Friday, June 24, 2011


Congratulations to Stephen Moyer for his Saturn Award Win, Best Actor in a Television Show. Joe won for Best Guest Star. Read all the winners at TVOvermind

New Jess Vlog I didnt expect this would happen so soon.

Televisionary's Jace wrote on the first 3 episodes but this is not the whole thing, go read that at the link-

 After a complete misstep in the opening installment, the first three episodes of Season Four of True Blood (sent out to press for review a few weeks back) return to form, shifting the action back to Bon Temps and to the sprawling set of characters established over the last few seasons. Showrunner Alan Ball  is being particularly spoiler-averse this year, which means that I'm forbidden to get into too much detail about the season opener, though those of you who watched the first eight minutes of the season already know a considerable amount about light fruit, Mab, and other details.
But it's the circumstances around Sookie that are perhaps the least interesting elements of the first few episodes back. More intriguing are the other storylines surrounding her: Sam's quest to belong; Jessica's exploration of her true nature; Tara's attempts to find herself (I did say that identity is the key underlying theme, didn't I?); Andy's struggle to maintain his personal sense of order. Elsewhere, the vampires attempt to put a new face on their community following Russell Edgington's televised slaughter of a news anchor last season, high-quality home furnishings and property ownership are discussed, Bill deals with some new responsibilities, and a group of witches convenes at a New Age bookshop, drawing together several familiar faces into the spiritual realm.
I'm still not in love with the faerie storyline (particularly after seeing how it was handled in those opening minutes), but there are several long-dangling plot threads neatly tied up due to some reveals here. Sookie's dual heritage is of especial interest, as she finds herself caught between her own personal desires and the political machinations of the faerie court, such as it is. But there are some shocking moments contained within this plotline as well, at least. (One in particular was a real jaw-dropper.) And there's another storyline--a particularly creepy one surrounding Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten) and Hotshot--that made my blood run cold.
But, putting these issues aside, the second episode of the season, “You Smell Like Dinner" (written by Brian Buckner and directed by Scott Winant) is a particularly strong installment, setting up a new status quo for the series and examining the fallout from Season Three's events in a compelling and addictive way.
It's impossible to look away from Fiona Shaw's Marnie: she's ambition incarnate in a dowdy print dress, a frumpy housewife whose placid exterior conceals the beating heart of the power-mad. Rutina Wesley's Tara is for once not painted as either the angry black woman or as the victim, but as a rather badass version of herself. Look for a major showdown between Tara and Pam... and some typical steal-stealing from Kristin Bauer van Straten in general, who once again gets to have some of the most deliciously bitchy lines on television and who tosses off these bon mots with such effortless grace that it's auditory candy to hear her speak. (One moment in the season opener, in which Pam tries to reach out to Fangtasia's human customers, is particularly hilarious.) Nelsan Ellis' Lafayette and Kevin Alejandro's Jesus continue to charm; Deborah Ann Woll's Jessica and Jim Parrack's Hoyt, meanwhile, have some hard times ahead. (Let's just say that Jessica's cooking skills aren't quite up to par with Maxine's.)

Alexander Skarsgard shines in this season, delivering a stirring performance that's vastly different to anything we've seen from him to date. Season Four's Eric is an entirely separate creature than the vampire sheriff we've come to know over the last three seasons, displaying a rare innocence and animal naivete that's entirely captured in Skarsgard's subtle facial expressions and in his eyes. He's at the top of his game, really.

At least for now, there's a less frenzied pace to the storytelling (compared to the tail end of Season Three) and a concentration of setting, keeping the action confined to Bon Temps, Hotshot, and nearby Shreveport.  But by using the area around Bon Temps as a nexus for the season's multitude of plotlines, it infuses every shot of the town with possibility. (You never know just what's lurking on the other side of street.) 

Just slight spoilery bites from SamTrammel's interview with Reading Eagle, sometimes these smaller news sources have great info.
"Last season, by the end of it, Sam was in a real state," the actor continued. "His buttons had been pushed by many people, and it ended in this eruption where I beat up that were-panther, started drinking, and I had a flashback to when I killed a couple of people, and I was betrayed by a girl I was seeing and committing petty crimes with. Hung over, still kind of reliving that flashback, I went to Tommy's house, saw that he was gone, suspected that he may have stolen the safe with all of my money, and chased him down." Viewers then saw Sam fire his gun and nothing more.

"What you didn't see is whether or not I shot Tommy," Trammell said, speaking by telephone from his Los Angeles home, "and what had happened with Sam is that he basically took two steps back. He'd gone to Bon Temps to start a new life, and no one knew about this side of him, where he had a criminal background and these anger issues.

"So in Season 4 I'm dealing with that eruption that happened at the end of Season 3 and also with Sam's past catching up with him," he said. "It's going to be cool, because we'll see more of this shape-shifter community I've met, who are helping me deal with my issues, with all of the betrayal in my life, especially from my first adopted family leaving me because I was a shape-shifter. With this community I can talk about shape-shifting and heal myself a bit.
"And it'll be cool for the audience, because they'll learn a little more about shape-shifting, things we didn't know about the mythology."
Even better, Sam will be getting a love interest during Season 4 - and, no shocker, she'll be a shape-shifter. Janina Gavankar, late of "The Gates" (2010), will play the character, a, pardon the pun, shapely schoolteacher named Luna.
"Luna is a very interesting character, and Sam is very attracted to her," Trammell said. "She's not just beautiful, but she's also mysterious. She's like Sam in the sense that she doesn't want to reveal a lot about herself, about her past or who she is. Throughout the season those secrets start to reveal themselves to Sam, and some of them put Sam in danger. 

MTV's Hollywood Crush has a new video up (check it out at the link) and this bit-

Husband and on-screen love interest Stephen Moyer will be taking on a new role this season now that the fate of his vampire nemesis has been cemented. (Ha!) "Bill's kind of clearing up the mess that Russell Edgington made," Stephen dished. "So we sort of tell the humans that vampires aren't interested in them. You know, which is a tough job."
Many cast mates, including Alexander Skarsgård (who plays Eric) and Kristin Bauer (who plays Pam), hinted that we'll see new sides of their characters, but probably the most startling revelation came from Rutina Wesley, who plays sharp-tongued Tara. "I think she's in a very zen place. She kind of goes and finds herself, so to speak, and finds how to love herself. I think she's ready to be open to the world and to life and to love."
Tara? Zen? We can hardly believe it. Though before you drop dead from shock, it sounds like at least one constant will remain for the drama magnet. "But she does get swept back up into the world of vampires. It is 'True Blood,'" Rutina added with a smirk.
The Vulture Blog is becoming all True Blood all the time, like us! More to read at the link.

Plenty of Lafayette
The Sookie-Bill-Eric love triangle might be the show's central romance, but Lafayette — with all his "hooker, please" — is the show's delightful voice of reason. True Blood is its most interesting and entertaining when its fantasy elements are in contact and contrast with the normal world as we know it, and Lafayette's point of view often provides the jolt of a perfectly delivered reality check. And, thankfully, he's never been more present or happy than he is at the beginning of Season 4.
It's scary again
True Blood does gore just fine, but legitimate frights had largely disappeared from the series. Not so this season! Definitely watch the first episode with the lights on.
Eric (and, therefore, Alexander Skarsgård) has way more to do
No one's going to complain about Eric when he's dark and brooding, but this season True Blood is letting Skarsgård flex his (ample, lovely) muscles in other, sweeter directions, and it's a welcome shift. Plus, it adds some interesting emotional depth to his potential romance with Sookie.
The story actually moves forward
Finally. Only a few months elapsed over the first few seasons, so despite all the action, death, aggressive intercourse, tender intercourse, revelations, chases, shootings, shape-shifts, and general family drama, the characters were relatively stuck and stagnant. Not so this time! To put it in as spoiler-free terms as we can, this season everybody moves forward in a big way.
The secondary and tertiary characters are fun again
Arlene and Terry have the most underrated relationship on the show, and they get a juicy story arc in the early episodes that highlights what True Blood actually does well: blend dark, terrifying supernatural elements with cheeky sarcasm and folksy levity. Tara gets a solid story, Hoyt and Jessica have more to do than just stand around and loop dopey, and Sam actually starts to enjoy being a shape-shifter.

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