A Look at True Blood- Series Finale: “Thank You”

And so it’s come to this, the ending of True Blood. After such an underwhelming season, the series finale, “Thank You,” wraps up the show in a nice little bow, while still leaving so much unanswered and unaccounted for in the pile that was True Blood’s seventh and final season.

Thank You- Bill talks with Sookie about his death wish

The episode begins with Sookie letting Bill into the room where he first summoned her. Sookie cuts Bill’s trip down memory lane short by letting him know that nostalgia and suicide don’t mix. I tend to agree. Sookie just wants to see Bill live, but Bill asks her to imagine a life without him. The two know they’ve been down this road before: Sookie will leave Bill for a moment, but find her way back to him. This virus has made Bill feel more human than when he was, but his grave is still a lie. He should be in the ground with his family.

Bill believes that, by existing, he’d be denying Sookie the best part of life. He’s seen the way Sookie acts around kids and hopes that she’ll, one day, have some of her own. Sookie says that it should be easy for Bill to just swear her off, but he can’t because he loves her too much. Isn’t that precious? And just a bit stupid? Bill wants Sookie to grant him the ultimate kindness by using her fairy light to kill him. If not, other vampires will come after her. By doing this, she’ll rid Bill from her life and be normal at the same time. Sookie needs to think this over.

Thank You- Eric about to release Sarah

At Fangtasia, Eric unchains Sarah, but glamours her into taking some of Pam’s blood so the two will always be able to track her. Eric reveals his ultimate plan to Pam: kill Mr. Gus, get rid of the Yakuza and steal New Blood for themselves. As Sarah leaves, she’s instructed to wait for Pam to find her.

When Mr. Gus and the Yakuza arrive, they’re dispatched of…fairly quickly, actually. Huh.

Eric deals with the remaining Yakuza before Sookie can spot them from her home.

Thank You- Pam finds Sarah at the carousel where Eric turned Willa

Sarah makes her way to a carousel and feasts on food from the garbage. Goodness, woman, you haven’t fallen that far yet. Pam finds her in no time. The carousel, as Sarah notes, is the same location where Eric turned Willa. She read about it in Bill’s book, which Pam only skimmed to find the parts that mentioned her. She would do that. Sarah admits that she’s a horrible person, but to solve that, she should be made into a kickass lesbian vampire! And Sarah’s dead serious. Pam, however, won’t turn her. She’s also not a fan of Sarah bringing up Tara. Instead, she feeds on her.

Thank You- Bill asks Hoyt if he'd ever marry Jessica

Jessica and Hoyt come by Bill’s, as Jessica has a few words for her maker: she doesn’t want him to die, but she’ll be fine regardless. She still doesn’t understand why he’s doing this, and frankly, I don’t think anyone else does, but she will eventually accept it. That’s all Bill needed to hear right now. He asks if Hoyt would ever ask Jessica to marry him, and after an awkward moment, Hoyt tells Bill that he would eventually ask.

Thank You- Jessica and Bill talk about marriage and Jessica's future

This prompts Jessica to talk with Bill in private. Having marriage thrust upon her isn’t what she wanted. After all, Hoyt’s memory of her only goes back by a day. Bill wants to make sure Jessica was spoken for after he dies, as he was turned before he had a chance to see his daughter, Sarah, wed. Well, Jessica asks, if Hoyt did want to marry her, could it be today? Somehow, I don’t think marriage works like that.

Thank You- Grandma talks to Sookie and Tara in flashback

Now it’s raining. Sookie has a flashback to when Grandma gave her and Tara hot chocolate. Young Sookie reads Young Tara’s thoughts and learns that she likes Jason. Sookie, however, doesn’t like anyone, particularly boys because they’re weird. Plus, she has no intentions of getting married. Grandma, however, tells Sookie that she can have any life that she wants to have because she’s entitled to it! Remember that, Sookie Stackhouse.

Thank You- Jason tells Sookie that he's no good for advice

All right. Sookie heads to Jason’s, but finds Brigette instead. Sookie wakes up Jason to tell him about Bill’s request to be put out of his misery. Jason, rightly so, tells his sister that he has no advice for her, but he’ll love her anyway. Moments later, Jason and Sookie receive calls from Hoyt and Jessica, respectively, about an upcoming wedding.

Thank You- Bill offers his home to Andy to give to Jessica and Hoyt

Andy, Holly and Arlene arrive for the big wedding. Inside, Bill speaks with Andy in private. He acknowledges the difficult history between them, but Andy is still ill’s eldest remaining heir. When he dies, the house will be passed to Andy, and he’d like to rent it to Hoyt and Jessica for the sum of a dollar a month! Sounds affordable.

Thank You- Jason helps Hoyt get ready

Upstairs, Jason helps Hoyt get ready. He tells Hoyt that Brigette will be heading back to Alaska tonight and that it’s probably a bad idea to call her. Hoyt apologizes for the punch, but Jason tells him that he deserved that and a lot more if it meant Hoyt returning into his life. Hoyt tells Jason that he feels like Harrison Ford did in Regarding Henry, where he had to relearn everything he ever acquired. Jason comforts him with a single question: if the world ended tomorrow, who would he want to be by his side? Jessica, clearly.

Thank You- Andy marries Jessica and Hoyt

The moment arrives with Andy officiating the ceremony with no Bible, no rings, and no official vows. They aren’t even in a bloody church! But this is True Blood. This would be considered normal for these people. During the ceremony, Sookie, surprisingly, reads Bill’s thoughts of how much he loves her and wishes that she could have this kind of happiness right now. He’s also in excruciating pain.

Thank You- Sookie approves of Jason sleeping with Brigette

After this mock wedding, Sookie tells Jason about how surprising it was that she could read Bill’s thoughts and thinks back to what Bill said about feeling more human than ever. Oh, and she sort of suggests that Jason sleep with Brigette since she isn’t Hoyt’s girlfriend anymore. I’ll get to this later.

Thank You- Sookie talks with Reverend Daniels

Sookie then pays Reverend Daniels a visit for some advice: was she a mistake if God supposedly made everyone in his image? The Reverend tells Sookie that people in Bon Temps are saying that they wouldn’t be around right now if it wasn’t for Sookie Stackhouse. Huh. Guess we missed those conversations. He then tells her that God doesn’t lead our lives- rather, we make our own decisions. So says Sookie Stackhouse, help is on the way. She calls Bill to tell him to meet her at sundown for the arrangements.

Thank You- Meeting at Bill's grave

That evening, Bill meets her at Bill’s grave. A coffin is already inside because some soldiers never returned home during the war. The coffin was meant to be palatable for the families. He looks inside the coffin and finds a photo of him and his daughter in a small case. Bill prepares himself and the two vow to never forget one another. Sookie prepares her magical fairy ball, but stops short of using it. This is who she is- it’s part of her. Bill will always be a part of her, too, but she can’t do this for him. She cuts off her energy and, instead, breaks the shovel in two.

Thank You- Sookie kills Bill

Taking the pointy end, Sookie kisses Bill Compton one final time before driving the wood into his body. Sookie cries as Compton’s blood covers her body, but she composes herself, begins covering the grave and leaves the cemetery.

Thank You- Eric and Pam behind New Blood

One year later, New Blood President and CEO Eric Northman and the ever lovely Pam De Beaufort discuss their new product and the origin of it. The two never did catch Sarah Newlin, but they found traces of her blood and managed to synthesize it.

Thank You- Pam and Eric at New York Stock Exchange

Three years after this, Eric and Pam are at the New York Stock Exchange.

Thank You- Happy Ending

And then we cut to Thanksgiving, as the remaining survivors in Bon Temps- plus Sam, Nicole and their daughter, for some reason- sit down and have themselves a merry little Thanksgiving dinner.

Thank You- Sarah Newlin isn't thankful for anything

Oh, and Sarah Newlin’s not dead. She’s chained in the bottom of Fangtasia while Pam has vampires feed on her. What’s she thankful for? Not a damn thing.

Well, that was a series.

From the premiere, this final season of True Blood has been lukewarm. Let me be clear: True Blood has never been what I’d call stellar or groundbreaking television. It can be entertaining even when it’s bad because of good humor, but this season didn’t have that. There were more misses than hits and it’s made worse because this is the final season. There’s no strict code or formula that television shows need to follow for their final episode, but you want it to at least be a satisfying ending. You don’t want something that feels underwhelming or incomplete. That’s why people still have gripes with the endings to such series as Seinfeld, The Sopranos, and, recently, Dexter.

Thank You- Sookie and Bill hug before it's time

If anything, the episode tried to focus on characters accepting who they are and making their own decisions for themselves, but even that didn’t entirely feel genuine. Sookie chose to kill Bill on her own terms, but only after not killing Bill the way that he wanted her to. Jessica had dreamt of weddings, and despite how sudden it was, she still chose to marry Hoyt in no time at all, despite how short their relationship has been.

The show seemed to know how worn out and tired the formula had become when Sookie and Bill talked about how often they’ve been down this break-up road before. Other shows would try to be clever with that sort of meta humor, but True Blood doesn’t have that sort of spark. At least, not this season. More than that, we got more flashbacks of Sookie basically receiving encouragement from other people. Encouragement that, at this point, she shouldn’t even need. Like the flashback to Tara’s childhood with Lettie Mae, we already know these things about the characters and shouldn’t have to be spoon fed this again just because it’s the final episode.

Even if True Blood wanted to take a nostalgia trip on its final episode, it’s done more than enough with so many flashbacks, and we never did get much of a payoff to Bill’s. We know Sookie would eventually make her own decision. We knew that Hoyt and Jessica would probably end up happily ever after, even if it did feel convoluted, and forced.

Thank You- Sarah with Pam

My point is that nothing in this episode or even this season felt particularly memorable. There were some interesting places to go with Sarah Newlin being the cure or the Hep-V vampires, but subplots were rushed over so quickly to get to the next one that the writers just seemed to lose interest in the show altogether.

Thank You- Sookie seriously considers killing Bill

Let’s just get the characters done and over with. Sookie decides to keep her ability and kill Bill her way. Fine. We did not need to drag this out for so long with Sookie acting like she needed so much time to make up her mind. She accepts who and what she is, even if she’s not a fan of being fae, but this should have made her final decision all the easier, especially given how insulted she was at Bill’s request for her to kill him. That said, the shot of her covered in blood was a nice image.

So who is the lucky guy that knocked Sookie up? Who knows? People divide themselves into the Sookie and Bill or Sookie and Eric camps often, from what I’ve read from fans of the series. Me personally? I couldn’t care either way because that doesn’t affect my enjoyment of the show.

Thank You- Jason doesn't want to sleep with Brigette

Jason. Oh, Jason. What happened? You were doing so well last episode by not bedding Brigette and you looked like you would stick to that. But flash forward a few years and he’s not only bedded Brigette, he’s got kids! He did say he wanted kids, yes, but he took one step forward and two steps back! If Jason was so committed to changing his act, let Brigette go and live her life. Don’t put the two together for the sake of convenience and to give them a happy ending. Wasn’t he supposed to be growing up? And it’s even worse that Sookie was the one tempting Jason to sleep with Brigette by giving her approval. Oh, by the way, now that Jason and Brigette are officially an item, this makes the scene where Jason gets her a flight to Alaska completely pointless!

Thank You- Hoyt and Jessica kiss

Again, I’m fine with Hoyt and Jessica getting married, but like getting them together or hooking Brigette up with Jason, I’m not a fan of the execution at all. It’s hard for me to feel anything when this decision feels so rushed. In fact, I’m surprised there wasn’t a double wedding. Hell, they already acknowledged that the marriage wouldn’t be recognized by the state, there were no rings, no vows or even a bouquet of flowers to throw. It was about as unconventional of a wedding as there could be. Why not go all out and have Jason and Brigette get married, too?

And what happened with Andy wanting to make an honest woman out of Holly? That never did get brought up again, did it?

Thank You- Eric and Pam plot to steal New Blood and kill Mr. Gus

I’m sounding like a broken record, but Eric and Pam commanded this season from start to finish. It helped that they had an actual arc that built upon the relationship they’ve forged for years. They had the best chemistry, dialogue, and motivation to go after Sarah Newlin. Like the Hep-V vampires, I think they dispatched of Mr. Gus and the Yakuza a bit too quickly, essentially proving them to be ineffective as adversaries. They made this season worth watching and it felt like their characters had the more interesting storyline than whatever everyone else did.

This season has felt uneven from start to finish. If it wasn’t rushing through one plot to get to the next, it slowed to a crawl and wanted us to reminisce about things we already knew. The season had no regard for slowing down and letting audiences absorb what they’d witnessed and characters had to practically spell out what we were meant to feel. For my money, any attempt at real tension or drama fell flat under poor writing, ill thought out character motivations and rushed storytelling.

Again, I’m not asking True Blood to be some revolutionary television show, because it isn’t. What I’m asking for is a satisfying conclusion to a show that’s almost six years old. What we got instead was a very forced, sappy ending from a show that felt obliged to tie up loose ends while still not offering a rewarding experience. And still so much remains unanswered. If the Hep-V vampires had a constant need to feed, why didn’t Bill ever have that urge? Who fights for vampires in Bon Temps now that Eric and Pam are living the rich life?

Thank You- Sookie cries

It has to be said, this is the most disappointing ending to a disappointing season. There was never any real sense of urgency or threat. Characters waited for things to happen instead of relying upon the instinct that’s gotten them this far. While Eric and Pam were entertaining, they alone can’t make up for what was a sad attempt to force a happy ending upon viewers that stuck around with the show for this long. I’m no professional at all and my word isn’t law, but I cannot recommend this final season of True Blood except to those who are very curious. It’s almost insulting that the show has been reduced to this after being so entertaining. Watching this season became a chore just to find any little moment that made an otherwise dull episode worthwhile. Are there good things within this mess of a season? Yes. But you’ll have to do a lot of waiting to get there as HBO’s vampire drama finally drags itself across the finish line to accept the True Death.

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.

A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 8: “Almost Home”

So it looks like we might be getting somewhere. Heavy on the ‘might,’ if only because it looks like “Almost Home” is trying to wrap up a lot of loose threads and moving the plot along. Sure, things ramp up a bit, but at the same time, we retread familiar territory. Some of what we got was a bit too predictable, but we did get an interesting end that did manage to interest me to see how the plot would progress from there.

Almost Home- Eric ready to kill Sarah

The episode begins with Sarah dreading her inevitable death, even though she’s convinced that she will return as the Princess of Peace. She surrenders herself, but Eric goes in for the kill. Rather than fight back, Sarah actually pleads to be killed. Pam, realizing that Sarah must be kept alive, puts a gun to heart and threatens to kill herself if Eric kills Sarah. Instead, Eric takes a quick bite and in moments, he’s fully healed!

Almost Home- Sookie asks Bill about Queen Sophie-Anne

After their rendezvous between the sheets, Bill and Sookie talk. Sookie’s been wondering why Queen Sophie-Anne sent Bill after her in the first place. The plan was for Bill to find out if Sookie was, indeed, Fae, and if she was, bring her to the queen so she could begin breeding her. Yeah, it’s like that. But, as we know, Bill didn’t bring Sookie. He accepted the mission without risking it, and spending time with Sookie reminded him of his humanity and all the darkness he carried. However, Sookie believes that there was love present.

Almost Home- Lettie Mae and Lafayette still digging in yard when Reverend Daniels shows up

Lafayette and Lettie Mae are still digging in this poor family’s yard. Reverend Daniels, even though he has no real reason to be there, apologizes to the family. He’s still unconvinced by what the two have told him about Tara, so Lettie Mae asks him to join them, courtesy of James, who picked the perfect time to arrive. Obviously, the Reverend doesn’t want to, but Lettie Mae reminds him that he once wanted her to take a blind journey and asks him to believe in her. Yeah, pretty sure your terrible parenting and drinking problems don’t measure up with this, Lettie Mae.

Almost Home- Flashback, Tara’s dad, Joe Thornton, played by Malcolm Goodwin, learns about Tara's birthday party

So the three go on a V-trip and Tara leads them into the house, where a young Sookie, Tara, Lafayette celebrate Tara’s birthday. You know who wasn’t invited to the party? Tara’s dad, Joe Thornton, played by Malcolm Goodwin, enters and throws a fit about not being invited. After knocking Lettie Mae around, Joe looks for his gun.

Almost Home- Brigette and Jason look over photos of Hoyt

In the present, Brigette and Jason look over some photos of Hoyt. Brigette brings up the possibility of having kids, but Hoyt isn’t on board with that, given all of the things that his family has been through. As this happens, Jason receives photos from Violet. No nudes, though- just pictures of a bound Adilyn and Jessica. He quickly calls Andy and Holly, who are still far away, and rushes into action. Brigette decides to tag along.

Almost Home- Mr. Gus' proposition to Eric and Pam on how to use Sarah's blood

Mr. Gus talks with Eric and Pam about synthesizing Sarah’s blood for their new product. He doesn’t want the finished product to be too perfect or work too well. It shouldn’t fully heal the infected vampires, but just alleviate enough of their symptoms that they’ll want to come back for more. And the more vampires purchase, the more money for the people higher up. Eric and Pam are on board with more money, but no one else can know about this plan.

Almost Home- Violet's red hot phallus

Jason arrives at Violet’s villainous lair and arms Brigette with a gun while she’s in the car. Yeah, she won’t be joining in on the fun. Not long after Jason enters, Violet gets the jump on him and puts him in one of her many torture devices. Side-note, why does Violet even have so many devices if she’s not going to ever use them? She gives a long, drawn out speech that most villains give while the hero prepares to make their sudden, but inevitable and telegraphed counterattack. All she wanted was for Jason to worship her. She does have an order to how she’ll go about this torture: Wade first, so Adilyn can see him suffer. Adilyn will be next and get to experiment with Violet’s handy-dandy breast ripper, and then she’ll be drained slowly. Jessica is next and will be subject to a red hot phallic poker. Again, why does Violet have these things? But before we can start the fun-

Almost Home- Hoyt enters and kills Violet

-boom, in enters Hoyt, who puts an end to Violet. So there’s that, I guess.

Almost Home- Flashback, Young Tara burying gun

Back in Flashback Land, young Tara pulls her father’s gun out of her dresser drawer and is very close to pulling the trigger, but decides against it. Instead, she heads to the yard and buries the gun while her father gets in the car and leaves.

Almost Home- Tara apologizes for not shooting her father

In the present, Tara apologizes to her mother for not pulling the trigger when she had the chance. Lettie Mae says that responsibility wasn’t on Tara, but Mae should have been a better mother. No one’s questioning that at all. A lot of bad things happened to the two of them, but Lettie Mae needs to forgive herself and let Tara go. She does, and with that, Rutina Wesley walks off the True Blood set one last time.

Andy and Holly return after the fun, but still console Wade and Adilyn. Hoyt introduces himself to Jessica, while Brigette and Jason talk. She asks if Jessica is Jason’s girlfriend, but to be honest, Jason doesn’t even know what to call Jessica right now.

Almost Home- Sookie sees that Eric is fully healed

Eric pays Bill a visit and reveals to Sookie that he is fully healed. He can’t tell her how, despite the fact that Bill is very sick, but the cure isn’t ready yet. Hey, if it worked on Eric, it should work on Bill, right? Eric hesitates, unsure what to say. He tells Sookie that dawn is approaching, but she doesn’t give a shit about that. Eric promises to come back tomorrow night and leaves. Sookie, not satisfied with that, heads out into the night.

Almost Home- Jessica and Jason talk

Not long after, Jason and Jessica pull up. The two talk about the whirlwind of events they’ve been through. Jason decides, again, to stop making bad decisions, but his affection for Jessica was never a mistake. Despite everything Jessica has been through, she never felt that Jason betrayed her. In fact, she feels that their relationship hasn’t been too complicated. They made sense. After the two share a brief kiss, Jessica heads inside and lets Bill know that she’s there.

Almost Home- Sookie heads to Fangtasia by herself to meet Eric

The next day, Sookie heads to Fangtasia, alone, to meet with Eric. She’s let in, though Mr. Gus is curious about the relationship between Eric and Sookie. Eric tells Mr. Gus that Sookie is just a fangbanger, coming back for more. However, she shouldn’t be killed. Not just because she’s the main character, but because her brother is part of the Sheriff’s Department and if something happens to Sookie, the authorities will come after them. Eric tells Mr. Gus that he’ll glamour Sookie, but it’s obvious that he’s playing him. Oh, and that musical sting that plays whenever a vampire glamours a human? It doesn’t play for that long, either. But Sookie does take the opportunity to read Mr. Gus’ thoughts and learns that something important is downstairs.

Almost Home- Hoyt and Jason talk at Bellefleur's

At Bellefleur’s, Jason is loving the eggs. Just thought that was worth mentioning. Hoyt shows up and the two talk about the previous night. Hoyt asks about Jason and Jessica, though he makes it clear that he still loves Brigette. She’s just in a rough place right now.

Almost Home- Hoyt gives Jessica his clean blood

Next thing we know, Hoyt shows up at Bill’s doorstep. After heading into another room, Jessica lets him in. Hoyt offers up his own clean blood to help alleviate Bill’s pain. When Jessica apologizes about the death of Hoyt’s mother, Hoyt admits that he does miss her, but at the same time, he doesn’t. He would just like to head to an easier time when you’re a child and the only thing you need to get you through the day is a parent’s love.

Almost Home- Sookie finds Sarah Newlin chained up

Sookie uses her fairy powers to enter the side wall that the vampires previously used to enter Fangtasia and comes face to face with Sarah Newlin. Sookie reads her thoughts and learns that she’s the cure. Again, Sookie makes the practical choice of actually not letting Sarah go.

Instead, she returns to Bill’s and tells Jessica that there is a cure and promises that Bill will survive! Sookie, don’t make promises that you can’t keep.

Almost Home- Bill dreams of a shadow baby

Bill, meanwhile, dreams of a life with Sookie and their…evil, black, shadow demon ghost baby. All right.

Mr. Gus is heading to Dallas, so Eric and Pam better not cause any problems while he’s away! Some of his men will remain with them. When Gus leaves, Eric tells Pam that he plans to give some of Sarah’s blood to Bill.

Almost Home- Jessica confronts Sarah

When Bill, Jessica and Sookie arrive, however, and after Jessica briefly considers biting into Sarah’s flesh, even though Eric is offering the cure right in front of him, Bill refuses to take Sarah’s blood.

Well, what do you know? The writers must have realized that the show ends in two episodes, so they’re trying to tie up as many loose ends without creating new ones. The episode feels like it has less filler moments- there’s no Sam and Nicole, for one thing, and no Andy admiring the silence. It’s just dealing with the season’s plots as best as possible. That doesn’t mean the execution was handled all that well.

If last week’s episode dealt with one final shot at happiness, this one feels with making a choice to ensure a good future and prolong your life. If we had a second chance, would we go about doing things differently, and should we even have to? More than that, the episode dealt heavily with forgiveness. As profound as these messages may seem, they’re nothing new to True Blood or even this season. The show is just retreading messages, which is a letdown that we have to enter familiar territory so close to the end.

Almost Home- Violet on the war path

Violet was an odd one. I’m upset she’s gone, if only because she was so beautiful, but man, did her whole kidnapping amount to a lot of nothing. Like most villains, rather than just do what she wants to do, she has to talk about it. I mean, don’t tease us with a red hot dildo or breast ripper and then don’t use it! I don’t understand why Violet didn’t just drain Adilyn and kill Wade when she had the chance. Jessica clearly wasn’t able to stop her, or she wouldn’t wound up as a hostage. If this was supposed to make for easy drama, it failed, and even worse because this subplot dragged out for so long and it was Hoyt, of all people, who put her down!

Almost Home- Brigette and Jason talk

Jason, meanwhile, looks like he’s up to swap Jessica for Brigette. I mean, he couldn’t keep his eyes off of her last week, so this seems obvious. But he’s talked of wanting to grow up before, so I don’t see why we needed to hear him say it again.

It doesn’t seem right for Jason and Jessica to have no regrets about their relationship, considering what it led to with Violet. Jessica’s vampire vagina can’t be worth Adilyn and Wade suffering. But I’ve never had it, so what do I know?

Almost Home- Jessica and Hoyt talk

If Jessica somehow ends up back with Hoyt, then fine, but I wish this transition was handled better. Don’t get me wrong. I loved the scene where Hoyt talked to Jessica about a parent’s love, but I thought he was a bit too irrational when he got on Brigette for talking about his pictures and wanting to have a kid. It came out of nowhere. He says that Brigette is in a rough place, but she certainly doesn’t give off that vibe.

Almost Home- Tara's on-screen send-off

And then we’ve got Tara. This was just foul. So, we have to settle with the fact that Tara was killed off-screen. We’ve had to endure Lettie Mae admitting that she was a bad mother and confronting another addiction issue. We’ve already seen and heard of Tara’s past. So what was the point of all of this, if only to give Tara a proper on-screen sendoff? At least it wasn’t an episode-long funeral. But Lettie Mae has had chance after chance to come to terms with Tara’s death. We did not need to have this stretched out as long as it was. And I’m not sure what compelled Reverend Daniels to eventually concede, just because Lettie Mae threw his words about a blind journey right back at him. He’s not struggling with an addiction.

Heck, he even made Lettie Mae choose between him and Tara, and she chose Tara! Why even ask that if you’re eventually going to join in anyway? This entire subplot was ridiculous and a poor sendoff for a character that has been around from the beginning. Treat one of your longest standing characters with some dignity, True Blood. Though, for me, Tara should have met her end when she was killed the first time, before Sookie decided to have her turned. Oh, and what was up with all the crosses and snakes and unrecognizable language? Couldn’t Tara have just led Lettie Mae to the house from the start and saved us all some time?

Almost Home- Sookie with Sarah

I like that Sookie was a bit more proactive this week. Instead of waiting for something to happen, she confronted Eric on her own and refused to help Sarah, given all of the trouble she’s caused. And we learn about even more stuff she doesn’t give a shit about.

Almost Home- Eric healing

At least Eric’s healed. I get why he’d want to keep the cure a secret from Sookie for now. At the same time, we see that he’s willing to use Sarah to help Bill. The fact that he doesn’t glamour her, despite promising to, shows that he wants to keep her safe and alive.

Almost Home- Pam threatens to kill herself if Eric kills Sarah

And I still love just how loyal Pam is, willing to follow Eric, even into death.

This was just a decent episode, as has been the trend this season. We got some nice moments with Jason, Jessica and Hoyt, wrapped up Violet’s storyline and Eric’s healed. In that sense, we’ve progressed. Where the episode stumbled was how it handled Tara’s sendoff, given how long she’s been around and the amount of time spent on this subplot.

Almost Home- Bill refuses to take Sarah's blood

And what’s up with Bill not taking the blood?

Any questions, comments, concerns, issues, complaints, would love to hear them.

A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 7: “May Be the Last Time”

I tell you what: during the production of “May Be the Last Time,” it seems like the directors chose to just let the cameras roll and allow the characters to go about their business at their own rate. Their own, very slow rate. Really, this episode felt like one giant waiting game. Sure, some of what we got was applicable to the main storyline and we get a sense that things are building to something big, but there’s no sense of urgency or panic. We got the surprise return of one character and there are moments that could have gone somewhere, but ultimately, not a lot happened this week.

May Be the Last Time- Amber chained, interrogated by Eric, Pam and Mr. Gus

The episode begins with Eric, Pam and the Yakanomo folk questioning a now restrained Amber, who at first refuses to reveal how she’s now healed from the Hep-V virus. Mr. Gus even offers money for information, but no dice. Amber does eventually admit that Sarah is the cure, but says that she is a good person. Eric doesn’t think so. After all, it’s because of Sarah that vampires like him, Jeremy and so many others have and will die. Amber still won’t reveal Sarah’s location, so Eric does the most practical thing possible.

May Be the Last Time- Eric kills Amber

He kills Amber.

May Be the Last Time- Andy calls Jessica about Adilyn's whereabouts

Andy and Holly arrive at Fort Bellefleur and find nothing. Andy calls Adilyn’s phone, but, of course, the phone is still up in the fort. So Andy then calls Jessica, as she has Adilyn’s blood and would be able to sense if Adilyn was in any danger. However, Jessica hasn’t felt anything off, so Andy can at least assume that Adilyn and Wade are at least still alive. Holly remembers that Brian has a lake house about a half hour north of Oklahoma City. Road trip!

May Be the Last Time- Violet with Wade and Adilyn

Violet takes her supposed captives-I mean, newfound friends, to a mansion. She’s so upset that her parents won’t support their love. Violet knows exactly what Adilyn and Wade are going through. After all, she used to fuck her brother, too. All right, no, Violet. Just no. She then introduces the kids to her assortment of erotic devices. You know, strap-ons, shackles, the works. If they want to mess around, they’re more than welcome to. Violet doesn’t even offer to give the two an instruction manual on how to use the devices. Poor Wade doesn’t even know what a strap-on would be used for.

At House Compton, Jessica and Sookie notice the virus making its way up Bill’s neck. Sookie reminds Bill that he wrote in his book about experimental treatment in India, but such treatment is still years away. There is no available cure. Sookie refuses to accept this.

May Be the Last Time- Keith pays Arlene a visit

At Bellefleur’s, Arlene is shutting down stop when Keith enters. Arlene is shocked, but Keith is only there to see her home. It’s dangerous to go alone. She’ll need a vampire guide. When Keith puts the moves on Arlene, Arlene makes it very clear that she’s not a fang banger. That doesn’t stop her from giving in and eventually having rough sex with Keith on the pool table.

May Be the Last Time- Arlene wakes up

Oh, never mind.

May Be the Last Time- Mr. Gus' proposition to Pam and Eric

Pam chastises Eric for killing Amber, but Eric shows no remorse. He still wants to kill-not capture- Sarah, even though she’s the answer to saving his life. Mr. Gus has a proposition: find Sarah, but then synthesize her blood as a product: New Blood. It will still be a tall task to find Ms. Newlin, but luckily, the Japanese government is hard at work on tracking Sarah’s location.

So why does Mr. Gus need Pam and Eric? Well, the new product will need a spokesperson, as the general public doesn’t trust the Yakanomo Corporation. Eric initially refuses, but soon changes his mind.

Back at House Compton, Bill finally manages to fall asleep. Sookie tells Jessica to get in with him, weird as that is. Jessica asks what Sookie will do, and Sookie plans to go searching for answers. She says that people don’t generally believe in miracles, but they exist all around them.

May Be the Last Time- Flashback, Bill speaks with his father

As Bill dreams, we flash back to 1855, where he speaks with his father, William Compton Sr., played by Michael Rothhaar. Compton Sr. wants his son to marry Caroline Shelby, even though she and her family haven’t been in town for very long. Oh, and for land purposes. But mostly for the land.

May Be the Last Time- Hoyt and Brigette visit Bellefleur's

Business finally arrives at Bellefleur’s. Arlene receives an unexpected visit from Hoyt and his pretty young thing of a girlfriend, Brigette, played by Ashley Hinshaw. Hoyt’s in town to see his mother one last time, but also to speak with Deputy Stackhouse. Arlene, confused as to why Hoyt doesn’t remember Jason, makes a phone call.

May Be the Last Time- Jason takes phone call from Arlene

From this, we see that Jason hasn’t caught up to the modern world as far as portable music, as he vacuums while listening to music on a cassette player. He does manage to hear the phone ring, though. Upon learning that Hoyt has arrived, Jason rushes to get dressed.

He arrives at Bellefleur’s not much later. Hoyt isn’t ready to see his mother just yet. Though Jason would prefer as little interaction as possible, Brigette insists that he dine with them.

May Be the Last Time- Dr. Ludwig arrives

Dr. Ludwig arrives in a monstrous looking vehicle that she should not be driving. Or own. Why does she have that? Anyway, Sookie takes her to Bill, but let’s spend more time in the past.

May Be the Last Time- Flashback, When Bill Met Caroline

We flash back to When Bill Met Caroline. Neither is what the other expected: she expected Bill’s father, but just younger looking. Bill isn’t a fan of the fact that his father described Caroline as comely. As the two feel the eyes of their parents staring into their souls, the two decide to go for a walk.

May Be the Last Time- Dr. Ludwig with Bill

Back in the present, Dr. Ludwig tells Sookie that the virus would not have transferred from her to Bill as a result of the cut on her arm. She’s seen a similar acceleration rate before, but nothing like Bill’s. When Ludwig learns about Sookie’s particular fae line, she shows herself the door.

May Be the Last Time- Jason consoles Hoyt

Hoyt sees his mother one last time, while Jason can’t keep his eyes off of Brigette. She brings him in to talk with Hoyt for a moment. Hoyt asks Jason about how his mother died, and Jason changes a few facts around: Hoyt’s mother was not, in fact, part of the mob, but one of the good people. Funny how that worked out, isn’t it?

Sookie tries to call on Grandpa Niall Brigant, but she gets nothing but the wind.

May Be the Last Time- Sookie cooks for Grandpa Brigant

But then she finds him in the kitchen, hungry for her spaghetti. Even though there are more pressing things to deal with, Sookie fixes up some food first. I mean, why not? Nothing else is going on right now. Grandpa Brigant isn’t surprised that Dr. Ludwig suddenly didn’t want to help out anymore- dwarves have a fear of fairies, maybe because fairies killed some of them in the past. That could have something to do with it.

Sookie asks that if Grandpa Brigant could see her at all times and knew that she was infecting Bill, why didn’t he stop it? His answer is very simple: he doesn’t like Bill for Sookie. Sookie, however, begins to see very little advantage in having fairy abilities. I mean, she only gets to use the power so often, it may as well be pointless.

May Be the Last Time- Sarah arrives at the Light of Day Institute

Sarah drives to the Light of Day Institute and hears voices of the past, but then sees Jason. He addresses her by her new name, but then tells her that Eric is coming for her, meaning death. She argues with him long enough to suddenly realize that no one else is there.

No one else except the Japanese government, which has now spotted her by using the most advanced form of Google Earth known to man.

May Be the Last Time- Arlene talks with Sam about happiness

Because Sam needs something to do this week, he talks to Arlene about Nicole’s ultimatum. Oh, just forget about her already! He talks of people who rebuild their homes where tragedies once took place. As bad as Bon Temps is, he can’t really see himself leaving. Arlene knows that Sam has run from many places, but Bon Temps is the one place he really considered home. If he left, is it to run from something or to it? Arlene, however, is not happy. She probably never was, but she fakes it. The more she fakes it, the more real it is until happiness feels real. Sort of like this season, really. Her whole life is in Bon Temps, shitty as it is.

May Be the Last Time- Holly and Andy at the lake house

Elsewhere, Holly and Andy arrive at the lake house. That took no time at all. The kids aren’t there, but Andy can’t help but admire how peaceful it is compared to home. He blames himself for Adilyn leaving, but Holly consoles him.

May Be the Last Time- Grandpa Brigant and Sookie after flashback

As Grandpa Brigant takes Sookie to channel nature’s energy, we get a brief flash back to Caroline giving birth to a young girl. The point of that little trip, Brigant says, was to show that the dream itself was a miracle. Death, forgiveness, they’re all miracles. Sookie thinks this little reunion may have just turned into a way to trick her, but then Brigant gets to the point: not everything can be fixed with magic.

Oh, and Lettie Mae and Lafayette go digging in someone’s yard. Why this scene is just randomly in the episode at this point, I don’t know.

May Be the Last Time- Arlene and Keith dance

Back at Bellefleur’s, Keith shows up, but for real this time, as he felt Arlene’s pain. Before things can escalate, Arlene tells Keith that she’s Hep-V positive, so they can’t have sex. That’s no problem with Keith. The two can dance instead.

May Be the Last Time- Violet after her nap

Violet, fresh from her rest, knocks out Wade while cuffing Adilyn to the bed.

This gets Jessica’s attention, so she springs into action.

At the same time, Eric and Pam awaken.

May Be the Last Time- Sookie stands with Bill

Well, Jessica picked a good time to leave, as Sookie runs to Bill in a white dress and pledges to stay with him until the very end.

May Be the Last Time- Sarah hallucinates

Sarah, meanwhile, sees visions of not just Jason, but Steve and Guru Sanbir Dutta as well. Dutta and Steve offer her a choice between Christianity and Buddhism, but she chooses neither. Instead, she chooses herself as the Messiah. Either way, death is still coming.

May Be the Last Time- Sookie and Bill fornicate

And so are Bill and Sookie.

With only three episodes left, the stakes should feel higher, but don’t. There’s no sense of buildup or anticipation. What we got with this episode was mostly conversations and characters searching for answers, but being fine with not finding any.

This season has been very uneven. When episodes give us too much too quickly, we’re not allowed to soak in what happens. But when an episode such as this moves so slowly, we get little out of it. I’ve said that less is more, but less shouldn’t equal nothing. Or next to nothing.

May Be the Last Time- Arlene on happiness

One of the overarching themes I noticed with this episode was happiness, or a last shot at it. We don’t know when our end is, so we try to make the most of our time on Earth while we have it. We see characters say and do things just to give others some joy in the face of danger, as Jason does with Hoyt. Sookie talks a lot about believing in miracles, and maybe it’s crazy to believe in such things when you live in places like Bon Temps. Nicole may not entirely be wrong on that account.

Even though Bon Temps is a proven hellhole, that doesn’t mean that the people who live there don’t deserve something that will better their lives, even if, as Arlene mentions, faking it until happiness feels real. When the characters take themselves out of their element, it’s a literal breath of fresh air, as was the case with Holly and Andy. Sure, Bon Temps is all most of these people know, but they aren’t doing much to try and change their situations. They aren’t acting like Bon Temps is all Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows either, but they’ve become complacent, and that is very clear in this episode, as characters just walk from scene to scene with little urgency pushing them. Problems can’t be solved overnight, but show some fight in the face of danger.

May Be the Last Time- Sookie believes in miracles

Sookie tries to be the optimist this week by believing in miracles. Well, at least that’s something she gives a shit about. However, as much as she’d like to help Bill, she’s able to take time out of her not so busy day to make spaghetti. Seriously, she wants to look for a miracle, but she moved a lot faster when she rushed to have sex with Bill. I appreciate her telling off Grandpa Brigant about the ineffectiveness of fairy powers which, let’s be fair, are almost entirely situational. Sookie being a fairy turns her into even more of a target than she already was.

Oh, and she was in such a hurry to have sex with Bill again. She wanted to remain loyal to Alcide at first, and then she tried to remember Alcide after he died, but now it’s like that doesn’t even matter. If the show was in such a rush in trying to make us forget a character like Alcide, it was pointless to keep him along for so long or even put him in a relationship with Sookie in the first place. And let’s not forget Sookie’s brief moment with Eric when he and Pam arrived back in Bon Temps. The girl needs to make up her mind.

May Be the Last Time- Brigette and Jason

Jason had a moment to be genuine without messing things up, and he did, but ogling Brigette wasn’t necessary. He’s over Violet, but like that, he’s onto another girl that’s with Hoyt. Hopefully this doesn’t sour things between the two of them again. At least he gave Hoyt a final, happy memory of his mother, even if he did muddle the details.

May Be the Last Time- Violet and Wade and a strap-on

Speaking of Violet, this was another waiting game. Her having sex toys felt right up her alley, but what’s her end goal? It’s as if she wants to be caught. At first, I thought she only wanted to just keep Adilyn and Wade hostage, but in hindsight, now I wonder if she’s trying to draw Jessica to her. If Violet wanted to kill or drain Adilyn, she’d have done it. This also means that Holly and Andy are stuck just playing catch-up.

May Be the Last Time- Lettie Mae and Lafayette digging

By the way, what’s up with the random inclusion of Lettie Mae and Lafayette? The scene just randomly appears in the middle of everything else that’s happening and, to be honest, felt like more of a distraction.

May Be the Last Time- Sex on the pool table

Dreams as a result of vampire blood are nothing new for True Blood. Hell, we saw Jason have an erotic fantasy with Eric. So when Arlene’s pool table sex with Keith turned out to be a dream, it did throw me. Again, she’s here this week to drop some wisdom with Sam on faking being happy until it feels real so she’s not just here to sit around at Bellefleur’s. I still attribute this to her near death experience, but she has a point: Bon Temps is an awful place to live, but she’s making the most of it, even if she is Hep-V positive.

May Be the Last Time- Eric and Pam

Even Pam and Eric are forced to sit around and wait, after starting on a quick note with Eric dispatching of Amber with little hesitation. We’re with them for a few scenes, then the next thing you know, they’ve overslept. I mean, what the hell, show? Don’t take the most entertaining part of this season and reduce them to a long nap.

May Be the Last Time- Sarah calls herself a messiah

It’s funny how Sarah has given herself this godlike complex. She has to know she can’t hide forever, but ingesting the cure does still give her an advantage, because it ensures she’ll stay alive just a bit longer.

This episode felt very uninspired. Nothing really happened! We mostly had to wait for things to take place, and the things that did happen weren’t all that interesting. A slower paced episode didn’t feel any more engaging than the faster paced ones. I keep holding out for some great setup, but even that’s becoming a chore. The season as a whole has had trouble finding its footing, and with three episodes left, that’s not a good thing.

A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 6: “Karma”

“Karma.” What an apt episode title name. That or “Irony” would do it. While True Blood, I feel, still hasn’t found its footing this season and still has a scattered plot, this episode had some nice character moments and a few surprises in an episode that shows, in the end, that what goes around, comes around.

Karma- Eric stops fighting to see Pam captured

The episode begins immediately following Eric’s battle with the Yakuza. In fact, he’s still carrying around the face as a souvenir. Through blurred vision, he spots more Yakuza, but deals with them. Before another battle can begin, some Yakuza bring forth Pam, her neck wrapped in silver chains.

Karma- Eric and Pam captured

The two are brought to the Yakamono Headquarters and are placed in a room with a view. A man places a clock counting down how many hours remain until dawn. How about that? All this madness, but Eric and Pam still find time to have their first sunrise together. Very romantic.

Karma- Bill speaks with Jessica before heading out

A few states over, Bill makes a phone call and sets an appointment. Jessica enters the house and overhears Bill state that he’s Hep-V positive, but he’s unaware that she’s returned. When Bill prepares to leave, he simply tells Jessica that he’s fine when asked about his condition.

Karma- James offers his blood to Lettie Mae and Lafayette

Since the good Reverend will be knocked out for some time, Lettie Mae’s shacking at Lafayette’s, as is James. Lettie Mae still believes that Tara is speaking to her and needs some of James’ blood. Surprisingly, James offers it up, but Lafayette, still against this, decides that he will trip alongside Lettie Mae. This is the last time, however, and it’s only for closure.

Karma- Violet sits Jason down

Outside of his home, Jason prepares to face Violet. He heads in and finds lit candles all around. Violet walks out in a very skimpy and sexy outfit- all as a surprise for Jason. But more than that, she wanted to show Jason how much she appreciates him. She came from a different time, but she can adjust to this one just fine. Jason should feel in control. Even though she still knows that Jason is hers, she belongs to him, as well.

Karma- Bill at Kapneck Offices with other infected vampires

Bill drives to Kapneck Law Offices and finds it packed. The clerk, who sounds like he’s been here for quite some time, just tells Bill to take a number and have a seat. The wait is only five to seven hours.

Karma- Eric and Pam speak with Mr. Gus, played by Will Yun Lee

As Eric and Pam await their oncoming death, a man enters the room. This is the North American President of Yakanomo, Mr. Gus, played by Will Yun Lee. Yakanomo is now bankrupt and he needs Pam and Eric’s help to rectify the situation, mainly by providing the location of Sarah Newlin. Eric won’t cough up anything and gets into a prick measuring contest with Gus over who can be the bigger prick and who gets to kill Sarah first.

The heat is literally on as the sun begins to rise. As she and Eric begin to turn red, Pam, rational, lovely Pam, breaks up the argument. While Gus and Eric fight, Sarah Newlin gets the last laugh. If the two don’t make a deal, they’ll all lose. So the deal is Eric will kill her, but Gus gets the body. A deal is reached just before Eric and Pam burn to death. Time to pay Amber a visit.

Karma- Amber throws up blood on Sarah

Sarah beats them to it. After some breaking and entering, Sarah enters the house, but Amber gets the jump on her. This is before she starts vomiting blood and passes out on the ground.

Jessica calls Jason, who slips away to the kitchen- and away from Violet- to talk with her. She needs Jason to find Sookie and bring her as soon as possible, but can’t say why just yet. When Jason leaves, Violet reacts how you’d expect her to: destroying the room.

Karma- Andy after finding Wade and Adilyn having sex

Andy overhears Adilyn and Wade making sweet love. How sweet. He storms into the room, throwing the two into a panic and sending Wade out of the house. Naked. Andy demands that Wade keep away from Adilyn, while Holly comes to her son’s defense. She and Wade leave in a huff.

Karma- Sookie sleeps the episode away

Someone apparently didn’t tell Sookie that the next episode started, because she’s fast asleep like the series had already ended. Jason comes in and wakes her up, but she’s still pretty groggy. Jason tells Sookie to answer her phone, and Sookie should probably tell everyone that she ditched her phone.

Karma- Dream sequence, Lettie Mae and Lafayette take Tara down from cross

In Dreamland, Lettie Mae and Lafayette take Tara down from the cross. She repays them by running off. All right.

Karma- Nicole tells Sam that she intends to leave Bon Temps

Sam comes in as Nicole finishes a conversation over the telephone. Nicole plans to leave and go home because she just doesn’t belong in Bon Temps. Hallelujah. I could not agree any more. However, she also wants Sam to come with him, even though this crazy town is the only place where he’s ever felt safe. That, in and of itself, may be crazy. Anyway, Nicole’s parents will come to get her tomorrow.

Karma- Jessica tells Sookie and Jason about Bill

At Bill’s, Jessica fills Jason and Sookie in on what she heard. Jason still thinks that Bill, given his abilities from last season, should be able to survive. Sookie has a brief flashback to the night Alcide died, when she wound up covered in Hep-V vampire blood, after she’d cut herself to draw the vampires. Sometime after that, Bill did feed on her, so it’s possible that she infected him. However, now she needs to get tested, just to be sure.

Karma- Arlene and Holly arrive at trashed Bellefleur's

Holly and Arlene arrive at Bellfleur’s, which is still trashed from the night Vince’s mob trashed it. Pity that no one bothered to clean it up, but hey, not like Holly and Arlene have anything else to do.

Back at the clinic, Bill listens as other vampires talk of the early stages of Hep-V. He looks down and sees that the virus has quickly spread to his arms.

Karma- Sookie gets tested

Sookie, however, is already being seen. The nurse, played by Mandy Levin, packages Sookie’s blood, which is sitting right along many other vials. Sookie should receive a call later on in the day with the results. When she meets up with Jason, Sookie tells him that she would rather go anywhere but home right now.

Karma- Dream sequence, Tara leads Lettie Mae and Lafayette to old home

Back in Dreamland, Lettie Mae and Lafayette continue to chase Tara, but can never catch her. Not sure why. She’s not moving that fast. They finally stop when they see Tara digging in the yard of a house, the house they used to stay in when Tara was young.

Karma- Reverend Daniels and Lafayette

The dream ends when Reverend Daniels wakes Lettie Mae up. Lafayette breaks up the fight, telling the Reverend that he didn’t believe Lettie Mae either, but after going on the V-trip, he’s convinced that Tara is trying to tell them something. So now they must go to the old house to find out what Tara wants them to know. The Reverend won’t stand for this, so he gives Mae a choice: him or her dead daughter. Mae chooses dead daughter.

Karma- Holly and Andy argue about sex

Andy arrives at Bellfleur’s so he and Holly can argue about those crazy kids and their sex thing. Arlene the Mediator tells them that this is the least of their problems. After all, Adilyn and Wade are at that age.

Karma- Sookie learns she's Hep-V positive

Sookie and Jason have a moment to talk about their past love lives. Despite everything that’s happened, Sookie can still sense Bill’s presence. There’s just something about your first true love. Jason, however, doesn’t feel much when he’s with Violet. In fact, he’s sometimes afraid of her, even though love shouldn’t make you scared of anyone. After all, none of us know how much time we have left, so that time shouldn’t be spent with someone you don’t love. With that, Jason plans to have a talk with Violet.

However, Sookie receives the phone call she’s been waiting for. We don’t hear it, but just based on her reaction and facial expressions alone, it’s not good news.

Karma- Bill meets Madeline Kapneck, played by Kathleen York

After seeing that the virus has spread over his chest, Bill’s turn finally arrives and he meets Madeline Kapneck, played by Kathleen York. Bill gets to the point: he wants to turn over his entire estate to his progeny. The problem is that the state doesn’t recognize vampire progenies. Bill’s will was drafted in 1894, but he was turned in 1865. Technically, Bill was impersonating a human at the time he drafted his will. The only real option would be for Bill to adopt Jessica, but such a process could take five months to a year. Obviously, Bill doesn’t have time for that, so Ms. Kapneck offers to move Bill to the front of the line…for the modest sum of $10 million.

In response to extortion, Bill tries to glamour Ms. Kapneck, but like Eric’s attempt on the Governor last season, it falls flat. The humans are learning, it seems. Kapneck doesn’t see herself in the wrong. Vampires have had centuries at to live as they please. Humans don’t have as much time, so she shouldn’t be at fault for wanting to make some cash.

Karma- Bill kills Madeline Kapneck

Well, since glamouring didn’t work, Bill settles on murder instead. A messier alternative, really.

Karma- Andy and Holly find Rocky

Holly and Andy head back to confront Adilyn and Wade, but the two are missing. I mean, it’s pretty clear from the moment the two don’t get a response that Adilyn and Wade probably aren’t there. They wanted to be alone, so they swore Rocky to secrecy about their location. That works until Holly threatens to gut him, even though they’d never find out if she did that.

Karma- Sarah and Amber argue

Back in Texas, Amber wakes up to find Sarah still there. Sarah needs a place to hide and Amber, of course, is insulted that Sarah had the nerve to show her face after everything she’s done. Sarah has gone spiritual, however. After finding a place where she didn’t exist, Sarah has made peace with herself.

Oh, and there’s an antidote to the Hep-V virus. She drank it all, as we see in a flashback. Hence, she is the antidote.

Karma- Jason finds Violet's letter

Jason is ready to confront Violet, but he won’t have to. Her room is a wreck, but she did at least leave a note, telling him that their relationship just wasn’t working. Jason is excited, to say the least.

Karma- Violet finds Wade and Adilyn

So where is Violet? She’s watching Wade and Adilyn, who are literally sitting in a tree house, not F-U-C-K-I-N-G, but just K-I-S-S-I-N-G. All right, they’re lying down, but close enough.

Violet warns the two about being out so late at night, especially since Adilyn’s fairy scent could be tracked by other vampires. Violet offers her protection, but just to be safe, she has Wade and Adilyn toss their phones so they won’t be traced. Sounds reasonable.

Karma- Amber is healed

Eric, Pam and the Yakuza are all ready to pay Sarah Newlin a visit. What they’re not prepared for is the sight of a now fully healed Amber, which was kind of obvious, given how the camera followed Amber from the back, never showing her face.

The episode comes to a close as Bill enters his home. He’s greeted by the sight of the visibly upset and tear-stained faces of Sookie and Jessica.

Again, this was an aptly named episode. What goes around definitely came around this week. After last week’s mostly focused episode, “Karma” went back to multiple storylines, and I understand that the show needs to wrap up as many threads as possible before the series ends, but the execution is still weak, in my opinion. In fact, most of the subplots felt like filler compared to the larger stories that involved either Eric and Pam or Sookie and Bill dealing with the Hep-V virus.

While I’m not a fan of the multi-story episodes, they do at least build off of what happened at the party last week. The characters tackled the inevitability of life and how to make the most of a shitty situation. Some things you can try to avoid or yell your way out of, as Holly and Andy attempt to do, or you can take the proactive approach with Eric and Pam by trying to fix your problem. We can’t stop the inevitable, but we can sure as hell try. But if you’re too late, the most you can try to do is salvage what’s left while remembering the good times you had, but squandered because you got distracted.

Karma- Sookie and Jessica

So we got a payoff to Sookie being covered in Hep-V blood. Though she told Alcide that she never got any in her mouth, it was still on her body. It’s very possible that the disease would spread through direct contact, but maybe Sookie thought the virus only hit vampires. After all, vampires were the only ones that we saw infected.

And it’s even worse because she’s the cause of bringing pain to the man who has come to know her better than most. I don’t know what Sookie could have done differently, but she at least took the time to get herself tested, rather than just blaming herself on a hunch. Throughout the season, we’ve watched Sookie use others for something that she needed, mainly getting rid of the Hep-V vampires. Now the very sickness that infected vampires is inside of her.

Karma- Sookie and Jason have a moment to talk

I appreciate the moments she got to spend with Jason that didn’t involve any craziness- it was just a brother and sister having conversations, which I like. They could be people for a few moments and not constantly worry about some supernatural threat. And the way they talk of their first loves gave them something to bond over. For once, the characters could reminisce without the use of flashbacks.

Karma- Violet goes down on Jason

So it looks like Jason might want to give things another shot with Jessica. This I’m fine with. I think Jason and Jessica could have potentially worked out the first time, if not for the drama with Hoyt. That said, the man should not be elated over Violet breaking up with him via letter. If her destruction is significant of anything, it’s that she’s not done yet. But I do agree that he doesn’t feel anything for her anymore. Hell, the woman gave him a blowjob and he didn’t even flinch. I said during “Fire in the Hole” that I didn’t understand Violet’s beef with Jessica and that it felt like forced drama. Now Violet actually has a reason to be pissed at Jessica, but I don’t think the writers were being clever or trying to foreshadow this.

Karma- Violet about to destroy room

And really, what are Violet’s intentions? If she wanted to drain Adilyn, she could have just done it. Surely she doesn’t just want Adilyn and Wade to suffer.  I mean, that’d be too easy. And cliché.

Karma- Holly and Andy

As for Andy and Holly, I can’t say I’m all that interested in their arc. It’s not out of character for them to bicker, I just wish it was more interesting than ‘the kids are having sex’ stuff. However, given everything they’ve been through, this is probably the most normal thing to happen to them. Savor this.

Karma- Arlene

Arlene seems to have gone through a complete transformation since her dungeon experience. I almost want to call this shift too sudden, but given how she was on the verge of death, I suppose it’s not too unrealistic that she would actually want to turn her life around, with her being the voice of reason and moral compass when Andy and Holly can’t seem to get along.

Karma- Bye, Nicole

So Nicole wants out. Good. No, really. Good riddance and I hope she doesn’t run into any sort of distraction that would keep here there. I don’t think I’ve disliked a character on this show as much as I do Nicole. She feels like a distraction. She says she doesn’t belong and I can’t really blame her. I wouldn’t have as big of an issue with her as I do if she hadn’t made that comment last season about her grandparents being the ones to kick off the Civil Rights Movement, essentially making her family pioneers in a movement that spanned decades before that.

That’s what made me hate the character, even though that’s just one line. And she can’t leave soon enough for me. While it would be good for Sam to find some normalcy, I hope it’s because he actually wants to, not just because he feels obligated to Nicole and their unborn child. Hell, now that Nicole is with child, she and Sam have even more to lose, should they fail. To give credit where credit is due, she was spot on with her comments during the party: celebrating life during so much chaos is maddening. I just don’t care about her or Sam’s plot, really.

Karma- Lettie Mae and Lafayette trip

The same can be said for Lettie Mae. All right, now she wants to be the good mother? Not until she lost the person most precious to her does she now want to play a role in helping her. Sucks that the Reverend was left out to dry, but he gave her a choice. In the end, Lettie Mae chose family. Dead family, but family. It’s a clear choice for her, but it’s also certainly a late one. The only thing keeping this plot interesting to me is Lafayette’s involvement. The fact that Rutina Wesley’s name still appears in the credits makes it seem as if the writers are going to try and bring her back.

Karma- Bill learns he could adopt Jessica

As for Bill, I like that he’s trying to pass off his legacy to Jessica. It makes sense, given that he’s her maker, but aside from Sookie, Jessica is one of the few people who Bill actually trusts. We’ve watched Bill flash back to his family life during the Civil War to show the importance of family to him. The possibility of losing your current family would be enough to throw someone into a frenzy, but Bill at least tries to salvage what he has.

We could have done without the political context, though. That’s something I feel True Blood has never been able to do right, even when Russell went on live television. We get that vampires are an oppressed people. Don’t beat us over the head with the message that’s pretty obvious. Bill murdering Ms. Kapneck may have been excessive. True, she tried to extort him out of his money, and glamouring didn’t work, but there were other people still at the center. Surely someone saw or heard him, right? Right?

Karma- Pam and Eric prepare to share their first sunrise together

It’s becoming repetitive for me to say that Eric and Pam are my favorite part of the episode. Their banter energizes the scenes and the two have been the most consistently entertaining part of the season. I like how exasperated Eric was when he thought he’d have to endure another fight. And like how the virus spread quickly to Bill, we saw a glimpse of it worsening Eric’s condition through his hazy vision.

And for as much as Pam doesn’t give a shit about almost anything, good on her to keep a level head when her maker almost got them burned due to his pig head. There’s no point in everyone fighting each other when Sarah Newlin is their common enemy.

Karma- Sarah tells Amber that she drank the Hep-V antidote

But how ironic is it for Sarah to be the key to the Hep-V virus? I hope this doesn’t just become a repeat of last season, where the vampires fed off of Bill just so they could survive in the sun for a while. Sarah is living in her own world and can’t see things for how they truly are. Amber was correct when she said that Sarah couldn’t just pretend like all of the horrible things she’s done just didn’t happen. With Sarah downing the antidote, I can’t tell if she did it out of desperation, if she’s that clever or just stupid. She had to know that vampires would come after her if they ever learned about this. But this at least guarantees that she won’t die as early as she may have previously thought, now that she’ll be of use.

“Karma” was all right. Not bad or great. Like “Lost Cause,” it had its good and bad moments. This one I’d rank under that because the storylines involving Sam and Nicole, Andy, Arlene and Holly, and to an extent, Lettie Mae, just weren’t as interesting as the other plots. But, again, the Eric and Pam stuff made for more interesting television. There’s a lot of set-up with Sookie now knowing that she may have infected Bill, not to mention Sarah being the ultimate cure. As bad as True Blood is this season, they still find a way to sneak in one or two little bits that keep me interested.

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

A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 5: “Lost Cause”

For the people of Bon Temps, what is normal, if not constant attacks and living in fear of the supernatural? This week’s “Lost Cause” has Sookie becoming host to a party that feels very out of the ordinary compared to everything else. This party leads to a series of unfortunate events where almost nothing goes right. Balanced against this is the continuing adventure of Eric and Pam to snuff out Sarah Newlin.

Lost Cause- Eric prepares to release Willa

The episode begins with the disposal of the bodies in the aftermath of the battle. Eric and Pam are about to head off, but Willa doesn’t want to go. She’s still pissed at Eric for leaving her, while Tara did a better job helping her adjust to being a vampire. Eric admits he’s been a terrible maker, but he doesn’t regret turning her and he still needs information regarding Sarah’s location.

Willa offers it, but only if Eric releases her. And like that, Eric renounces his dominion over her. Huh. To think, all Willa had to do was ask. Willa spills: Sarah has a sister named Amber, which is not news at all. What is news is that Sarah’s sister is also a vampire. Apparently, Willa overheard Sarah having a phone conversation with Amber at the mansion. Willa couldn’t overhear everything, but she at least knows that Amber called from a Dallas area code. Well, that settles it. Time for a trip to Dallas!

Lost Cause- Ginger doesn't want Eric and Pam to leave

But before that, there’s the matter of Ginger, who doesn’t want Eric and Pam to leave for fear that she’ll never see them again. If Ginger can’t come with them, she at least wants Eric to fuck her. After all, she’s been their loyal slave for so long without getting any from either of them, so it’s the least they can do. And they’re both diseased, so it all balances out!

Lost Cause- Ginger won't take 'No' for an answer

No dice.

Lost Cause- Lafayette sends Sookie to bed

So at Stackhouse Residence, Sookie heads in and finds Alcide’s jacket. She’s not alone, however. James and Lafayette are already there and came by as soon as they heard what happened. Though Sookie wants to do some cleaning, Lafayette orders her to bed.

Lost Cause- Sookie sees the others have prepared a banquet dinner

Time passes and Sookie later heads downstairs, only to find Jackson, his lady friend, James and Lafayette there. The house has been prepped, almost as if Sookie were about to have a party. Guess what? They’re throwing a party for the entire town! What better way to celebrate life after a day of death and sadness?

Oh, and Bill brought flowers because he’s a gentleman.

Lost Cause- Amber Mills, played by Natalie Hall, not sure yet whether she likes Pam

In Dallas, Texas, Eric and Pam find an infected Amber Mills, played by Natalie Hall. She shares her story with them: she has always been the black sheep of the family. After Amber had been turned by her boyfriend, Sarah freaked out. She’s been paying Amber money to stay in a coffin, all while convincing the populace that her sister had just been taken away by vampires. Family, am I right? Amber needs no convincing to help Eric and Pam, especially when she learns that the two plan to kill her. However, it’s been years since the two talked in person. Sarah did recently call, looking for a place in Dallas to stay. Mom and Dad are attending a Bush Gala for Ted Cruz, so Eric and Pam have a location. Amber warns the two: only assholes are invited to this gala. Clearly, this woman has never met Eric Northman and Pam De Beaufort.

Lost Cause- Lettie Mae wants to attend the party

Lettie Mae wants to attend the party. Reverend Daniels says no. While the reverend is conveniently looking away from Lettie Mae and focusing on his food, Lettie Mae spots some allergy medicine. That’s a scene.

The party is in full swing. Bill keeps himself to a corner while Arlene and the rest of the girls celebrate freedom.

Lost Cause- Charles Dupont, played by Matthew Holmes, rouses the men

We flash back to Bill during the lead up to the Civil War. He speaks with a young man named Minus, played by Gilbert Owuor, before heading to the bar. Inside, Charles Dupont, played by Matthew Holmes, gives a rousing speech about all able bodied men serving in this incoming war against the Northern carpetbagger. These fine, Southern gentlemen shall do all they can to maintain their way of life. And, by God, it is their sovereign right, as the good people of the state of Louisiana, to secede from the Union!

“With what?” is the ultimate question that Bill asks. After all, the North is better equipped, so the men of the South will be crushed! The bar doesn’t take kindly to this carpetbagger sympathizing and the bar’s owner, Louis Bodehouse, played by Brian Patrick Mulligan, orders him out.

Lost Cause- Jackon says kind words about Alcide

After Violet awkwardly tries to cheer Sookie up, Jackson says a few words about Alcide. Though the two never got along, Jackson appreciated that his son was happy when with Sookie. You can’t die a hero without having a righteous cause.

Lettie Mae would also like to say a few words, about Tara: Tara was a hero, too. Mae might not have always been there, but she tried her hardest. And when she wasn’t around to help her daughter, Mae could always count on Tara’s friends to help her.

Lost Cause- Jessica refuses to join the party

Not joining in on the festivities is Jessica, who has remained outside while still feeling guilty about Andy’s daughters. Andy comes out and basically tells Jessica that she’s being a buzzkill. Jessica torturing herself keeps the pain alive for Andy, as well. After all that Jessica has done for Adilyn, the least she could do is realize that life’s too short and precious to look back. Yet we’re still seeing flashbacks. Andy needs help from Jessica, specifically a ring to propose to Holly, but Jessica insists that something so precious shouldn’t be done with one of her rings. Why? You’re not exactly using them!

Lost Cause- The ring

Inside, Sookie gives Andy one of her grandmother’s rings- a ring that was originally intended for Jason. Andy kills the music and gets on one knee before Holly. He’s nervous, and it’s made no better by the fact that Holly says ‘Yes’ before Andy gets a chance to pop the question. When he finally does, she kisses him. She didn’t ‘Yes’ that time, though.

James wants to leave the party, but Jessica tells him not to be a wet blanket and enjoy himself. Really, Jessica? You’re telling him that?

Lost Cause- Arlene and Sookie talk about the pain of loss

Upstairs, Sookie and Arlene talk. Sookie’s feeling overwhelmed by all of the festivities and finds it hard to miss someone that she can’t fully believe is dead. Arlene tells her that no matter how much you love someone, death is inevitable. Every night, Arlene puts on Terry’s jacket just to feel his arms around her. Arlene, I swear. Arlene believes that you never get over the loss of a loved one- you just learn to live with it. That should be one of this show’s mantras. All healing comes in due time with tequila. A worthy combination.

Lost Cause- Lafayette and James bond on the porch

Out on the porch, James and Lafayette bond. James isn’t feeling his so-called relationship with Jessica. Lafayette poses a question about James’ former friend, Danny: were the two intimate? James confirms that they were. Things are starting to heat up!

Lost Cause- Eric advances to stage two of the virus

Back in Dallas, Texas, Eric and Pam get ready to infiltrate a “Republicunt” stronghold. You know, in the politically charged world that we live in today, where so many feel they must be one way or the other, I wouldn’t be surprised if the term “Republicunt” didn’t originate from True Blood. But I digress. When Eric removes his shirt, Pam sees the veins making their way all across his body, indicating that he’s advanced to Stage Two of the virus. Not one to stop with the plan, Eric simply tells Pam to cover the marks that would be visible.

Despite just calling him a wet blanket, Jessica asks Arlene about James’ whereabouts. Arlene last saw him step out with Lafayette. You know where this is going. Jessica follows the sounds and…

Lost Cause- Lafayette giving it to James

…whoops! Jessica storms off and won’t listen to either James or Lafayette. James goes off to sulk. Jason even rescinds his invitation.

A now confused and distraught Jessica tells Jason about what happened. Jason isn’t entirely surprised. Given Jessica’s description of James, it seems pretty clear that he’d be gay. Jessica just thinks that James may be confused.

Lost Cause- Lafayette tells off Jessica

In enters Lafayette, one of the last people Jessica wants to see, and she makes it known. The two exchange barbs before Lafayette leaves.

But Lafayette’s not done yet. Even though Jessica caught him and James in a compromising position, Lafayette knows more about James than Jessica does because he actually gave a damn and asked. And if Jessica was honest with herself, she’d see that she and James just do not fit. It’s not a stretch that Lafayette would want some happiness after seeing everyone around him find someone. Nicely done, Lafayette.

Sookie makes her way through the party and overhears the thoughts of citizens that now regret the awful things they said to her before.

Lost Cause- Bill in flashback

Bill thinks back to the time when he, Minus and a group remain hidden from Confederate troops. Just when they think the coast is clear, Charles fires a shot and kills Minus. That shot, Charles tells the group, is a warning to any deserters. All he wants is Bill’s map, but that goes up in smoke.

Back in the present, Sookie thanks Bill for seeing her the way she can’t see herself. As she continues through the party, she hears Lettie Mae’s thoughts, and the lady wants more vampire blood.

Lost Cause- Willa stabbed by Lettie Mae

So Lettie Mae takes a knife and stabs Willa in the shoulder! This causes a ruckus and although Willa’s wound heals in no time, Lettie Mae manages to bring the party to a screeching halt. Mae tells Lafayette that Tara has been contacting her: she’s stuck and the only way out is with Willa’s blood.

For whatever reason, Nicole is the voice of reason and calls out the absurdity of having a party in the middle of so much carnage. All right, I guess. You’re still new to town, lady.

Lost Cause- Jason and Jessica talk

Jason and Jessica have more girl talk. Jason admits that Violet is just a bit off. Also, it really meant a lot that his grandmother meant for her ring to go to him. He’s unsure now whether that ring would have gone to Violet. Then they kiss. They get to the loving later on, which Violet overhears.

At the gala, Eric and Pam split their priorities: Eric will get Sarah’s father alone, while Pam heads for Mom.

Lost Cause- Sarah and her mother, Nancy, played by Bess Armstrong

In the ladies room, Sarah surprises her mother, Nancy, played by Bess Armstrong. Nancy lets her daughter know that the world is looking for her. Sarah knows this and wants some powerful help: Laura Bush! But Laura stopped taking their calls. Well, darn.

Lost Cause- Eric meets Sarah's father, Paul, played by Brett Rice

Eric meets up with Paul, played by Brett Rice, but before the two get a chance to talk for long, the Yakuza pop in to make quick work of the Mills’ parents.

Both Paul and Nancy are killed in the attack. Sarah runs off, but heads straight into Eric. Before Northman can deliver the killing blow, he dispatches some Yakuza.

Lost Cause- Sookie in Alcide's jacket

In Bon Temps, the party is over and everyone is gone. While the people of Bon Temps may have changed their opinions on Sookie for the better, they were still dicks that didn’t bother to help her clean up. Before laying down for bed, she takes a moment to inhale the scent of and put on Alcide’s jacket. Sookie, I swear…

In one final flashback, Bill tells his wife that he doesn’t want to fight. She says not to worry, though. He is her’s.

In the present and after his bath, Bill heads to the mirror and sees that he is also infected with the Hep-V virus.

I wouldn’t call this a bad episode, but it has its fair share of problems. Luckily, the different plotlines were contained this week. We were either at the party or with Eric and Pam. Where the episode suffers, I think, was in characters making predictable and very stupid decisions when they should be smarter than this. More than that, they learn lessons that, given what they’ve been through, should be nothing new to them. At the same time, Eric and Pam’s separate storyline and Bill’s reveal at the end did help make the episode more entertaining.

Lost Cause- Violet tells Sookie about her hundred boyfriends

With True Blood, characters must have come to accept the death and craziness that has plagued Bon Temps, time and time again. What would be out of the ordinary anywhere else turns out to be just another week in good ole’ Louisiana. These people have lost loved ones before, but the grieving process has never been the same, like Terry getting almost an entire episode dedicated to him. The characters can accept death, yes, but they don’t know how to process it.

They’ve been able to come to terms with loss without having a party. It feels like the episode tried to tackle how we grieve after a heavy loss, but I question the execution.

Lost Cause- Toasting to Alcide

When trying to find happiness, something always gets in the way, making it almost impossible to be happy. Additionally, characters don’t realize how good they have it until the one thing they love is gone, whether that’s Lettie Mae grieving Tara or Sookie accepting that Alcide is not coming back. There’s a time and place for everything, and that doesn’t mean just saying something for the sake of saying it.

It’s fine to grieve, but this season has moved so fast with its murders that raising glasses felt like a half-hearted attempt to get us to care about or remember characters that the show was perfectly fine with getting rid of. The death of Vince and his mob, Kenya, Mrs. Fortenberry- none of them are brought up. I’m not saying the episode needed to reference everyone, but if the show is going to kill off characters we’ve known for awhile, there ought to be a payoff. Otherwise, it makes the deaths feel pointless.

The main issues I find with the episode revolve around character decisions, specifically those at Sookie’s party. Who honestly thought having a party to celebrate life was a good idea? What in the world made Jason and Jessica think it was a good idea to bone then and there, with other people in the same house? And why wouldn’t Reverend Daniels think to keep a closer eye on Lettie Mae, who he already knows is unstable?

Lost Cause- Sookie and Bill

Sookie, I feel, mostly existed this week as a background character. Sure, she’s prominently featured throughout the party, but most of what happens has little to do with her. She’s mostly an observer. I’m surprised she was so open to letting Lettie Mae remain at the party, despite Mae blaming her for Tara’s death. Can’t say I buy her sadness for Alcide, given how we know that she didn’t love him with the same affection that he did.

If Jason was so dead set on accepting his grandmother’s ring, why not just accept it and keep it until the time came? I’m glad he showed some backbone to Violet when he told her off about mentioning her many, many boyfriends to Sookie in an attempt to cheer her up. He seems to be at absolute ease when speaking with Jessica.

Lost Cause- Jason and Jessica bone

And really, if he and Jessica wanted to bone, they could have taken it somewhere else. I don’t see Violet taking this lightly. I also don’t understand why he was so quick to rescind James’ invitation, given how what James and Lafayette do really shouldn’t be any of his business.

Lost Cause- Jessica outside, talking with Andy

Speaking of Jessica, I’d like to know why she’s still so upset about what she did. Wasn’t this the entire reason Lafayette came in to have a pep talk with her? And now, it’s as if she’s forgotten all about that. Her emotions are all over the place. First, she doesn’t want to come to the party, and then she chastises James for wanting to leave the same party she didn’t even want to join.

Lost Cause- Jessica after finding James and Lafayette fucking

She freaks out when she finds James with Lafayette, but to be honest, Jessica and James don’t have any sort of chemistry. She wouldn’t even listen to James when he mentioned that she hadn’t fed. Even though we’re supposed to believe that James and Jessica are a couple, they appear very distant.

Lost Cause- Lafayette wants happiness, too

And to be honest, Lafayette has a real point. Throughout the series, he’s watched from the sidelines as others made connections. He was there for support and while he had a relationship before, it didn’t last long. And Lafayette has taken the initiative to get to know James outside of knowing that he’s a vampire. We’ve seen the two interact and grow as a pair, which gives credence to the possibility that the two could form a strong bond.

Lost Cause- Sookie and Arlene speak with Keith

I’m glad that Arlene has made a full recovery and is ready to move forward, but she could have been a little grateful to Keith. She may be right to fear him since, vampire and all, but he did save your life. Some gratitude would be in order.

Lost Cause- Bill sees that he's infected with the Hep-V virus

While Bill’s flashbacks felt like he just longed for the old days, I get the feeling that they’ll connect with the reveal that he’s infected.

Lost Cause- Bill's final flashback of episode

And like Pam and Eric’s flashbacks, we did get to learn some more about his past. It’s a past we’ve seen before, but I hope there’s a payoff to them.

Lost Cause- Pam and Eric stopped by Ginger

And as before, Eric and Pam had the most entertaining part of the episode, with their search for Sarah. Whether it’s Amber and Pam slowly gaining respect for one another, Eric telling Pam that she must accept that he’s going to die or how disgusted they are at the gala, the two make for some great character moments. Plus, I got a laugh when Eric told Amber that he and Pam could definitely be assholes if that meant it would get them into the gala. Even if the two can be major assholes, they clearly care for one another.

Lost Cause- Eric rips off Yakuza's face

Unlike last week’s battle at Fangtasia, I thought the battle with the Yakuza was well done and much easier to follow. Eric ripping off the face of one Yakuza reminded me too much of the battle between The Mountain and The Viper on Game of Thrones.

All in all, this was a decent episode. While it had characters doing stupid things and somewhat forced drama- seriously, characters like Lettie Mae and Nicole should be killed off- the character moments from Pam and Eric, as well as Bill’s infection, kept me interested for more.

A Look at True Blood- Season 7, Episode 4: “Death is Not the End”

And here’s the episode where apparently no one cared. We dug some more into Pam and Eric’s past, while everything else occurs with no real sense of tension or surprise. What should have been big moments were brushed aside like any side plot from any episode of Power Rangers. Most of them, anyway, but that’s another conversation. The show still manages to squeeze in too many characters for its own good. As a result, “Death is Not the End” feels very muddled with only a few pockets of entertainment.

Death is Not the End- Jackson learns that Alcide is dead

The episode begins in Jackson, Mississippi, where Jackson receives word from Sookie that Alcide has died. Jackson tells Sookie that, while he and Alcide didn’t talk much, he spoke fondly of her. Sookie advises Jackson not to come at night.

Death is Not the End- Hoyt learns that his mother has been killed by a vampire

At the same time, in Anchorage, Alaska, Hoyt hears from Deputy Jason Stackhouse that his mother was killed by a vampire.

When the Stackhouse siblings finish their respective bad news calls, Jason isn’t ready to move on. However, as Sookie points out, people are looking to him because he’s the law.   Sookie, what people? Those people are the very ones that think he shouldn’t be in charge anymore! But anyway, Sam enters. Everyone’s ready.

Death is Not the End- Pam and Eric en route to Louisiana

Pam and Eric are en route to Louisiana. Pam feeds on a flight attendant named Victoria, played by Christine Pitre, and her reward for being a good woman is she now has Hepatitis-V. Congratulations, you’re so screwed! They’re taking a slight detour to Shreveport, much to Pam’s displeasure. Eric just wants to see Willa again, despite abandoning her. Doesn’t matter if Willa hates him, Eric just wants to see her one more time before he dies.

Death is Not the End- Zeljko Ivanek as The Magister, showing Eric and Pam the video store

We then flash back to 1986 and get a brief reappearance of Zeljko Ivanek as The Magister as he shows Pam and Eric a shitty looking video store. But not just any video store: it has the largest collection of adult videos in Northern Louisiana. Enticing indeed. There’s even a tunnel that dates back to the Civil War. The Magister makes it clear that not only is Eric the new sheriff- because the Authority doesn’t trust him and wants to keep an eye on him- but he and Pam are to turn this dump into an operational business. Though Pam and Eric would rather die, they aren’t really given much of a choice. And they’re being watched day and night, so better watch your step.

Death is Not the End- Sookie visits Coby and Lisa

For some reason, Sookie pays a visit to Coby and Lisa to talk about their mother. Everyone else talks to them like they have no idea what’s going on, but Sookie won’t. She knows that Arlene is still alive and will do all she can to make sure she returns to her kids. Promise.

Death is Not the End- Sookie tries to get Holly to remember

The only lead to Arlene is Holly, who is in no condition to talk whatsoever, given the hell she’s been through this on sloppy season- I mean, the horrors she went through in that dungeon. Andy insists that Sookie leave Holly be, but Sookie made a promise! Yeah, Andy, weren’t you listening to the last scene? Sookie made a promise, damn the mental consequences!

Last thing Holly remembers is the mixer and then meeting Sookie in the woods. Everything else is a blur, so the two join hands and Holly begins to relive the memories. She clearly doesn’t want to remember, but Sookie tells her that she’s doing great! Sookie eventually figures out that the others are held at Fangtasia. With this information, she, Sam and Jason leave, while Andy must contend with a still fragile Holly.

I have a huge problem with this scene, but I’ll get into that later.

Death is Not the End- Jason and Sam argue

While Sookie goes to meet with Bill, Sam intends to drive straight to Fangtasia. Jason implores that Sam stop since rushing into Fangtasia without a plan would be suicide. Sam is tired of waiting, however, and keeps on driving…

…until Jason puts his gun to Sam’s head and demand that he stop. Soon enough, Sam brings his truck to a halt. He won’t go to Fangtasia, but he won’t drive, either. He wants Jason to take the wheel. That way, Sam won’t have to say that he’s the one who drove away. Right.

Death is Not the End- James and Jessica in bed, Jessica won't feed

In what I think is their first extended scene on-screen together, we actually get a moment between James and Jessica, whose wound is still not healing. The reason? She hasn’t fed in quite some time, as she still feels guilty about what she did to the fairies. Since Jessica won’t listen to James, he brings Bill instead. But even that does no good.

Death is Not the End- Sookie doesn't give a shit about Jessica's problems

Sookie arrives to the rescue and tells the boys to leave so she and Jessica can have some hard talk, woman to woman. This talk? Sookie just doesn’t give a shit about why Jessica isn’t eating. She doesn’t care about what Jessica did or any of her personal problems. Right now, Sookie needs all the vampire help she can get. This is the strangest girl talk I’ve ever heard.

Death is Not the End- Flashback, Ginger visits the video store

We flash back to 1996. The video store is up and running. In walks a very young Ginger, yet Tara Buck doesn’t look any younger. In fact, she just looks like a female version of Garth from Wayne’s World. Anyway, Ginger is really into vampire cinema.

She’s then in awe at the sight of a clean looking Eric walking in slow motion. Instantly, Ginger wants to apply for a job.

Death is Not the End- Sam and Jason tell Rosie that Kevin is dead

Sam and Jason pay Rosie a visit to tell her about Kevin. She’s distraught, but still isn’t above calling Sam a freak. To be honest, this scene wasn’t necessary, especially given what happens later.

Bill admits that his side will be greatly outnumbered when they converge on Fangtasia, but he’s doing this for Sookie because he owes her. Well, isn’t that special?

Death is Not the End- Lafayette talks with Jessica

Since no one else could help Jessica, they decide to bring in the big guns: Lafayette. He gets right to it- he won’t pretend to know what Jessica is going through. Jessica fights back. She may be a vampire, but Lafayette has no idea what it’s like to kill an innocent person. Except Lafayette does. He never forgave himself for it, but he accepts that he’s flawed. And even though Jessica is technically dead, she can still be worse than she is right now.

Death is Not the End- Flashback, Ginger brings Pam a shitty looking chair

We then flash back to 2006, where Ginger is dressed like Harley Quinn from Batman: Arkham City. Not Asylum, but City. There’s a difference. In Asylum, she’s dressed more like a nurse, but in City, she-oh, never mind. I’m getting off track. Anyway, she brings in a shitty looking chair and has quite the proposal for Pam: the space is theirs, so why not just turn it into whatever they want?

When Pam continues to listen, Ginger pretty much describes the bar we will soon come to know as Fangtasia. And since Eric Northman embodies sex, he can sit on the shitty chair like a king. It’s still a shitty chair, Ginger. Pam likes the description and Ginger’s suggestion for a name. In fact, she likes it so much that she glamours Ginger and decides to take the idea for herself.

In the present, Eric’s impressed that Pam would do such a thing. Nothing less from his progeny.

Death is Not the End- Assembling before the attack on Fangtasia

The time for attack has come. Bill called all the unaffected vampires he could, but only managed a few. No word from Willa yet, but she does suddenly sense something and leaves the human she’s feeding on.

Death is Not the End- Pam and Eric arrive

A knock at the door later, Pam and Eric arrive. That was fast. Sookie speaks to Eric alone and embraces him. Sookie doesn’t want him to die on her. Since they last saw each other, Eric has had quite the life: he triggered an avalanche, went to South America, all over the world until he ended up in France.

Death is Not the End- Willa confronts Eric

Suddenly, Willa enters and demands to know why her maker left her in such a huff. She doesn’t give a shit about what Sookie’s going through- she just wants an answer. Eric tells Willa that, as his maker, they will talk about it later. Well, I guess that settles that.

Death is Not the End- Sam finds the hostages

Sam enters the dungeon as a rat and informs the ladies that help is on the way. But they still need to trust the vampires.

Death is Not the End- Hep-V vampires feed on Arlene

As he leaves, however, one of the Hep-V vampires comes down and seizes Arlene. She’s taken upstairs, where the others begin to feed on her.

They stop when they hear a knock at the door. Eric tells the vampires that he is in need of help and even has a savory human along with him. Before the vampires can feed on Sookie, Eric’s reinforcements attack.

But just as this happens, Vince and what’s left of his ragtag mob- directed by Rosie- throw Molotov cocktails into Fangtasia and fire into the bar.

So things get a little crazy, the vampires fight and Arlene needs clean blood. She’s at death’s door to the point that she’s hearing and seeing Terry. Just as she’s ready to cross onto the other side, one of the vampires, Keith, played by Riley Smith, gives Arlene some of his blood. She lives.

Meanwhile, the good vampires apparently won and the mob looks to be all but dead.

All right, I guess. This final season really seems like it wants to wrap up as many loose ends as possible, but almost as soon as they begin. The Hep-V vampires are crumbling, as is Vince’s mob, and Alcide’s death is all but forgotten by the end of the episode. The trouble is that the season is moving too fast for its own good and we can’t fully take in what we’re given. It’s like the writers aren’t interested in telling a cohesive story. If the writers want to introduce multiple story arcs and bring in as many as characters to fit into an episode, they’d better do something meaningful with them instead of trying to force an emotional response from the audience.

That’s not to say this episode didn’t have some positives. Eric and Pam’s flashbacks did help flesh out their pasts and showed how Fangtasia came to be the bar we know it as. And Pam taking the idea seems like something she would do without hesitation. Jason had a funny moment where he compared the upcoming attack on Fangtasia to storming the beaches at Normandy, only for Bill to point out that said battle lead to 200,000 casualties. And though I never liked the Hep-V vampires, I’m glad their arc seems to be over.

So while there are elements of this episode that I liked, where the episode suffered for me was in the writing and characterization. Not that what we saw was out of character, but selfishness was evident in the amount of characters who didn’t give a shit about anything except their problems.

Death is Not the End- Sookie makes Holly relive nightmares

Let’s start with Sookie and return to her scene with Holly. She knew that Holly was broken and didn’t want to relive the horrors of the Fangtasia dungeon, but she used her anyway. Making her relive a nightmare just to get the location of a place you should have suspected in the first place is unnecessary. And what’s worse is that Sookie doesn’t seem the least bit remorseful by what she did. She just leaves with her information, but at the cost of Holly’s already fragile psyche. Sam and Jason don’t even say anything about it.

And then she doesn’t give a shit about Jessica’s situation. Fine, since the two haven’t interacted much, anyway, but this was only because Sookie had a use for Jessica. After everything that’s happened, with Sookie pleading the town to let her help, she just starts demanding whatever she wants? It’s not a stretch that Sookie would be this selfish, though.

Death is Not the End- Sookie and Eric embrace

I don’t personally care who Sookie ends up with when this is all over, but I just hope we avoid another love triangle between her, Eric and Bill. Pam even tells Bill that nothing would come of him and Sookie. We’ve seen this play out many times.

Also, there was no reason to show Sookie talking with Arlene’s kids. Could have just gone straight to Holly.

Death is Not the End- Arlene on the verge of death

Speaking of, if Arlene had died, I wouldn’t really complain. Heck, I probably would have welcomed it, even though I’m a fan of redheads. The scene where she almost died looked like it was supposed to be tense, but it wasn’t. We got a very unnecessary cameo by Todd Lowe as Terry, just to give us one last look after he got almost an entire episode dedicated to him. Really, if the show wants to kill off anyone, just axe Nicole. That’s all I want.

Death is Not the End- Sam and Jason

Sam and Jason mostly play tag-along, but they have their moments. I thought it was nice of Jason to call Hoyt to deliver the news, while also trying to pretend that the two never met.

Death is Not the End- Jason pulls a gun on Sam

But what in the world was up with him putting a gun to Sam’s head? And even worse, what made Sam think Jason would have pulled the trigger? That sort of reckless behavior would only get them killed faster.

Death is Not the End- Jessica argues with Lafayette

Here’s another question: when did Jessica decide to stop feeding? We never got any sort of indication that something was wrong with her before. At all. Now, all of a sudden, she doesn’t want to feed because she feels bad about what she did? She’s had chances to talk with Adilyn and the two appear to have a connection, so why not share it with her? If, in fact, Jessica has felt guilty, I refuse to believe she’d just keep quiet about it. But hey, I guess it’s a good thing she got shot. Otherwise, we never would have known her problem. Or, follow me on this, it would all too convenient. And Lafayette’s reduced to being the magical sage Negro that gets her to bare her fangs. And really, Jessica couldn’t have been all that useful to Sookie since she almost got killed.

Death is Not the End- Pam and Eric in flashback

With Eric and Pam active again, they were, by far, the most enjoyable part of the episode. Not just because of their chemistry, Eric and Pam are just more fun to watch interact. If this is Eric’s last hurrah, hopefully he’ll be a lot more involved outside of his search for Sarah. And, again, I did enjoy seeing how their dump of a video store became Fangtasia.  Hopefully Eric and Willa resolve their mess, though.

And at the end of the day, a bunch of people and presumably vampires die during that awkward final fight scene. Vince is gone, so the mob won’t last much longer. Who else died? No idea. And who cares?

With this episode, it’s like the writers of True Blood are actively trying to make me dislike the characters or the storyline. The episode moved at breakneck speed with questionable character motivations, particularly from Sookie. If the final season wants to wrap up every single thread, then fine, but do it with care. The final season isn’t an excuse to shove as much into the show as possible. No amount of funny moments can overshadow that. We heard a lot of characters not giving a shit this week. Right now, I have to wonder if the writers even do anymore.