As always, tonight’s episode of “True Blood” manages to create a great deal of suspense, answering some questions while leaving others unanswered, which is exactly the way it should be. In this episode, we learned that Sookie has the blood of the Fairies in her veins, Eric is convinced that Russell will kill him, that Bill is (as always) determined to protect Sookie, and a great deal else besides. This episode, unlike some in this season, managed to keep the plot tight and focused, with the result that it was a bit easier to follow than some of the others.
One of the greatest strengths of this particular episode, however, was the fact that it allowed us to see some very powerful images of the secondary characters, including and especially Pam. Pam has almost always been a cold and calculating vampire, determined to remain emotionally aloof from any situation she gets thrown into. The dangerous situation in which Eric has placed himself, however, has brought out some very raw emotion in her, similar to that felt by Eric for his maker Godric in the second season. Pam has always been one of the best characters in the show, and it is refreshing to see her given so much screen time and development.
However, the real star of tonight’s episode was the villainous yet sympathetic vampire king Russell. He continues to arouse sympathy due to his maddened grief over the murder of Talbot. In tonight’s episode, he staked a young man who bore some resemblance to Talbot, in an attempt to assuage his guilt at not being present at his lover’s True Death. This scene was one of the most powerful that we have yet seen, and it allowed us to gain a glimpse into the tortured mind of Russell. Even though he is a terrorist who is determined to cause ruin and pain to all of the characters that we have come to know and love, one cannot help but feel a measure of sympathy for him, tortured as he is by guilt and remorse.
If there was one thing about tonight’s episode that rung a rather sour note, it was the revelation that Sookie has Fairy blood in her veins. However, to be fair to the producers of the show, this is part of Charlaine Harris’s original mythology (and a pretty significant one at that,) so it would be very difficult to alter significantly. Something about this particular revelation, however, just sounded a trifle false and contrived, although the actors did all that they could to ensure that it sounded legitimate rather than silly.
Perhaps the most intriguing (although also perplexing) moments occurred when Sam immersed himself in memories of his previous life. Tonight, we learned that he used to be a jewel thief, and that he ultimately killed his partner and love (by accident,) and that, presumably, a greet deal of his personal wealth was based upon that stolen wealth (in addition that he had already stolen from the maenad Marryanne.) This particular scene was not only interesting and perplexing in that it shed a fresh but also sinister light on Sam’s heretofore mostly spotless character. Definitely one of the hallmarks of this season.
All in all, it was an excellent night for “True Blood,” keeping up the suspense and allowing us a privileged glimpse into the minds of our favorite characters. Indeed, this episode exceeded the quality of the one before it and, with Eric’s imprisonment of Sookie at the end (partially due to pressure from Pam,) has left us wondering what shall become of our favorite telepath, and our favorite vampires (and other sundry supernaturals,) at the end of the season. Whatever happens, we can be certain that it will be a cliffhanger like that of both seasons before it.