are psychos and because I am so uninspired by this storyline. Adeline has a name and good grief she deserves it I am surprised she is not still in shock after her shocking life so far I hope she lives through the season.

Bill drinks the fairy juice and it seems to work for now so he promptly heads off and a little jog and only goes and assassinates the tyrant himself aka the Governor. I don’t blame him but I hope he realises that this isn’t solving anything at the most it might buy him a little time still Bill is far less annoying now than he was.

At just over the half way stage I have to say this is the best season of True Blood in a long time so much better than the previous season. The storylines are mostly tight and going somewhere and the characters are mostly being three dimensional and seemingly following motivations that make some kind of sense. With another four episodes to go I am only slightly worried about the show derailing into a burning fireball of a mess.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "Fuck The Pain Away"

Season 6
Episode 5
Fuck The Pain Away

Yeah that is a very weird title but never mind as we have an episode to recap. Well I wasn't sure it would ever happen but we got some interesting background to Sookie’s story though it came across a little confusing. When Sookie’s dad was arguing with her mom about killing Sookie it made it sound like Sookie was maybe a baby or a little older but I am sure they had shown in the past Sookie being five or six at least and listening to her mom’s fear of her. Either way though it reveals that Sookie’s Pops be cray cray and that Warlow is a creepy stalker that makes Edward Cullen look like a happy go lucky kind of guy but apparently women dig that.

Eric steps up in a big way and goes to Vamp Camp seemingly in order to break out Pam and maybe if he can be bothered Tara and Jessica (that bit made me chuckle). Poor Jessica is reeling from her spree killing of the fae hybrids and goes to Jason for support resulting in one of the sweetest scenes on True Blood, unfortunately crazy Sara Newland had just fucked Jason for Jesus and she storms out and somehow manages to rescind Jessica’s invitation. By all the rules of Vampire Lore I know only the resident of a house can do that so I am than a little confused. Anyway Jessica gets scooped up by the vamp patrol as a result of Sara calling them.

Yay we have more Lafayette time but no because we could all see where this was going I mean how many times has Lafayette been body jacked? I guess that there really wasn't another way but it felt awkward and horribly telegraphed.

We get Warlow flashbacks to Fae in loin cloths and the story of how he was turned by Lillith. Something interesting is that someone told Lillith of the Fae and that they would be vampires’ salvation. We pretty much know what happened as Niall mentioned it before the extra is how exactly Warlow managed to kill his Maker.

Meanwhile back at the bar, you know where Sookie once worked AGES ago Terry calls on an old army buddy to well you know off him. That seems like a hell of a lead in but when he reveals that he killed their comrade he just signs up. I don’t know if this is about understanding the hell they went through together or his silent rage of the needless murder of a friend anyway this guy used to be a sniper and promises that Terry won’t know when the shot is coming which is honourable I guess. 

This whole thing is very messed up. We start to see more of what happens at Vamp Camp and some of it is pretty darn disturbing, though the survival game nonsense with Eric was mostly funny.

We can’t talk about this episode without talking about Sheriff Andy and the Fae Hybrid that Lived. That was a hell of a scene Andy busting into Bill’s house by himself with a pump action to save his children, they may be like 3 days old but that didn’t seem to matter and when he scooped up his girl and took her out. I wasn’t a fan of the fae daughters storyline but now that there is one of them hopefully it will suck less.

Friday, June 6, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "At Last"

Season 6 Episode 4 “At Last”

I’m still catching up on True Blood in preparation for the new season so join me as I take a look at my thoughts and fears regarding “At Last”. So Eric was thinking about the longish game with taking the Governor’s daughter as he decided to turn daddy’s little girl into the thing he seemingly hates most. To be honest as a centuries old vampire I would have thought he would have come up with something a little less destined to fail.

Warlow is now well and truly in the cold harsh light of the moon and I find myself more than a little confused by his motivations. When you think about he goes through a lot of work to keep the body count (around Sookie at least) non-existent sending Niall to the weird hell dimension thing and healing Jason though that second part may just have been to better glamour him later?

Ah the fairy hybrids with no names are you already gone we didn’t even know you. They were cute and then they became very annoying almost to the point that their deaths would be meaningless, except for poor Andy and his reactions. That seems to be a bad choice from the writers they should have made us more invested in them I know there is only so much time but if I can hear Pam saying the exact same thing to Eric for four episodes in a row then maybe you can give the hybrids some characterisation.

Pam and Tara happened but you know what if I could care less I would so let’s move on to Sam and civil rights girl. I’m sorry but I really can’t buy the hook up it made no sense he’s grieving for his last girlfriend, pretty much adopting said girlfriend’s adorable child yet he has time for a hook up my head hurts from this seriously. And no Lafayette around to save me from the stupidity of this storyline.

I almost forgot the werewolf pack who are totally crazy and I don’t even know what to say about them other than all the other civil rights hipsters appeared to be dead by the end where is this going to go? It seems that the excellent quality of episode 2 was a one off and things are tailing off in terms of quality again I am in till the end of the season though so we shall see.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

TV REVIEW: True Blood "You're No Good"

True Blood

S06E03 “You’re No Good“

I am kind of having fun with this, the series flows a lot better when you watch it with little downtime and the flow of the story fresh in your mind through writing these recaps. So grab a cool beverage and settle in so we can talk all about True Blood Season 6, Episode 3 “You’re No Good”.

Jason what is wrong with him and why oh why does no one seem to care? Elsewhere Eric decided not to eviscerate the daughter of the Governor, I can’t see how that could possibly go wrong. Reverend Newland got himself picked up by the Anti-Vamp squad.

The journalist/civil rights activists/pushy hipsters help Lafayette and Glass Jim I mean Sam back into his place after the wolves left with Emma. Lafayette gave them a warning to stay away from all things supernatural and dun dun dun it was like foreshadowing.

Billith decides that the Sun has been talking shit behind his back and he’s about to go outside to have a chat in what I have called the Brouhaha in Bon Temps I think I’m going to go with the bookmakers on this one though.

Niall heads out on the hunt for Warlow and heads down to the Fae refuge which is empty of people and yet full of blood. After Niall finishes doing some impressive fae CSI he leaves the refuge only to meet up with Ben whose last name is Flynn somehow only managed to find it a day and a half after being given the directions by Sookie. I still think he is a spy probably for Warlow but we will have to wait and see.

Jason and Sookie FINALLY have a talk after Jason spending most of last season completely nuts and he explained about his hallucinations and Sookie suggests he go to the hospital, I figure if one of the few living relatives you have left comes to you with that you might be a little more insistent but whatever.

So we head off to the Sheriff station where they have taken delivery of new anti-vampire weaponry including those UV bullets and we see it is take your daughters to work day because the kids are there and they have done another age jump, got to be good for working child actresses in Hollywood right? Anyway Andy’s ex comes in after getting scared to death by hungry vampires the night before so he takes her off for some gun training.

The wolf compound has some unexpected visitors in the form of two dick cops looking for Emma’s dad who strangely enough has disappeared from his house. They somehow manage to make it out alive after Alcide’s mate manages to scare Emma into shifting. This whole scene is a little throwaway except for a suspicious owl looking on.

Andy shows that his game is strong and manages to get back in his lady friend’s good book because as I well know chicks love guns.

Niall drops his entire millennia long back story on Ben who decides to join up in the fight against Warlow. This seemed a little weird to me I would have thought Niall would have been more secretive about what he was doing but I guess when you are royalty perhaps you see the good in people or perhaps Fae are far more trusting than humans.

Jessica and Bill make plans to avert the vampocalypse™ and Bill sends Jessica off in an inappropriate outfit to find the creator of True Blood and Bill goes off to speak to Sookie.

Meanwhile back at the Vamp Camp the Newlands are bickering and I could care less, it is not interesting in the least though that hair is more than a little impressive.

Jessica’s mission is a success because well the guy had a pulse and that outfit is all kinds of fan service. Bill’s mission ends in failure and Jason getting bounced around like a sack of potatoes we do see that he has some serious control over his telekinetic abilities, Bill also says Sookie is dead to him which was interesting to think about as we go further through the series.

The journalists/activists show up at the Wolf compound and things escalate quickly, though they were being idiots trying to secretly tape things. Side note Rikki is seriously buff, things fall apart and half the pack decides to shift and go out for some hipster snacks, Sam seizes the opportunity for a jailbreak and then loses my respect when he decides to go after the head activist putting Emma at risk of recapture.

The governor has figured out where his daughter is or at least who took her and calls Eric. Can I just ask at this point how old is she meant to be because I assumed she was like 25, finished college and was working as an intern for dad but the earlier scenes with the backstory make it seem like she is supposed to be much younger. It doesn’t take long before Eric realises the gig is up but even before that Tara steals the girl away scared that Eric might actually execute her in retaliation for the Governor’s action, personally though I wasn’t convinced.

Back at Sookie’s house, Niall and Ben arrive but then quickly set off to capture, Eric’s sister who is watching for Warlow too.

Bill gets stopped by Sheriff Andy and seemingly senses the fae scene in Andy’s car, as he gets the whole evil mastermind look going on when he is walking away. That is all that mattered in “You’re No Good” an episode that is a come down from “The Sun” but still manages to be better than the premiere. Next week I am changing up the style of the recap to be less literal and more about my feelings while watching. What did you think “You’re No Good”?