True Blood episode review: “I Smell a Rat”

On this Sunday’s episode of True Blood, a lot of people come clean about a lot of deep, dark secrets. Everyone’s so refreshingly honest, you can almost forgive that this episode was kind of filler-iffic. But to be fair, last week’s ending was pretty tough to follow.

First, let me say that I like Arlene again. She finally told Terry that her baby’s daddy is René. Did anyone expect Terry to react with anything less than understanding and love? Even so, I still got all full of “Aw” when he told her that together they would surround that fangbanger-killing spawn with as much love as possible. Yet I wonder why Arlene still went to Holly the “Wiccan” (um, still not convinced she’s any actual witch with supernatural powers, not some Neo-Pagan neophyte) to handle her unwanted pregnancy situation.

Another small, enjoyable confession was Jessica telling Hoyt that she still loved him. I’m glad the show didn’t keep these two apart for too long. Hoyt, like Terry, is a stand-up guy and I think he’d help Jessica deal with all of her vampire growing pains. She bit his Mama! If he can overlook that, I think he could overlook almost anything.

In much bigger news, Jason finally told Tara that he shot Eggs, because Jason shooting Franklin is naturally similar enough to shooting Eggs that it warrants a flashback moment of trauma to that old news and the staking of Eddie. The whole heartfelt conversation was made even better by the fact that Jason brought a still-shaken Tara breakfast. I kept wishing he’d say something Jason-like such as: “Here you go, Tara. I brought you some eggs. Speaking of eggs…well, um, you see….” Eggs will be just a little bump in the road that brings Tara and Jason together romantically.

Here’s to hoping Crystal becomes roadkill.

A were-panther? That’s even more “fucking lame” than Sookie being a fairy. There’s really nothing redeeming about Crystal as a character at all. When she picked Jason over her family, I should’ve been relieved, but it just feels so phony and forced upon us. Maybe I just don’t think True Blood needs another set of shapeshifters when there’s still so much more to explore with Sam and even Alcide and Debbie. (Where are the wolves? Can the wolves eat the panthers?)

Speaking of everyone’s favorite shifter, did anyone ever guess that Sam had anger issues in the past? He had mentioned being something of a thief in his troubled youth, but actually shooting a woman? Wow. I’m really surprised. It seems like three seasons into a TV show, you’d know most of the major events of a main character’s life. I kind of liked the idea of Sam being the most normal, least-troubled person in Bon Temps. Despite being a shapeshifter. I don’t think we needed character backstory to put his beating of Crystal’s dad into more context.

Much like Eggs, Crystal has the ability to draw other characters into her suck. If Jesus was so anti-drug dealer, why would he take V? If his grandfather was such a powerful black magician, why would Jesus want to play with fire? Isn’t Lafayette enough trouble without adding illicit substances into the mix? I still don’t get all of the rules of V use. It can do whatever the writers want it to do, like give super orgasms, powerful visions, and now unlock family secrets? Can Sookie drink more of Bill’s blood to learn about her own fairy past then?

And again, there was more questions about whether Bill is trustworthy. (He is, for the most part, I think.) Or if Eric is trustworthy. (I think he is, too, ultimately.) But it’s all just sort of lost in the shuffle of so many characters with so many separate storylines. I’m just glad Sookie knows what she is now. Even if it’s only a hazy understanding, at least her plot can move forward.

This episode was all about setting up the final two hours. It’s a problem with watching TV live and not marathoning a whole season on DVD. I know we needed this hour, but it’s harder to enjoy as the impatience for some action grows. Like, it’s nice Russell got to say goodbye to Talbot in a depressing and slutty way and that Eric filled out his will, but, I want to see what insane act of war these two vampires would make next. Eric chaining up Sookie in the basement of Fangtasia at least offers some promise that the next two parts of this finale will be a lot more fun.

Quotes of the week:

  • Sam: “It’s not respect when your employees think you’re a psychopath.” I beg to differ.
  • Lafayette talking about Crystal and her father: “Dem fuckers is a whole new dimension of trash.” Preach it, La-la.

Theresa DeLucci is horribly sad that summer and True Blood will be ending soon.ddwill beee  will be ending soon.


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