‘True Blood’ Recap: Russell’s Bloody News

Denis O'Hare as Russell in True Blood (HBO)

Denis O'Hare as Russell in True Blood (HBO)

Last night’s episode of ‘True Blood‘ had it all: references to classic movies, surprise endings, thoughtful critiques of the U.S. political system, and more bare breasts than a whole evening of Cinemax thrillers.

Eric the Viking
The V Squad is waiting for Eric when he arrives at Fangtasia, led by Nan Flanagan (Jessica Tuck). They “silver” him, then make give testimony, which is piped via web cam to the authorities, about the death of the magister. He tells them that Russell did it, giving a discourse on werewolf/vampire history.  He explains he did not report Russell to the authorities because he has waited one thousand years to kill him.  Say what you will about the sexy vamp, he is patient.  Eric is placed on lockdown. Pam is hurt that Eric never shared his past with her.  He tells her that if he dies, she should make a new vampire. The authorities disavow everything and decide to sweep everything under the rug.  They want Eric to take care of Russell off the books. The vampire Rights Act is more important to the authorities than stopping Russell.

Russell Makes A Video That Is Destined To Go Viral
Russell cries over the bloody goop that used to be Talbot.  It’s oddly touching.  Those two could teach a seminar on what it takes to make a relationship last: infinite wealth, clearly defined roles, and the freedom to sleep around.  Russell places the Talbot Jell-O  in a glass urn and carries it around with him. It’s the most disgusting romantic gesture since Angelina Jolie stopped wearing that vial of Billy Bob Thornton’s blood around her neck.   The king vows to make Eric and the authorities suffer.

‘True Blood’s Denis O’Hare: ‘Things Start To Go Really Crazy’

In her limo, avowed Tru Blood drinker Nan uses a bare breasted stripper as an afternoon snack, as she watches a news report about the Vampire Rights Bill in Oregon.  I think Nan’s blatant hypocrisy makes the authority an allegory for the Republican party.  Then again, the Vampire Rights Amendment is clearly a stand-in for gay marriage, and boy did the show luck out with the courts recently striking down Prop 8, because it makes this episode so timely.  Suddenly, Russell appears and kills the newscaster. He makes a huge speech about how the Vampire Rights Amendment is a fraud because it is based on the premise that vampires are just like humans.  This, is not true.  He is the true face of vampires. He asks why would they seek equal rights to humans, when they are not equals?  He concludes, “Now,time for the weather.” That was the best TV newscast insane takeover since Howard Beale in ‘Network.’  Think about how many hits Russell would get on YouTube.  He would be more popular than Keyboard Cat!

On a more serious note, Russell’s stance seems to be a riff on the faction of the gay community that argues that the gay community is too eager to argue that gay people are no different than straight people, and that gay relationships should not aim to replicate the structure of heterosexual relationships, while the vampire authority is mainstream gay rights organizations.  Only, the Authority is totally corrupt and gay people don’t go around committing murder, forging alliances with werewolves, and plotting to take over the world.  So really, I think it works better as a statement about how the overall political process is totally corrupt, unless one considers Russell to be the embodiment of all the anti-gay movements fear-mongering about gay people.

Sookie and Bill Share The Same Dream
Sookie takes a  post coital shower with Bill. They are both covered with blood.  The camera lingers on Anna Paquin’s refreshingly implant-free chest.  Fanboys rejoice.  They have shower sex. The blood pours down the drain.  It reminds me of the opening scene of the movie ‘Carrie.‘  Downstairs, the werewolf’s dead body is stinking up the living room.  Sookie complains about how annoying it is that they still don’t have a normal life. Uh, nobody forced you to get back together with him. She asks Bill about his secret file on her.  He explains that he put it together to find out why Eric is so obsessed with her.  Her cousin Hadley summons her to an aquarium.  Her son Hunter, whom she snatched from daycare, is with her.  It turns out he can read minds. He and Sookie have an entirely mental conversation, like Danny and Dick in ‘The Shining.

Bill dreams he’s in the same place that Sookie saw in her dream.  Claudine accuses him of killing Sookie. He demands she tell Sookie what she is.  When he wakes up, Bill tells Sookie he knows why everyone is after her.  He knows what she is. We, unfortunately, won’t find out until the next episode.

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Jesus Loves
The morning after their romp, Jesus wears one of Lafayette’s flowered robes. He has a tattoo of a jaguar on his chest, which he claims was his high school team mascot.  Either he’s the best boyfriend ever, or he is in some weird jaguar related cult.  Lafayette’s Mom notices “LaLa’s” afterglow, and actually approves.  Jesus orders the veggie burger with bacon. Ha. Wait a minute.  Merlotte’s has a veggie option?

The Dark Crystal
Jason discovers that Crystal has told Felton, her kind of fiance, that he kidnapped and raped her. What a gal! When Jason attacks Jeremy, she hits Felton with the butt of Jeremy’s gun.  In a detail that seems relevant, Crystal tells Jason to tie him up with rope because he can escape handcuffs.  Jason disguises his voice and calls the police to report Felton as a drug dealer.  Felton nearly kills a deputy, Kevin. Oops!  Jason suggests Andy trace the V they planted on Felton to Hot Shot and arrest the whole ring.  Crystal does not want to see her family arrested, pointing out that children will end up in foster care. Crystal’s Dad hunts her down at Merlotte’s.  Sam nearly beats him to death.  Crystal insists on accompanying her father to the hospital.

Franklin’s Brief Return
Tara goes to a support group for rape survivors. Holly, the new Merlotte’s waitress, tells a story about being raped by a co-worker.  Franklin shows up at Merlotte’s alive and well.  He simultaneously claims he is in love with her while threatening to kill her.  Jason, of all people, shoots him with a wooden bullet, saving Tara and reducing Franklin to goop. I would have liked to see her save herself. Actually, I would like to see a spin-off about Franklin, the Lovelorn Vampire Psychopath Detective.

More From Merlotte’s
Sam finds Tommy naked with a skanky blonde.  Yes, we see her boobs. Arlene accuses Tommy of stealing her tips.  Holly comforts her. Arlene confides that Terry is not the father of her baby. She admits she does not want to have the child, but refuses to consider abortion.  Holly tells her there are other ways to solve her problem.

Jessica serves Hoyt and his tiny Christian girlfriend Summer.  Her fangs come out.  Summer praises him for choosing “life” over Jessica.  Hoyt tells Jessica he hates Summer but is with her because it beats thinking about Jessica.

“You need to trust me and stop thinking of me as a thing that needs to be protected.” – Sookie gets feminist with Bill

“The American Vampire League would like to perpetuate the notion that we are just like you. I suppose in a few small ways we are.  We’re narcissists.  We care about getting what we want no matter what the cost, just like you: global warming, perpetual war, child labor, torture, genocide.  That’s a small price to pay for your SUVs and your flat screen TVs, your blood diamonds, your designer jeans, your garish McMansions…” Russell scolds human beings

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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