Join 3,432 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


21st Century Vampires
August 14, 2010 12:38 PM   Subscribe

True Blood: The First 21st Century Vampires. [Spoilers, Previously, Via]
posted by homunculus (206 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Watch how fast I type "motherfucker!"
posted by homunculus at 12:40 PM on August 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


Ok, Franklin creeps me the fuck out. Like seriously, what-the-fuck-is-he-going-to-now creepy.

I hope we see more of him.

“A Latvian boy. Has to be tasted to be believed. Not polluted like most humans. Tastes exactly the way they used to taste before the industrial revolution fucked everything to hell.”

Considering the crappy diets in the South, it's wonder that the Vamps in True Blood aren't having humans flown in.
posted by nomadicink at 12:56 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Franklin reminds me of the strangling scene in the Soprano's episode, "College": just in case you'd got comfortable with this whole vampire thing, we'd like to remind you that this setting is not fucking around and is not something to get comfy in.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:02 PM on August 14, 2010 [14 favorites]


The marketing thing interests me cause when I first saw the ads I was ha! clever way to introduce the show's concept AND make a buck. But also the whole "Vampires are real and thus are a marketing demo" is one of the more amusing aspects - and with the Vamps = Gay motif, it's interesting to see them against actual gay-targeted ads. Watch something like Logo (the Viacom gay-Interest channel) and you see a lot of the same ads as on another channel, but with the genders changed. Or when during Pride a company like Budweiser suddenly remembers they should be making off you and slaps together some hilariously weak "celebrity diversity" ad.
posted by The Whelk at 1:02 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


that and Lone People Fighting Dark Secret They Must Keep From The World bores me. The "Transparent" quality, so to speak, is a deeper vein of storytelling to explore, and I like it when the show acknowledges that (Anibus Airlines, Hotel Camille, Vampires getting smacked with RICO laws...)
posted by The Whelk at 1:05 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Or when during Pride a company like Budweiser suddenly remembers they should be making off you and slaps together some hilariously weak "celebrity diversity" ad.

Schmidt's Gay
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:06 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


I wish they were as well done as Schmidt's Gay. Normally it's just the same stock photo of people laughing with a "For ...everybody" tag. Laaaaaaaaame.
posted by The Whelk at 1:08 PM on August 14, 2010


So I think I need to watch True Blood. That article convinced me when nothing else has.
posted by Mizu at 1:20 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


just in case you'd got comfortable with this whole vampire thing, we'd like to remind you that this setting is not fucking around and is not something to get comfy in.

The thing I don't buy in the True Blood setting (ok, the thing I have trouble suspending my disbelief for anyway) is the level of acceptance that vampires are receiving. Yes, there are groups strongly opposed to it. Yes, there is some hate crime. But they are certainly at least as accepted as gay people in the 70s.

And here's the thing; virtually every single vampire we've seen is a murderer who occasionally loses control and kills people. Including innocent people. Yes, even good ol' longs-to-be-human Bill. Every single one of them. I have a hard time believing that vampires wouldn't be hunted down under those circumstances. Some are pure evil. Some are probably just folks struggling with compulsions they can't control. But so are serial killers.

When even the "good" vampires are shown to snap and chow down on the nearest food source under certain not unthinkable circumstances I think we'd probably go with the Sam Colt solution. Not that I don't love the show but come on.
posted by Justinian at 1:35 PM on August 14, 2010 [7 favorites]


There was the vampire Jimmy James in the first season, who was a pretty mild mannered guy.
posted by codacorolla at 1:39 PM on August 14, 2010 [10 favorites]


I like True Blood as well as anybody else, but I don't think there's a very great case to be made for its vampires redefining much of anything, and I especially don't think there's a very great case to be made for its vampires redefining anything because they text and blog. But then again, I don't think there's much of an argument to be made for the idea that vampires even can be redefined; you either like this stuff when it's done well or you don't, but if you walk into a story about vampires expecting anything blindingly original, you're insane, or just haven't read/watched much of this stuff. Every. Possible. Vampire story. Has been told. Over and over and over. You can tweak things and change things here and there, but there have to be something like five thousand vampire novels in print, to say nothing of the TV shows and the movies and the comics and...yeah. The odds of anything really new being done with this trope are so low as to be totally friggin' cosmic.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 1:40 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ha, homunculus, the scenes with Franklin also highlight for me how Rutina Wesley (Tara) out-acts everyone else on that show. She is fucking amazing.

I had zero interest in Interview with a Vampire, Twilight, or any of the other vampire stuff out there, except Buffy, and wasn't even really into that.

But this show? They had me with the scene in the first season where Tara, a black resident of Bon Temps, confronts vampire Bill, who was a resident there before the Civil War, about the fact that the person in front of her was a bonafide former owner of her ancestors. And that she was more than a little pissed about it.

It's a campy show, because it's vampires, but a lot of the characters are believably Southern in the way that King of the Hill was believably Texan.
posted by emjaybee at 1:42 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


virtually every single vampire we've seen is a murderer who occasionally loses control and kills people

I haven't actually seen much of True Blood, but to take the Sopranos parallel a step further, perhaps the vampires we see in the show are atypically screwed up, borderline criminal (vampire-blood smuggling was mentioned in the link), and not necessarily any more representative of their species than Tony and his kin are of human beings in general?
posted by AdamCSnider at 1:43 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


The thing I don't buy in the True Blood setting (ok, the thing I have trouble suspending my disbelief for anyway) is the level of acceptance that vampires are receiving

I like True Blood because it's a great series to just revel in with a half turned off brain as it continually examines and mocks Southern craziness. It's perfect trash tv, light, mostly filling on an emotional level and you tell you friends you like it without feeling guilty. Plus, however bad the characters act, you know it's just the story.

The horror reality tv, such as Real Housewives or Real World is that those are actual people behaving badly. Imaginary vampires, even crazy ones like Franklin or ruthless ones such as Eric or Russell seem much more cuddly as viewing the shit real people do to each other.
posted by nomadicink at 1:46 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


that and Lone People Fighting Dark Secret They Must Keep From The World bores me

Yeah, it's a bit overdone. To be fair, most shows like this don't frame it that way exactly (Mulder's whole spiel was trying to reveal The Truth™ to the public), so much as relying on the theme that no one believes in paranormal phenomena. Which is true. The problem is, after a few seasons of seeing aliens/monsters/ghosts raising hell in a different town every week, the universe they create is one where the paranormal is actually ridiculously common and it stops making sense for no one to notice besides the protagonists. This always bugged me about the X-Files, especially when they started becoming over-the-top in later seasons. That shit would make the news, you'd think.

I like that True Blood is taking a different approach, but it feels like they've largely ditched exploring that theme since season one to be more soap opera-ish. Still a fun show but I'd like to see more "when mainstream culture and actual vampires coexist" concepts beyond the dysfunctional Sooookehhhh/Bill, Jessica/Dohyt relationships.

(didn't rtfa, I'm 2 episodes behind and afraid of spoilage)
posted by cj_ at 1:54 PM on August 14, 2010


Speaking of Franklin... is what Tara did to him permanent?
posted by porpoise at 2:00 PM on August 14, 2010


On preview fail..

The thing I don't buy in the True Blood setting (ok, the thing I have trouble suspending my disbelief for anyway) is the level of acceptance that vampires are receiving

I think this is a consequence of what I mentioned: them moving away from telling the story of vampires in the real world to telling the story of the drama between the ensemble cast, who are all ridiculously fucked up. It's understood (at least to me) that there are a lot of vampires, not all necessarily flipping out and killing people, selling vampire blood, getting in werewolve blood feuds (haha!), taking prisoners, etc.
posted by cj_ at 2:02 PM on August 14, 2010


Speaking of Franklin... is what Tara did to him permanent?

I would assume he is dead dead, much like a vampire being beheaded. She was able to attack him like that because she had drained a good amount of his blood the night before and left him weakened. Luckily, Franklin shows up in flash backs, because he was the best part of this season.
posted by shinynewnick at 2:07 PM on August 14, 2010


I have never understood why people find vampires scary, cool or impressive in any way.

Neither has Charlie Brooker.
posted by Decani at 2:12 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Speaking of Franklin... is what Tara did to him permanent?

I assumed that the look on Tara's face when Sookie told her that no, this is what a dead vampire looks like (goo), was a sign that Franklin would be coming back.
posted by homunculus at 2:13 PM on August 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


Speaking of Franklin... is what Tara did to him permanent?

She didn't cut his head off or stake him, right?
posted by nomadicink at 2:14 PM on August 14, 2010


Have you watched Murnau's Nosferatu?

(Yeah, that's a link to the entire movie. Thanks the future!)
posted by griphus at 2:14 PM on August 14, 2010


We've seen vampires die several times in this show, and every time they turn into a mess of ropy gore, even the decapitated Magister- as soon as his head hit the ground, it exploded into gore. Franklin was just a corpse with a smushed head. As far as I can tell, Tara isn't out of those particular woods yet.
posted by Pope Guilty at 2:14 PM on August 14, 2010


...that was a reply to a deleted comment.
posted by griphus at 2:15 PM on August 14, 2010


The thing I don't buy in the True Blood setting (ok, the thing I have trouble suspending my disbelief for anyway) is the level of acceptance that vampires are receiving.

Still a fun show but I'd like to see more "when mainstream culture and actual vampires coexist" concepts beyond the dysfunctional Sooookehhhh/Bill, Jessica/Dohyt relationships.

Hear, hear.
posted by homunculus at 2:16 PM on August 14, 2010


The VQ cover has Eric's last name wrong. Northman.
posted by Babblesort at 2:17 PM on August 14, 2010


Still a fun show but I'd like to see more "when mainstream culture and actual vampires coexist" concepts beyond the dysfunctional Sooookehhhh/Bill, Jessica/Dohyt relationships.

It's an Southern Vampire Mystery Series, not sure that's going to happen.

I mean if Sookie and Bill aren't a lovely sterotype of Southern relationships, I don't know what is. Sookie may be progressive as the South often claims to be, but despite all her intelligence and unique talents, she's still waiting tables in a bar and getting herself into one fucked up situation after another...

The show is wise to avoid human and vampires in the real world, because portraying that really doesn't well in a strongly reality based medium such as tv. Humans couldn't really co-exist with a species that had been feeding off them for centuries, you know? It just wouldn't work.
posted by nomadicink at 2:22 PM on August 14, 2010


I have never understood why people find vampires scary, cool or impressive in any way.

First off, that Murnau comment was directed at yours, which I thought was deleted. Second, here's a good explanation of why vampires became popular originally. They're still popular because they're fictional mainstays. No generation of film/television has not had its own take on vampire stuff. They're pretty much "sexy but dangerous" incarnate, and who doesn't like a little dangerous sex in their lives?
posted by griphus at 2:22 PM on August 14, 2010


There was the vampire Jimmy James in the first season, who was a pretty mild mannered guy.

Unless you touched his favorite blood-red stapler, then he'd rip your throat out.
posted by homunculus at 2:23 PM on August 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


It sucks that Talbot was staked. He was awesomely bitchy. Him and Sophie Ann bickering would have been a laugh.
posted by FunkyHelix at 2:29 PM on August 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


There's much to be said about True Blood, but I'm pretty sure it's the only place you ever get to see Thomas Cromwell type motherfucker on a cell.
posted by klue at 2:37 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Werewolves, shape shifters, swimming hippies—the world of True Blood is getting too crowded.
posted by homunculus at 2:39 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


I miss Vampire Bill Dauterive.
posted by Pope Guilty at 2:50 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


perhaps the vampires we see in the show are atypically screwed up, borderline criminal (vampire-blood smuggling was mentioned in the link), and not necessarily any more representative of their species than Tony and his kin are of human beings in general?

Bill, the main vampire character, is portrayed as an extremist/outcast among the community for his empathy towards humans and his desire to mainstream by sustaining himself on the synthetic Tru Blood instead of feeding on humans. Almost all the other vampires, and especially the ones in power, show varying levels of disgust for this lifestyle and consider him a sort of 'race traitor'. The show as featured other mainstreaming vamps like the already mentioned Jimmy James, but I think we must conclude that they are the minority. Even Jessica, the young girl who was home-schooled and secluded in a strict Christian family and who probably had never spoken to a boy or been to a movie before Bill sired her, and who was subsequently guided/parented by Bill in how to mainstream and how to not harm humans, has killed when her emotions got out of control and because she had not yet been taught how to sense when someone was about to die. We are pretty much left to the conclusion that vampires must work extremely hard to overcome their urges, a trope that is common to almost all vampire stories that feature a hero vampire, and that the default state for vampires otherwise is bloodthirsty and cruel.
posted by Rhomboid at 2:53 PM on August 14, 2010


Jessica's also getting over a lifetime of social and emotional repression. This is like Rumspringa for her.
posted by Pope Guilty at 2:58 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]



Great read. I agree that the show is getting a little crowded but only because we only have 1 hr per episode. If it was a bit longer each week, then all the characters would have proper room to develop their stories.
posted by dealing away at 3:03 PM on August 14, 2010


It sucks that Talbot was staked. He was awesomely bitchy.

I wanted to see him and Lafayette have a fierce-off. :/
posted by elizardbits at 3:18 PM on August 14, 2010 [10 favorites]


I agree that the show is getting a little crowded but only because we only have 1 hr per episode. If it was a bit longer each week, then all the characters would have proper room to develop their stories.

Cut out crap subplots like Sam's white trash family hijinks, problem solved. Seriously the least interesting thing going on this season and it's already gotten more screen time than Jessica and Lafayette combined. Does he just have a generous contract or something? I don't get it. I liked him in the first season when he was at least interacting with the rest of the cast, but it's like he has his own (really boring) show going on now.
posted by cj_ at 3:18 PM on August 14, 2010 [11 favorites]


emjaybee about the fact that the person in front of her was a bonafide former owner of her ancestors

Bill never owned slaves but his father did.
posted by mlis at 3:23 PM on August 14, 2010


Cut out crap subplots like Sam's white trash family hijinks, problem solved.

I am so in agreement with this. Sam's whole thing is dull and cloying and has been from day one. I'd sooner watch Pam totaling Fangtasia receipts at a table.
posted by Babblesort at 3:31 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


That would be hawt, actually.
posted by nomadicink at 3:38 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I kind of like Sam's plot, even though it is the kind of thing I would normally hate.

Something about a family that has the power to SHAPESHIFT and wants to use it to make money but is so white trash stupid that the best way they can think of to do it is dog fighting is just hilarious.

I mean, maybe consider robbery? Mug people in the shape of a bear? Turn into a Canadian Goose, dive bomb some valuables and fly off? ...anything instead of getting yourself maimed by a pit bull?

I have an idea, DOG SHOW.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 3:42 PM on August 14, 2010 [12 favorites]


I agree with Decani ... and the Guardian article to which he links.

No. Contemporary vampires come in two flavours, if you'll forgive the expression. Sexless wimps (Twilight) or smouldering hedonists (True Blood). Morrissey or Michael Hutchence. Both troubled. Both dreamy-eyed frontmen with nice hair. Forgive my pants for remaining unshitten.

I mean, if you're going to go rock'n'roll with it, at least achieve some Satanic Majesty.

But all that said, I just caught a little True Blood the other day and couldn't help but be drawn in, by the humor more than anything else, and the fucking.

But I wasn't scared.
posted by philip-random at 3:52 PM on August 14, 2010


No. Contemporary vampires come in two flavours, if you'll forgive the expression. Sexless wimps (Twilight) or smouldering hedonists (True Blood). Morrissey or Michael Hutchence. Both troubled. Both dreamy-eyed frontmen with nice hair. Forgive my pants for remaining unshitten.

I believe it's "unshat".

It's a humiliating climbdown for a monster originally inspired by Vlad the Impaler, a man who'd happily eat his lunch while watching a skewered peasant slide down an immense wooden spike, being slowly and agonisingly dragged toward the ground by their own kicking, flailing body mass. Vlad would sit among entire forests of screaming human kebabs, chuckling and munching his oxburger or whatever the hell they ate back then.

To be fair, Eric did tear that one guy to pieces. This guys is right that a little more vampire-level violence would be great for the show though.
posted by r_nebblesworthII at 3:59 PM on August 14, 2010


One of my favorite recent bits was seeing Lafayette totally rattled by Jesus. When Jesus showed up at Merlott's and came on to Lafayette he was rendered nearly speechless and looked like he might actually blush.

He mostly regained his composure after a bit but it really tickled me to see Lafayette, king of the snappy rejoinder, left stammering and shy when the tables were turned on him.
posted by Babblesort at 4:00 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


it really tickled me to see Lafayette, king of the snappy rejoinder, left stammering and shy when the tables were turned on him

Yeah, that totally made me swoon and clutch my pearls. I thought he was going to giggle behind his hand like a cartoon japanese schoolgirl.
posted by elizardbits at 4:05 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


He did bat his eyelashes, though, quite winningly.
posted by scody at 4:07 PM on August 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


BTW, reading Jacob's Television Without Pity recaps of True Blood is a trip. They're not just recaps but lengthy dissertations on meaning and metaphor.

Here's a sample from Season 1 Ep 8 (so as to avoid spoilers):

She runs up the hill to where Mike the Coroner stands, alone with a cop, staring down. "Jiminy Christmas," says the man who's not Neil from Kentucky. "That's what happens to vampires?" Mike laughs, because this has nothing to do with him. They stare down into a coffin: it's a soup of blood. "Evidently. Plus, we got three more." The cop is totally grossed out, and Mike keeps laughing. "I hope you skipped breakfast!" He spots Sookie and doesn't really care. "Did Bud send you up here to make an ID? Because..." She barks, a rough and terrible sound, and runs away again. Andy calls after her, but nobody cares. Of everybody on this scene, only one of them had a man in the fire. Everyone else is safe.

Brothers and sisters, if you'll turn now to Hymn #203, "Fuck My Legless Grandmother," we'll see if we can't get to the bottom of all this. Because what appears at first to be a disjointed episode of Thirtysomething crossed with scenes from "Strange Love" is actually a pretty excellent meditation on what happens when you meet the Buddha, if you look at it right. Here's the text from the song:

You want me to complain?
All right then: Fuck this
Fuck you, fuck all of you
With your sniveling self-pity
And fuck all your lousy parents
Fuck my lousy parents while we're at it
Fuck my selfish bohemian sister
And her fucking bliss
Fuck my legless grandmother...
And fuck you for dragging me to this terrible place
And not letting me have a Snickers bar:
I'm going to get something to eat!

If you're not familiar with the poet, Ruth Fisher, the background to this melody is a pretty simple story: a woman loses her husband, not just once but many times, and tries to fill the aching hole in herself in lots and lots of ways. She tries, endlessly, to incorporate herself into her childrens' lives, and is rebuffed. She tries, endlessly, to reinvent herself. She dates souls more broken than her own, and even remarries. But the best thing she ever did was join a cult. And this cult, a self-help forum called The Plan, told her there was salvation from her pain. That emotions are rational and can be thought around, that God is a crutch, that exposition and explosion are the keys to repairing the cracks in our foundation.

posted by emjaybee at 4:09 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


My favorite scene so far was when (Mortal) sheriff Bud Dearborne finally got sick of the constant death and destruction the supernatural menace had brought to his Parrish and up and quit as soon as they found the 5th or 6th dead body in less than a year.
posted by Megafly at 4:19 PM on August 14, 2010 [4 favorites]


Cut out crap subplots like Sam's white trash family hijinks, problem solved.

Now it looks like he and Tommy are going to have a family feud with Crystal's family of were-whatever they are (armadillos maybe? Could Felix and Crystal be related?)
posted by homunculus at 4:22 PM on August 14, 2010


Something about a family that has the power to SHAPESHIFT and wants to use it to make money but is so white trash stupid that the best way they can think of to do it is dog fighting ....

This is Louisiana we're talking about here.
posted by Azazel Fel at 4:27 PM on August 14, 2010



BTW, reading Jacob's Television Without Pity recaps of True Blood is a trip.


Yes, much like his BSG recaps. But sometimes he gets details wrong in his immediate reviews (recaplets) and scolds people in the forum who criticize weaknesses in the show. He does said criticism in his recaps, which I think is kind of uncool.

Like people were on a tear in the forums of how stupid Sookie was acting and Jacob wrote a bit of a rant about how you needed intelligence to appreciate the show.
posted by angrycat at 5:02 PM on August 14, 2010


This is Louisiana we're talking about here.

Yeah, no mater how smart they all are, they do incredibly fucked up shit and are bound to their families in ways even they don't understand and defy all logic.

Sam's mom is the submissive wife who just did whatever to keep her family together, even if it involved shapeshifting for dog fights. Her husband is the idiotic white trash who doesn't have a lick of sense. Tommy is the half way smart son who could probably do better for himself, but is held back by the bonds of family. Layfette and Tera are similar.

Sam himself is a modern day good ol' boy. Not stupid, not prejudiced, solid member of the community, but really couldn't survive anywhere 'cept in Bon Temp.

Bill is the classic southern gentlemen, updated like Sam, so he isn't .

Sookie? She's not white trash, though I've seen her called that. Not necessarily well educated of course, but far from stupid. She's from a decent family that just doesn't go anywhere, no matter how smart or talented they are. Like the others, she's just bound to the land in some fucked up tangle of family and friends and fear of the unknown.

Eric? Pam? They're just HAWT. They are not locals. Make of that what you will.
posted by nomadicink at 5:09 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I would watch a Franklin Mott/Russell Edgerton/Pam spinoff religiously. I enjoy the minor characters so much more than the ongoing Sukah/Bi-yall saga.

Franklin reminds me of the strangling scene in the Soprano's episode, "College": just in case you'd got comfortable with this whole vampire thing, we'd like to remind you that this setting is not fucking around and is not something to get comfy in.

Exactly. The Franklin/Tara storyline is the anti-Twilight. See girls, this is what it's really like if an obsessive, murderous stalker thinks you're the yummiest princess in the world.

Someone should duct tape Bella to a toilet.
posted by bibliowench at 5:12 PM on August 14, 2010 [17 favorites]


Re: Franklin being dead. Talbot said he had to pick Franklin's brains out the bedsheets, so how could he still be alive? Or rather, still undead, or whatever it is vampires are.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 5:21 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Re: Franklin being dead. Talbot said he had to pick Franklin's brains out the bedsheets, so how could he still be alive? Or rather, still undead, or whatever it is vampires are.

Why do you suppose his brains cannot heal themselves, or that the self of the vampire is tied up in his head? The heart, or the blood itself, is more likely.
posted by Pope Guilty at 5:40 PM on August 14, 2010


Perhaps Franklin will just return even more messed up, typing m#fharkurd badly but really really fast. And even more pissed off. hold me I'm already scared
posted by dabitch at 5:45 PM on August 14, 2010


As others have said; if Franklin were dead he would have turned to goo. He did not, ergo he is not (truly) dead but still only mostly dead.
posted by Justinian at 5:54 PM on August 14, 2010


Another reason I think Franklin is coming back: you don't cast an actor like James Frain unless you plan to use him a lot. It's just too soon for him to be gone from the series.
posted by homunculus at 6:13 PM on August 14, 2010


I'm completely obsessed with the show and love it to pieces. Granted, it took a bit for the actors/accents to get established, but now it's ON.

Alan Ball has done amazing things with the source material, and the comic timing & delivery is so, so good: Lafayette's mom's reaction shot when Jesus shows up at the door, Sophie Ann & Russell's wedding air-kiss, Jason's Fellowship of the Sun fiasco, Talbot's tantrums, (sob!) Tommy's bad boy gloating, Pam's attempt to keep Sookie out of Eric's dungeon - I mean, really! The camp and sex go to eleven!

I'd love to see Sam, Terry and especially Tara get a break from the endless line of shit they've been getting - I wanna see them happy for once. And of course I can never get enough Jessica, Pam, Lafayette and MOAR NAKED ERIC AND ALCIDE PLZ.

At this point, I can't decide who scares me the most: Franklin or Debbie Pelt. There's some amazing fucked-upedness right there, and I can't wait to see what happens next.

/squeeing fangirl
posted by Space Kitty at 6:50 PM on August 14, 2010


I've got good odds Fraklin isn't dead, if you do something like that on a serial show, it's to leave people wondering....so if you don't get the actor back you can say "uh well..she killed him" but ..since he didn't explode into a bag-o-gore, I think he's just Very Seriously Wounded and will show up, all jack-in-the-box like at the end.

As for the series, here's the thing, it's fun. it has fun with the premise, it's fun with the characters, it's red lipstick and grand guigul camp. It's at it's best when it's in this Whatever Happened To Baby Jane mode of over the top. When it has to get all serious I turn off , which is my whole problem with the Sam Storyline. Sam Is Boring and his family is just normal fucked-up not crazy shape -hifting fucked up. Adlice bores me too but that's cause he can't act despite his pecs. Also this season is making Jason dull. I'd rather he not be there at all aside from his "And Santa?" line. I liked it when Sookie got to go out in the world to Dallas and see how the world was adapting to Vampires Totally Being Real You Guys and such. I like it when it's funny and don't like it when it's not.

I would watch a Franklin Mott/Russell Edgerton/Pam spinoff religiously. I enjoy the minor characters so much more than the ongoing Sukah/Bi-yall saga.

I'd said it before, I'd watch a traditional 30min 3-camera sitcom about running Fangtasia ala Cheers so hard my eyes would bleed.
posted by The Whelk at 7:41 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I really really want to see Franklin confront Tara with a fucked up bashed in head.
posted by Falconetti at 7:46 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Wait..speaking marketing, wasn;t one of the Lesser Cheney's involved in getting Budweiser (or another Big Beer Company) on board with marketing to The Gays.

Which is to say if I ran the show I would use this factoid to get Sarah Newlin back in the show cause I loved her and her mixed up head.
posted by The Whelk at 7:48 PM on August 14, 2010


okay BOOk-BASED SPOILER SPECULATION ALERT.


Tara is gonna become Magic. Not directly Magic, but via Jesus (the dude not the ...savior) and Lafayette (You have power!) cause my good money is on Jesus being a cultist ..a magical know-it-all, a Hunky Gay Wizard who is going to teach the entire clan how to fuck shit up.

Then the rest of the season so far makes sense in that it's to push Tara far enough so she really wants to learn about the Spooky Magical Stuff and learn how to protect herself to regain a sense of control. Tara gonna get all occult on us, mirroring her experience with The Witch in the other season.

And then Tara is gonna Kick. Some. Ass.


END SPOILER.
posted by The Whelk at 7:52 PM on August 14, 2010


MOAR NAKED ERIC AND ALCIDE PLZ.

AKA The Brotherhood of The Sock.
posted by homunculus at 7:53 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also my running theory on how the Bill-Sookie thing is gonna play out cause damn girl when you HAD HIM in the hospital room you DIDN'T MENTION THE FOLDER? THE FILES? The one your dear beloved was KEEPING ON YOU? She can rationalize it by thinking Russel would do anything, but it's going to come up sooner rather than later.

And it fits into why Sookie took Bill back. Sookie is. On. Drugs. And it's not just first love.
posted by The Whelk at 7:58 PM on August 14, 2010


The previous super hero one is kind of garbage. Iron Man the only superhero with a public profile? WTF, have you not heard of the Fantastic Four?
posted by Artw at 8:35 PM on August 14, 2010


WTF, have you not heard of the Fantastic Four?

Considering how the F4 have been handled in the last ....25 years, I'd say not.
posted by The Whelk at 8:49 PM on August 14, 2010


If you're not familiar with Marvels output in the 60s then you have no business pretending you know anything about superheroes. That's like talking about vampires without knowing anything about Dracula.
posted by Artw at 9:02 PM on August 14, 2010


Dracula...you mean the sushi guy?
posted by The Whelk at 9:09 PM on August 14, 2010


If you're not familiar with Marvels output in the 60s then you have no business pretending you know anything about superheroes. That's like talking about vampires without knowing anything about Dracula.

Superhero comics have basically been shit since our generation's been around, and it's only been in the last few years with the rise of retro TPBs and *cough* the .cbr file format *cough* that we've had access to anything more than people talking about it.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:57 PM on August 14, 2010


I mean, I'm 28. Rob Liefield became a thing before I was 10. People my age got kind of screwed in the superheroes field.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:58 PM on August 14, 2010


WTF, have you not heard of the Fantastic Four?

I saw that movie. It was terrible.
posted by homunculus at 10:07 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


/headdesk
posted by Artw at 11:14 PM on August 14, 2010


I'm stil trying to figure out how the Roger Corman version came out better than the multi million dollar version of the Fantastic Four. Even the thing was better.
posted by reklus at 11:15 PM on August 14, 2010


I first tuned in to this show because I was hoping for an intelligent, character-driven show in the line of the Sopranos, Deadwood, Mad Men, etc. More of that long-form cinema that seems to be a regular occurrence during this amazing current era of television. I hadn't seen Six Feet Under, but a number of my friends liked it, recommended it.

The beginning credits are great. They imply a show that is smart, a show that offers an authentic slice of life in that part of the South, with brimming with sexual tension, effortlessly weaving an American tale of ambitious scope, dovetailing from religion, to race, to class distinctions, to family, etc...

I don't know when it happened, but this show became progressively more and more campy. I grew increasingly frustrated with the show, wincing every time a new random arbitrary character or plot device was trotted out (ostrich egg? flying? queen? magister?) Why were they so goofy?! I understand the books are campy, but... this isn't television. This is HBO.

My problem was that I watched this show with certain expectations goin in, which I shouldn't have. Then one day I came across this.

Finally! Someone who understands! A voice in the wilderness decrying a freight train flying frightfully off its course! Who understood stories for adults actually track from plot point to plot point!

Now I enjoy it for the wonderful, silly camptacular awesomeness that it is. I embrace its nonsense, because that's what the show has done. They've fully committed to the bad accents, the gaps in logic, the constant parade of new characters, the gotcha cliffhanger moments that really amount to nothing.

Forgive me. All of this post is to say, enthusiastically, that I am a fan.
posted by ishmael at 11:19 PM on August 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yeah, if you expect True Blood to be all smart and mature and classy, you are totally tuning into the wrong thing. It's trashy, campy fun, aimed straight at the id, and while there's bits that you can beanplate occasionally, as of Season 3 the writers have finally figured out exactly what format works best for the show and are just absolutely nailing it.

Over in the MeTa thread that for some reason started becoming a True Blood thread, I mentioned that it's looking like the Simpsons: Season 1 started out not quite sure of where it was going or how to get there and Season 2 started refining the formula and figuring out what works and what doesn't. Now we're in Season 3, and just like the Simpsons, True Blood's third season is where everything comes together and starts firing on all cylinders. Here's hoping we get another five great seasons out of it.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:36 PM on August 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm behind a season as I'm watching it on DVD (yay Netflix) but, if you have read the books, prior to watching the show it helps things come together a bit more. The books are campy and fun, along with the wild, out there stuff. I really think you need to be into the whole SVM universe to take it all in.

My one big complaint with the show was initially how Eric Northman looked, as I had him pictured completely differently but, now I just go with the hotness of Eric and deal.
posted by SuzySmith at 2:35 AM on August 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


I like true blood a lot, but have a hard time agreeing with the article. Yes, it's a very different mythology from Twilight. But really it's just the logical extension of an outed Lestat-and-friends. Even the locale isn't far off.

The only thing true blood has really added is working gentalia -- not much of a stretch.
posted by coolguymichael at 9:37 AM on August 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


working gentalia -- not much of a stretch.

You know, if they're into that thing.
posted by The Whelk at 11:03 AM on August 15, 2010


Never in a million years would the line "Young lady, in this house we recycle!" pass Lestat's lips.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:25 AM on August 15, 2010


Vampires being Environmentalists is a cute twist in haha-of course, they've got to live here way longer than you - and also ahaha-oh my it's like they're cleaning up after letting their cows over graze. Russel's scary point - If we're going to be out in the open why don't we just RUN things like we should. There is some hint that they're already doing that, and the Vampire Rights Amendment isn't all moonlight and hugs.
posted by The Whelk at 11:32 AM on August 15, 2010


"I had zero interest in Interview with a Vampire, Twilight, or any of the other vampire stuff out there"

Y'all got to watch Let the Right One in -- subtitles, not the dubbed version. Creepiest vampire ever.
posted by Manjusri at 11:57 AM on August 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Y'all got to watch Let the Right One in -- subtitles, not the dubbed version. Creepiest vampire ever.

Can't emphasize this enough. Watch it and avoid the crappy Hollywood remake that will convert the story into Twilight, the Euro Trash Sequel.
posted by Mental Wimp at 1:32 PM on August 15, 2010


Never in a million years would the line "Young lady, in this house we recycle!" pass Lestat's lips.

Speaking of Anne Rice, since she's quite publicly renounced Christianity, one wonders if she wants to get in on this renewed popularity of vampires as entertainment. Interview with the Vampire was a great book but if ever there was a movie that could use a remake...
posted by fuse theorem at 1:37 PM on August 15, 2010


She's "renounced Christianity" but still loves Jesus. I think her beef is with the institution and not the beliefs, and I seem to recall her talking about how she fears she led people into sin with the Vampire Chronicles. So I dunno.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:43 PM on August 15, 2010


True Blood’s Vampire King Spills Character’s History
posted by scody at 1:52 PM on August 15, 2010


Tiffany?
posted by The Whelk at 7:00 PM on August 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


AUDIBLE GASP
posted by elizardbits at 7:03 PM on August 15, 2010


I usually don't go in for cheesy attempts to make a show seem like it is really happening, but I completely enjoyed looking through Jessica's blog, and found the "Fangin'" entry bizarrely endearing.
posted by nightchrome at 7:50 PM on August 15, 2010


So in terms of campy overtopness, show is back on track.

Oh Nan. Oh crazy Ann-Coulter Nan.

So is the Stripper-Lady from before going to end up Pam's sire and thus we get to see Pam try to be the devoted Babyvamp momma? Oh can we please?

"No, don't do that. That is stupid. You are stupid. Try not to do it stupidly."


Ahhhh, like clear mountain water.
posted by The Whelk at 8:09 PM on August 15, 2010


can we safely assume The Authority is headed by vampires who think Agriculture was a bad idea to begin with and what's this few hundred years ago stuff? What happened a few hundred years ago to make Vamps org-chart up?

Also catch the quick hint that Talbot was from Pre-Columbian South America?

posted by The Whelk at 8:11 PM on August 15, 2010


We. Will. EAT YOU. After. We. EAT. YOUR CHILDREN!

Now time for the weather.
posted by scody at 8:33 PM on August 15, 2010 [4 favorites]


That was the greatest thing I've ever seen.

Tiffany?
posted by Justinian at 8:54 PM on August 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also it seems like this episode is starting to address the very criticism I made earlier in the thread. Talk about your prompt service.
posted by Justinian at 8:56 PM on August 15, 2010


Also Bill's File on Sookie. Came up, but he's still all 'oh THAT that isn't MINE"
posted by The Whelk at 8:58 PM on August 15, 2010


Ok, that takes care of that.
posted by porpoise at 9:14 PM on August 15, 2010


O HAI GUYS IS FRANKLIN DEAD?
posted by Justinian at 9:15 PM on August 15, 2010


Aside from my lingering "where exactly did Jason come from?" thoughts, yes, he esploded.
posted by The Whelk at 9:17 PM on August 15, 2010


also fits my theory. TARA NOT AFRAID! TARA ANGRY! TARA GONNA FUCK SHIT UP. WOOO.
posted by The Whelk at 9:19 PM on August 15, 2010


Also Sam beating that guy to pieces was the most character he's shown in 3 seasons.
posted by The Whelk at 9:20 PM on August 15, 2010


Also I'm glad Tara is gonna get her own version of this. It's a Recovery Group! It's a Coven! Oh it's BOTH.
posted by The Whelk at 9:23 PM on August 15, 2010


Also I'm sure the show is in a cabal with the makers of home fitness machines. I am entertained and filled with a desire to blast my quads.
posted by The Whelk at 9:24 PM on August 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also it seems like this episode is starting to address the very criticism I made earlier in the thread. Talk about your prompt service.

Well done! How did you do that, anyway?
posted by homunculus at 9:42 PM on August 15, 2010


The thing that gets me about this show is -- based on its premise -- it should be horrible. if you ever think about reading the book you will get an idea of how bad this show really ought to be.

There was a promo that I heard on the radio, my wife and I are both fans of 6 feet under, and we were pretty sure that Alan Ball was cooking up a nasty shit sandwich. I'm pleased to say that we were wrong.

It's a horrible show, perfectly executed. It's the greatest shit sandwich ever.
posted by overbo at 12:03 AM on August 16, 2010


Also catch the quick hint that Talbot was from Pre-Columbian South America?

I must have missed it. What was it?
posted by homunculus at 12:35 AM on August 16, 2010


Loved loved loved tonight's episode, but felt the Tara/Franklin stuff was resolved way too quickly. The way she was talking to him, full of confidence and righteous anger, after one support group meeting, felt more like her fantasy of taking control than it was actually happening. I say this as someone who actively wants Tara to kick ass, but it just felt like she wasn't ready yet.

Not having read the books (I read the first one a while back, and am part way through the second), I feel apprehensive about Holly bringing positive energy into the mix. On this show, that's not necessarily a good sign. Hopefully The Whelk's book based speculation will come true, and whatever she is, she will help Tara find her true power.

Unfortunately, Joss Whedon has trained me to expect major badness when happiness looms (see also Lafayette and Jesus).
posted by yellowbinder at 1:46 AM on August 16, 2010



Does that help you decide America??? Oh man, I love this show. So now, what? Are 3,000 yr old vampires that hard to come by to kill Russell?
posted by dealing away at 2:10 AM on August 16, 2010


What happened a few hundred years ago to make Vamps org-chart up?

Spanish Inquisition?
posted by elizardbits at 3:21 AM on August 16, 2010


Space Kitty:

MOAR NAKED ERIC AND ALCIDE PLZ.

This. This. A thousand times this.

Last week's Eric & Talbot scene was the hottest "sex plus violent death" scene since Keller broke his buddy's neck after a blowjob on "Oz."
posted by dnash at 5:34 AM on August 16, 2010


My sadness for scary Franklin death was immediately cured by "now time for the weather" Russel-insania. Byooteeefull.
posted by dabitch at 5:50 AM on August 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Postmortem: Jerry's Dead
posted by homunculus at 8:52 AM on August 16, 2010


Babyvamp Jessica: My Name Is Not April
posted by homunculus at 8:54 AM on August 16, 2010


Spanish Inquisition?

That's what did it for the Camarilla. Not a bad guess.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:32 AM on August 16, 2010


That's what did it for the Camarilla.

All of this makes me wish I never got rid of all my VTES cards... or that I still knew anyone who played it.
posted by scody at 11:03 AM on August 16, 2010


I am entertained and filled with a desire to blast my quads.

I know I'm getting old when I don't understand the euphemisms for sex any more.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:43 AM on August 16, 2010


I thought the Postmortem was kind of blah until I saw that the headline they kept scrolling was "spineless vampire murder". That's some quality snark right there.
posted by Justinian at 11:59 AM on August 16, 2010


We. Will. EAT YOU. After. We. EAT. YOUR CHILDREN!

There was much cackling in the quin household when this line was delivered. It was felt that, finally, there was a voice on the show that represented me and my views on the world.
posted by quin at 12:11 PM on August 16, 2010 [5 favorites]


They still make VTES! The Gothsicles even wrote a song about how everyone should play it so that way somebody will be worse than their singer.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:13 PM on August 16, 2010


True Blood's "Barrage of Homosexuality"
posted by homunculus at 2:40 PM on August 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


I like this sentence from homunculus' link: "Of course, it is a wonderful irony that his message—as much as they try to convince you otherwise, vampires are not like you—is more correct than the line Bill and the Vampire League are trying to sell. ".

Which is kind of what I was getting at earlier and why I was pleased to see the mask slip in this episode. It isn't at all clear to me that the AVL is more representative of vampires than is Russell Edgington. The counter-argument to that is as made earlier in the thread, that the vampires we see on True Blood are no more representative than the humans we saw on The Sopranos. The counter-counter-argument to that has also been expressed.

TB is such a perfect antidote to crap like Twilight or The Vampire Diaries. I'm so tired of milquetoast emo vampires who seem right out of The Sorrows of Young Werther. Please.
posted by Justinian at 3:04 PM on August 16, 2010


True Blood's "Barrage of Homosexuality"

It's almost like he's being held down, pummeled, and ravished until he relents by all the homosexuality.
posted by The Whelk at 5:22 PM on August 16, 2010


Everyone else BUT Sookie and Bill are fascinating, except Sam, who is merely boring.

And just plain crystal for Talbot?! FOR SHAME Russell, you know he'd want a bit of color, something to really accent the red.
posted by nomadicink at 5:46 PM on August 16, 2010


Having just watched this most recent episode, I came here to say:

OH GOD RUSSELL



RUSSELL RUSSELL RUSSELL










RUSSSSELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL

posted by Greg Nog at 7:31 PM on August 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


He's got a spine, doesn't he?
posted by nomadicink at 7:38 PM on August 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Russell Edgington...
posted by homunculus at 7:39 PM on August 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


I kind of wish it wasn't in English so we could do Downfall Meme style parodies of it.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 7:44 PM on August 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Just got done watching Russell wrap up the news while wiggling anchor spine. Every time I think the show can't possibly keep giving me the same high I am once again left shrieking in anticipation for the next episode.

I can't remember the last time I felt this away about a show. The last thing that came close was also Alan Ball's. Six Feet Under was maybe the best drama that's ever been on TV but it still didn't give me the I-can't-wait-foot-hopping-pee-dance for the next episode to be on already.
posted by Babblesort at 9:31 PM on August 16, 2010


Best True Blood ending EVER. EVER. EVER. EVER.
posted by homunculus at 9:44 PM on August 16, 2010


Oh, I'm soooooooo going to order a veggie burger with bacon somewhere. Soon. soon.
posted by Justinian at 10:04 PM on August 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


1...2...3...4...I declare a vampire war!!!!!
posted by Mental Wimp at 5:01 AM on August 17, 2010


My regret at losing Talbot and Franklin (sniff) is more than mitigated by seeing Russell go up to eleven. THIS is how I want my vampires: violent, snarky, and with a raging superiority complex because to them, we are food.

From Defective Yeti's hilarious review of Twilight:
[Edward's] a good vampire, insofar as he doesn't eat people. But he really, really wants to. Hence the brooding. And to make matters worse, he wants to eat Belle more than anyone, because apparently she has great smelling blood. But he's also in love with her, you see. Oh my goodness, what a pickle! It's as if you or I were dating an apple fritter.

To Russell, we are all fritters.
posted by bibliowench at 6:52 AM on August 17, 2010


The Joy of Vampire Sex: The Latest Issue of Rolling Stone (probably nsfw)
posted by homunculus at 1:20 PM on August 17, 2010


MOAR NAKED ERIC AND ALCIDE PLZ.

AKA The Brotherhood of The Sock.


Actually, it turns out Alexander Skarsgard doesn't wear a sock.
posted by homunculus at 1:51 PM on August 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


To Russell, we are all fritters.

In my Ideal Vampire Worldbuilding this sort of thing would be a major source of conflict between old vampires and young ones. The old vampires would likely feel as you say; why that would be is probably beyond the scope of this comment. But the world used to be a much more dangerous, violent, and dark place than it is now (in the industrialized world). And the old vampires would probably have internalized the whole religious thing where they are evil incarnate, etc. The fact that they can only survive on living blood and can't abide direct sunlight is not going to help either. But that's really just a problem with socialization.

The youngish vampires, on the other hand, wouldn't have that problem and would be quite different. Even in the absence of stuff like Twilight I mean. Oh, with crap like Twilight you get tragicomedy where hordes of emo kids deliberately set out to become really, really shitty vampires. But lets assume that the emo woe-is-me-I-love-you-but-I-want-to-eat-you-Bella vampire thing didn't happen in this world. Would a mid 30s American Gen X'er all of a sudden decide that people are food, he or she is evil incarnate, and maybe it is time to go on a murderous rampage? No. No they wouldn't. Even on True Blood we see nods in this direction. Hell, with Jessica they had to give her a whole super-freaky sheltered Christian upbringing in order to make her prone to poor impulse control and such.

Honestly, young vampires would be more likely to stay up all night pwning n00bs at Halo:Reach with their super reflexes than to rip out an anchorman's spine on national television. BOOM HEADSHOT UR GAY says suckmyfangs271.

The only way around this, really, is to invoke vampirism as inherently supernatural and evil, corrupting all that it touches. I believe Buffy went that route. But as time goes on that view becomes increasingly less entwined with the vampire mythos; to a modern sensibility the Nosferatu type vampire is usually inherently less interesting than the Eric-and-Pam type. Or even the Lestat and Louis type or, god help me, the Twilight shit (if you're a 13 year old girl).

Evil fossils like Russell would increasingly snap and act out violently; the world is passing them by, the natural order of things is falling apart, and things they've known in their bones for a thousand years are being overturned in what seems a heartbeat to them. Jesus, people our grandparents (or parents...) age struggle to use a computer and think gay people are unnatural. Multiply that times twenty.

So despite what I said earlier, if many vampires survived the initial period after a hypothetical Great Revelation (and that's not exactly a given), the tide of years would make sure it ceased to be a problem. There would of course be exceptions but there are plenty of human exceptions who turn evil as well. Frankly, with synthetic blood easily available I would expect the fraction of humanity "afflicted" with vampirism to grow rapidly in the developed world.

Mmmmm beans.
posted by Justinian at 1:52 PM on August 17, 2010 [6 favorites]


Would a mid 30s American Gen X'er all of a sudden decide that people are food, he or she is evil incarnate, and maybe it is time to go on a murderous rampage?

Isn't the idea that the blood craving is so powerful that it takes enormous self-control to abstain? I don't see this as inherently evil so much as an aspect of vampire biology. If you accept that, then the difference is older vampires having embraced it, but younger vampires would be failing anyway (then feeling bad about it). I mean, True Blood can decide that vampires Just Aren't Like That, but the Jessica subplot (the only young vampire in the cast) bears out the more traditional view of vampires as insatiable.
posted by cj_ at 2:44 PM on August 17, 2010


(That said, yeah, they made her very sheltered. Since she's the only new vampire in the show, they can still go a different direction and blame her lapse on a failing of character rather than something new vampires are wont to do.)
posted by cj_ at 2:47 PM on August 17, 2010


Actually, it turns out Alexander Skarsgard doesn't wear a sock.

nnnnghh did not need this information as my mind is already enough of an iniquitous den of filth and wrongness
posted by elizardbits at 3:17 PM on August 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


I mean, True Blood can decide that vampires Just Aren't Like That, but the Jessica subplot (the only young vampire in the cast) bears out the more traditional view of vampires as insatiable.

Is it insatiable or just lacking direction? Bill has been a shitty teacher, which isn't too surprising, but Jessica insatiable? She's calmed down after killing the trucker and the only other person she killed was a werewolf trying to kill her. If anything, she's an argument for not making teenagers into vampires as that sort of hormonal recklessness is just asking for trouble.

But to enjoy your plate of beans, I wonder what a modern day vampire would be like, if we tossed out all the "must ravish humans as metaphor for sexuality". Would they be happy with a synthetic blood, perhaps different flavors as Talbot was doing ("This one ate nothing but oranges for weeks"). Would human blood really be the best or would animal blood be tastier, more filling (They live forever off an elephant!).

Speaking of Jessica, I wonder if she's ready for the wild ride she's going to take with Tommy. Hell, does he have any idea what he's getting into?

What say you Tiffany?
posted by nomadicink at 3:34 PM on August 17, 2010


I am a couple episodes behind, and the last one I watched didn't even have Jessica, so I may have missed some recent developments that'd change my view of it.

it insatiable or just lacking direction? Bill has been a shitty teacher

Well, yeah, but that suggests the default impulse is to kill unless they are taught to control it by someone more experienced. Perhaps insatiable is the wrong word, but it does seem to be their nature to some degree. I doubt Jessica would have flipped out and killed someone had she not been a vampire just because she was sheltered. But if they're going for a metaphor for sex or drugs, maybe it doesn't matter.

Off to catch up.
posted by cj_ at 4:36 PM on August 17, 2010


Isn't the idea that the blood craving is so powerful that it takes enormous self-control to abstain?

Sure.

What do you think would often happen if you locked a random 25 year old male in a room for two weeks with nothing but water and then put them in front of a feast on the other side of a plexiglass wall... which opens if they push a button which will deliver an intense shock to a complete stranger. I don't think most people would be able to starve to death before pushing the button.

But there's not a lot of justification for the blood craving being tied to living human blood rather than sustenance in general apart from the demonic evilly one. Human blood always has midichlorians or vital humors or chi or whatever which can't be synthesized. I just don't find that a very satisfying way of generating tension: It's a tough row to hoe to want to de-mystify most of the vampire tropes while maintaining that one.

But with regard to True Blood an actually coherent worldview Does Not Appear on the writers' to-do list. Still, I would expect modern 20th century and later vampires to overwhelmingly break with the Russell Edgington types even in a True Blood style world.
posted by Justinian at 4:57 PM on August 17, 2010


I think the big thing, now Post-Revelation, is that young vampires can be very OPEN about their ...uh ..lifestyle. They can drink True Blood, they can find willing humans, they can feed without willing...and it's all in public view. They *can* live among humans in a way the older vamps couldn't dream of, and they don't have the thousands of years of baggage/experience.

Since blood in the True Blood world has quasi-mystical qualities (Human blood acts on Vampires like how Vampire blood works on humans, a potently addicting super-power fuel complete with mental connections) so most Vamps are reluctant to give up feeding on people, but now they have a choice, a real one, and the idea of assimilation is possible. This has never, ever happened before and it's Freaking Them Out. Unlike say, Buffy, we don't get the idea that being vamped makes you a monster ...it has to be a choice, kinda. In the past that choice was made for you, but now it doesn't have to be, and that's the big divide between the older vamps and the newer generation.

Think about it this way, have Vampires ever had generational conflict? The only time I can really think it would come up would be the shift to an agricultural society. Or to put it another way, Vampires haven't had a big change to their entire way of life since the development of cities.

Everything is super new for them, and that is something they haven't felt in a long, long time.
posted by The Whelk at 5:23 PM on August 17, 2010


Also can we now call Russell Magneto?
posted by The Whelk at 5:25 PM on August 17, 2010


the best Vampire gang was in the first season, that's the kind of stuff I miss, where you get to see the various strains and sub-cultures in Vampire society. You had the classy New Orleans-Billi-Holiday vamp, the GOD-IS-DEAD Suburban Ubermesch vamp, and the hilariously bored Vamp Classic. Bill is supposed to be really fucking weird and an outlier in the vampire world, but maybe they're worried he's the New Model. Nan and her cabal are trying to use him as an Example to sell the VRA, which is a kind of con game they're trying to pull on humanity, but aren't comfortable around him as a Shining Vision Of Their Future.

For one thing, he's a total dope.
posted by The Whelk at 5:30 PM on August 17, 2010


Vampires as an allegory for otherism is intriguing. Where as you can't turn someone black or jewish or gay, a vampire can and usually within a day or so. Indeed, it almost allows and justifies said "otherism" because the person that existed ceases to exist in many ways and immediately joins the other group and there's no turning back. I'd be curious as to how a real life situation would handle vampires ability to make more vampires. Humanity could easily be overrun by vamps, thus reducing the delicious food supply and then vampire extinction? Surely there were certain codes or quotas in place about who could turn vampires and how many could be turned each year, month, etc.

It's intriguing that animals, particularly apes are monies are never thought of as human food, despite 99% genetically similar and possibly tastier if they're eating a natural diet. It's just human narcissism that paints ourselves as the most delicious food.

Mmm, dinner time!
posted by nomadicink at 5:38 PM on August 17, 2010


Aaaaand I only mention it cause they seemed to be Making A Point about the Vamp's various ages in the last episode (Pam is surprisingly young!)
posted by The Whelk at 6:27 PM on August 17, 2010


willing should have been killing, er up there.
posted by The Whelk at 7:17 PM on August 17, 2010


Humanity could easily be overrun by vamps, thus reducing the delicious food supply and then vampire extinction?

This is pretty much exactly the situation presented at the start of the movie Daybreakers.
posted by Justinian at 7:22 PM on August 17, 2010


Which was a great concept that got a bad movie stuck to it.

SIGH.
posted by The Whelk at 7:28 PM on August 17, 2010


wow..

Am I the only one that didn't know Eric was the EARTH TO BRENT guy in Zoolander that died in a freak gasoline fight accident?
posted by cj_ at 7:29 PM on August 18, 2010


I saw a photoshop that I CAN'T FIND NOW of that cover with Bill in Sookie's place but it was a bad job so it looked like Bill had no torso and yet a shapely pair of too -thin legs.


Eric is forever Iceman Colbert from Generation Kill to me. You remember when he 'flew" right after the invasion, right when he didn't have to worry about everything going horribly wrong all the time? I don't any human male has ever been as cute.
posted by The Whelk at 7:37 PM on August 18, 2010


I saw a photoshop that I CAN'T FIND NOW

Here it is...
posted by Tenuki at 8:51 PM on August 18, 2010


SEE!SEE HOW THE HIP DOESN'T CONNECT AND HIS HAND IS LIKE NOW LONGER? NO? ONLY ME? GOD TWO YEARS OF ARTIST ANATOMY WAS FOR NAUGHT.
posted by The Whelk at 8:55 PM on August 18, 2010


LETS NOT EVEN TALK ABOUT THE NECK OR TORSO GOD.
posted by The Whelk at 8:55 PM on August 18, 2010


OH GOD THE LIGHTING TOO GOD
posted by The Whelk at 8:56 PM on August 18, 2010


True Blood’s Denis O’Hare on Villainous Monologues, Love Scenes, and That Rolling Stone Cover
posted by homunculus at 12:52 AM on August 21, 2010


He, s so ...puckish without the Russel hair.
posted by The Whelk at 7:10 AM on August 21, 2010


I'm curious about this upcoming film he's in: The Eagle.
posted by homunculus at 10:44 AM on August 21, 2010


I'm curious about this upcoming film he's in: The Eagle.

"We will EAT YOU. After we eat YOUR DRUIDS! Now, time for the astronomical forecast. Agrippina?"
posted by scody at 12:13 PM on August 21, 2010 [2 favorites]


Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer Get Married
posted by homunculus at 8:59 AM on August 22, 2010


Hopefully no one will send them hate-cake.
posted by The Whelk at 9:30 AM on August 22, 2010


"I'm a [Spoiler]? How fucking lame!"

She has a point.
posted by homunculus at 11:48 PM on August 22, 2010


That was kind of a weak episode.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:02 AM on August 23, 2010


*closes eyes hides from thread* have not seen it yet, REALLY hoping for some more Russel-insania. And I already know that Sookie is a [SPOILER].
posted by dabitch at 7:27 AM on August 23, 2010


Post Mortem: Praise His Light
posted by homunculus at 8:49 AM on August 23, 2010


"I love Betty White too."
posted by Mick at 9:52 AM on August 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


REALLY hoping for some more Russel-insania.

Will him reliving [SPOILER] do?

The season finale will be awesome if they just reshow Hoyt doing what he did to Tommy, over and over and over.
posted by nomadicink at 6:19 PM on August 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ha, the best thing was when Jessica flung Tommy offa Hoyt and you hear this whine yip.
posted by angrycat at 6:21 PM on August 23, 2010


True Blood: where wages are paid in dirty vampire basement sex
posted by homunculus at 6:23 PM on August 23, 2010


Steve Newlin's been reading Vampire: the Masquerade books, I see.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:28 PM on August 23, 2010


I can see it now: "As is so clearly laid out by the Book of Nod, which is being published by a small firm of committed Christians over in Stone Mountain Georgia..."
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:29 PM on August 23, 2010


House of Pam?
posted by homunculus at 8:08 PM on August 23, 2010


OMB what?!

Okay this is how a serial show pays off. All that too many plolines thing? Delt. With. The theme is relief and revelation, even Bill was having more scary fun.

I'd like to point pu that I'm now ten for ten on predictions And who said they thought Sam was secretly a serial killer? This was so much better, it throws the entire last two seasons into a new light and holy fuck Sam now has a personality.

I know I say it every week but Go! Jessica!

Everything is out in the open! Laffs and Jesus are kinda related and also Magic!

Sookie has never looked better then in a football tshirt, discuss.

Note the Jeffery Dalmer line and uh, Russel? Yeah...

Anyone note has excellent the exit music has been? I tsrated noticing it after they used Timebomb. It's really well chosen.

Blah blah vampire business blah blah
posted by The Whelk at 8:27 PM on August 23, 2010


Also, Pam, literally a baroness? Awesome.
posted by The Whelk at 8:31 PM on August 23, 2010


Learn how to attract REAL Faeries!
posted by homunculus at 10:24 PM on August 23, 2010


Also, Pam, literally a baroness? Awesome.

It makes sense. She's always so regal.
posted by homunculus at 11:22 PM on August 23, 2010


True Blood in 60 Seconds
posted by homunculus at 4:08 PM on August 25, 2010


Goddamn, Eric. Badass.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:11 AM on August 30, 2010


I really enjoyed that scene where the dolls spoke to Lafayette, and I about died laughing at Summer lamenting the reasons why she thought Hoyt didn't want her. Just about the only thing that isn't working for me this season is Jason -- he's just too dumb to be alive it seems sometimes. With the exception of that encounter with the shotgun it seems like all he does now is gnash his teeth at things that confuse and bother him, and then runs off and does something rash and dumb.
posted by Rhomboid at 3:23 AM on August 30, 2010


In Memoriam
posted by homunculus at 8:55 AM on August 30, 2010


I enjoyed watching Pam kick Bill's ass until Sookie and the dancer/cardiologist saved him. Bill may be older and stronger, but Pam's smarter and came prepared. She should teach self-defense classes for young Vampires.
posted by homunculus at 9:06 AM on August 30, 2010 [3 favorites]


This whole "Sam embracing his dark side" thing is must not working for me, though he and Tara are hot together. And Pam is awesome.

But if they really kill of Eric the Vikimg, I'm going to want to stake the writers. He is my absolute favorite character in the books AND the series.
posted by misha at 10:29 AM on August 30, 2010


Sam's not embracing his dark side, he's just a mean drunk.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:50 AM on August 30, 2010


Well, I'd agree with you, but I took the "dark side" description from HBO's synopsis of the episode.

And I really need to check my posts for spelling errors. Stupid iPad.
posted by misha at 11:02 AM on August 30, 2010


Stephen Moyer Being Pursued to Portray Fantastic Four's Doctor Doom
posted by homunculus at 12:10 PM on August 30, 2010


True Blood gives a great neck job, but we need a bit more
posted by homunculus at 9:54 PM on August 30, 2010


It looks like Talbot was not Russell's first love.
posted by homunculus at 10:11 PM on August 30, 2010


I feared your "in memoriam" link was something for Erik, homunculus. Jävla, Erik, that was badass men dö inte! please don't die.
posted by dabitch at 12:25 AM on August 31, 2010


So dare I allow myself to hope that Andy's admission means we've finally seen the last of Eggs-related angst? Jesus fuck, I sure hope so.
posted by Greg Nog at 6:24 AM on August 31, 2010


I'm pretty confident that Eric is not going to die. They have said older vampires burn quicker, so Russell should go first, and I swear during the preview for the next episode I saw a ghostly Godric hovering over Eric, presumably to tell him it's not his time.
posted by homunculus at 9:07 AM on August 31, 2010


Yeah, I sorta assumed that as soon as the Fae Blood wore off, Russell would just burst into flames and Eric would run for the door; I'm assuming that something similar's gonna happen before next episode's credit sequence.

But hey: how bout that lady they got to play Young Arlene? She looked just like her! Wacky!
posted by Greg Nog at 9:32 AM on August 31, 2010


Still not sure about Sam having a personality now. It seems that just made him all angry and dark, but over stupid stuff.

And were panther girl? WTF is that all about?

I'm going to miss Russell. Him and Franklin were excellent villians, albeit in different ways.

Hey Tara, what do you want for breakfast, scrambled eggs?
posted by nomadicink at 4:25 PM on August 31, 2010


Werepanther girl wasn't a surprise for me since I read all the books. The fact that her black eye takes so long to heal is annoying, though. What good is being a kick-ass panther if you don't at least have enhanced healing powers? Plus she really waffles around. I guess if I had a big cat for a Dad I'd probably have a tough time rebelling. I'm owned by three cats now as it is.

And I do feel that Tara is one of the best actors on the show, but do they have to make her cry every episode?
posted by misha at 5:51 PM on August 31, 2010


Stephen Moyer auctions 'modesty sock'
posted by homunculus at 6:44 PM on August 31, 2010


Stephen Moyer is so much hotter when he's speaking with his Brit accident and immodestly auctioning his modesty sock.
posted by angrycat at 7:16 PM on August 31, 2010


I JUST SAWY THIS EPISODE AND OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD ah The Fotynberries are stupid venal hicks are stupid OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!
posted by The Whelk at 8:33 PM on August 31, 2010


Now, will Sam's annoying little brother manage to crack that safe? Thieving seems to run in the family.
posted by dabitch at 2:30 PM on September 1, 2010


Guess who's coming back for next season's True Blood
posted by homunculus at 7:37 PM on September 3, 2010


Play with True Blood's Vampire King of Mississippi all night long!
posted by homunculus at 3:45 PM on September 7, 2010


The last True Blood clips you'll see until next Spring
posted by homunculus at 6:44 PM on September 9, 2010


The True Blood Season Finale: Not enough skin, not enough scares, plenty of cliffhangers.
posted by homunculus at 12:28 PM on September 13, 2010


Sook's all "FUCK YOU GUYS I'M GONNA GO ROMP AND CAVORT."
posted by The Whelk at 12:29 PM on September 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


not sure why, but it seems like the last two or three episodes of the last seasons have been relatively lifeless, pun intended
posted by angrycat at 1:03 PM on September 13, 2010


The "finales" of True Blood aren;t very good as a rule. They spend too much time set up the next season.

That being said, Sookie! Grew! A! Pair! And basically said fuck y'all to an entire plane of existence.
posted by The Whelk at 4:01 PM on September 13, 2010


Pro: The Return Of Felix.
posted by homunculus at 12:29 AM on September 14, 2010


Yeah, I was a little annoyed that they did the old "why should we just kill him when we could set up a much more complicated plan that has many ways in which he might later escape to take his revenge" scenario with Russel. Of course, future me will be glad to see Russel again, but it felt like a total cop-out now. I was seriously expecting them to do some political maneuvering such as offering Russel to the human authorities for executions as a sign of goodwill. (I was also expecting to find out that Crystal and her Hot Shot dude (Bufort?) had actually played Jason the whole time in a plan for them to be able to escape and be free together having killed their oppressive patriarch but without leaving the rest of the bunch to rot. But I suppose I was reaching a bit too much there.)

I'm not sure how I feel about Tara leaving. For one thing if they were trying to make it a surprise twist they failed because it was telegraphed the moment that she and Sookie hugged in her house that she was saying goodbye forever and not just for a short while. But I'm not sure I would have wanted it the other way, where she leaves her best friend forever without leaking any emotion. As to future seasons I have no idea how they'll incorporate her storylines but I'm sure they'll find a way. I just worry that it will involve some turn of events or revelation that will require her to return to Bon Temps for whatever reason a few episodes into the season, in which case the whole plot line will feel like they wrote it just to have a season finale cliffhanger. Or maybe they'll surprise me and find some way for Tara to exist elsewhere and still be a worthwhile part of the plot -- for example if they fast forwarded a couple of years. But I seem to recall reading that the next season will continue to pick up immediately after this one ended, just like all the previous.
posted by Rhomboid at 3:08 AM on September 14, 2010


« Older Dorchester Publishing (an original paperback publi...  |  (TYLM) There are actually many... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments