I am loving the amnesiac Eric storyline on this season of ‘True Blood’ so much that I’m willing forgive some of the less interesting stuff going on in the show right now. Of which, unfortunately, there’s a fair amount.
Let’s start with the good parts, though. ‘I’m Alive and on Fire’ opens with Eric having just drained Sookie’s fairy godmother to death. This makes him really drunk and totally loopy from the fairy blood. Alexander Skarsgard obviously had a blast playing this, and he’s really hilarious. Eric flirts shamelessly with Sookie, behaves like a child, and eventually runs off.
Sookie has to recruit Alcide to help her search for Eric. They find him frolicking in a pond in broad daylight – a nice side effect of the fairy juice. There’s some very funny macho posturing bullshit between Eric and Alcide, done solely for Sookie’s benefit, but she’s having none of it. Eric doesn’t want to ever leave the sunlight, but soon the fairy spell wears off and he starts burning. Sookie wraps him in a blanket and has him race back to the house. Later, he petulantly mopes about having to return to the darkness, and tries to convince Sookie to stay up with him all day in the cubby den that he built in her house. She reminds him that he’ll start bleeding if he doesn’t go to sleep, then leaves him alone there. Eric is sad.
The witch storyline isn’t quite as much fun as this, but I’m OK with this one, and certainly prefer witches as villains over fairies. Lafayette, Jesus and Tara beg Marnie to reverse her spell on Eric. Unfortunately, she still has no idea what spell the “Great Spirit” used when it possessed her. Marnie has a flashback vision of a witch being burned at the stake in olden times. The spirit then directs her to a spell book.
Lafayette et al. bring Marnie to Pam, who demands that she reverse her spell immediately. Marnie starts an incantation, but is then taken over by the Great Spirit and casts a curse on Pam that causes her face to desiccate and fall apart, turning her in the walking corpse that she really is. Pam flees in terror. This was not a wise move for any of the humans. Tara and Lafayette are pissed.
At the very least, I can say that the Jason storyline has finally made some progress. I still don’t really care for where this one is going, though. Basically, all of the women in Hotshot rape Jason. When a 13-year-old girl named Becky is sent in for her turn, she’s scared and Jason talks her into letting him go free. He escapes and runs off. When Felton finds out, he chases in pursuit. Jason is smart enough to set an ambush and manages to kill Felton.
Crystal comes up shortly after. She’s not mad about Felton being dead at all. In fact, she’s happy about it, and believes that she and Jason can now reign as the “Ghost Momma” and “Ghost Daddy” of the panthers together. Jason tells her to fuck off. Crystal lets him go, but tells him that he’ll come crawling back as soon as he starts to turn into a panther. Jason wanders away and passes out on the side of a road where Jessica and Hoyt find him. Jessica gives him some of her blood.
The other storylines in the episode drop-off in interest level pretty quickly. Let’s see, Bill is officially dating Andy’s sister Portia, who brings him home to meet her grandma (Katherine Helmond). Grandma takes a liking to Bill, especially when he helps her to fill in the blanks of their family history with his knowledge of the town. But, uh oh, her genealogy book has some bad news for Bill. There’s a Compton in the Bellefleur family tree. He immediately tells Portia that they have to break off their relationship, because she is his great-great-great-great-granddaughter. D’oh! I bet Bill wishes that he’d found that out before they had so much dirty, dirty sex.
Speaking of relationships, Sam discovers that his Shifter girlfriend Luna has a young daughter. He plays Barbies with the girl and they all get along splendidly. This was really worth wasting screen time on?
Also a complete waste of time is the nonsense with Arlene’s allegedly-evil baby. In this episode, he gets hold of a crayon and scribbles “Baby Not Yours” (a message to Terry) on the wall, which freaks everybody out. Or, we’re supposed to think the baby wrote that. I’m pretty sure it was really the creepy doll doing it. In either case, I just can’t bring myself to care anymore.
Yet even this isn’t quite as dull as the Tommy storyline. Tommy is not a major character, and just isn’t interesting enough to dedicate a whole storyline to. Nevertheless, in this episode he goes to visit his momma, who tricks him into believing that she’s left Joe Lee. As soon as Tommy’s guard is down, Joe Lee sneaks up and captures him in a choke collar so that he can train him to be a good doggie again. Sigh. I wish the show would just kill the whole lot of these characters off already. They serve no purpose to anything anymore.
Outside of forgetful Eric’s storyline, Trueblood really isn’t doing it for me this season. I’d be alright with the witch storyline if it weren’t for the horrible way Marnie’s character is being handled. The fact that she has zero control over her badass witchy powers, and suffers from her own brand of amnesia after she does anything remotely interesting, just kind of neuters what could otherwise be an interesting character. In the books, god help me I’ve read some of the books, the witches – aka the villains – are just super powerful witches hopped up on V, which is kind of cool. Marnie on the other hand, who has almost nothing to do with any of the powerful magic she’s using, is as threatening as a toddler.
Speaking of, that evil baby storyline is … bad. Just bad. No mas por favor.
The Jason/Hotshot, Bill/Portia, Sam, and Tommy storylines are all equally tedious. I’d argue that the return of the Mickens is probably the worst development though. As you say Tommy is not an interesting character. SOOO uninteresting in fact that he spends the majority of the episode talking about reading. Like there are literally two or three scenes where he and his mom talk about it, and you get the impression that they’ve spent the whole day talking about it. In a show about supernatural beings having sex with humans, my take on Trueblood, putting on the brakes to talk about the power of reading seems like a pretty big mistake. Here’s hoping next episode is a little bit better.
Did anyone else expect Eric to hold up a pack of Mentos after draining Claudine?
I thought both the Eric and Tommy subplots are the least interesting of all the subplots. Sookie is getting more and more like Snooki: clueless and not relatable. The best subplot is the witch subplot.