Mon
Jul 15 2013 12:00pm
True Blood Season 6, Ep. 5: “Fuck the Pain Away”

True Blood

“F-A-N-G the pain away?” Naw, this is True Blood, HBO’s flagship summer series, justifying its cable network R-rating by naming an episode after a particularly raunchy Peaches song. The episode was kind of raunchy, too. And it was actually fun. Definitely one of the better episodes of the season. Sex, drama, goofy flashback-wigs worthy of David Boreanaz in Buffy! This hour had it all.

Spoilers ahead...

Sookie

After insanely putting herself in a very compromising position with her vampire-fey enemy Warlow, Sookie isn’t so much as saved by Bill as her Warlow-problem is temporarily on hold because Bill hates Warlow more and pulled the Maker-card. The best True Blood openings are the ones that leave Sookie saying “WTF?!” Warlow reveals that he loves her and wants to be her fairy prince and was only trying to save her from parents that were trying to kill her. At first, I took it to mean that Corbett and Michelle, by refusing to let Warlow turn Sookie into a vampire, were in his eyes condemning Sookie to mortality. Semantics. But no—Corbett was literally going to kill his daughter to save her from Warlow. WHAT? It seems terrible judgment is genetic.

I really feel for Sookie. There’s pretty much no one she can trust. There’s no one to protect her—not even Grandma Adele. It’s sunk in for her now and it’s just bitter times. Good for her for at least trying to take control of her life and figure out why she’s such a magnet for people looking to use her body and her feelings and separate all the truth from the lies. Sookie’s not the smartest person on this show, but at least she’s trying to be.

True Blood Bill Warlow

Bill

As Nora—why didn’t we see her in the Dreadfort this week?—said, Billith and Warlow are destined to fight each other. Warlow’s definitely all kinds of gray. Can we trust him? He says he hates his vampire part and he was pretty much raped by Lillith. So why turn Sookie into one? Will Warlow really kill Bill? Or will his fairy blood save vampirekind and put the whole fairy thing to rest forever?

Jessica

Shouldn’t she be tripping balls for more than ten minutes with the blood of four half-fairies in her? Is it because the girls were young? Their half-blood only equaled two full fairies consumed? I guess I’m just going to go with Eric and Russell ate way more powerful fairies. Anyhoo... Jess is a triple murderer. That’s a kind of character development. Now she’s wrestling with her inner huntress and her human religion—which she had previously abandoned. Loved her pre-capture showdown with Sarah Newlin. Stuck in the camp with the other naughty, dumb vampires, I’m worried what her and Tara’s Level 3 status means for them. Because vampire hamster wheels and dentistry and possibly rape? These characters have been through enough.

Eric

What the hell is wrong with you, Eric? Maybe if I loudly repeat myself like Eric is prone to do when he’s trying to make a point: WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU? Voluntarily walking into the enemy’s camp to rescue his friends. Again. God, this is so insanely dumb. Didn’t we just do this last season? And we saw how well that turned out, right?

Pam

Easily the highlight of tonight’s episode. Her whole therapy session was gold, with too many choice quotes to pick just one. “Hold the fuck up, am I in therapy?” might be it. Or “I like to think of myself as especially unremorseful.” Her speech on human and vampire notions of “forever” and “pain” was pointed and poignant. Maybe not new in vampire fiction, but Pam’s posturing didn’t really hide her pain over Eric’s newfound assholery. At least not to viewers of True Blood. The shrink, on the other hand, took what she was saying at face value and I have to say I was a little pissed that Pam would so easily cooperate with her captors. You knew they’d turn whatever she said against her. And how. A deathmatch is one way to finally give Eric and Pam some sort of closure to their estranged relationship. It’s a messed-up, exciting twist. Worthy of Game of Thrones if the show actually does kill off a major character.

But then I remember this show isn’t Game of Thrones. But the promise of catharsis is enough to keep me looking forward to next week’s episode.

Jason

How nutty was it that Sarah Newlin showed up on Jason’s doorstep, in her lingerie? I won’t lie that it was kind of refreshing to see Jason in a very “heterosexual” sex scene. Reminds me of the first season. But, I hope Jason wore protection. As Governor Burrell and Oscar Bluth know: Never promise crazy a baby. Jason’s fling was just that, a fling, and I guess hot, hot sex is as good a catalyst as anything in Jason’s life, if it gets him to prioritize. His allegiance changes sides more often than gay vampire Steve Newlin.

True Blood Sookie Lafayette

Lafayette

Oh no, not again with the Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost routine. And the possession. At least Alcide has a story of his own. It’s a shitty story, but he at least has a goal in mind.

Everyone Else

Beyond feeling bad for Andy and wondering if his daughters’ mom will return when she finds out he couldn’t keep half of their offspring alive, Big Meh. It’s like they don’t want to release popular shirtless heartthrob Joe Manganiello from his contract, but they have literally no use for Alcide this season. This shifter storyline might be one of the most pointless B-plots in the history of this show. And that’s including Terry’s current angst over killing a murderous douche in self-defense. That someone would kill Terry voluntarily and for free made me laugh. That couldn’t have been intentional. But there it is. I’d say I’m a bad person... but it’s Terry.

 

Next week: No reviews for the next two weeks because I’ll be attending San Diego Comic-Con and my episode reviews for True Blood have been so negative lately, no one at HBO wants me in a room with the showrunners to ask, “WHY DO YOU HATE LAFAYETTE SO MUCH???”

True Blood airs Sundays at 9P.M. E/PT on HBO.


Theresa DeLucci is a regular contributor to Tor.com, covering True Blood, Game of Thrones, and gaming news. Follow her on Twitter @tdelucci

13 comments
meonlyme
1. meonlyme
Although I'm not a fan of Lafayette's ghost possessions, I do love it when he gives the dead vintage La-La attitude when he first enters their world.

I have a question - Why is it when Eric and Russell fed off a fae, the fae turned old and then into dust, but when Jess fed on 1, 2, 3, and 4, they just died, looking as they always did? Perhaps it has to do with age of the fae...?

Yeah, that wig worn by 3500 B.C. Ben'low was a trip. Didn't quite rival G-Pa Niall's Christopher Lloyd in 'Back To The Future' hair, but it definitely came in second on the freaky scale.

Gotta say Eric's look of bewilderment upon learning the Gov'ner imprisoned his own daughter was a stretch. Are we supposed to believe intelligent and conniving Eric REALLY thought the Gov'ner would raise the white flag of defeat simply because his daughter's a vamp? Puh'lease!

Although I'll miss your show synopsises next week and the week after, I hope you have a great time at Comic-Con!
Pritpaul Bains
2. Kickpuncher
@1 meonlyme - The lack of fae-ashing may have also had to the fact that they were halfies, I think, rather than full fae.

Eric is just... he's supposed to be smart, decisive, calculating, dammit. Not the stupid rash vamp he's turned into this season. Doesn't bother training Willa or guiding her on how to deal with her father, set her loose, Willa attacks governor, Eric is legitimately surprised she's imprisoned? What? Argh.

For some reason I though LaLa had learned to control/prevent his possession issues. Guess not. Since that happens almost *every time* he conducts a seance, why is he still doing 'em willingly, especially since they inevitably result in him killing or trying to kill someone he cares about?
meonlyme
3. Gardner Dozois
It's just been announced that TRUE BLOOD has been renewed for a seventh season. Apparently they get 10,000,000 viewers a week.
Theresa DeLucci
4. theresa_delucci
*jumps out the window*

No, no. I do enjoy reviewing the show. It's the watching that gets rough sometimes. I genuinely enjoy writing about television and would do it full time if only I didn't have this pesky desire to keep giving my landlord money. And if I didn't have a mighty Vietnamese street food habit to support.

So, thank you @meonlyme, for saying you'll miss my reviews for the next two weeks. Who knows? Maybe I'll get back from San Francisco and my lingering Xanax haze (for fear of flying) will inspire me to give an episode review in the voice of Hunter S. Thompson. Or I'll just get home and catch up on two weeks' worth of True Blood and Dexter and all of the things I didn't get to see at SDCC because I was at SDCC.

Thinking of Dexter's finale season, I'm really glad the show is ending now. Last season was great and since this eighth season was planned as the final one, the season before had a sense of urgency and impending finality to it, too. It's the kind of forward momentum that's lacking in True Blood. I think the human vs. vampire war would be a natural endgame, yet here we are, kinda spinning our wheels in a limbo.
meonlyme
5. Hammerlock
I'm liking the latest season so far, with the huge caveat of hating how Eric had the idiot ball implanted in his skull.

The big honking plot hole this episode though, is that we find Sheriff Andy pissed and looking for righteous retribution against Beel, but is talked down by Holly since going in solo is quite stupid.

If only there was a paramilitary group sanctioned by the state specifically trained to hunt vampires that he could call up on a moment's notice without really needing a reason. Oh well, may as well drop it and stay home.
meonlyme
6. Gardner Dozois
I generally still do enjoy the show, and at least its been mostly fast-paced this year, unlike last year, with the exception of Episode Two. But it does bother me a bit that the characters, none of whom were ever Mental Giants, have become unbelievably dumb. Eric, who is supposed to be the slyest, trickiest, cleverest character on the show has come up with two REALLY DUMB plans in the course of the last two episodes. Wouldn't it have made more sense to find out where The Camp was and then plan a daring raid to break in and save Pam? As it is, he's put himself in a position where if he gets out alive, it'll only be because he's a major character/heartthrob on the show. The turning the Governor's daughter and sending her to show the Governor the errors of his ways plan was really dumb too. If Andy admits that he can't go up against Bill on his own, why not call the Governor's forces who are scouring the state for vampires and sic them on Bill? This never occurs to him? (I do have to give points to Andy, though, for thinking of giving his daughter vampire blood, which I didn't think he was smart enough to do; I was sitting there saying "Give her some vampire blood, you moron!" for a long while before he actually got around to it.) If Bill wants Warlow to let go of The Scientist, why doesn't he just comand him as his Maker to do so? (I must say, though, that Bill as Warlow's Maker is a twist that never occurred to me.) Sookie's Dad can't think of anything else to do but immediately kill his daughter? (By throwing her in the river yet!) This is his FIRST plan, before they even try anything else? And don't these people ever talk to one another? If Sookie had told Jason and Niall earlier on that she'd figured out that Ben was Warlow, they might have been able to figure out a plan that didn't end up with Niall being thrown into the Phantom Zone. And why didn't Sookie just fairy-blast Layfette with her magic fingers and then run away?

I hope we don' t see any more scenes of Warlow at the Dawn of Time, as they were really silly. Andy's subtheme is still holding my interest at the moment, mostly because of the father-trying-to-protect-his-daughter angle, but I've come to the point where I could care less what happens to Sam and Alcide, let alone Terry and Arlene.

And how in the world did Mrs. Newland revoke Jessica's invitation from JASON'S HOUSE? Even Jason protests about this, which goes against the entire mythology of the show, but do you want to bet that it's never mentioned again?

Nevertheless, in spite of all these quibbles, I was glad to hear that they're renewing the show for another season. Although since I was thinking that this would be their last season, I'd assumed that Sookie would use the Sparkly Magic Fairy Ball of Doom against Warlow and lose her fairy powers and go off to "lead a normal life" somewhere else at the end of the show, but now that I know there's going to be another season, I'm not sure what's going to happen.
meonlyme
7. Gardner Dozois
And it never occurs to the Govenor to extend his vampire-hunt to the huge freaking mansion where the King of Louisiana used to live, the location of which was never a secret? We're not talking about the Bat-Cave here.
Shelly wb
8. shellywb
The only thing I can think of that might be able to make Mrs. Newland able to throw Jessica out of that house, is that she had just happened to conceive a Stackhouse. Heck, maybe even a part fairy one (it evidently skips generations!). It's a stretch, but since they called attention to it in the show I'll bet it means something like that.
Alan Brown
9. AlanBrown
I thought Eric was not only stupid, but he also showed a lot more sappy human-type sentimentality in this ep than he has in the entire show to date--a bit out of character.
And, like others have noted, the Pam scenes were great. If they expose all the vampires to hideous torture, it makes all the sense in the world for her torture to be sharing her innermost thoughts and feelings... ;-)
meonlyme
10. Darket
I havnt read the books so I dont know if there are any clues there, but I have to wonder... Is Warlow Nialls father??
Don Barkauskas
11. bad_platypus
If Bill wants Warlow to let go of The Scientist, why doesn't he just comand him as his Maker to do so?
Bill starts to, and Warlow interrupts him and says "He'll be dead before you finish the sentence."
meonlyme
12. asaar
@10 Darket
Warlow doesn't exist at all in the books (though Niall does), but the show did seem to suggest that Warlow was indeed Niall's father in the flashbacks.

I also wondered why Jessica/Bill didn't give the girls their blood right away - I guess 3 of them were already totally dead? But still, you think they would have tried.
My other lingering question - wouldn't Activist Girl turn into a werewolf since she was bitten by one? or is that not how it works in this world? Sigh. I guess I don't really care about that whole plotline anyway, but it seems like that would at least make it a little more interesting.
meonlyme
13. meonlyme
@asaar - In season 4, that question was asked in the show by Sookie to Alcide and he told her a person is born a were; a person cannot turn into one.

Subscribe to this thread

Receive notification by email when a new comment is added. You must be a registered user to subscribe to threads.
Post a comment