True Blood: “I Found You” Season 7 Episode 2 Review

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There are still some kinks to work out, but the second episode in the season progressed the show in a decidedly positive direction.

It’s good to see that True Blood still knows how to laugh. Tonight’s episode was full of the show’s signature sense of humor, even during the bleakest of circumstances. And boy, are things looking bleak.

While Sookie, Sam, Andy, Jason, and Alcide search a neighboring town to find survivors, a riot breaks out at Bon Temps police station, resulting in the citizens getting ahold of the last remaining source of firearms. Meanwhile, Arlene, Holly, and a very pregnant Nicole remain trapped in the basement of Fangtasia while droves of H-Vamps pick them off one-by-one.

Yet, the show opens with a scene that seems ripped right from a piece of fan-fiction. In church, Jason dozes off and ends up dreaming about a steamy encounter with Eric. Is it a ridiculous sequence? Absolutely. But the writers know this, and they milk it for all it’s worth. Eric and Jason are given silly, romance novel dialogue and purposefully awkward stage direction. Sure, this opening didn’t do anything to advance the season’s overall goals, but I’m sure there are plenty of viewers who aren’t complaining.

I can’t understand why, if everyone’s looking for Arlene, Holly, and Nicole, they wouldn’t check a known vampire bar first. Still, Arlene’s desperation to get her children’s former teacher to help them escape elevated an otherwise stale hostage plotline to a hilarious new level. As always, Carrie Preston’s manic line delivery was spot-on, and I especially enjoyed her reaction to the teacher needing to feed on her femoral artery.

The main plot of the night—Sookie and her Scooby gang searching the abandoned town—is unfortunately where most of the show’s problems still lie. Here’s the thing about these H-Vamps: they don’t make a whole lot of sense. If Sam has ordered everyone to have a vampire protector at night and not to invite anyone in, and the infected vampires are slowly dying anyway, shouldn’t this problem just sort itself out in due time? Why are they such a threat, and how are they able to wipe out an entire town if they’re on their last leg? This issue is probably the most frustrating aspect of this new season because True Blood  has always been good at creating some wonderfully twisted villains. These new rabid vampires just don’t have the same bite as, say, Russell Edgington or Maryann Forester. Pun intended.

The other complication at hand is still Sookie, who I’m now realizing is suffering from a lack of development. Remember how Andy went from being a V-addicted deputy to Sheriff of the town? Or how Jason went from despising Vampires to opening his heart up to one? Well, Sookie, seven seasons later, is still just Sookie. She’s still a town pariah, forced to hang her head in shame for bringing Vampires into Bon Temps. This was made abundantly clear during a scene in which she finds and reads aloud the diary of a girl just like her, who lost her vampire boyfriend to Hep V.  I don’t see why she’s still so down on herself. If she really wants to help the town, she needs to be more confident in her choices.

This episode, however, is a strong indication that this season has a lot of potential. Despite its flaws, there was a lot to like. The humor is back and as sharp as ever, and the idea of Bon Temps being a town divided could make for a very compelling narrative arc. Additionally, in the episode’s final moments, we got a shocker of a scene as Pam finally finds Eric in France. To her horror, she also discovers he has Hep V. This is the kind of crisis True Blood is good and handling, and I have high hopes as to how it will play out in episodes to come. Grade: B+

 

By Mike Papirmeister

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