Monday, August 24, 2009

What About Eric?! -- He's Dreamy. Bite me.

Well, I'm not as jazzed as I usually am right about now. I know, GASP at that for a moment, but it has a lot to do with the fact that this week's True Blood, "New World In My View," ended 15 minutes early this week! So there I was, sitting on the couch, all ready for a little more Eric screen time and cut to credits. Frowny face. How about 15 minutes of gratuitous Eric flesh? I don't think anyone would have complained about that, HBO.

Can I just have an aside for a moment? What are they thinking over at the show? First, they cut many of the memorable scenes from the novel while adding in hours of really boring Maryann stuff (basically an excuse for orgies.), then they give us a little more Eric. And we thank you. But the thing is, for most people, Sookie's sudden fondness for him comes completely out of left field. You can't blame it all on the blood exchange, either.

I can understand the idea of putting Eric in more scenes and having more of a romantic interaction between he and Sookie, but why would you cut all of the smaller instances of flirtation in Book/Season 1 and heap it all on us in the last few episodes?

I love the idea of Sookie dreaming of him, but the fact that Sookie comes downstairs and finds Eric crying and HE'S SHIRTLESS, the "This is a Dream" flags go straight up. At least leave a little mystery in there. The best thing about the Eric-Sookie dialogue in the book is the flirting, the joking, Eric's leers. I can't understand why there's nothing and then everything.

UPDATE: (8/24/09 9:26 p.m.) After watching this clip again, I want to point out a few more things. How cute is it the way his nose twitches when his fangs come out? And I'm going to amend what I said before and say that we do see a little more of Book Eric here, in that Sookie goes to pull away from a kiss and he grabs her hand, pulling her back. Sookie always needs that extra push over the edge if she's doing something she's not sure is a good idea, and Eric knows just when to help her along and when to passively flirt.

I'm glad they're finally putting more Eric into the episodes and creating this love triangle, but you can't just throw us Team Eric people a dream sequence every once and a while and expect us to be happy. There's this Big Scary Eric and there's the Sensitive Eric, with no happy medium. There's no impish flirt that we've come to love. I'm still waiting, HBO. Still waiting. End Eric rant.

So here we are, with Sookie, Jason and a becoffined Bill heading back to Bon Temps. They run over a couple of the locals (who are Sam's captors from an earlier episode, if you recall.). But basically the whole town's all gone to hell. And Maryann's a kid in Candyland. She's all "MORE MEAT!" for her, well, what Andy from Blood Work called a "Giant Meat Tree" on BlogTalk tonight. She's still a diva. And can anyone else appreciate those Dr. Seuss flowers (Beginning 1:55) she stuffed in there? It was like the frickin' Lorax (There he goes with his moustache.).

The influenced Eggs was sort of creepy in a overly positive kid's show actor way when he says, "So it's extra fresh?" after Maryann calls for organs and murder. Alright kids, what color is the spurty blood coming from Sam Merlotte's heart? Red! Gold stars!

I loved Andy and Sam together in this episode. Andy's she's a "She's a MAY- WHUT?" was pretty classic. And Sam's "I think she wants to cut out my heart while a bunch of naked people watch," was up there too. For a "sometimes nudist," Sam sure doesn't show the free hippie zombie devil people much love.

The regular cast was looking really good this episode. I don't know whether that was because everyone else looked so horribly mussed and haphazardly clothed (if at all), but I did have a problem with Bill's Johnny Cash outfit earlier in the episode. But all I could think as Maxine Fortenberry was standing there in her fuchsia Hawaiian shirt playing Wii was that Sookie looked like she stepped out of an Ann Taylor ad.

I guess I should mention the fact that Jessica's had enough of ole Maxine and takes a bite out of her. I thought that Hoyt was going to throw himself in front of her or something, but we'll see how that plays out. I'm really glad that they went with having Maxine go after Jason, because I was cringing those scenes with the Jocasta set-ups there. I don't think I could have taken it.

There was a lot of instances when you weren't sure who was going to be affected and who was not. It was like a zombie movie. But, c'mon Sam! You knew that was a trap. How could it not be? And he and Andy go into the freezer. I especially love when Andy stops to grab the liquor bottle. Another great Sam-Andy line? Sam: "These are our friends and neighbors." Andy: (mutters) "And customers." Oh snap! Andy tells it like it is.

SPOILER for non-novel readers: We knew that Jason would be immune in the same way that Sookie was because of their lineage. But how that genetic quirk translates into full-on pulsing life force glowing thing... I don't know. I think that's an addition that lays on the, "WHAT?!" or so I like to yell at the T.V.

Are we just meant to assume that someone told Sookie that her house was now Maryann's house? Because she seems surprised when Maryann shows up and when Lafayette tells her to leave. But there she shows up at her house looking for Maryann after Hoyt says, "Party at Maryann's," etc. etc. That's a little fuzzy. And how are they going to bring Sookie's house back to normal for next season? I wonder if they're going to cop out and explain everything mystically. Like poof! Back to normal. There's a few "in the kitchen" scenes next season. I can't picture homey Southern life around all the vines and scum.

UPDATE: I think I expected a bigger reaction when Sookie found out about her house being orgy party central. About the time Bill, Sookie and Jason arrive, Hoyt mentions that Sookie's house is Maryann's house. All Sookie says is, "What?" As if Hoyt had just told her he ate the last Oreo. Actually, I would expect a bigger response for that. She reacted as if Hoyt told her he used the wrong setting on the lawnmower. This one line of dialogue slipped by me amid the saucer-eyed Maxine Fortenberry Wii fest. Apologies.

Another question about immunity to Maryann's influence: Why is Lettie Mae immune? At first I thought the reason Maryann allowed some people to be controlled and others not was so that it would keep up the charade. She left out the outsiders, so to speak. Think, there's: Lettie Mae (Drunk), Lafayette (Gay), Andy (Drunk), Sookie (Telepath = Weird/Crazy Sookie). -- That would be before we knew about her immunity. It would make sense for her to selectively influence people, but I'm not quite sure where they're going with this whole thing. I just hope it ends somewhere close to Eric in pink Lycra... (If you want a Lycra spoiler, it's the last paragraph of the plot summary here.)

Sadly, probably not, but a girl can hope.

Maybe I'm watching too closely and too frequently, but I feel like they're hitting you over the head with a lot of the maenad clues this season. Bill's reading that book in the flashback about Greek Myths after we already heard Maryann talking about Greek maids and gods. Then, OH! HELLO AUDIENCE! THIS IS IMPORTANT! There's something wrong in there. It's getting a little too obvious with the foreshadowing.

Since I talked about the Sookie's Moon Tiara Magic! (har de har... Maybe I wasn't that far off last week...) in the spoiler part, let me just say that the first thing I wrote in my notes after that scene was BULLSHIT! Seriously? How does Sookie's telepathy translate into blue glowey psychic force field magic?!

Of course, Bill drinks from Maryann, and gross vomit scenes ensue. Is it weird that I thought that Bill vomited with an accent? Oh, was that just me? And then just as I'm thinking, well, yelling at the T.V. again, "WHY DON'T YOU CALL ERIC?!" Sookie says, "I'm callin' Eric." It's nice when the television is interactive.

I really enjoyed the, what a lot of the chatters have been calling, "Jambo" scenes. Jason with a bandoleer, nail gun and chainsaw. Oh boy. And the set dressing at Merlotte's was pretty priceless too. Notice the bobcat and goose stuffed animals with Mardi Gras beads around their necks? Nice touch. My main thought during the Jason scenes was, "Wtf is he going to do?" The answer: Slice a stereo in half with a chainsaw. I should have known.

Terry Bellefleur's part was amazing, and although I'm a non-smoker, I loved the way his cigarette moved when he talked, with the black eyes and everything. Pretty awesome. He really took charge of the situation. Good for him. If his main objective wasn't to fillet Sam, I'd be cheering right about now.

When Bill and Sookie head over to save Tara and Bill goes all fangy for the V-buyer, I had a "Yay Bill!" moment. Shocker. Bill does scary well. The fangs help. And Lafayette isn't afraid to let it slip that Eric's pushing him to sell the stuff. Which is probably a mistake. Has his basement time taught Lafayette nothing?

Black-eyed Tara is super creepy. Like really creepy. Bravo, Rutina. That laugh gave me chills. And did you notice that the go-to insult for Sookie's enemies is the "C" word? Think about it: Steve Newlin, Zombie Tara and Denise Rattray come to mind. Sookie saying the Latin phrase that all the zombies were repeating in her accent was a nice moment for me. I had a giggle at that. This scene was a chance for Sookie to play a more active role (in her own frickin' show...) but I don't know if I'm 100 percent happy with it. The tag team saving thing was interesting, but again, I have to say that I'm not so sure they explained it well.

For book folks, we know that Sookie has a sort of hypnotic power that is introduced at the beginning of Living Dead In Dallas, when she helps interrogate vampire bar employees in Dallas to help find Farrell, the missing vampire. Godric actually lures the Dallas vampire to be kidnapped and taken to the Fellowship. But that scene was left out in the show, and the magical Tara-saving was explained away with one throw-away line. They're just relying on the fact that people know the story too much. There's confusion when they leave out large chunks of the novel.

In other Jambo news: I effing love Jason. He uses his "I'm scary!" gas mask that he used to scare Amy Burley last season (Look for it at :52). And is shirtless. And exclaims, "It's me! The guy who comes!" and at Terry Bellefleur's "Bullshit. God has horns!" adds a nice pair of tree branch horns. I had to ask myself, "Why flares?" in there, but I guess the actions of Jason Stackhouse cannot be explained.

Sam's "Smite me!" was perfect with the twitching and the flashlight going. That was hilarious. I think that really saved the whole episode for me. I did wonder where Sam got that apron, though. It's not like Andy's never seen him in the buff before. Plus shifters aren't the most modest people.

Although that scene was really funny, in the end, there was just not enough Eric, and a little too much Maryann, and a lot of weird shit happening without any real explanation.

Visiting the Queen's compound was pretty epic (Note: I just typed Eric there. Not even thinking about it. Have Eric typing syndrome.). Bill's in slow motion and as Dallas from Loving True Blood in Dallas said on BlogTalk, The Queen's compound was also "badass." I wrote that exact word in my notes. So it must be true. I like how the queen has secret service people. In the book, I always pictured them as more like guards. Like military style. This was more political. So that's a surprise for me.

Well, we're back to square Season 1 in the Eric department. Let's hope he's not just a glorified extra next episode. At least this one proved what we've been saying all along: Eric's dreamy. Only now, it's literally. Eric dreams? I'll take one please, extra shirtless. And a little bite never hurt anyone. At least not anyone who lived to tell about it.

Oh, and people, after next week's episode, we have to wait until SEPTEMBER 13th for the finale! Suckfest, right? Think happy bitey Eric thoughts until then.


  1. I don't have time to read your whole post before school, so i'm totally just going to comment on the eric rant for now. If I cried blood, and knew that i was going to be crying alot of it, I'd take my shirt off too, theres no need to ruin a shirt, blood so does not come out

  2. oh and yes. jason was super duper hot in his "god" outfit, that boy can sure rock a pair of black pants with boots


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