True Blood: You Scratch My Back, I’ll Scratch Yours
Since so many readers requested recaps of True Blood, I decided to give it a shot. What could be so hard about trying to make sense of this show? After all, most HBO series have a minimum of 15 plot lines going on at any given time, so this should be a piece of cake to keep track of. Anyway, I’m starting with the most recent sex- and blood-filled episode (season two, episode three), so if you want to know what happened before this week, SCREW OFF.
To catch you up to speed, since this is the third episode of season two: Bill is in charge of Jessica, who he was forced to turn into a vampire after he killed another vampire to save Sookie; Jason is balls-deep in the Church of the Fellowship of the Sun which is a change of pace from always being balls-deep in… well, you know; Tara is hitting it off with a delinquent named Eggs while living with Maryann, whose interests include taking naked strolls with giant pigs and making everyone around her have wild orgy sex; Lafayette has been trapped in the basement of Fangtasia, but asked Eric to make him a vampire; and Sam the shape-shifter has been dealing with Daphne, an inept new waitress at Merlotte’s while simultaneously worrying about Maryann, who he has encountered years ago, which didn’t end well. And after that mini-summary of only the first two episodes, I’m thinking this is going to be a lot more confusing to recap than I expected. Good luck following along!
I thought if my introduction won’t get you to read further, shirtless Jason will. You’re welcome!
The episode starts after Bill stops Jessica from killing her father. He is driving like a maniac, furious at Sookie for bringing Jessica to her house, while Jessica sobs tears of blood in the back. Bill pulls over and gets into a fight with Sookie, but due to their southern accents and Bill’s 19th-century vernacular, it mostly just sounds like polite banter.
Sookie eventually gets out of the car and storms off into the woods. Jessica informs Bill that when women do that, they want the man to follow and apologize and confess their love, but Bill is obviously not used to this kind of behavior. No, he prefers his women to wait back at the farm and keep busy by melting their jewelry into musket balls and dying of consumption. He doesn’t understand the rules of modern dating, such as helping her TiVo Oprah and returning the favor if she gives you a blowjob.
After getting about ten feet into the woods, Sookie starts to realize what a stupid idea it was to walk through the backwoods of Louisiana at midnight. I can’t believe this plan backfired! Naturally, she starts panicking, especially when she hears someone following her and grunting. She turns around to see who it is, and it’s a… what the fuck? Silhouetted by the moonlight is some sort of human-like monster with giant claws and a bull’s head. It looks like a minotaur, but I’m really hoping it turns out to be some fucked-up kid on his first LSD trip who decapitated a bull and started wearing its head. Come on, not everything on this show has to be magic.
After the kickass opening credits, Bill follows Sookie’s screams and finds her on the ground, bleeding. He asks what did it to her, and she responds, “Bull human.” Surprisingly, Bill doesn’t find this weird at all. He bites open his wrist and gives her some of his blood, which not only doesn’t work but starts her FOAMING AT THE MOUTH. With all the seizing and bleeding, the scene is actually more disgusting than Uma Thurman’s foaming-at-the-mouth moment in Pulp Fiction. Bill obviously starts to panic and makes Jessica drop them off at Fangtasia before she goes home.
And here’s one for the fellas: Anna Paquin topless! Pretty sexy, right?
At Merlotte’s, the new waitress Daphne comes into Sam’s office and says that her count is $64.08 short. He is still upset about Maryann’s visit to the restaurant (all she did was turn your business into a massive orgy and force you to shape-shift into a dog, GET OVER IT ALREADY), so he snaps at Daphne and forces her to give him her tips to make up the difference. She leaves crying, and Tara enters, at which point Sam goes off on her, telling her to stay away from Maryann. For some reason, Tara doesn’t immediately obey his insane ranting and cut off all ties with Maryann.
At Fangtasia, Sookie wakes up to see Bill, Eric, and an old lady bending over three massive claw wounds in her back before finding out she’s dying of poison. The old lady forces everyone to leave so she can strip Sookie, and you can tell Eric is regretting choosing to wear sweatpants after hearing that statement. Bill tries to say something to Sookie, but she just starts foaming at the mouth again. I’m starting to think Sookie is just allergic to terrible accents.
Outside, Bill and Eric discuss the bull-man and the fact that Bill’s blood didn’t heal her. Neither has any idea what is going on, so Eric sends Pam and that other fat underling of his to go search the woods. Pam refuses because she’s wearing her “best pumps,” but Eric forces her to. Bill goes in to check on Sookie, and he finds her screaming in pain while the old woman pours something in her wounds that is basically acting like acid. Bill has to hold Sookie’s arms down, while the old lady sticks her finger into one of the wounds and pulls out a glob of something that looks like Vaseline. The scene will probably be the most nauseating thing shown on HBO until Entourage comes back (zing!).
I’d make a joke about fingering, but I’m too busy barfing.
At his Creepy Jesus Camp, Jason wakes up (shirtless, natch), only to find he is in bed with the vampire he killed in season one. He then wakes up from that dream screaming and starts to pray, but the whole scene seems less like a reason to pray and more like an excuse to flex.
Finally, Bill is able to give Sookie some of his blood to heal her, but as he’s about to bite into his arm, Eric jumps in and offers his blood, “because it’s stronger.” Man, Eric is acting like the worst third wheel ever. Just give these two a fucking minute alone, will you? Obviously, Bill refuses Eric’s blood, and as he’s feeding Sookie, Pam and what’s-his-name come back, coated in mud, to report that the tracks were human but the smell is an unrecognizable animal. Eric, who is quickly becoming the annoying guy at a party who has to one-up everybody no matter what, says to Pam and her mud-caked shoes, “Those were great pumps.”
At Maryann’s, her man-slave Carl is cooking something that looks like a pot of organs, while Maryann arranges flowers. Maryann’s house is almost exactly what I imagine Martha Stewart’s is like: a constant supply of gourmet food, flower-arrangements galore, tons of pot, and frequent unprotected sex with strangers. Of course, while talking to Tara, Maryann is rolling a joint at the breakfast table. Maryann reassures Tara that Sam is only telling her to move out because she is jealous that Tara is with Maryann instead of him. When Tara starts asking further questions, Maryann simply shoves the joint into her mouth and lights it up. Honestly, this is what happened whenever I got too nosy at my house, as well. I was stoned for three days straight after I asked where babies came from.
“Mmm, today on Maryann Living: baby heart and diced penis soup. It’s a good thing.”
Outside Merlotte’s, Terry the cook drives up to find Sam packing up his car. Sam says that he is leaving, and he gives Terry control of the restaurant until he gets back. He reassures Terry by telling him that he wasn’t his first choice, but he has the least fucked-up storyline of Merlotte’s staff: Sookie is recovering from a minotaur attack, Tara is living with a crazed Greek sex goddess, Lafayette is held captive by vampires or is possibly a vampire himself, Marlene is still getting over finding out her fiance was a serial killer, and Daphne is just retarded.
At the crazy Jesus camp, Jason is taking part in some sort of Vampire Victims Anonymous meeting, presided over by Sarah, the preacher’s horny wife. Sarah asks Jason to share, so he tells how his sister is dating a vampire and that he’s not a bad guy, and that his grandma and friend were killed by a person who had problems with vampires. He walks out of the meeting, having decided that he doesn’t belong there, but Sarah chases after him. Finally they’re going to have sex, right? Sarah confesses that after vampires “came out of the coffin,” she marched for equal rights, until her sister got hooked on V and was killed by vampires. She eventually convinces Jason to “give himself up to God’s light,” and asks him to pray with her. They kneel on the porch and pray together, but the sexual tension is undeniably thick. I’m honestly surprised when the scene ends without them ripping each other’s clothes off on the porch. It’s only a matter of time…
Less Fellowship of the Sun and more Fellowship of the SEX, please.
Meanwhile, Sookie has woken up in an oversized T-shirt in Fangtasia, but it’s daytime so all the vampires are asleep. She runs into the creepy little blonde woman who watches the bar during the day (who reminds me a lot of Amy Poehler’s one-legged prostitute character from SNL, incidentally), who Sookie overhears thinking about Lafayette in the basement, as well as a gun hidden under the register. Sookie grabs the gun and forces the woman to bring her to Lafayette, who is chained back up to the giant dungeon wheel, with, like, one pair of bite marks on his chest. Last episode they made it seem like he was going to be a vampire or eaten alive, but now he’s just back where he was with barely a scratch on him? That’s kind of disappointing.
Anyway, at Maryann’s, the party is in full swing, with Eggs – I still can’t get over that ridiculous name – playing guitar for a crowd, who all LOVE the one chord that he can play. Tara starts talking to him after he’s done, and it’s pretty clear that she’s a little drunk. Eggs does his usual thing, which is to make every situation extremely serious, and to remind everyone what a terrible life he’s had. This guy is the biggest downer ever. Who the hell invited him? He even says that when Maryann gave him the guitar he started sobbing because he had always wanted to play, which makes him not only obnoxiously depressing, but also a total loser. Basically, Tara kisses him. I really don’t care about these two at all.
Back at Fangtasia, the vampires wake up, and Sookie slaps Eric for keeping Lafayette trapped. He pops his fangs out and then offers her an arrangement to save him. Meanwhile at Merlotte’s, Sam is still moping, but this time about Sookie – he’s looking at a picture of her on the wall and obviously pining after her. GET OVER IT. She’s too much trouble, and she’s got a gap in her teeth. Not worth it, Sam.
Jessica wakes up to find Bill’s house empty, so she gets all dressed up and goes into Merlotte’s, which is apparently the only restaurant in the entire city. All the guys start paying attention to her, which is accented by the hilarious song choice of “Sex and Candy” being played on the jukebox. She sees our old friend Hoyt (the nicest guy in town, unfortunately for him), and sits down at the booth facing him. He approaches her and starts to talk, but she can only focus on his throbbing… jugular. Fooled you, you pervert! He gets nervous and starts rambling about chicken-fried steak, before offering her a drink. She asks for Tru Blood and cringes, expecting him to freak out, but he just says, “That is awesome,” and goes to get it.
“Me? A vampire? No, I’m just really into jugulars.”
Sookie agrees to go to Dallas to look for the missing vampire sheriff for Eric, if he agrees to release Lafayette. But she ups the ante by asking for $5,000, since she’s missing so much work. Bill steps in, but instead of telling Sookie not to get greedy, he raises it to $10,000 and insists that he be allowed to go with. Eric reluctantly agrees, intrigued by Sookie’s balls. He says that maybe in time he’ll grow on her, but she insists, “I’d prefer cancer.” Eric doesn’t do anything in response, but I feel like one of these days he’s going to stop letting Sookie insult him. And, knowing this show, it will involve lots of blood and boobies, and it will be awesome. Anyway, Lafayette is released.
At Maryann’s, Carl is serving up the organ soup he was preparing earlier, and no one seems to question arriving at a swanky mansion party only to be handed a bowl of soup. Am I the only one who would find that a really strange thing at a party? Speaking of strange, in classic Maryann style everyone starts dancing and ripping their clothes off. Detective Bellefleur shows up because of a noise complaint, and sees a giant pig in a small house, which, if you remember, is the giant pig Maryann was standing naked next to in the middle of the road when we first met her last season. Maryann shows up and when he asks about the pig, he notices that it’s gone. She entices him into staying and drinking, and probably fucking.
Still at his camp, Jason is having dinner with the preacher, who is obnoxiously wearing a yellow sweater tied around his neck. This guy is a nightmare, and most likely secretly gay. They talk about how “hating evil is really loving good,” and blah blah blah I hate this guy. But then he gets to the good stuff: his father, mother, and baby sister were all murdered by vampires. Fantastic!
Sarah comes in to serve food (not to sit down and join the men for dinner, of course), and their interaction basically proves that the preacher is gay. I am specifically referring to when he says the sentence, “Well, you stop being such a li’l angel!” And when they go in for a kiss, his eyes pretty much scream, “EWWWWWW!” This scene is mostly important for the greatest double entendre ever, when the preacher says that Sarah must like Jason, because she “doesn’t whip out her pudding for just anybody!” My head almost exploded at this sentence.
“I am sexually attracted to my wife, I am sexually attracted to my wife, I am sexually attracted to my wife…”
Jessica brings Hoyt back to Bill’s house, where he gets hilariously excited over Bill’s Wii. First of all: Bill has a fucking Wii? He still asks women if he can “call on you sometime,” but he owns a Wii? Something isn’t right about this. It could be product placement, since the next two minutes consist of Hoyt raving about the Wii and teaching Jessica how to play it. But that is also weird – Jessica only died a couple weeks ago, and she was no older than 17, and you’re telling me she didn’t know what a Wii was? And yes, in a show about vampires and mind-readers and minotaurs, the inclusion of this Wii is definitely the most unrealistic thing for me so far.
Anyway, the fondling of the Wii remotes turns into the fondling of other things, until Jessica gets too aroused and her fangs pop out. Hoyt, however, tells her not to be embarrassed, because he likes her for what she is. He says they should take it slow and wait to have sex, but she throws him down on the couch and goes wild. Does it count as statutory rape if she’s permanently 16 years old?
Back at Maryann’s, the party is getting even crazier. Tara and Eggs are getting all up in each other’s business in the hot tub, when a topless girl jumps in and announces that she is a massage therapist. Eggs starts getting a massage, and Tara starts to notice how weird the party is getting, between the lap dances and the fat guy with the tiny dick running around naked. Tara gets out of the hot tub and runs inside, where Eggs tries to apologize, but Tara simply says that there can be no “us” if he’s into this whole group sex thing. What a fucking prude, am I right, fellas?
The character I most relate to on this show is Naked Girl Chugging Wine
As Sam is packing up to leave, a dog starts barking at him, so he rips off his shirt and goes running off into the woods with it. I assume he’s going to morph into a dog, but with how many weird sexual fetishes everyone has on this show, I’m worried he could be doing other naked things with that poor animal.
Well, fear not, because he does turn into a dog, and dives into a lake before changing back into a human. He tries to urge the dog to jump in after him, but it just runs away. Daphne then approaches the dock, and starts flirting with him, which seems really out of character. When she decides to join him in the lake and takes off her shirt, we see that her back is scarred by three claw marks, much like the ones Sookie got from the minotaur. My notes sum up my reaction to this shocking cliffhanger: “Gets naked – OH MY GOD SHE HAS THE SCRATCHES ON HER BACK”.
Daphne does her best Passion of the Christ impression.
Were you as shocked at me at this ending, or am I just an idiot? What the hell do you think is going on with this “bull-man?” (If you’ve read the books, no spoilers!) And if you know of any parties like Maryann’s, will you please let me come with you?