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True Blood: Authority Always Wins

"Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Sanguinista movement?"

Puppy werewolf in jammies! Sooo cute!

But Lord and Lilith, the original vampires, hidden behind doors? The council itself? The child vampire? Someone has been reading a whole lot of Anne Rice. Doesn't mean it won't be fun. But it did mean that there was this uncomfortable feeling of familiarity for me when I was expecting something more original. At least the Vampire Authority Council was chock full of good character actors. I was especially happy to see Christopher Heyerdahl, who turns up in all my favorite shows, each time with a different accent. I'm not a fan of Christopher Meloni as boss vamp (whatever he's in that has made him a star, I don't watch it) and to be honest, he didn't seem all that vampire-like. Not yet, anyway. We shall see.

I did like the idea of a vampire Bible (the Original Testament) and the communion scene. If their testament said Adam and Eve were created to feed vampires, though, then isn't mainstreaming antithetical to the holy book that the Authority reveres? It doesn't make sense that they've prioritized mainstreaming to the point of executing any vampire who strays. Oh, well. Maybe it'll make more sense as the season progresses.

We finally got a glimpse of Russell, who is running through victims and still not looking his best. I'm just happy he's back. And I'm assuming he's going to be the poster child of the Sanguinista movement, the vamps who are anti-mainstreaming? I'm also enjoying Steve Newlin as a gay vampire so very, very much. Especially his scenes with Jessica. Steve trying to buy Jason from Jessica was way funny. I also thought it was interesting that Steve knew something about what was going on in New Orleans. Somebody we haven't seen let Russell out, and somebody is feeding him. Is it Steve? Too obvious?

Gee. Do you think Tara may be having adjustment issues? I wonder if it's just too late for me to truly like Tara again. At least I can definitely say that this might be the most interesting thing they've done with her character, and I want her to figure out how to handle it, mostly for Lafayette's sake.

I am definitely enjoying Bill and Eric as best buds, and I'm glad Authority wasn't able to turn them against each other, even with ultraviolet and silver IV torture. (The IV was reminiscent of lethal injection, which I'm sure was deliberate.) Bill was actually acting like a king should, taking responsibility for everything (Eric looked shocked). His final Russell Edgington gambit is obviously what is going to get them out of there. I think.

Also really loved the Pam flashbacks. 1905 San Francisco! Even though they were so not what we got about Pam's past in the books, seeing Pam as a human and meeting Eric for the first time (when he saved her from the local Jack the Ripper, no less) was great fun with period costumes. That red dress of hers was something special, and I'm not really into clothes.

And Alcide continued to be cool. I'm actually liking him more as the series progresses, and I was never a fan of book Alcide. He'd make a great packmaster. But Grandma Martha creeps me the heck out. She wants to see Emma? Where was she when her son Marcus was terrorizing his family? And Luna really ticked me off by dumping Sam, right after he went off to endure torture and die for her and her daughter. Bad Luna, no biscuit. Especially since Sam turned out to be correct. Emma's a puppy werewolf. Sooooo cute!

Bits and pieces:

-- Absolutely loved the "Stake House" with the anti-vampire weapons. I especially loved the silver nail polish.

-- What ancient language was the script on the wall? Who was in the painting?

-- Why didn't the Authority prisoners get under their beds to shield themselves from the UV rays?

-- Andy found Debbie Pelt's car. Not good. But he managed to resist the V. Very good. Maybe Holly is good for him. Jason obviously is.

-- Hoyt moved back in with Mama. His attitude has adjusted radically, though. And Maxine was so thrilled that Jason took Jessica away from Hoyt that she was ready to bake Jason a pie.

-- I don't know what's going on with Terry and the veteran/fire subplot, and I still don't care. Although I like Arlene's loyalty to Terry, and her determination to figure out what was going on.


Lafayette: "Do something!"
Pam: "I am. I'm laughing."

Jason: "That's getting to eat the pie without paying for the cow. Win win."

Steve: (on camera) "I'm here to tell ya, Jesus loves vampires."

Eric: "A lady should be more careful."
Pam: "If I meet a lady, I'll let her know."

Salome: "It's wonderful to be a vampire, isn't it?"
Eric: "Generally, yes. Right now? Not so much."

Girl: "Can I say, before you became a vampire, you were a massive dick."
Steve: "I know!"

I certainly enjoyed it, although a couple of times I felt like there was too much going on (a common reaction I have to True Blood). Three out of four bottles of silver nail polish,

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. HBO's OZ shot Chris Meloni right into my radar!!!

  2. I can understand Tara's anger and (in spite of the previews) I hope she levels off soon, comes to her senses and gets back with Sookie and Lala. I guess I'm in the minority, since I've loved Tara from the beginning.

    I loved the shot-out to SEINFELD when we saw (Man Hands) Pam breaking the crab(?) leg in her flashback.

    Not every main character has to appear in every episode – they're stretching things with the Jason and Andy story. They could have cut out the scene in the police station or combined the po-po station scene with the Fortenberry house scene or eliminated both.

    I loved the WHOLE Jessica/Steve Newlin segment. I want to see at least one more fight between them.

    I'm torn on the Terry/Arlene/"Noel" (ok, Patrick) storyline since I have no idea where it's going or what the root cause is.

    Luna was too bitchy toward Sam. It was uncalled for. But Emma-wolf cub was so cute!!!

    Is the vampire origin tied to Lilith in the books? Is there an origin given in the books at all? I have to re-watch Bill's "interrogation" because I missed bits of it.

    Chris Meloni is (well, always has been) smokin HHHOOOOTTTTT!!!!!!

    The Authority member in the purple suit is Diane from GENERAL HOSPITAL. I love her!!! I hope she pops up again.

    The little boy on the council is very Anne Rice, but also The Annoying One from BUFFY.

    The loved the whole Authority segment.

    The make-up effects on Denis O'Hare at the end were even creepier than the effects they used on him on AMERICAN HORROR STORY. Who freed Russell? Who's feeding him?

    Who turned Steve Newlin?

    I loved this episode, but then again, i have loved every episode of this series.

  3. I enjoyed this a lot more than last week's, but, as you said Billie, there is too much going on. True Blood just has too many characters and insist on giving each any every one of them a scene in every episode. Game of Thrones is probably the only show with more, but at least it knows when to put characters aside for a episode or two and give other storylines room to breath.

    Still, there was a lot I loved about this episode. Pam was awesome as always. The Bill/Eric bromance is a gift that just keeps on giving. And it was great to see all those familiar faces on the Authority council, especially Barb from Cougar Town. That was just a hoot.

  4. One other thing:
    The look on Vamp-Tara's face when Pam is holding her after Pam pulled her off Sookie was hysterical.

  5. Mark Greig said it best, there is just way too much going on. Often times I feel there is too much filler and not enough important stuff. What I did enjoy was The Authority stuff, some people are complaining that it was corny and that the mystery was taken out of them, but it beats the hell out of witches and maenads. I like the Pam stuff too, and Russell is back! Don't care about Terry at all. Give the characters and we, the audience time to breathe.

  6. "Why didn't the Authority prisoners get under their beds to shield themselves from the UV rays?"

    Yes, yes, and again yes! I guess immortality doesn't up the IQ.

    "Puppy werewolf in jammies! Sooo cute!"

    I've been thinking about how cute that was all day. With the little paws, and the big ears...

    HBR, so Oz is worth watching, eh? I've got it on the list. And I really like Christopher Meloni from my brief flirtation with L&O: SVU.

  7. Hey Josie, I know you asked HBR the question, but I would definitely check out Oz. There are six seasons, first four are great, fifth is okay, and the sixth season is kind of lame. Check it out!

  8. Thanks, Roman!

    Mark, I agree with the Game of Thrones comparison. I thought the same thing during the episode.

    Okay, I really just came back to this review to look at the picture of the werepuppy again.

  9. I liked this better than last week but there are some subplots here that I don´t care and should be put aside or at least have minimum screen time like Terry and Arlene and even Jason. And even the werewolf story doesn´t engage. I want to see more Bill, Eric and Vampire Authority. And Pam, I so loved her and the flashbacks.
    And I seriously started laughing real loud with this line:

    Lafayette: Do something.
    Pam: I am. I´m laughing.

  10. I just wanted to second/third the OZ love. The guy who plays Mayhem on the insurance commercials is one of the main actors. I love it. It is very intense and well done.

    As for True Blood, any screen time for Jason and Pam and their wonderful one liners is great for me.

  11. I have to give a gold star to the first seasons of Oz as well. It took me a few episodes to really get into it, but once I did I thought it was great (well, until it lost steam after season four).

    When I first heard Chris Meloni had been cast as a vampire I thought, "Eh... no" but I think he might actually work. He played a charismatic, manipulative psychopath on Oz and a highly ethical, caring cop on one of the Law & Orders. With the right material, I think he can turn out to be a fascinating character.

    I also agree that tv Alcide is much cooler than book Alcide, who was, let's be honest, kind of a clueless dip. And being a vampire might work for Tara, who was never a favorite of mine.

    Last comment: I am chalking Luna's behavior toward Sam up to a kind of projection. It seems too easy that Emma turned into a wolf puppy that night out of the blue. I think Luna knew this was coming, was reading the signs, but wasn't ready to deal with it, which is why she turned into such a raging b-word to Martha and especially to Sam. Luna wasn't ready to face the truth and didn't want to listen to anyone who brought it up.


  12. I must confess that for the very first time in 5 seasons, True Blood disappointed me, and the clearest indicator of that is that I am not looking forward to the newest episode next Sunday.
    The main reason is what has already been said by you Billie and Mark Greig and others. Too many suplots, and most of them totally uninteresting. I couldn't care less about the Bellefleurs and don't understand the sudden shift in Luna's character, from that lovely couple who built a relationship with Sam that was worth him sacrificing himself for her and her daughter to this ridiculous selfish person. I don't buy it and don't like it.
    Meloni as the Guardian didn't excite me as I thought he would, I guess the whole thing with the authority was too surreal, and I was expecting a different vampire mithology. I did love Salome, though. I think we'll be seeing more or her and it seems to be good.
    There were some high points, of course, Tara and the lioness posture on top of the sink, Newlin and Jessica's dialogues were fun and Pam's flashbacks were awesome. I loved how charming and scary Eric came to save the not-so-donzel in distress, and I honestly do hope they stick with the main characters.
    It's easy to get lost with so much going on, especially if that much that is going on isn't interesting enough.
    I do hope next installment of TB restores my interest in the series, I seriously do. TVD and GOT spoiled me for good.

  13. "I guess immortality doesn't up the IQ", I could not have said it better, Josie, but it surely crossed my mind.
    And by the way, if they were to bring Bubba up, why not closer to the book vesion? I'd love to see an Elvis impersonator, I'm not sure I was happy with the baby eater vamp. Or better, I'm sure, I wasn't..

  14. "If their testament said Adam and Eve were created to feed vampires, though, then isn't mainstreaming antithetical to the holy book that the Authority reveres? It doesn't make sense that they've prioritized mainstreaming to the point of executing any vampire who strays."

    I was a little confused about that too. All I can figure is this: Christopher Heyerdahl (!!!) asks Bill if he's a fundamentalist who interprets the Original Bible as the literal truth, and during the council scene he's asked if he's a part of the Sanguinist Movement. Maybe there's some kind of religious scism among the vampires, and the Authority is down with worshipping Lilith and having creepy communion, but don't interpret their book as literal truth, just as a good number of Christians don't translate the bible as literal truth? In which case, coexisting with the humans to save their own asses is totally cool, because the Original Bible is just metaphor and ritual, not meant to indicate that vampires should take over the world because God created it for their pleasure. Or something. In which case, the Sanguinists basically believe in vampire manifest destiny, and that's enough to poke at my geek buttons and almost get me over how less than enthused I was with the echoes of Rice. I was never a big Anne Rice fan.

    I sort of suspect Newlin is working with the Authority rather than with Edgington, since his little TV appearance seems very much in like with their agenda. "Jesus loves vampires! Let me tell you how!"

    I work for a jeweler sometimes, and I keep getting distracted wondering how everyone has such easy and affordable access to huge amounts of silver. It's become pretty expensive in our world, and I'd think it'd be even more expensive in a world where it's in demand as the only thing that can reliably restrain a vampire.

    Is it bad that I'm liking Bill so much more for his sort-of bromance with Eric than I ever did for his romance with Sookie?

  15. When that elevator door opened I flashed back to Wolfram & Hart! Anyone else?

    I think it was solid good. I didn't mind Arlene\Terry story or Hoyt fixing the sink because those didn't take that much of a time. That whole Meloni's speech on the other hand did. God it went on forever! Or maybe it's just me not liking the actor, I think his the worst they could do for the part.

    Why Luna is so mean all of a sudden beats me and Tara's character has become absolutely unbearable. If she never comes back after running off into the woods, I seriously wouldn't mind. I woukdn't even ask for a reason or explanation - just make her stay gone!

    But despite those few not so interesting parts the episode just flew by. Jess was so much fun! That lady vampire who questioned Eric (didn't catch a name) was both beautiful and intriguing (I might just add her to my list in the "Sexiest TV actress" thread). Loved that we got to see a bit of Pam's past. Eric's "Long live the King" was a hoot and that was one adorable wolf cub!

    So yes, great episode! Great review, as always!

  16. I love Bill and Eric together, so glad I was wrong last week.


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