“If the humans want war, we’ll give them war.”
I’m not much of a fan of modern vampire fiction. It all seems to be drawn from the same well lately. Instead of frightening, blood-hungry killing machines, we get gorgeous, pale, athletic, fashonistas who drive sports cars and fight for the honour of beautiful virgins. Love triangles are their biggest concern, not killing or maiming. Vampire-lite, essentially. That said, when I first saw the promo for “True Blood” season six, I was intrigued by the imagery and badassity of it all. I blew through the first five season in about three weeks, and was ready for more. But, after witnessing the rise of a quality fantasy-drama, I have to say, this latest outing in Bon Temps did not exactly drop my fangs.
Full season SPOILERS ahead…
Season six picks up the moment season five ended. Bill drinks the Blood of Lilith (the first vamp), and instantly goo-ifies, then rises again as a blood-soaked vamp-god. Later, with the destruction of the Tru Blood factories, vampire/human relations are strained, with people terrified of what will happen when reserves run low. Acting on this fear (and his own prejudice), the Governor of Louisiana creates a concentration camp for vamps and starts rounding up all your favourites. On top of this, Bill calms down but develops a messiah complex. And a new threat hits town, an ancient vampire hybrid named Warlow. And he’s looking for Sookie… big surprise.
“Danger, it’s a fact of life for me.”
“True Blood” has always had a knack for pacing. Now it may just be because I devoured five seasons all at once, but the episodes all seemed to go by quickly, and each season felt like it was building to something, and then it did. This season just kind of drags, and that’s a big thing with only ten episodes. Everyone just sort of mulls around while we’re forced to watch the writers focus on all the wrong issues going on. I can honestly say, I found myself bored several times.
Don’t get me wrong, “True Blood” still has qualities, so it’s hard to condemn it entirely. The acting is always good, with the exception of a few of the new additions. Warlow was painful to watch from the beginning. The mainstays we all know are still as likable as ever, and the action and violence is top notch and over the top at the same time. This season just hit all the wrong beats week after week. It’s seems like the writers are catering to the lowest possible denominator. So instead of a well-thought out plot with intriguing villains and high-tension drama (à la Season Three’s Russell Edgington), we get a half-baked story about a centuries old marriage contract, cartoony villains running a death camp, and a lot of pretty new faces to ogle at. Not. Exactly. Impressed.
“I play by a different set of rules now, Sookie.”
The two biggest letdowns this season have to be Bill and Warlow. In the season’s opening scene, we see Bill in truly monstrous style, rip people apart, destroy a building, then soar off into the sky. Soon after, he becomes his normal, arrogant, pompous self and goes back to brooding over his purpose in life. Warlow, who they spent way too long hyping, shows up looking like a Rob Zombie nightmare from Hell. Before he shaves, showers, and suddenly looks like a reject from “Vampire Diaries”. Seriously, what 5,000 year old vampire wears hemp necklaces? Oh, and his whole villainous storyline is dropped after two episodes. AFTER we see him slaughter dozens of innocent faeries. And after he throws Rutger Hauer into another dimension. We’re apparently meant to forget that, and instead watch Sookie swoon over him because he loves her.
The other missed opportunity is the entire concept of vampire/human relations. “True Blood” is now in a world with NO True Blood supply. Vampires are desperate, killing at will. People are afraid, arming themselves for war. A fight for survival, humans against monsters, blood in the streets! Do e see any of this? No. We see one semi-Bond villain’s attempt at Auschwitz, and a bunch of Faerie land romance. I believe Andy Bellefleur would say “That is some bullshit right there!”
“Life really is a shit sandwich sometimes.”
The finale is the worst transgressor. Our ultimate payoff for the shitty Warlow plot (of which he spends multiple episodes tied to a fucking rock), is ten minutes of villainy, followed by a quick and pointless end. Bill’s godhood goes nowhere, and Sookie gets over Warlow by instantly getting a furry new boyfriend… Jesus Christ; this really is “Twilight”. The episode tries to go for that epilogue format and it just feels like a mess. The first half is all over the place, and the second half is rushed as all Hell. Oh, and Sam, the bar owner who can turn into a dog, is now Mayor. Apparently it was an election year.
Coming from someone who enjoyed Season Five, I have to say this is “True Blood” at its worst. While the setup for next year isn’t too bad, it doesn’t make up for such a sub-par season. Everything just feels slapped together with no real thought or care given to the depth or seriousness of the issues at hand. It’s a real shame because I fell in love with this show very quickly, and I don’t want to fall out just as fast. Next year better pick up and give us some real suspense and surprise. Especially if it turns out being their final year. No one wants to go out on such a randomly shitty note.
Oh, and you see Eric’s dick in the finale.