My name is Luke Duffy, I am an aspiring media journalist from Ireland and this is my website, Media Pancake. Media Pancake is a site devoted to my reviews and thoughts on the latest in film, television, and video games. If you enjoy my articles then please share them with your friends and stick around for my upcoming posts. Thanks.
Friday, 26 July 2013
TV Review: True Blood Season 6 Episode 1 'Who Are You, Really?'
‘True Blood’ used to be my
favourite show on television, it was that good. Was.
Picking up from where the
season 5 finale left off, Sookie and Eric escape from a now god-powered Bill.
The characters are left stunned at what has happened to their friend and seek
to find answers to what exactly he has done to himself, starting with the
search for the vampire bible.
The very mention of a
“Vampire Bible” should be an indication of how downhill this show has gone, it
speaks volumes about how lo-brow and vapid the plotting has been for the past 2
seasons. ‘True Blood’ has mutated from cutting-edge supernatural horror into
utterly ridiculous b-movie campiness over a matter of years. The writing of the show, which once
carried great symbolism within its intelligent words, has now become so
boorishly scripted it bears no resemblance whatsoever to the stunning show it
Some people talk about a show
having a “jumping on point” for new viewers, an episode that best demonstrates
the mood of the show to give possible viewers an example of what to expect in
the full series. I bring this up because I feel that I’ve found the “jumping
off point” for ‘True Blood’ and it is this episode. It’s time to sever the
infected limb and be done with it, this show is dying a horrible, slow death and
by watching it we’re just prolonging the awful, excruciating pain.
The vampire drama is not nearly as engaging as it once was.
The acting is just as
it as always been for the most part, ranging from fairly great to excellent.
Actors like Stephen Moyer, Anna Paquin and Alexander Skarsgard still bring their
characters to life with the same proficiency that they always have but their passion
seems to be missing. I couldn’t possibly blame them for this; most of the
writing they have been given is just atrocious. Meanwhile Rutina Wesley’s
portrayal of Tara Thornton feels more tired and caricatured than ever, if that
was possible, Tara should have been gone seasons ago, as a character she has
nothing left to offer the story but a meaningless thread to the origins of the
This brings me to yet another
issue with ‘True Blood’ and that is it’s convoluted mythology. The earlier
seasons had the single supernatural element of the vampires and dealt with them
extremely well, the slow ramp-up to the inclusion of other supernaturals such
as werewolves was handled well but sometime around season 4 every ounce of
controlled pacing in this area went right out the window. Suddenly these supers
were popping up everywhere, idiotic inclusions such as “werepanthers” and a
poor handling of Sookie’s fairy origins ruined the uniqueness of its magical
characters. ‘True Blood’ suddenly became the show where “everybody was
something” as even the most human of characters present from the beginning of
the series were given a fresh coat of supernatural paint in order to somehow
reinvigorate them and make them interesting again to the audience.
Jason (Ryan Kwanten) and Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin).
The last few seasons have
shown one clear fault in ‘True Blood’ and that is it’s dizzying number of plot
threads which are a pain to follow, most of these are inconsequential and annoyingly take screen time away
from stories that actually entertain. This is a result of the show’s inability
to let a character’s arc end or to simply kill them off, it shows utter
weakness and unoriginality on the part of the writers who seem content to
ramble on with characters who have lost whatever intrigue they once possessed.
The departure of the great Alan Ball says a lot about the current integrity of
the show he created, quite frankly what is airing now is leagues away from what the show was once upon a time.
I believe that television shows
should always go out on a high note, usually this means ending after about 7 seasons.
‘True Blood’ however has not even reached that milestone; it has corrupted so
quickly and so greatly that it’s glory days are long behind it at this point.
It may still retain some of the charm it once had but don’t let it’s rosy
cheeks fool you, ‘True Blood’ has been dead for years.