True to form, ‘True Blood’ ended its sixth season with another anticlimactic, underwhelming finale episode, as it has so many times before. Sometimes it feels like the writers have never watched any other serialized TV show before, and have no idea what viewers expect or want from one.
As I said in my last recap, after Eric and Bill rescued the other vampires from prison, most of the season’s storylines were basically concluded, with little need to drag it out to another episode. What we’re left with in ‘Radioactive’ is Warlow, who remains insistent that Sookie become his immortal fairy-vampire bride. When Sookie makes the not-unreasonable request that perhaps they could date a little and get to know each other before she signs her soul over to him for all eternity, Warlow turns into a super-abusive jerk, basically from out of nowhere and for no reason.
Bill feels guilty about encouraging Sookie to whore herself to Warlow, but he seems to have lost all of his Lilith superpowers and can’t do much about it. He convinces Adilyn to help him cross over to fairy land, and recruits Jason and Andy to help him rescue Sookie. Although they manage to get her back to our plane and into her house, Warlow easily overpowers the two humans, and Bill finds himself unable to cross the threshold of the house. This all climaxes in an incredibly lame deux ex machina, wherein Sookie is saved at the last minute by the miraculous and timely reappearance of her grandpa Niall, who was last seen banished to a hell dimension. Conveniently, he fights his way back just in time to grab Warlow, allowing Jason (who’d been locked in the basement not 30 seconds earlier) to stake him, reducing the once-fearsome Warlow to a puddle of goo.
Remember all that build-up about Sookie’s powerful fairy magic ball that could kill any vampire? Yeah, that comes to nothing. The helpless girl has to be rescued by a couple of men. This is peculiarly sexist of the show.
This entire storyline feels pointless to me. If Eric had killed Warlow when he drained his blood, there’d be no need to waste another half hour on this. The show attempts to justify this, however, with a sudden plot twist that Warlow’s death ends the magic spell of his blood – meaning that the vampires who drank it can no longer walk in the sun. This is bad news for Eric, seen nude sunbathing on a mountaintop in Sweden when the spell wears off. He bursts into flames, but we don’t actually see him die. I expect that Pam will save him.
All of this draws to a close in the first 30 minutes of the episode. Much like the notorious Season 2 finale, the last half abruptly shifts gears and spends a meandering half hour setting up the premise for next season.
It’s now six months after the death of Governor Burrell. An outbreak of Hepatitis V has claimed a significant portion of the vampire population. Roaming bands of sick vamps move from town to town, attacking humans and infecting other vampires. The state government is in disarray and the federal government has offered no help. (I assume that this is a national problem, given that we know that a shipment of the tainted Tru Blood made its way to Hawaii.)
Bill is now a celebrity and bestselling author, having written a tell-all book called ‘And God Bled’. He freely admits on television to murdering the governor and fears no repercussions for it. Sookie and Alcide are officially together as a couple. Jason and Violet are still together, and she’s still withholding sex to frustrate him. Sam has given his restaurant to Arlene, who’s renamed it “Bellefleur’s.”
More importantly, Sam is now the mayor of Bon Temps. He convenes a town meeting at the church, where he announces a plan that he and Bill have concocted in the hopes of keeping the citizens safe. He proposes that every human who is not a carrier for Hep V be paired up with a healthy vampire for a mutually symbiotic feeding relationship. The humans will provide blood for the vampires, and the vampires will protect the humans from the dangerous infected vamps. Naturally, this is greeted with controversy. Nevertheless, Sam hosts a public dance to get people to sign up. At that moment, a huge horde of infected vampires descends on the town. End scene.
So, I guess next season will have a vaguely post-apocalyptic vibe. The cliffhanger is pretty limp, and the treatment of the infected vamps contradicts what we were previously told about Hepatitus V. When Nora got infected, she didn’t turn into a raving psycho monster. She got incredibly weak and frail, and died soon afterwards professing her love to brother Eric. This new infected zombie-vampire set-up doesn’t make much sense.
Like other of the show’s finales, the episode has no sense of pacing or structure, and falls tonally flat. I suppose I should be used to this by now, but it’s still disappointing all the same.