Monday, July 02, 2012

Tara the Vampire

You know, as much as I wanted Tara to be dead and not be on True Blood anymore, I'm finally starting to dig Tara as a vampire. If this week's episode is any indication, it's bringing her some of the things she's always needed as a character, such as clarity and self-control. This week, Tara was better than she's ever been. There's finally potential in the character, and a weird kind of calm that was always seen only in glimpses. She's been such a victim every season: maybe this is finally the thing that will give her the strength she's always been looking for. It would be nice to have a season where Tara isn't the least interesting, most obviously expendable character on the show.

Ah, True Blood. You were never going to be more than silly, enjoyable sleaze. But less pained sleaze would be a nice direction in which to go.

Some other thoughts on the season so far.

:: Finally! The producers are finally willing to have characters realize that Sookie can be just awful and toxic. I've been so sick of special Sookie, walking on water while every character falls in love with her and trips all over everyone else to protect her. There's a side to her that can be so manipulative, and the other characters on the show are finally starting to realize that she might not actually be worth the trouble. Lafayette's "You're the Angel of Death" speech was a long time coming. Unfortunately, the show went right back to people wanting to protect innocent Sookie, and ended with the spectacle of her seducing yet another supernatural creature who is in love with her, like this is going to be the one that actually works out. I know, romantic whatever. All I saw was a woman incapable of seeing herself unless it's reflected in the adoration of others, drunkenly using someone's feelings for her to make herself feel special. Yeah, Alcide, this is really going to last.

This is Bella Swan all over again. "No, I'm really awkward and terrible and you can tell because everyone thinks I'm special and beautiful and wants to be with me and weird things just happen to me because I don't know what."

:: This Authority stuff feels like it's going nowhere. This is typical True Blood, talking about things that might happen or could happen but never actually end up happening. This season's main villain has yet to appear onscreen four episodes in.

:: Why the fuck does Andy Bellefleur even have his own storyline? Who cares? There are way too many stories and characters on this show, and giving attention to each one is simply too much. It's okay to have supporting characters who don't have their own story beats. What is this shit with Terry Bellefleur and his old Army buddy? Did a series about as serious as a Lost in Space rerun think it was in good taste to set a scene in war-torn Iraq that showed US soldiers gunning down unarmed civilians? The whole thing feels so divorced from True Blood in the first place. Cut it out. Every character doesn't have to be a main character.

:: I'm still not sure how I feel about humanized, three-dimensional Pam. I liked her fine as comic relief and the voice of one of the few creatures on this show who didn't find Sookie's magic pussy worth dying for. Now we're supposed to take her seriously as a person? I'm not sure about it, but I still find it a hell of a lot more interesting than what either of the Bellefleurs are up to.

:: This fairy shit is terrible. First fairyland is some kind of Ancient Greek spa, then it's running away from goblins in a field that looks like it came from a third season Star Trek episode, and now it's a rave. And as I figured, Hadley's back, too. This show cannot let a single character go. Every episode has to focus on 12 different characters to ever-diminishing effect. Seriously, counting the Authority, how many new characters has just this season added into the mix? 7? They had to kill Sam's shifter friends just to make some room.

:: Also, were Sam's friends killed by the werewolf pack? Because that's another element that's overstayed it's welcome.

:: But you know, for all of the constant additions to this Simpsons-sized cast, I have never once found anyone more boring than Bill Compton. God, he's a fucking snooze. Eric is everything Bill is, but better: sexier, funnier, more charismatic, and a better actor. How about Bill turns out to be the traitor and we just off him? Why not, eh?

:: Let's get to this fucking vampire civil war already.

Overall, as the show gets bigger and broader, it loses a lot of what made it such stupid fun in the first place. As we're apparently supposed to take these characters and their situations more and more seriously every season, the cracks just get bigger and bigger and dumber and dumber. I get that they wanted to expand the mythology of the show, but in doing so they've upped the nonsense quotient considerably, and not in an enjoyable way.

If it wasn't for all the reliable nudity, I'm not sure I'd be able to stand it.

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