After what I went through watching the season 6 finale, I was anticipating this final season with joy and trepidation in equal parts. Three episodes into season 7… trepidation is winning by a mile at the moment.
My initial reaction to True Blood’s “Fire in the Hole” this past Sunday literally was “What the fuck???”… as Erika, Nymerias, and Evie can attest to.
I have been pretty lenient with the TB world until they decided to go “Radioactive” (and get Zompires), but I do have some core beliefs.
- I believe in the suspension of disbelief.
- I believe there are 3 sides to every story; my view, their view, and what really happened… especially when there is video evidence to support “what really happened”.
- I don’t believe in rewriting history… again with the video evidence available for the world to see.
So forgive me if I was feeling conned… retconned that is.
Retcon (ret’kon) retroactive continuity. The common situation in fiction where a new story “reveals” things about events in previous stories, usually leaving the “facts” the same (thus preserving continuity) while completely changing their interpretation.
For the names of characters stay the same… they are just being asked by the writers to not be themselves anymore and the story to be forced in a direction that seems false to most of the viewers.
I am sure by now you have either seen or read the recaps from this episode from other reviews. Here is what I gleaned from my 2 ½ viewings. Well… I had to rewatch, to make sure I didn’t miss anything.
New Girl/Same Face:
As you might have gathered, Anna Camp returned as Sarah Newlin. She has made her way to LA practicing yoga (and her yoga guru) while using the pseudonym Noomi. Sadly for her, her yoga guru lover is killed by the Yokonomo corporation. Since he wouldn’t tell them where she was. I think boys and girls… we just met Mr Gus.
Well, the gruesome twosome teamed up this episode on a half-baked plan that was not well executed. Why not? It was being executed by BS. We knew Sookie had run to Bill’s the episode before with a “plan” to try to catch the Hep V vamps before they could hurt anyone else. Her plan was to use herself as “bait” with Bill acting guard… and talk while on guard duty. It was a juvenile plan, pretty much for the writers to build up further toward the Anna/Stephen ending by providing away for Bill to get his blood in her and time for them to reconnect… in Retconcentral. MY blood was boiling as I watched their scenes because it was a lame plan being tooted as a good idea, and triggered an unnecessary Bill flashback that had no bearing on the story. Nervous chatter on Sookie’s part I can understand. Was it headache worthy? Yes, but I understood it.
It obviously worked so well that he was caught from the tree and she was almost snatched… luckily the calvary of Jason, Andy, Violet, Jessica, Alcide and Sam arrived to save them…
The Dog/Wolf Days are Over:
A moment that was seen coming by a mile… Alcide was shot dead by episode end. This was after being a good boyfriend trying to find Sookie, whom he tracked down to Bill’s. Then rushes in to save her before she was snatched by the Hep V hunting party, after which he was killed by one of the town vigilantes. While I do admit I am not a fan of Joe’s, it was a callous way to kill him off the show.
As for the other dog… Sam’s screen time starts him off discussing what he found in St Alice with Reverend Daniels at the church. Not his pregnant wife and child. Frozen pizza. After their chat is interrupted by Willa and Lettie Mae on V, Sam meets up with the vigilante group road blockade who’s mission is to kill anyone who is not human human…. Because idiocy runs supreme when your scared. Sam flies of to safety (and Sookie tracking) after his vampire escort meets his true death.
The Retcon Heard Around the World:
I came into this episode hoping to get answers about Eric. How he got Hep V (probably the month before in St Petersburg Russia), how he survived the burning, why Rhone… will he be ok… you know, the important stuff. With the infamous show runner at the writing helm… I should have known better that I would get a decent story for the character we love. Yes, we got some answers… but in a way that changed what you knew about the character. After first viewing, you would think Eric was an unfeeling ass toward Pam and her loss of Tara. (Tara, who was finally acknowledged as dead on screen by her maker 2 episodes after her death. AR’s interview doesn’t count), and her concern/search for him. That is not the Eric we’ve known for seasons… the one who would do anything for his close circle he cares for. It was my second viewing where I saw the subtle reaction of Alex’s eyes before his flippant reply about the bucket game that made me think there might/hopefully be layers to this season. Any way… my bewilderment followed as we flashed back to Rhone of ’86. In which we meet Sylvie… and see our fun-not-so-serious Viking in love under the French moonlight. Sadly for him, he experienced coitus interuptous by Jessica Tuck’s Nan and a gratuitous mention of Nora in the Authority. She shows up to read Pam and Eric the riot act to be discreet since they were so close to synthesizing blood for the mainstreaming movement… and the Yokonomo Corp was ready to make some serious money. Pam is ready to toe the line with her shoe bestie Nana, who conveniently remembers Pam’s name (season three Nan had no clue who she was), while Eric… in love with Sylvie… tells her to fuck off. She leaves but you know it’s not the last we’ll hear of it. Pam is ready to toe the line or run, Eric is resistant because Sylvie wants to finish school. Eric reminds Pam that she should be on his side no matter what. Hasn’t he always protected her. Kiss. Of. Death. For the next part of the flashback has the men in black from the corporation to help Eric “see it their way” by making him choose between Pam his childe or Sylvie, a human he loves. For one must die. In Eric fashion he tries to sacrifice himself in their place but the man with the silver sword refuses that deal.. along with the money. In pure lobbyist form, he doesn’t take the deal… and poor Sylvie, whom we never heard of before this season, is killed and Eric’s heart breaks. Almost reminiscent from season 4’s Soul of Fire. After our trip down memory lane where the writers “corrected” their story, Pam is trying to find ways to for Eric to be “Eric Fucking Northman” again… and finds a way with sharing Sarah Newlin is alive. And with that.. the Viking is ready to hunt. Game on.
***my additional viewings definitely gives me more insight to Eric’s state of mind. One thing that will never change is I will believe in him no matter what the writers throw at me.
That’s all She Wrote:
Obviously, other things happened during this episode. Lala and James go tripping…The Reverend sheds light on why he cheated on his wife with Lettie Mae. Willa became homeless again. Maxine lost her heart… literally. She threatened Jason and Jessica over Hoyt. Violet took things into her own hand. And the vigilante humans… not to be confused with the Hep V vampires on the loose with Holly/Harry Potter.
It was a complete trip down the rabbit hole with the end in sight… but where we will land, no one knows.
On a positive note, the episode was not cut short by 10 minutes.
Now I apologize for my disjointed recap. Definitely not up to my standards… what can I say, I am just following True Blood’s lead?