True Blood Season 6 Review: “You’re No Good”

By Brandi McCormick on Jun 30, 2013 to True Blood

Everything’s coming up fae, isn’t it?

sookie-help-rutger

Tonight’s episode has some really promising moments as far as foreshadowing the rest of the season’s storylines. Let’s start with Sookie.

She’s far less annoying so far in these first three episodes than she had been as of late, and I’m liking her attitude towards dealing with her shit. Her ultimate denial of Bill has been a real highlight, as the fact that she hasn’t wavered in her opinion makes her stronger than ever. Bill takes a turn for real evil this time around, and the scene in which he storms into a terrified Sookie’s house uninvited is a chilling one. It seems as though there are not two, but three big bads this season, and Bill the God-like is quickly rising in rank.

The notion of synthesizing Sookie’s blood reminds me much of an X-Men like plot; using the genetic gifts of “freaks” to the benefit of others. But at what cost? The final scene with Bill when he realizes his next fae target are the children of Andy was horrifying. He’s stooping lower than ever, and more so than my fear for what he can accomplish as indestructible Bill, I very much hate Jessica’s loyalty to him. I understand the maker-progeny bond, but she is blind to his corruptness and I fear it will only put her in more danger.

Rutger Hauer continues to delight as Sookie and Jason’s grandpa. He brings more gravity to the fae species and storylines, which in turn makes those plot points much more interesting. I think before this season True Blood didn’t really know what they were going to do with fairies. The threw them in as vampire catnip, but never alluded to the true dark origin of the species. If the show was going the way of the books, the fae would be one of the most feared enemies the show could cook up. They are ruthless. And so far the only person to make that idea seem plausible is Grandpa Niall. If they decide to really own fae as a thing on this show, they’re going to have to give it much more thought and attention if they don’t want it to come off as a joke.

Speaking of a joke, let’s talk about the entire Emma/werewolf/shapeshifter plot. Ugh. What a clusterfuck. Just like so many characters before them, the time of the werewolves and shifters seems to be at a crossroads. What to do with them? They began to lose traction last season as an interesting group, and they are even less enjoyable now. First of all, who does Alcide think he is? I had a fear his rise to pack leader would render him cruel and power-hunger. And now he’s got some misguided stake in Emma? I’m sorry, but the motivation behind that ENTIRE idea to take Emma from Sam was ridiculous. It just doesn’t hold any water. Why should he even care? If her grandmother wanted to get her back, that’s one thing. But Alcide has no reason to be so invested in her. And now Rikki’s been relegated to a growling meanie, for what? Is she with Alcide or not? At this point, I don’t know and I don’t really care. I don’t care about any of the werewolves because they don’t have good storylines. Aside from imminent persecution after vampires, their lives don’t intersect with others on the show and they continue to be a group of outsiders with no real purpose. Give me season 3 werewolf/vampire tussles any day over this.

SAm-S6-ep3

Sam goes for Sam. Poor, poor Sam. What are we going to do with him? I do hate that he lost Luna, but if his sole purpose now is to hide his shifter abilities and take care of Emma, then I would rather he ride off into the sunset at this point. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Sam. Always have. But, at this point he’s borderline Hoyt-territory–wandering through Bon Temps with no real purpose, adrift in a sea of supernatural clusterfucks.

And now we’ve got he added element of these kids parading around under the guise of the US Vampire Unity League. Like we need more people tied up in their mess! Anyway, these kids are all up in everyone’s business, causing a mess. They cause (well, Rikki causes really, because she’s a real hothead) an all out werewolf brawl which ends up with most of them getting killed. I’m not sure what their purpose is either, but I can’t imagine it’s going to make anything better.

It is worth noting that while lost of the things going on in Bon Temps are kind of ridiculous, the allegorical implications that come from the parallels being drawn by the racism toward all things vampire and supernatural are eerily accurate of current events. (even if the USVEL seems like a lazy attempt to bring that to the surface). The attitudes that were first brought to the surface in the very first season of True Blood towards the undead are back with a vengeance, and it’s an all out war. They’re denied equal rights, they’re murdered for sport, they’re hunted down like animals. The Governor has even instituted what you could see as a vampire concentration camp where he and a team of merciless scientists torture and test (and eventually kill) vampires–those following orders under the misguided ruse of ‘doing good’ have historically led to bad, bad outcomes. Though they may not be human, thanks to the Authority’s follow-through with the bombing of the Tru Blood factories, they are now definitely on the bottom of the totem pole as far as civil rights go. And it’s been mentioned by others on the show that after the vamps comes other supes. It’s true, and with the horrifying new weapons and anti-vamp precautions being doled out by the government, it’s an all too real reminder of current day inequality. That allegory was one that True Blood did very well in the first season, and it would be nice if the main storylines this season were limited to the fairy/Warlow situation+ Bill + humans vs. supes. (I know it’s too much to ask that True Blood just limit itself to only two main storylines. Ha.)

eric-s6

As I mentioned before, Bill may be a big bad, but he’s only  just one. Let’s not forget the Governor and Warlow are out there, too. The Governor is the perfect amount of creepy crawly sleezeball, and his interactions with Eric continue to be some of the best scenes so far this season. And let’s be real: Eric is the undeniable MVP of season 6 so far. He is really killing it this season. His rage is caged, but unhinged; his motivations are clear; and his obvious love for Sookie is truly touching. I’m tired of of his riffs with Pam, but that’s mostly because Pam has been demoted to a pretty pink ball of whine. She used to be one of the best characters, always ready with whipsmart snark and observation. Her problems with Eric seem to be on the downslope, and I hope they stay that way. And I hope her and Tara continue to be a thing, because that ‘ship is the best.

The addition of the Governor’s daughter to the mix of vamps in Eric’s caravan is a nice development. I am undecided if she is genuinely against her father’s ambitions, or if it’s all a ruse. Either way, I like her so far. (Though I did give a big eye roll when Tara flew off with her. Ugh. Typical Tara.) She seems like she could be tougher than we think. It will be interesting to see, too, if the Governor really is willing to roll over to save her when push comes to shove, or if he’s willing to sacrifice her for the greater good. (I have a feeling we both know what the answer is.)

The relationship growth between Sookie and Jason this season is a real delight. I always feared Jason would also go the way of Hoyt–become a useless burden sooner or later and see an untimely  demise. I can tell the writers have something in store for him, but I don’t know what yet. Why do Warlow’s visits have such an effect on him? Warlow has now made an “appearance” at Sookie’s twice now, and each time he’s left without so much a trace and a flash of light. And each visit has left Jason doubled over in pain. He’s been off his game since he got bit before the Authority implosion, and now he seems to be in seriously bad shape. I have no idea what it all means, but I am more interested in that than many other things on the show.  I do hope that Jason does not eventually become another gravestone in the long cemetery that is Sookie’s life.

jason-sookie-s6

Speaking of Warlow, Grandpa Niall is resolute in his mission to end the vampire demi-god, and he’s now found another warrior to back his efforts. Ben! Oh, Ben. I knew we were just getting started with you.  I still feel like something is fishy about his whole story (and for a moment I thought he was somehow connected to Warlow or his mission to capture Sookie). I can’t quite put my finger on it, but maybe it’s because True Blood has taught me nothing if not to be weary of strangers because they are almost never what they seem. I like Ben so far though, and I am shipping him and Sookie real hard. Wouldn’t it be nice if (until she and Eric are together for real) she could find a nice fae boy to love for a hot minute? She deserves that.

A few notes:

-I will always find it funny when Andy refers to Bill as Vampire Bill.

-Steve Newlin’s wife was back tonight! And man did her hair look CRAY.

-Jessica never ceases to amaze me with how hot she can look.

-I like Holly a lot, and I really do hope her and Andy can make it work. Despite the fact that he has four rapidly growing halfing daughters.

Here’s a peek at episode 4:

  • Beverly Casares

    Is it me or does the Louisiana Vampire camps remind anyone of the “Initiative” on Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Eric was awesome in this episode.

  • I kinda think you missed the fact that Alcide is now packmaster, which makes Emma, as the granddaughter of one of his pack (and one who stood for him at that), very much his business by werewolf standards. From his point of view, Emma is a member of his pack being kept from her rightful family by some guy who briefly dated her mother.

    On other points: very much agreed about Pam; I’m really tired of her incessant whining.

    I also agree on the fairies. True Blood has really dropped the ball on their portrayal in past seasons; in the books they can be scary and deadly as hell.

  • I really enjoyed Brandi’s review, I can’t find anything here that I disagree with. My main observations would be: 1 – We totally need more of the real Pam. She’s my favorite character on the show and I’m really missing getting to see her at her best. 2 – Lafayette is just too funny. We’re seeing shades of the true Lala this season, and I want more! 3 – Niall is a much needed shot in the arm for the fey. I’m so relieved that they seem to be taking the faeries in a less ridiculous direction. 4 – The Sam/Werewolf storyline just seems like filler. Those scenes are really good times to go grab a drink or check the baseball highlights. 5 – Who/what is Ben?? There is definitely more to him than meets the eye and I’m dying to find out what his deal is. Which is awesome, as last season, there was ZERO that I was dying to find out. I think this is already a giant step up from Season 5! I love this show, so that’s a HUGE relief!

    • Yeah have to agree. It’s no season 1/2 but better than S5 so far.

  • Fairygirl

    I have to agree…this review was great. I too don’t trust Ben and I have this feeling he is Warlow. Granted it’s just a feeling and although I like his character their is something about him I don’t trust. Eric I love this season he is great, seeing him be a bad ass is outstanding. As for Bill my sympathy’s are with him. I feel he is not going to be as bad as they want us to think. As for Sookie well all I can say about her is I hope she gets the true death as she is still annoying. Bill/Eric/Ben deserve someone better.

    • Brandi McCormick

      I’m glad you liked it! You know, I at first thought Ben was going to be Warlow too. I just had this…feeling. And then I realized that he was walking around in the daytime and could communicate with Sookie and Niall telepathically, so that kind of shot down my theory. I DO still think that there is something up with him, I’m just not sure what.

  • #trubieforever

    I dont get it. this is the 2nd review ive read that doesnt come off as, well, that the author actually LIKES the show. so, why watch and write the review if you dont like it….and HBOwatch, why publish this…..just IMO. looking forward to reading reviews that paints the show in a POSITIVE light.

    • Clare

      Oh wow I don’t agree at all! I think the reviews of both episodes sound like they’re fans of the show, but are looking at it with a critical eye, as a reviewer should. A critic or reviewer shouldn’t be all about looking at a show through rise colored glasses, they should break it down into the good & the bad & tell us why. If all a review does is kiss hbo’s ass, I’d consider that really disappointing. I really enjoyed this review & agree on so many points! Nice job!

      • Just to chime in as the editor in chief here. We don’t tell our reviewers what to write. It could be good or bad we just don’t know beforehand. We have… I’d say 90% promotional/stuff on HBOWatch. We all love HBO. But we also want to get fans’ concerns out there as well otherwise we’d never see HBOGo as a standalone product, the producers of Game of Thrones wouldn’t care as much about sticking to the books etc.

        I actually PERSONALLY disagree with several writers about HBO shows. But we post their reviews because it gets the conversation going. Thanks for being a part of it! If you disagree with Brandi here give some of your views on the specifics she mentioned. There is another side to this show, I know so let’s hear it! :)

        • PortuguesePrincess

          I actually thought the review was pretty soft and I LIKE THE SHOW…actually I like the show soooo much I run a True Blood Fan Art group for artists but I am conscious of it’s flaws as much as I am of it’s strengths.
          I expect more from True Blood each week than Eric’s naked backside and Pam’s witticisms … yes, I love both those things but it sometimes seems the cracks in the foundation are growing. For example; continuity – Bill can walk around for 10 minutes in sunlight season 1 to save Sookie’s life but in S6Ep3 he completely burns in seconds from sunlight??? I also agree with the reviewer; True Blood has a history of bringing in too many characters and subplots that only convolute and muddy the main storylines. It seems like the writers get overly excited each season (first 2 seasons not withstanding) and kaboom we have the unnecessary plotlines like US Vampire Unity League.

          But what I always keep in mind while watching True Blood is that this show is considered URBAN FANTASY – keyword being FANTASY. And for all it’s beautiful moments and some of it’s shortcomings, True Blood is still the most enjoyable 12 hours (this year 10 hours) of supernatural escapism I have each summer. I look forward to it for 9 months out of the year and just except it for what it is…hot buttery popcorn for the brain.

    • Brandi McCormick

      Just want to say that I do truly adore the show! One of the reasons I like writing reviews for HBOWatch is that it allows me to dissect a show that I have high expectations for. The whole point of reviewing a TV show is to lay it all out–its faults, its successes, and all the reasons why I’m still watching it after 5 years. It’s because I love the show that I am able to critique it so. And in a way, as a writer of entertainment, I hold quality TV programming at a higher standard. They are creating this content FOR us; if we don’t hold them accountable for their own actions (even if only in blog reviews and tweets and status updates), then who will? I am glad that my review sparked a debate from you #trubieforever and I hope our reviews continue to challenge everyone’s views on the show. :)










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