True Blood, why?!
Listen, I don’t know what to say about the True Blood finale, so I’m just going to complain about it. In my last post on True Blood I did this whole bit about how absurd it was to call such an overly plotted show “boring,” and yet… okay. Uncle.
The big ending gesture was that Sookie and all of the as-yet-uncharacterized faeries disappear in a burst of golden light. That whole strange Lafayette plotline ended in a ho-hum declaration that his boyfriend is a witch, nothing at all happened with the Arlene-is-carrying-a-devil-baby story, and honestly, the most emotionally moving bit of the whole episode was that Sookie got mad at Bill. Yeah. They didn’t even leave a little “Is Eric going to live?!” cliffhanger action to propel the audience across the season hiatus. I suppose I do have to give some credit for the horrifying appearance of Russell Edgington burned past the point of recognizable humanity, snickering even as his blackened, flakey skin floats enticingly through the air. Even he was a figure meant to gross you out rather than frighten you – his whole appeal has been his insane invincibility, and by the end, he was barely putting up a fight.
So let’s just set this season aside and think about what would need to change for True Blood to return to its former gory appeal. For one, it would be nice to see not quite so many plotlines Maybe we don’t need Nazi werewolves, insane vampire lover, shapeshifter dog fighting, the King of Mississippi, inbred addict werepanthers, an evil fetus, a cute perpetually re-virginizing baby vamp, voodoo gay boyfriends, and long-lost faerie relatives in the same season, mmkay? It would also be appealing to me, from a narrative standpoint, if perhaps the multiplicity of plotlines were to come together in some sort of meaningful relationship with each other by the end of the season. I’m not saying the Nazi werewolves have to kidnap the voodoo gay boyfriends and take them to a long-lost faerie family reunion or anything ridiculous like that, but just maybe, it could appear as though all of these characters actually lived in the same small town and knew each other.
I think that what True Blood needs to learn from this last season is that a small amount of organization and background structure are better support for the crazy aesthetics than a free-for-all in Bon Temps.