A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 9: “Love is to Die”

This felt familiar. “Love Is to Die,” like other episodes this season, took us through familiar territory when next up is the series finale. What little good this episode had does not overshadow the mediocre.

Love Is to Die- Bill won't accept Sarah's blood

The episode begins right after Bill’s decision to not take Sarah’s blood. Everyone is understandably pissed, particularly Jessica and Sookie. Bill can’t explain it right now, but he’s accepted his fate and will take the true death. Sookie isn’t having that. She tells Bill that if he refuses the cure, he’s making a choice. Jessica sulks and Sookie smacks him twice when he refuses to explain himself. Before she can smack him three times a lady, Eric stops her. He then tells Bill not to tell anyone about Sarah- who is probably the only happy person among them right now.

Love Is to Die- Jessica tells Bill to release her

Before Bill can leave, Jessica demands that he release her, and she’s not taking ‘no’ for an answer. Bill approaches Jessica and reminds her that he never wanted to turn her into a vampire to begin with. After all, he only turned her because he killed a fellow vampire that tried to kill Sookie. Nevertheless, Bill is still proud of the vampire that Jessica has become. The vampire Jessica eventually became, anyway. He knows she’ll still flourish and, with that, he renounces their ties.

Not long after this, Sookie and Jessica stop by Sam’s, for some reason. They enter to find the home completely empty, save for two letters.

Love Is to Die- Sam and Nicole pack up and leave

As Sookie reads the one marked to her, we flash back to Sam and Nicole packing. Sam gave some serious thought about what Nicole said about Bon Temps being a crazy place to live. Even though Bon Temps is his home, Sam loves Nicole and wants to see his baby girl grow up. Why he’s still into Nicole baffles me, but I’ll get into that later. Sam believes that we have two lives: our own, and the one for our kids. And he won’t be too far- he and Nicole are just moving to Chicago!

Love Is to Die- Andy reads his goodbye letter from Sam

Meanwhile, business sucks at Bellefleur’s, though not like it’s been booming these past few days. Arlene decides to wait it out by having another party. You know, because a party worked so well the last time. Sookie enters and wishes to speak with Andy in private, as Sam’s second letter was addressed to him. She figured that Andy would want the privacy, but all Andy learns is that Sam resigned. That’s about it. Shortest ‘good-bye’ letter ever.

Love Is to Die- Jessica and James reconcile

James and Jessica take a moment to reconcile, though Jessica admits that what Lafayette said about her was spot-on: she doesn’t know much about James because she never took the time to ask. She apologizes for that, but that’s about it. After this, she takes off.

Love Is to Die- Hoyt and Brigette argue

Hoyt and Brigette are not only still around, but they’re bickering again. Brigette wants Hoyt to explain not just why he doesn’t want kids, but why Jessica seemed to be so into him, if he supposedly never met her. Hoyt does own up to seeing Jessica, but only to deliver Bill some of his blood. Brigette quickly apologizes for freaking out-

Love Is to Die- Jessica wants to explain herself to Hoyt

-but she gets her second wind when Jessica arrives. She’s not invited in, though. She tells the two that there’s a reason she remembers him, but not the other way around him. Brigette delivers her ultimatum: if Hoyt steps out the door to hear the rest of what Jessica has to say, they’re through. So as that relationship crumbles, Brigette makes a phone call to Jason. Outside, Jessica spills: Hoyt was the first man she truly loved. When he returned to Bon Temps, she just wanted him again. Selfish as that is, she at least owns up to it.

Love Is to Die- Arlene gives Sookie a pep talk on starting over

Sookie doesn’t join in on the fun, so Arlene plays therapist to Ms. Stackhouse, while also letting her know that she and Keith are taking things slow. Sookie asks Arlene how she’s able to start over so many times. Well, it helps when you get a vision from your dead husband. Sookie admits that she never forgot about Bill when she was with Alcide, but she’ll never do that again. A little late for that, Sookie.

Love Is to Die- Eric and Bill talk about Sookie again

Eric pops by Bill’s and talks about how much he wanted to give up living around the time that Pam found him. The Hep-V virus attacks more than the body; it goes after the spirit. Bill claims that he’s doing this all for Sookie, even if she can eventually love someone else. He then tells Eric about the fever dream he had of Sookie holding a shadow, void baby. She’d given birth to death, which is what vampires are. All Bill wants to do is set her free. However, since Sookie won’t listen to Bill, he wants Eric the Relationship Counselor to play mediator.

Love Is to Die- Hoyt knocks out Jason

Jason shows up and is quickly knocked on his ass by Hoyt. Well, that was a scene.

Love Is to Die- Brigette drives to Jason's place

He wakes up later in his police cruiser with Brigette at the wheel. This isn’t legal, but this is Bon Temps, so not like it really matters. Jason doesn’t need a hospital, either. He was only out for five minutes and no one would be working at the hospitals at this time of night, anyway. He tells Brigette, flat out, that the two are not going to have sex. Even though Brigette is heartbroken and just left Hoyt, Jason just needed to put it out there. Well, I give him this: he gave her fair warning.

Love Is to Die- Pam plans to turn Sarah back into a blonde

Since Pam needs something to do this week, she has the Yakuza bring Sarah upstairs so she can turn Ms. Newlin back into a blonde.

Love Is to Die- Jason helps Brigette with her flight troubles

At Jason’s place, Brigette is unable to secure a flight back to Anchorage. Jason asks about the gender of the person on the phone. When he learns that it’s a woman, Deputy Jason Stackhouse steps in and lets his magic work. He informs the woman that Bon Temps has been under attack these past few weeks and Brigette is suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. All he wants is help. In a few moments, the woman on the phone emails Brigette the confirmation for her Delta flight. With his work done, he heads to the living room for some shut eye.

Love Is to Die- Hoyt and Jessica talk about why they broke up

For Hoyt and Jessica, the night has just begun. Hoyt asks Jessica that if the two of them knew each other before, why wasn’t Jessica ready back then? She admits that she was immature and hadn’t explored her dark side until she met him. And after Hoyt shot and killed Violet, Jessica saw a future for herself when she was on the verge of death. Again. When Jessica was on the verge of death again.

Love Is to Die- Pam works on Sarah's hair

While working on Sarah’s hair- seriously, Pam has nothing else to do- Pam talks about a young woman she once knew named Mary. Mary worked at a whore house and met Pam at the age of 16 or 17. She thought herself too good to be a whore. Pam believes Sarah sees herself as something similar, but once the world knows that she’s the cure, there will be a huge price on her.

Love Is to Die- Jason tells Brigette about Hoyt and Jessica

Brigette asks Jason about what he would have done if it had been a man on the phone. Good question, but Jason says he would have still tried. Jason has just always had a way with women, even back when he and Hoyt were young. Jason would always get the girl, but Hoyt would return to his mother. This all changed when Hoyt met Jessica. As we know, that went south and became even worse when Jason tried to justify having sex with Jessica. He feels that he deserved to get the hell kicked out of him by Hoyt, but he remembers something that Hoyt told him: Jason would never have what Hoyt and Jessica had because that was real.

Jason was just someone who thought with his dick. And because Hoyt wanted to forget, he wanted Jessica to glamour him so he’d forget about the both of them. So Hoyt never lied about not knowing Jessica- he just didn’t remember. And even though Hoyt and Brigette may have been an item for who knows how long, he was always meant to be with Jessica by the transitive property of happily-ever-after logic.

Love Is to Die- Hoyt and Jessica get it on

Oh, as this happens, Hoyt and Jessica get it on with swelling music playing in the background.

Love Is to Die- Eric talks to Sookie about Bill

The party at Bellefleur’s ends without incident. Sookie finds Eric waiting for her. He tells her to talk to Bill, but she’s scared. Absurd as Bill’s explanation is, Eric believes it will make sense to Sookie when she hears it from him. He offers her a lift.

Love Is to Die- Brigette and Jason do not have sex

Back at Jason’s, he and Brigette do not have sex, so they swap secrets. Worst thing that Brigette’s done was let someone cheat off of her test. And she never told a single person about it, either. I’d say alert the authorities, but Jason’s right there and not even sarcasm would be enough for this. Jason’s big secret is that he likes pink. Brigette wants a deeper secret, despite how simple it is to admit cheating on a test. But Jason relents: he would like to have kids, but he’s fearful that, if he had a daughter, she would meet someone who is just like him. Brigette comforts Jason, telling him that, contrary to what Hoyt said, there’s nothing missing in him.

Eric drops Sookie off at his please and bids her farewell. She heads in and takes Bill’s phone call. The two plan to meet up.

Love Is to Die- Eric and Ginger about to fuck

Meanwhile, at Fangtasia, a depressed Ginger is suddenly filled with anger when an equally angry Eric storms in. Ginger is livid that Eric didn’t tell her that he’s healed. Eric, however, is frustrated beyond belief at having to help other people with their relationship problems. He begrudgingly apologizes for not telling her that he’s cured. To make it up to her, the two are finally going to fuck. Just what Ginger wanted to hear. Where’s it going to take place?

Love Is to Die- Ginger and Eric fuck, sort of

On the throne. Ginger straddles him, just as she fantasized, and after a few moments of riding Eric Northman, Ginger climaxes herself to sleep.

Love Is to Die- Eric finds Pam and Sarah bound by the Yakuza

Now, onto what Eric originally came for: he searches for Pam, but doesn’t find her until he heads to the basement and sees Mr. Gus and the Yakuza have not only rebound Sarah, they’ve strapped Pam down with a stake above her. Gus asks if anyone knows about Sarah, and just before the stake can fall onto Pam, Eric admits that he told Sookie Stackhouse about the cure. Now all Mr. Gus needs is her address.

Bill, meanwhile, knocks on Sookie’s door as the episode comes to a close.

As we approach the series finale, this episode appeared to have the growing sense of finality. We’re done with side-plots like Lettie Mae and Lafayette digging in the yard or Violet not being a very good mini-villain. We’re focusing on a few plots and the writers want to bring closure to some of them. However, while I’ve said before that less is more, it should still be interesting to watch. Not a lot is explained when there should be simple explanations, Bill’s decision being the biggest of them.

Love Is to Die- Jessica and Hoyt

Confrontation and coming to terms with your fate were some of the central focuses of the episode, with Bill resigning himself to the true death. Even though we don’t know when our time on Earth ends, rather than try to make the most of it, some accept that the end is inevitable, so there’s no point in trying to fight it. On the other hand, inevitability doesn’t always have to be bleak, as it’s what drove Hoyt and Jessica back together again.

They, like others during this season, have been given a second chance to make amends to the people they’ve hurt and right their past mistakes. They’re choosing to acknowledge their wrongs, but also not dwell on them to ensure a happy future for themselves. Even though that is a bit selfish, as Jessica acknowledges, at least people who choose this option are making a conscious decision instead of just going along with whatever life throws at them.

Love Is to Die- Party

There are a few moments this week that just didn’t make sense. I must question why Arlene felt that it was time to have a party. It hasn’t been that long since the last one and nothing happened at this one at all. It could have just been the regulars hanging out at Bellefleur’s. No need to dress it up as a party when the last one ended in disaster. We get bits and pieces of information, such as Lafayette and James have bonded more off-screen, while Keith and Arlene want to take things slow. Sookie really didn’t have a reason to be there, especially since I don’t think she told anyone besides Andy that Sam had left.

Love Is to Die- Jessica and Sookie find Sam's goodbye notes

And on that, why did Sookie and Jessica just randomly decide to stop by Sam’s house, anyway? To talk about Bill? If so, it seems odd that he’d be the first person they go to, but it just felt like a way to get them there to find Sam’s letters. If Sam’s gone, fine. I’ve lost interest.

Love Is to Die- Pam stops Sookie from smacking Bill a third time

Sookie has every reason in the world to be angry at Bill. She put her life at risk-again- by learning about Sarah being the cure, but did it for the greater good of saving Bill’s life. For him to reject it felt not like just one, but two slaps to the face. There was real venom in her voice when she demanded that Bill at least try to justify himself, but to Sookie, this was an insult.

Another insult came too little, too late. Sookie admits that, while with Alcide, she never let Bill go. She vowed to never do that again. This makes Sookie’s relationship with Alcide feel like even more of a waste because she never truly grew close to or loved him.

Love Is to Die- Bill has no words

If Bill wants to be resigned to his fate, then fine, but spell it out better than “There are no words.” It’s as if he wants to die, but doesn’t want Sookie to hate him for it. When you don’t tell the people who care about you why you’re looking forward to death, you’re guaranteed a negative response, as Bill did. After the two appeared to have reconciled their differences, Bill making this decision after last week’s cliffhanger is a disappointment. That buildup resulted in him just feeling sorry for himself and vampires alike for the harm they cause humans. I’m not interested in joining this pity party.

As for the love square that is Jason, Brigette, Hoyt and Jessica, I guess it was only a matter of time before Hoyt and Jessica found their way back into each other’s arms. Truth be told, I’m fine with whoever Jessica ends up with, whether Hoyt or Jason. I don’t have a problem with the two rediscovering their love, but I do have a problem with the execution.

Love Is to Die- Brigette and Hoyt

First off, Hoyt and Brigette, at first, seemed to be a genuine couple that cared for one another. However, Hoyt’s time in Alaska seems to have hardened him and he’s become more of a dick, flipping out at the idea of having kids. If we had to see Hoyt and Brigette break up, I wish it hadn’t been done this way since the two genuinely seemed to care for one another. Then, once Jason and Jessica entered the equation, it’s like a switch flipped on and the two became irrational and short with one another.

The same goes with Jason, as I think not putting him with someone would have been a better idea. Why not just bring Hoyt back, and then have Jason and Jessica remind him of his past? Sure, it might have left Jason alone at the end of the day, but it’d be a bolder move than the two just switching ladies. But I’m not a television writer, so I have no idea what I’m talking about, really. A switch just seems too easy.

Love Is to Die- Jason discusses the conflict between himself, Hoyt and Jessica

Credit where it’s due, Jason has come a long way since the season and even this series began. Having a crazy vampire girlfriend may have helped push him faster than he’d like, but Violet’s antics definitely played a part in him re-evaluating his life. It was quite funny to see him and Brigette literally just lay in bed and talk. For all of Jason’s wild sex antics, the man showed some restraint. And though he’s not with Jessica anymore, I’m sure their friendship will remain intact.

Bill Turns Jessica

I don’t want to spend the series finale talking about every character, so I wanted to address Jessica for a minute. While watching this character grow, Jessica has slowly become one of my favorites of this show. It’s interesting to look back and watch where this character started and what’s brought her to this point. When we first met Jessica, she was a scared, Christian girl thrust into a situation that she had no control over. By no fault of her own, she wound up being bitten and turned into a vampire.

Jessica the Rebel

From there, we watched her grow from being a rebellious kid that’s trying to relearn how the world works, to becoming one of the most vital characters on the show’s run. She found love, almost met the sun and helped train Tara after Pam turned her into a vampire. She refused to leave Bill when he originally wanted to release her, but now, after watching him refuse to help himself, she readily took liberation into her own hands. Despite her spat with James, she did apologize for not giving him the attention he deserved. Though I wasn’t a fan of her sudden hunger problem or inability to forgive herself, Jessica has had a complicated, yet still entertaining life throughout the series’ run.

Love Is to Die- Jessica

Deborah Ann Woll has been both sweet and vicious when it comes to this character and I never got tired of watching her in this role. She can be menacing while embracing Jessica’s darker side, but in a seamless transition, she shows deep affection and care for those around her. One of my favorite performances on this entire program.

Love Is to Die- Eric the Relationship Counselor

Pam and Eric are fun to watch, but don’t get much to do this week. Pam’s here to work on Sarah’s hair and try conversing with the Yakuza, while Eric goes through hell as an impromptu relationship counselor.

Love Is to Die- Ginger climaxes herself to sleep

That said, at least Ginger finally got hers. The look of pure excitement and ecstasy when she rode Eric for a few seconds and climaxed herself to sleep was the most enjoyable part of the episode. She worked herself up to this moment and even got Eric to sit on the shitty chair, and it’s over before it even begins. That’s funny.

This was still a slow episode. What little good there is doesn’t make up for the uninspired and sometimes unexplained character motivations, lazy storytelling and telling us things that, as an audience, we already know about these characters. It’s the second to last episode! Give us a little credit!

Any questions, comments, concerns, issues or complaints? Would like to hear them, if’n you have them.

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