All right, let’s just get right down to it: I did not like the season finale. Sure, there were some little individual parts that I liked, but overall I thought it was ridiculous. I must admit that a lot of this is probably colored by my recent reading of most of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, and the way that Ball & Co. are departing from them in such annoying and irritating ways. But even if I look at the finale in a vacuum, there were things I just did not like.
1. Bill’s ridiculous walk through the sunlight. Meaningful, romantic, heroic gesture? Um…sort of…except totally impossible. He would have burst into flame before he even got to the property line at his place. End of story.
2. Bill’s miraculous recovery from his walk through the sunlight. Again, would not, could not, just does not happen. Although I will admit that I loved his reunion with Sookie, her desperate hug of him after inviting him back into her house, and the tender way that he kissed her amazingly bruised face. I’m really starting to like Stephen Moyer a lot.
3. Maryann. WTF? What they’re doing here is taking a character from a later book, a maenad, and giving her a personality and qualities that she just should not possess. In the books she’s very much a powerful, wild, supernatural creature. The only thing that may save this new interpretation of her on True Blood is the fact she’s being played by Michelle Forbes, who equals awesome in any role. So I guess I’m willing to wait and see.
4. Sookie kills Rene with a shovel. Sookie would not kill someone, not even someone who was trying to murder her. Well, at least not until much later in the books…but that’s a spoiler for another day. No, she would have disabled Rene and then turned him over to the law. So this whole decapitation thing was fun, but I thought it quite out of character.
5. Tara. Go away! Anthony Robbins-ized Tara is even worse than demon-possessed pain in the ass Tara. GO AWAY! At least we didn’t see her annoying mother this week.
6. Jason believes in miracles and joins the Fellowship of the Sun. Yes, he’s stupid, but come on, True Blood…is he really THAT stupid? This storyline doesn’t track with the books at all, but congratulations to you: you have found a way to make Jason annoy me EVEN MORE.
7. Lafayette: murdered. DAMMIT! OK, OK, this was going to happen eventually (it is a plot point in later novels). But why did they have to do it as a cliffhanger to end the season? I wanted to see MORE Lafayette (and I don’t mean in a “naked and dead in the backseat” way). I hope he at least appears in flashbacks next season.
8. Other stupid, miscellaneous shit: Vermont legalizes human/vampire marriage. Jessica reappears to mess up Bill’s relationship with Sookie again. Sookie’s new retro 80s perm. Too little Eric/Pam/Fangtasia crowed. Eggs Benedict. Bill playing not-very-good ragtime on his piano (maybe they couldn’t get clearances for some Joplin, but isn’t a lot of that in the public domain now?).
So what did I like, then?
- Arlene’s sobbing, hysterical entrance with the bouquet of flowers. Poor, poor Arlene, but how funny was that?
- Pam’s impeccable knit (Chanel?) suit. This matches her description in the books a lot more closely. Pam is the bitch I’d want on my side.
- The look on Arlene’s kids’ faces as they’re watching the homemade fangbanger porno. Totally hilarious and so help me God, I hope I never find my daughter watching something like that!
- Andy Bellefleur finally gets slapped down, hard. Asshole.
- Bill’s reunion with Sookie, even though it was impossible. From the polite way he rang her doorbell, to the uncertain expression on his face when she answered the door, to his “Well, technically, no” to her cry of “You’re alive!” Man, he’s really cute for a dead guy.
- I can’t seem to confirm it anywhere, but didn’t the preacher at the Fellowship of the Sun temple look and sound like John Hodgman? I’m having fun imagining it was him, so even if it wasn’t, that’s still a positive about this episode for me.
So about those books. I’ve read like four or five of them now. They’re pretty easy reads, written on what seems like about a 7th grade level. I can usually get through one in an evening or two. They’re sort of enjoyable, if fluffy, although I’m starting to get annoyed with them. That’s because…spoilers to follow…
…Sookie breaks up with Bill around book 2 or 3, and as of book 5 she still isn’t back with him. She has had a fling with Eric (who doesn’t remember it, since he had curse-induced amnesia at the time) and she’s been spending way too much time with werewolves and shapeshifters. In fact, the books spend a LOT of time on shapeshifters of all types, and I’m getting pretty bored with it. It’s called the “Southern Vampire Mysteries,” and I want to read about vampires. Not werewolves, werepanthers, etc.
A Tara character shows up in the later books, but she’s much different than the one we get on the show, and her part is much smaller. There’s also a lot less Jason, and a lot of stuff about Fellowship of the Sun, which is kind of entertaining. But once more, WAY too much stuff about shapeshifters of all types, which I’m just not into.
So, until next season, which is promised for “Summer, 2009,” that’s True Blood.