True Blood: The First Taste
(S01E02) "Angelina Adopts a Vampire baby." - Cover of a tabloid
After all the comments I got about last week's review, I feel that I have to address some issues.
The first one is the books that this show is based on. I understand that they are popular and without the series there would be no show but I haven't read them nor do I have any intention of doing so. My job is to review the television show True Blood and unless they introduce a character named Charlaine Harris, this is the last time you will see that name in my review.
The second issue is a comment I made in last week's review about how I find southern accents funny. One reader in particular was offended by this and went so far as to call it a form of racism. I find a lot of things funny and southern accents are one of them. All that means is that people with southern accents make me laugh, that's all. If you want to glean some anti-southern message from that, so be it. I can't stop you. Just like you can't stop me from enjoying Talladega Nights.
Now on to my review.
As disturbingly violent as it was, I really liked that the opening started right where last week's episode left off. Clearly, that dog is more than just some stray. I just hope it doesn't turn out to be something dumb like a cursed soul. I mean, what is this, Sabrina the Teen Age Witch?
I was relieved to see that Jason didn't kill anyone but I was even more relieved to see that the local law enforcement didn't automatically rule him out. It's refreshing to see small town lawmen who aren't portrayed as idiots. The fact that they sweated Jason in hopes of getting a confession shows that they are at least competent.
The first fifteen minutes of the show seemed pretty choppy to me. Jumping back and forth from Sookie to Jason to Tara and back made me wish they would stop and concentrate on one storyline at a time. I understand that there are a lot of characters with a lot to say but I'd like to see a little more patience from the director.
Once Sookie and Bill were able to have a conversation, I felt that I was actually seeing some character development. I learned a little more about Sookie's abilities and the truth about vampire blood, although shouldn't it be ichor?
I'm still in awe at how well these characters are written. Lois Smith's, "Gran" Adele, for instance, manages to take each little scene and convey a myriad of emotions ranging from excitement over meeting a civil war vet to concern about her grandkids.
The writing also shines in all the ways they compare vampire prejudice with others. It's hard to imagine vampires as an oppressed group since we know them to be fictional but when you give in to the idea that they exist in this world and are asking to be treated as equals it really makes perfect sense. I just wish there were more examples of the "vampire lobby" than the few we get each episode.
Bill and Sookie's walk was a nice way to let us know more about Bill's vampiric ways and I enjoyed the flashbacks that showed us what it was like for Sookie to grow up being so different. What I liked the most was seeing Bill almost lose control after being so bewitched by Sookie.
As with most second offerings, this episode didn't quite measure up to the pilot but it still held my interest. More importantly, seeing the vampire with the skeleton tattoo at Bill's house guaranteed that I'll be tuning in next week.